-Either on the way in or out of town, make sure to take the long beautiful Route 1B through Newcastle and islands, totally worth it for the views.
-If you want an awesome diner-like breakfast, check out the Golden Egg, on rte 1A heading south towards rye.
-Dinner- across the bridge into Kittery Maine, restaurant called Anneka Jans is fantastic rustic American cuisine, think mussels with blue cheese sauce, hanger steak, seared calf's liver, etc. Excellent wine list too.
-After-dinner cocktails at The Red Door, located above Dos Amigos Burritos. Sometimes a small cover charge, but nice loungy bar with leather couches and usually DJs playing downtempo music to chill out to, really cozy.
-We had a nice Portsmouth Restaurant Week lunch at Blue Mermaid, not sure how it is normally.
Other decent/divey bars- Rusty Hammer, Press Room, State St. Saloon, Daniel St. Tavern, Fat Belly's.
Check out Street restaurant out by Route 1. Pretty good asian street food dishes, cool atmosphere.
Haven't made it yet to a few places, but definitely on my list to try are:
Coat of Arms Pub (dive)
When you're ready for your next town, drive the coastal Route 1A all the way from Portsmouth down through Rye eventually to Hampton Beach.
In Rye and Hampton Beach:
-La Bec Rouge roofdeck in the summer is fantastic, day and night.
-Ocean Wok for great chinese (ginger scallion lobster, salt and pepper squid, dan dan noodles, wontons in chili sauce, szechuan triple crown are our favorites). MAI TAIs are strong and amazing, Get the large one.-Karaoke at Stacy Jane's across the street from Ocean Wok, every night around 8:30pm
-Petey's Summertime has great seafood in-house, a bar, and also sells takeout and live lobsters cheap.
As always feel free to email me any suggestions or questions!