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GOOD waterside restaurants Hampton Beach NH area

  • t

Hi I'm looking for the above - not touristy, not wildly expensive - just a decent place to relax and be able to see the water (ocean or other). Not interested in noise/nightlife/music - just good food in a nice setting.

any suggestions?


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  1. Not many places at HB where you can actually see the water from the restaurant.

    I would recommend Ron's Landing, you can order off the lighter fare menu, smaller quantities/prices for the dishes on the main menu. You can see the water from the upper floor.

    Another choice is a new restaurant this year. Just ate there last night for the first time called "931 Ocean", you can't actaully see the water though. 931 Ocean is located where Kennedy's used to be at the intersection of Rt27 (High Street) and Rt1A, ~2 miles from the main beach. They have an outdoor patio, but your view is of the foot traffic and vehicle traffic, not the water. The food was very good, on par with Rons. Entres were all under $20, I had the tuna which was $19 and the most expensive thing on the menu. Dinner for 2 including cocktails was under $60.

    1 Reply
    1. re: humin

      Hi - thanks for your recommendation. I guess I can forgo the water for good food! like any good chowhound should. I wil check it out - I'm staying on the beach there in Aug for a few days. I ate lobster at a place overlooking the waterway right in downtown Portsmouth last summer and it was okay - nothing spectacular though.

    2. Not exactly in Hampton Beach, but a very nice drive up the coast to Portsmouth is BG's Boathouse--www.portsmouthnh.com/dining/bgsboatho...

      Not touristy at all. Nice outdoor seating right on Sagamore Creek. Great fried seafood and good beer in plastic cups.

      1. Hi thanks for writing - I checked out BG's website - it looks like the right setting - not sure I want FRIED seafood but the setting looks perfect! Portsmouth is not out of the question - it's really not that far away. I just want some food that is kinda out of the ordinary but I may have to settle for it at a place that is not on the water, like any good chowhound should be able to do.

        thanks again

        1. I've been to BG's once and wasn't impressed. You could just go down the road (rt1B) another 1/2 mile and go to the Wentworth. View is killer (best in the area), but more expensive than other recommendations. There is a little cafe at the Wentworth, down by the docks. If you go the Wentworth by the Sea WWW you can find it I'm sure.

          You could also venture up into Maine, take the State Street bridge in Portsmouth over to Maine, keep going past Warren's Lobster pound and follow the signs for Rt103. The drive is spectacular, eventually pulling into York, ME. Along Rt103 pau attention to the little signs and you will find Chauncey Creek Lobster, probably the quaintest lobster spot in the area. There is also Captain Simeon's Gallery, but I don't have experience there and can't recommend it one way or the other.

          To be honest, lobster is lobster. Folks get all worked about finding the best lobster. If a lobster meal is all your after, then go to Browns on the marsh in Seabrook, NH. It's a byob place, picnic tables - nothing fancy. But their steamed lobster is as good as any place else.

          1 Reply
          1. re: humin

            I used to live in Maine and kinda have "been there done that" but it certainly is not out of the question, and you are totally right about lobster being lobster. Thanks for your hint about the cafe at Wentworth - that too is on the short list.

          2. Saunder's at Rye Harbor sounds like exactly what you're looking for.

            1 Reply
            1. re: suchatreat

              yes it does - the website shows just the view I'm looking for. Thanks!

            2. Markey's Lobster Pool is in Seabrook Beach. It can get a little mobbed, and the waterside seats are at a premium but they have good steamers and people love the fried seafood, especially the belly clams.



              1 Reply
              1. re: Grayhound

                I love this type of place if the food is really worth it - one of my faves is in Cape Neddick, or used to be - havent been there in years. I will get on clamlove and check them all out.

              2. No steamers,lobster or food is better than Markey's in Seabrook, NH actually...next to Hampton next to Salisbury. You order and seat yourself, outside on the deck if you prefer waterside, not ocean though. We have never gone back anywhere in the area, have been going to Markey's for over 25 yrs. - had to hop across the street to Brown's a few times when Markey's was not open yet for the season, and each time was more than disappointing saying it politely. You will see huge lines at Brown's though, even so, because you can bring in your own 'packy', and people like that, I guess...I would rather get much, much better quality food myself. Prices are not too high at all although they have gone up considerably over the years, but what hasn't?
                The only things about Markey's that are irritating are that they MAY still have a few smoking areas, PLUS the ignorant people sitting out on the deck ignore or can't read the 'no feeding the seagulls signs' and they fling fries to the gulls and get them crazy... OR the ignorant parents who don't watch or correct their children from doing the same...Arghhh!

                1. We are looking for a restaurant that is bright and airy with character to help celebrate our daughter's First Holy Communion this weekend, Sat.... would prefer overlooking water but most important would be incredible lunch or brunch foods and that it is sunny and cheery.
                  Southern NH/ over the border in Massachusetts

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: kittyforkayla

                    You should probably start a separate thread for this...

                    What's your budget? How many people? Dining likes/dislikes? This Saturday is cutting things pretty close.

                  2. I was looking for Hampton area recommendations for Father's Day (I think there's a topic here) and stumbled upon this one. I also like waterfront restaurants and "seafood shacks", especialliy in summer, although places that are open year-round get extra points. I have a book called "New England's Favorite Seafood Shacks" by Elizabeth Bougerol (check for it at amazon) and am trying eventually to hit them all.

                    Anyway, just a couple of comments on what's been said.
                    - Possibly the best "seafood shack(s)" in the area are Brown's and Markey's, best for fried stuff and casual atmosphere. Brown's offers BYOB, Markey's sells alcohol.
                    - Ron's Landing upstairs is good, as well as the Carriage House in Rye. Go for a walk on the beach before and/or after.
                    - 931 Ocean is no more. I liked the lobster mac & cheese and especially the fish tacos. I think some other place is going in there now.
                    - Is Saunder's open this year? For some reason, I thought it was going away. I was never impressed with the food, but the view is fantastic (maybe not so much at low tide). They used to have reggae bands on the deck on Sundays, which was pretty cool.

                    My personal favorite is The Old Ferry Landing in Portsmouth, overlooking the tugs. Go around sunset on a nice night and be prepared to wait. And if you're driving, go up route 1A all the way, it's a beautiful stretch of road. The secret(?) here is to order one of the blackboard specials. They're much more interesting than what's on the menu. You'll get real plates, too. It is a very "lively" area and maybe better for adults than kids (though I've gone with kids in the past), but that's generally what I prefer for a summer night out.

                    1. On the boardwalk, is somewhat touristy, but with great views on the beach is SeaCatch(sp). We usually eat on the third floor, there is live music some of the time, but it's not obnoxious.
                      Food? well it's decent, but not fancy. Fish and chips are good, lobster roll has been "not bad" and snackish apps worth the money.
                      Worth a beach afternoon late lunch....

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: breakfastfan

                        Yeah, I saw a review of Sea Ketch on the Phantom Gourmet recently. It looked good and the views looked even better. I had walked by the place and wondered if it was worth trying. I will definitely check it out this summer, probably on a slower (Sunday) night, so I won't have to fight the crowds.

                        The Phantom review is http://www.phantomgourmet.com/Showpag...

                        1. re: natureboy

                          Another great place is the Purple Urchin....family owned restaurant, super food...they usually do a mini-lobster bake....steamers and muscles are good, and it's above the fray of the boardwalk (2nd floor of the big "casino"...across from the bandshell)....amazing people watching!