Avoiding the Bunk of Kennebunkport When Traveling with the Family

I considered arching my back and approaching the low bridge as if it were a limbo pole. But the tide was too high. Instead, I laid the paddle upon the board and crouched down low. The momentum was enough to sail me beneath the overpass and the tourists it held. They stood there admiring Kennebunkport’s crowded harbor, where even restaurant patios encroached upon the already narrow waterway.


On the other side of the bridge, no tall masts stood from the decks of boats and no giant motors hung off of afts. Chiefly, it was because no large boat on this side of the river would ever be able to access the sea on account of the squat bridge. So only a few dinghies floated in the Kennebunk River and kayaks dried upturned on the land. Here, the river was peaceful and the mansions on hills and those concealed by forest hosted quiet breakfasts or nothing much at all.


Kennebunkport is Southern Maine’s busiest coastal destination. The restaurants require reservations, the beach is busy, the Clam Shack on the bridge sees a constant line, and the harbor—the one I had just paddled through—is more suitable for bumper boats than for docking them.


As you can gather, I’m not one for busyness, especially in a place meant to be as charming as Kennebunkport. But I’m also part of the problem since I travel with my lovely and rambunctious children. Much like Bush 41 who selected quiet Kennebunkport to serve as the grounds for his summer White House, bringing with him a media storm, I too shepherd in the chaos. (One of our few connections, H.W. and I.)


If you’re looking to find solitude on a family vacation, but also aim to contain the pandemonium consistent with family travel, Kennebunkport might be the best place for it.


During our trip through Maine, we stayed at four properties, but the Lodge on the Cove in Kennebunkport was most perfect for families. There were board games and puzzles scattered about the clubhouse, s’mores on the open fire at night, a pool busy with children, kids’ bicycles waiting to be borrowed, a movie collection ideal for rainy days. Yet it also had plenty of places to escape to with a book (without straying too far) during those rare few minutes the kids are sleeping and you’re not.


Since the Lodge on the Cove is part of the Kennebunkport Resort Collection, guests have two hours of complimentary use of the paddleboards, canoes, or kayaks at the nearby Kennebunkport Marina, which is a unique place in Maine as the old woman working there might be Maine-in-the-summertime’s greatest curmudgeon.


Hectic beach days, with or without kids, are often no joy. But a ten-minute walk from the Lodge on the Cove is Kennebunkport’s Colony Cove, a small strip of sand set beside a towering jetty. If a longer beach is what you crave, the hotel, like all KRC properties, provide parking for the proper beach. Or there’s an evening shuttle that visits the waterfront and cruises into town for myriad dining options.


Easier still is eating at Mabel’s Lobster Claw near to the cove. The seafood is fresh even if the selection in beer—in one of the best beer states in the country—is shameful.


These are just some of the ways to find solitude in a busy place like Kennebunkport, and some of the best places for keeping a lid on the bedlam of your own caravan.



Posted on by Noah Lederman in Baby Voyage

One Response to Avoiding the Bunk of Kennebunkport When Traveling with the Family

  1. Insight Hiking

    To read these post, I think Kennebunkport is the best destination for families. Thanks for sharing.
    Insight Hiking recently posted…All Season XL Mummy Sleeping BagMy Profile

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