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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927

Private Island with View of Harbor, Lighthouse, and Open Ocean

Bedrooms 3
Property type house
Minimum Stay 2 - 7 nights


About the property

Cottage, 2 Bedrooms + Other (See Description), 2 Baths, (Sleeps 4-5)

Gooseberry Island is a seasonal rental, and is only available from MAY through OCTOBER each year.To get a complete accounting of your rental costs please enter your rental dates in the upper right corner of the site and look for an instant quote. Please note : Gooseberry island has only one dwelling on it and is completely private . It is only accessible by boat . See COMPLETE "rates" section for additional details.

Gooseberry Island is a small private island located in Portsmouth Harbor adjacent to the Maine shore at Kittery Point. Formerly a retreat for business associates, family, and friends, Gooseberry Island has remained in the same family for nearly 100 years. Gooseberry is the only inhabited private island in Portsmouth Harbor, and has fantastic unobstructed views of historic Whaleback Lighthouse, Ft. Constitution, Ft. McClary, and the open ocean with the Isles of Shoals in the distance. With hundreds of feet of completely private waterfront , beaches , and tide pools , it is a wonderful little paradise , especially for children .

The dwelling is a classic New England two story saltbox. It is available for rent from May through October and is accessible only by boat. The first floor consists of a modern kitchen with tile floor, cherry cabinets, and granite counter tops. The bathroom, located directly off the kitchen, is also designed with cherry cabinetry, a pink New Hampshire granite vanity, and beautiful custom shower with a solid glass door and custom tiled interior. An additional spacious shower room and changing area with hot and cold water from our drilled well is located on the back porch. The front of the house is comprised of a large L-shaped room which incorporates the living room and dining area. French doors open onto a classic semi-enclosed, shingled front porch furnished with vintage Woodard wrought iron furniture, and a panoramic view of the mouth of the harbor and open ocean .

On the second floor, the master bedroom has a chaise lounge, two period bureaus, and a king-sized bed. Adjacent to this room is a loft bedroom containing two single beds, two child beds , a bureau, and bedside tables.The cottage is best described as a well designed house for four, with ample space for an additional two or three young children or PERHAPS another adult.

Adjacent to the main cottage there is a rustic cabin that contains two bunk beds, TV, refrigerator, bureau, and desk. A large double window affords an excellent view of the boat harbor ; a special place just for kids!

This unparalleled island location includes all the amenities that one would expect on the mainland. There is a drilled well and pump house which supply excellent water that must be used sensibly for showers and kitchen use. The bathroom is equipped with an odorless electric composting toilet which requires minimal attention to operate – less than 30 seconds per day and actually functions better than a conventional one! The island is powered by submarine cables and has electric central heat. With the exception of the tiled kitchen and bathroom, all floors throughout the house are polished hardwood. As island living goes, it is luxurious. Gooseberry is a change of pace destination for guests anticipating a pristine setting with all the comforts of modern living. The cottage and cabin are the only dwellings on the island. No other people have access to the island without permission from the residents. Gooseberry island is accessible only by boat.

Transportation and secure parking are arranged from either our private pier or from the town landing . Our pier is approximately one mile from the island, the town landing one quarter mile. Guests may also access the island with their own boats. The dock at Gooseberry Island can accommodate a boat up to 50’ in length. Launch service is available any time throughout the day as requested. The launch can ferry you to various points throughout the harbor as well as our dock or the town dock at a nominal price. The cost of a round trip to the town dock for all guests {not per person }, is only $12. Other destinations are similarly priced. The launch is available daily {except Monday} from 8am to 7:30pm. Other times available by arrangement with captain Neil . Initial transportation upon arrival and departure is aboard our boat, the "Anna D ", and is included in the rental price. The "Anna D " is also available by arrangement for fishing trips, whale watching, or sight seeing . We are available 24\7 for emergency purposes. A 17' Boston Whaler is available for rent to qualified guests upon request.

Portsmouth, N.H., and York, Maine , hospitals are only 10 or 15 minutes from our dock. Boston's world famous Mass. General Hospital as well as many others of equal renown are only one hour away. Additionally, one of our close friends is a surgeon and partner at Portsmouth's Sports Medicine Atlantic Orthopedics clinic , ten minutes from our dock.

There are six kayaks and an aluminum row boat on the island for our guests' use . These boats may be used to travel to our home dock, or to the town landing where there is a general store as well as an excellent restaurant. Chauncey Creek Lobster Pier, a locally famous restaurant where guests can select their own lobsters from live tanks, is just a short paddle from the island. Dining tables are outside on a deck built over the water with an unspoiled view of the creek and the opposing shoreline.

The White Mountains of New Hampshire are only an hour and a half away. World famous L.L. Bean and Cabela’s are each within 45 minutes. Portsmouth NH with its fabulous restaurants, shopping, live theater, beautiful parks, and historical sites is just at the other end of the harbor. The famous Ogunquit Playhouse is twenty minutes distant by car. The York Beaches and Wild Animal Kingdom are located in the neighboring town of York, Maine. For rainy days one could consider shopping at the renowned Kittery Outlet Malls. During June, July, and August rentals are by the week, running from Saturday to Saturday unless by arrangement with the owners.

Keywords: Cottage, saltbox

More Details

Jim Austin
Member since: 2010
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
June 22, 2017

About Jim Austin

The owner’s family has roots in the Portsmouth/Kittery area that date back to the 17th century. They love the seacoast area as well as their proximity to the White Mountains. Avid fishermen, they spend many nice summer days fishing for striped bass, cod, haddock, and other local fish. The cottage on Gooseberry Island has always been a special place for them, and is often the destination of choice for social outings. They find it the ideal location for picnics and lobster bakes. Complimentary fresh fish is made available to their guests provided the owners have had successful fishing trips during your stay.

Why Jim Austin chose Kittery

Gooseberry Island is a family-owned property that has been in our family for generations. The island is located in Pepperrell cove with a panoramic view of the entire harbor as well as a direct view of the open ocean. Within sight of the island is Ft. McClary, an original French- Indian war block house that is open to the public, as well as Ft. Constitution where Paul Revere finished his ride to warn of the approach of the British troops.

What makes this house unique

The Island offers a unique sense of isolation and tranquility while still providing ready access to the picturesque and historical New England coast. As guests on the island, you will be the sole inhabitants, and as it is accessable only by boat, it will remain completely private.

Please advise of your arrival time and plans as we will have our boat standing by to transport you to the island. Arrival between the hours of 12 noon and 3pm allow us time to be organized for your transport. If you must deviate from this schedule, please arrange ahead of time.

Guestbook comments from the owner

"Thank you for such a wonderful experience. The weather was unbelievable and I believe the leaves were even brighter than in Vermont ! Thanks to your son for picking us up and toting all our bags to the boat and up to the cottage.

Jim, your lobster rolls were out of this world --- even better the day after you gave them to us . When you are in Atlanta, give us a call "
Oct 2013
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Kittery Point House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
House Rules:
  • Max. occupancy: 6
  • Minimum Age Limit for Renters ...
  • pets considered ...
  • children welcome ...
  • non smoking only ...
Location Type:
  • Oceanfront ...
  • Adventure
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Heating ...
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Mobile Phone ...
  • Parking ...
  • Parking Off Street ...
  • Parking for RV/Boat/Trailer ...
  • Towels Provided
  • Catering Available
  • Coffee Maker ...
  • Cooking Utensils ...
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator ...
  • Stove ...
  • Toaster
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Room
  • seating for 6 people
  • 1 Bathroom
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , shower , pink granite vanity and sink and full linen closet.
    Bathroom 2 - outdoor shower , Wonderful lattice enclosed outdoor shower and changing room
  • 1 This is a well equipped bathroom to include shower, vanity with sink and mirror, commode, and full linen closet. 2 The outdoor shower is located on the side porch . It is enclosed by decorative lattice woodwork and includes a changing area with a teak bench and brass hooks on which to hang clothes and swim suits. Hot and cold water make this shower room perfect for island use.
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 king , 1 sleep sofa /futon
    Bedroom 3 - 2 bunk bed , This 3rd bedroom is in the adjacent bunkhouse
    Other (See Description) - 1 king , 2 twin/ single , 2 sleep sofa /futon , 2 bunk bed
    Bedroom 2 - 2 twin/ single , 2 child bed
  • King size beds (1), Twin or Single Beds (2), Child Beds (2) Several available, Bunk Beds (1)
  • Books
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games ...
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Television
  • Video Library
  • Boat ...
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Lawn / Garden ...
  • Outdoor Grill
  • churches
  • cinemas
  • health/beauty spa
  • library
  • live theater
  • marina
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
  • synagogues
  • theme parks
  • water parks
  • zoo
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • boating
  • miniature golf
  • outlet shopping
  • scenic drives
  • shelling
  • shopping
  • sight seeing
  • sledding
  • walking
  • whale watching
  • wildlife viewing
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • Babysitter
  • fitness center
  • groceries
  • hospital
  • laundromat
  • massage therapist
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cross country skiing
  • cycling
  • deepsea fishing
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • hunting
  • jet skiing
  • kayaking
  • mountain biking
  • parasailing
  • pier fishing
  • rafting
  • rock climbing
  • sailing
  • scuba diving or snorkeling
  • snorkeling
  • snorkeling/diving
  • snowmobiling
  • sound/bay fishing
  • surf fishing
  • surfing
  • swimming
  • tennis
  • water skiing
  • water tubing
  • wind-surfing
Harbor tours , fishing trips , and luncheon or dinner cruises can be arranged with your hosts at any time on their boat, the 'Anna D '. Of special note is the availability of our baked goods to include cheesecakes, various and specialty layer cakes { for example, Calemondin orange, Boston cream,chocolate mousse,and coconut } , also wonderful pies such as wild Maine blueberry,Strawberry rhubarb, native peach, Key lime, and the fantastic Concord grape pie to name several. Freshly caught fish and lobster are always available, and can be delivered to the island. Finally there are the locally renown lobster rolls and fresh fish chowder. All these treats and others available upon request.


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(37 traveler reviews)

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Private Island with View of Harbor, Lighthouse, and Open Ocean
average rating of 5.0 based on 41 reviews

A paradise, experience and memory to treasure.

  • 5 of 5

An island paradise all your own of astonishing luxury and comfort. This home is a dream come true. The house is magnificent: full kitchen, warm and inviting living room, screened in patio with all the best of comfortable furniture, roof, fresh air, sunlight and screens to keep out bugs. It has a hidden camp with bunk beds for adventurous teenage children. It has beaches, rocks to climb on, every kind of boat to explore. And yet you’re on your own island. It’s an experience to cherish, a joy and a lifetime memory.

  • Submitted: Apr 25, 2017
  • Stayed: Jun 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Henry, thanks for a glowing review. Now we must make sure to live up to it ! We know that you are off on another adventure this summer , but we very much want to see you back on Gooseberry Island next summer . There are still many adventures left undone, thanks, Jim & Tudor
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Unique experience!

  • 5 of 5

We stayed here last summer with our theee teenagers. The house was beautiful! The house is decorated beautifully - very impressive. There is only one real bedroom which is fantastic. The other twin beds are at the top of the stairs in an alcove type area with no privacy. My kids didn't care about that. One of my boys slept in the bunkhouse which is great for teenage boys. Like a bunkhouse at summer camp. We were able to kayak everywhere. We loved being able to kayak to private beaches each day and kayaked down the little river for lobster dinner one night. We certainly entertained the dinner guests as we arrived by kayaks. We wish we would have rented the boat to have more options. Jim took us out fishing for mackerel one day and we caught hundreds! The kids loved it. You can also kayak 5-10 minutes to the boat landing which has a great outdoor restaurant for chowder or drinks. Once you meet the owner you will understand he is not in the Rental business for money- if you feel the price is too good to be true for your own island- you are a wrong. The price is silly reasonable in our opinion. We strongly recommend asking for the chocolate cake baked by Jims wife. To die for. Awesome experience for us.

  • Submitted: Feb 10, 2017
  • Stayed: Aug 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Dear Michelle, thanks for your nice review ! It was great having you and your family at Gooseberry Island. It is interesting that even in this day everyone { including teenagers } love the island lifestyle. This coming summer is shaping up well and we would love to see you all again if you are thinking about returning. Thanks again and best wishes to all of you, Jim & Tudor
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Beautiful and secluded

  • 5 of 5

Thank you so much!

We had such a wonderful experience. It was quiet, secluded and just perfect for a peaceful vacation. We spent an entire week of relaxing, boating, and playing with our dog on the beaches. Our 10 month old baby boy enjoyed discovering the seashells, walking along the beaches and experiencing his first boat ride. We're looking forward to making this a yearly tradition.

Thank you, again, for helping us create beautiful memories for our family.

We'll see you next year!

  • Submitted: Oct 5, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Dear Jessie, it was our great pleasure to have your wonderful family as our guests at Gooseberry Island. You certainly understood and appreciated all the simple pleasures that island life can mean. We look forward to seeing you again next summer , and thanks for the great review ! Jim & Tudor
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Great Getaway!

  • 5 of 5

Had such a lovely time with our family on the island! Easy access to everything with the benefit of being on a secluded island. Fun for the whole family! Jim and his family were wonderful hosts! Hope to return next summer!

  • Submitted: Sep 19, 2016
  • Stayed: Sep 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
Owner's Response: Dear Kerri, It was wonderful having you and your family on the island and we are excited about the prospect of your return! Thanks for your kind review, Jim & Tudor
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Charlottesville, VA

Fabulous Maine Cottage!

  • 5 of 5

Spent four nights with long time girl friends. Was an absolutely fabulous property, clean, well appointed, gorgeous ocean and harbor views. couldn't ask for anything more. the private little island offered privacy, great sea kayaking, and a quick and easy access to Kittery and Chancey's Creek Restaurant. Owners were wonderful to work with during the renting process, and checked in to see that all was good. Plan to rent it again next summer!

  • Submitted: Aug 29, 2016
  • Stayed: Aug 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Janice, what more can we say beyond the fact that you were the kind of guests that make our rental life a pleasure ! You were so wonderful to have as guests, and we very much look forward to getting to know you better in the future. It is a wonderful combination when guests exceed our expectations in all departments ! THANKS -- Jim & Tudor
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More than just and Island

  • 5 of 5

We arrived Met Jim and Scott at the Dock, they helped us load and unload our bags and groceries. It was short ride from their dock to island. We had rented the Whaler for the week to tour the area, up Chanceys Creek, close ups of the light houses,and pier, very helpful to have the boat, but definatlry not a neccesity, as the town dock is so close kayaking would take no time at all. Gosseberry Island has alot more to offer than I thought, sunrise and sunset kayaking, relaxing, sunbathing, scavanging the island ,so much sea glass and whole bottles to collect . At low tide you can walk to fisher island or cross the mud flats and walk along a gorgeous beach to the pier and beach at Fort Fosters park, kids can search and shells and hermit crabs. Just be sure to return well before high tide! Fish of the dock or kayak fish. we did both from the dock one small flounder and small Stipped bass which we tossed back to grow up! I kayaked fished and did very well with strippers 19 total !! YUP! and boy was it fun! 17 were not keepers but the 2 that were towed me around in that kayak until they tired! Great Island to unwind , have fun, reconnect. We had no problems with amenities, space etc, just perfect! I highly recommend this rental! Upon return back we got to meet Tudor, and what a wonderful sweet woman! Their charm and kindness were a wonderful ending to a great Vacation, Thank you !

  • Submitted: Aug 13, 2016
  • Stayed: Jul 2016
  • Source: VRBO, from HomeAway
Owner's Response: Dear Bobbie , You guys were great and really took advantage of all that the island has to offer. You certainly demonstrated that kayak fishing can be very productive if you spend the time to find the fish. Thanks for your nice review and we hope to see you back in the future, Jim & Tudor
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Chauncey Creek Lobster Pier
Nearest Airport
60 Miles
Boston, Logan or Manchester,N.H.
Nearest Barpub
1 Miles
Captain Simeon's restaurant
Nearest Ferry
3 Miles
Portsmouth, N.H.
Nearest Golf
4 Miles
Portsmouth, York , & New Castle
Nearest Train
3 Miles
Portsmouth, N.H.
Nearest Motorway
2 Miles
Interstate 95 as well as Rt #1
Nearest Restaurant
1 Miles
Captain Simeon's
Nearest Beach
1 Miles
Pebble beach at the island, sand beach adjacent

Guided fishing trips, Harbor cruises, Cruises to Isles of Shoals, lobster bakes. Locally caught fresh fish and lobster available and delivered to the island.


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Cleaning Fee $200
Damage Deposit $750

Check in time is between Noon and 3PM{ Or by prior arrangement}. Check out by 10AM. Weekly rentals run from Saturday to Saturday unless otherwise arranged. Weekly rentals only in June,July, and August unless other times available.Until confirmed, rates subject to change without notice. There is a two day minimum rental period except for dates where noted when there is a three day minimum rental period.
Security deposits are returned during the first week of the month following your rental period.
Boston Whaler weekly rental - $500.00 or $100.00 per day

Pet fee if approved - $250.00

Owner's Cancellation Policy

Please ask the owner or check their rental agreement when booking the property.