About Portsmouth

PORTSMOUTH, located at the mouth of the Piscataqua River on the Seacoast, is a cultural gathering place for young and old alike looking to experience the sights, sounds and smells of a classic New England community. It offers stately historic architecture in a vibrant community with a progressive business climate and active cultural and social environments. It has become the restaurant hub of New England and entices visitors to enjoy all that downtown has to offer. Market Square and its surroundings, are the center of the Seacoast's activities ranging from dining, dancing and live theater....to restored mansions open to the public and horse drawn carriage tours.


Portsmouth has a strong history ranging from becoming the state's first capital and harboring refugees exiled from Puritan Massachusetts to receiving Paul Revere and his accompanying warning of the British invasion. There are several museums in town including the famous "Strawberry Banke", one of Portsmouth's oldest neighborhoods. Strawberry Banke features over a dozen homes and buildings showing off their restored Colonial, Georgian and Federal architecture. Guided tours bring visitors over three-hundred years into the past, experiencing nearly all the aspects of daily life in a growing colonial settlement. Right across the street can be found Prescott Park, a riverside park with brick walking paths, amazing gardens and live entertainment almost every night in the summertime. The nationally recognized Music Hall offers unique cultural opportunities that allow locals and tourists alike to experience outstanding live theatre and concerts without traveling to Boston or NYC.


The geographic location, historic past and cultural strength of Portsmouth regularly lands it on various "best places to live" lists. Prevention Magazine named Portsmouth one of the top 100 walking cities in America for 2008. Also in 2008, the National Trust for Historic Preservation named Portsmouth to its list of America's Dozen Distinctive Destinations, calling the city "one of the most culturally rich destinations in the country with a stimulating mix of historic buildings, sidewalk cafes, great restaurants, art galleries, jazz clubs and distinctive artisans' boutiques". In 2009, Forbes Traveler listed Portsmouth as one of America's Prettiest Towns.

Portsmouth serves the northern New England region as an important center of commerce and is easily accessible from five major highways, several bus lines, Boston and Maine Railroad, Pease International Trade Port and a deep-water international port. The largest city on the New Hampshire seacoast, Portsmouth has a little something for everyone.


Portsmouth is a member of SAU #52 and maintains three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school for its school-age children. Several other towns have their high school children tuitioned at Portsmouth High School.

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