This beautiful and diverse town is composed of four smaller villages: Cape Neddick, York Harbor, York Village, and York Beach. York is a year-round vacation destination, as well as a famous summer resort, situated beside the Atlantic Ocean on the Gulf of Maine. Come to York and stay at one of many elegant inns or five star hotels. Enjoy the historic character of old fashioned restaurants. Explore the miles of sandy beaches, play golf, or visit popular arcades, souvenir shops and stores.
The York zoo and amusement park are family favorites. Make sure you visit Yorks Historic District. The Old York Historical Society maintains numerous historic buildings including Jefferds Tavern, the John Hancock Wharf, named for a notable merchant, and the Old Goal (Americas oldest jail). Nubble Lighthouse is one of the most photographed lighthouses in the world. Tours and special events are offered throughout the year at the historic Emerson Wilcox house. Mount Agamenticus, the highest point in town, has miles of hiking, biking, and horse-riding trails, as well as roads, to the summit.
York was first called Agamenticus by Native Americans. It was renamed Bristol in 1638 by settlers, after Bristol, England, from which they migrated. Sir Ferdinando Gorges, Lord Proprietor of Maine renamed it Gorgeana under the Plymouth patent. It became Americas first chartered city in 1641, making it a Royal Colony.
Following Gorges death, it was claimed by the Massachusetts Bay Company. In 1652 York was incorporated from a portion of Gorgeana, and received its final name after York, England. Money magazine chose York as -- One of the ten best places to vacation in North America.