Looking for an unforgettable coastal getaway? Look no further than Hampton Beach, New Hampshire. A vacation rental in Hampton Beach puts you minutes away from the shoreline, as well as plenty of dining and entertainment venues along the boardwalk. From arcades to concerts to water sports, this small New England town has tons of attractions to offer. Check out these 15 activities to get your vacation planning underway.
1. Relax on the Beach
You can’t visit Hampton Beach without spending time on the soft sands that line the Atlantic Ocean. Combine the fun of downtown and the boardwalk with the downtown beach, or visit the point at Hampton Beach State Park to watch the ships head into the harbor. Chill at the beach in comfort with rental chairs and umbrellas fro Coastal Vacation Supplies, A to Z Beach Mart, or Seacoast Gear Rentals.
2. See a Show at the Casino Ballroom
After a day on the beach, head across the boardwalk to the 1,800 seat Casino Ballroom to see a concert from a national touring act. The ballroom, which dates back to the late 1800s, hosts shows from April to November. Tickets can sell out fast for some artists, so be sure to plan ahead.
3. Explore Hampton Harbor by Kayak
Paddle until your heart’s content with a kayak rental from Platypus Tours. You can rent solo or tandem or double kayaks for four or eight hours from the Platy Shack at Hampton State Marina. Rentals include life jackets so you can get out on the water safely.
4. Play Arcade Games at Funarama
Master skee ball, air hockey, or one of the many classic arcade games at Funarama, which is located just off the beach downtown. Modern games complement your childhood favorites, and players can win tickets to exchange for prizes or treats.
5. Go Parasailing or Paddleboarding
See the beach from the ocean side as you glide along the water on a paddleboard or through the sky while parasailing. Bring your own paddleboard to your vacation rental, or stop by Hampton Beach Parasail and SUP Rental and get everything you need to go at your own pace. The company also brings you the adventure of parasailing up to 1000 feet above the waves. You can even fly with a couple of friends or family members with multi-person parasailing.
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6. Touch Sea Creatures at the Oceanarium
Get a hands-on feel for ocean life at the Explore the Ocean World Oceanarium and Touch Tanks. Schedule a one hour tour with a biologist to learn about the animal and plant communities that life along the New Hampshire coast. Exhibits include information on the Gulf of Maine ecosystem and the New England fishing industry. If you want more maritime learning, head up the coast to Rye to visit the Seacoast Science Center.
7. Get on the Seas With a Boat Charter or Tour
Learn some maritime history and see the natural beauty of the sea off Hampton Beach with Sunrise Adventure Charters. The company has smaller boats so its easy to have an entire tour to just your party. For a more hands-on cruise, head out on a lobster tour, which includes a lobster for every guest, perfect for cooking a gourmet meal back at your vacation rental. Sunrise also charters boats for fishing excursions.
8. Gamble at Ocean Gaming
Enjoy an evening out for adults only at the Ocean Gaming casino. Play blackjack, craps, poker, roulette, and other games. Even if you lose, something good comes out of your fun as 35 percent of the casino’s profit goes to charity. The casino also offers bingo, rotating events, and a restaurant so you can enjoy a full evening’s entertainment in one place.
9. Visit a Colonial House
Step back in time at the James House, which was built in 1723. The house is one of the earliest serving examples of colonial New Hampshire architecture and is on the National Register of Historic Places. You can tour this attraction between May and October, or if you have a large group, you can check with the museum about touring outside normal operating hours.
10. Ride the Waves
The waves at Hampton Beach over a challenge for surfers of nearly all skill levels. If you’re new to the sport, consider lessons from Zapstix’s Surf and Skate just minutes away in Seabrook. If your vacation rental is closer to Hampton, rent gear, take lessons, or even attend a surf camp at Cinnamon Rainbows Surf Company.
11. Enjoy a Round of Miniature Golf
There are options for the mini-golf players in your family. Buc’s Lagoon features a pirate-themed course that also sells ice cream for a perfect post-round snack. Just up the street, you can play at Casino Mini Golf, which also has other games to challenge your skills, such as foosball and ping pong.
12. Hit the Links
If mini-golf doesn’t challenge you enough, visit Abenaqui Country Club or one of the other golf courses near Hampton for a full 18 holes. Stop by Sagamore Golf driving range before your round to get your long game in order by hitting a bucket of balls.
13. Speed Down a Waterslide
Hampton Beach Casino offers visitors a variety of ways to have fun, from beach supplies to food to specialty shops. At the top of the list is the Cascade Waterslide, which has three slides for a mix of thrills. Share the experience by riding a double tube down the large slide.
14. Ride Along the Boardwalk
The Hampton Beach boardwalk connects the beach with shops and restaurants, as well as the rest of town and the state park. Cover more ground by biking the scenic route. Bring your own bike and store it at your vacation rental, or pick up a rental from Ocean Cycles and Sports or Gus’ Bike Shop.
15. Learn About Local History at the Tuck Museum
Operated by the Hampton Historical Society, the Tuck Museum of Hampton History includes exhibits and artifacts commemorating the rich history of the Hampton area. The museum is even housed in a collection of historical buildings that let you imagine what the area looked like in years past.
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