Contrary to common belief, Kennebunk is a separate town from Kennebunkport. With around 11,000 residents, it is located north of Wells and is “the only town in the world so named” after splitting from Wells in 1820. It is a highly popular summer tourist destination, with beaches, historic architecture & museums, the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, and lobster and blueberries of course! The Kennebunk/Kennebunkport school system is strong, offering K-12 and the New School offering community-based learning. Year-round residents are rising, as the town holds events throughout the year, and ski mountains are only an hour away. Residents also often choose the Kennebunks for their primary or secondary residences, and commute to Portland or Massachusetts.

Walking, Biking & Driving

Biking and hiking are a must-do activity when visiting in the summer months. There are countless rural trails ranging from beginner to advanced hikes and bike rides. The Museum in the Streets walking tour is also a must-do, with 25 small stops all around downtown Kennebunk, including The Wedding Cake House and the Brick Store Museum. The Eastern Trail, Ocean Avenue & Cape Porpoise, Kennebunk Beach, and Kennebunk Land Trust are a few of the great places for a walk or bike ride!

The Scene

It is challenging to encapsulate the Kennebunks’ scene in a few words, but on a perfect summer’s day or a crisp December night, it is simply paradise. It is a wealthier area, nut also not out of reach if considering it for a family move. Both high and off-seasons offer many beaches to choose from, such as Parsons, Mother’s, and Kennebunk Beaches. Exquisite food, dining and accommodations include The White Barn Inn, Boulangerie Bakery, The Kennebunk Inn, The Clam Shack, Sebago Brewing Company and Federal Jack’s. And year-round events include a farmer’s market, Harvestfest & Summerfest, and music on Main.

The Backstory

Kennebunk was first settled in 1621, and means “long cut bank,” after the long bank behind Kennebunk Beach. It was primarily a shipbuilding settlement through the early 20th century, and to this day, there are many shipbuilders’ homes that are architectural models and can be visited on the Museum in the Streets tour. In the 19th and 20th century, light manufacturing business came to the area with millwork. It is also home to the Tom’s of Maine headquarters.