AOPA Pilot Magazine
August 2007 Volume 50 / Number 8
Hampton, New Hampshire
The way it should be
Hampton Airfield is located in a scenic and vital region of the New Hampshire seacoast, within easy travel time of Boston, the celebrated lighthouses and shopping of coastal southern Maine, and travel hubs at Boston's Logan International Airport, the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport in New Hampshire, Pease International Tradeport in nearby Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Portland, Maine. A family-owned grass strip where students learn how to fly the old-fashioned way, Hampton Airfield is a place to meet new friends and savor aviation the way it used to be — the way it should be. Once you've arrived, stay a while and take advantage of the multitude of activities, dining, and cultural amenities available along the coast. You won't have to travel far to find a variety of amusements that will keep you happy and busy regardless of the duration of your stay.
What to do
Thousands of people are drawn each year to Hampton Beach, the wide ocean beach that is just a quick ride from Hampton Airfield. Warm ocean water and a sand beach make this popular spot located on Route 1A hard to beat. Other popular sand beaches such as Old Orchard Beach, Maine, are within convenient driving time.
Isle of Shoals, a handful of rocky islands a few miles off the New Hampshire coast are a base for fisherman and a retreat for artists. The islands also are home to the White Island Lighthouse, the Shoals Marine Laboratory, summer homes, and the Oceanic Hotel, site of the Unitarian conferences. Perfect for a summer day trip, several excursion companies offer frequent trips to the islands.
Portsmouth, New Hampshire's coastal city, offers a variety of activities and entertainment from its beautiful seaside Prescott Park, with flower gardens and a summer arts festival, to dining and historic attractions such as the Strawberry Banke museum. For some more splashy fun there's Water Country, New England's largest water park.
Plum Island, an 11-mile barrier island off the coast of nearby Newburyport, Massachusetts, offers a variety of outdoor recreation from nature walks to offshore fishing trips, windsurfing, kayaking, and boating.
The Seacoast's largest brewery, Redhook Brewery, is located at the Pease International Tradeport, 35 Corporate Drive, Portsmouth, New Hampshire Daily tours available.
Where to eat
The classic airport restaurant called The Airfield Café is located on Hampton Airfield. Hungry for breakfast? Try the Morning Glory. Nearby Portsmouth and York, Maine, offer countless choices of fine dining, seafood, Caribbean, French, Thai, "rustic American," and other cuisine.
Where to stay
A large selection of bed-and-breakfasts, hotels, and motels abounds throughout this scenic tourism region that encompasses the coastal communities of northern Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and extreme southern Maine. See AOPA's Airport Directory for more information.
Hampton Airfield is located on the short stretch of seacoast within New Hampshire between northern Massachusetts and Maine, located on U.S. Route 1. In addition to Boston's Logan International Airport, there is airline service to Manchester, New Hampshire, about an hour's drive west, and Portland, Maine, about an hour north. Flying into Hampton (7B3), which is located just south of Class D airspace at Pease International Tradeport, is a straightforward proposition facilitated by prominent visual checkpoints.
The 2,100-foot grass Runway 2/20 is 170 feet wide, smooth and well marked. Note that the airport's common traffic advisory frequency (122.8 MHz) is different from the frequency that operates the pilot-controlled lighting (122.4 MHz). The airport is located about 18 nm north of the most northerly lateral extent of Boston's Class B airspace. Check temporary flight restrictions carefully; Hampton is sometimes affected by presidential visits to the Bush family compound in Kennebunkport, Maine, as also depicted on the northern side of the New York sectional chart.
Driving to the area is easy as Hampton Airfield is just short distance from Interstate 95 either from Boston or from points in Maine. If coming from the Manchester New Hampshire, area and points west, head east on NH Route 101 about 30 miles toward Portsmouth. Then join Route 111N to Lafayette Road.