Summer time in Maine holds a novel allure. The times get longer, the oceans hotter, and a brand new life is dropped at the biggest New England state. From picturesque rocky coastlines and iconic lobster rolls to limitless outside adventures and culturally wealthy historical past, this Pine Tree State serves as an ideal trip vacation spot, incomes its moniker of Vacationland. Deciding the place to go to could be overwhelming, so let’s break down the best possible locations to go in Maine in the summertime.
After vacationing in Maine for over twenty years with my household, I’ve skilled journeys match for all ages and pursuits. With the little ones, marine life is on the contact of their fingertips with the Maine State Aquarium and Divers Ed boat rides. The Southern Maine coastal cities of York, Wells, Ogunquit, and Outdated Orchard seashore supply miles of sandy seashores.
Pure wonders like Acadia Nationwide Park and Rangeley Lake are good for these searching for some journey. Portland has a vibrant meals and brewery scene good for a weekend getaway.
Searching for a particular sort of journey? Listed below are my prime favourite locations:
Greatest locations to Go in Maine within the Summer time
Word: This publish comprises affiliate hyperlinks. In the event you click on a hyperlink and make a purchase order, I could obtain a small fee for free of charge to you.
Being proper off the border with New Hampshire, Kittery makes for an amazing day journey from Boston. This quaint city is thought for its in depth outlet malls and historic websites.
My household will make the day journey from Massachusetts simply to go to When Pigs Fly, a scrumptious Brick oven Pizzeria. Make certain to take a look at When Pigs Fly Firm Retailer for his or her sun-dried tomato bread and heat lemon blueberry cookies. Bob’s Clam Hut is one other native favourite in case you don’t thoughts ready within the lengthy strains for his crispy fried clams or recent lobster rolls.
If you’re trying to journey again in time, make your solution to Fort Foster State Park on Gerrish Island to discover previous army forts. This dog-friendly web site provides massive inexperienced areas to picnic, a peaceful rocky seashore, and a walkable pier providing stunning views of the mouth of the Piscataqua River.
York is ideal for a weekend getaway with the entire household. This Southern Maine coastal seashore city is an ideal place for younger youngsters with York’s Wild Kingdom, each a zoo and an amusement park.
Providing household rides, bouncy homes, mini golf, and petting zoos, this one-stop vacation spot is a full day occasion. Driving the kiddie dragon curler coaster and seeing the tigers up shut, was peak pleasure as a younger child.
Lengthy Sands Seashore is extra your typical sandy seashore with first rate waves for boogie boarding and browsing. Quick Sands seashore is downtown York with an old style arcade, and bowling alley. Cease by The Goldenrod the place you’ll be able to watch up shut how salt water taffy is made, after which seize a bag your self!
This quintessential beachtown will want a bit greater than a weekend to discover. Situated simply north of York on the southern coast lies Ogunquit Seashore, one of many prime 25 seashores within the U.S. in line with TripAdvisor’s Vacationers Alternative.
Hop on the Trolly and trip right down to the Ogunquit Playhouse the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in theater performances. Then, head right down to the ocean and go to the previous fishing village of Perkins Cove.
Discover well-known eating places like Barnacle Billy’s identified for his or her luxurious lobster and scenic views. For dessert, stroll over to seize sea salt caramels from Perkins Cove Candies and stroll alongside the drawbridge.
Some fast issues to remember about visiting Ogunquit:
- Many lodging are waterfront on the Ogunquit tidal river as a substitute of Ogunquit seashore. At low tide it’s potential to stroll on to the seashore, however put together to take the entry level by way of seashore road to seek out parking.
- Ogunquit is likely one of the extra touristy areas due to this fact you will need to plan round large crowds and better costs for meals and parking.
The place to remain: The Anchorage By the Sea is a pleasant oceanfront place for households.
One other beautiful Southern Maine seashore city, Wells is nice for households. Wells consists of miles of sandy seashores the place you’ll be able to stroll, surf, or search round tide swimming pools. Some well-liked ones embody Wells Seashore, Moody Seashore, and Drakes Island Seashore.
Are you a nature lover? The Rachel Carson Nationwide Wildlife Refuge protects salt marshes and native habitats, whereas providing an immersive and enjoyable expertise by way of miles of walkable trails.
You may’t go to Wells with out stopping by Congdon’s Doughnuts. These scrumptious doughnuts are one of many sole issues we nonetheless keep in mind right this moment from our household holidays. In accordance with latest evaluations, the apple fritter is a should attempt.
Belfast, Maine is my household’s all-time favourite summer season trip vacation spot, staying right here for nearly a decade. This quaint, artsy, reasonably priced, mid-coastal seashore city is nestled into Penobscot bay. The coast right here consists of rocky cliffs, and sea glass littered seashores. The water is calm, shallow, and barely hotter as a result of bay.
Canine are greater than welcome with canine bowls showing outdoors outlets downtown. Public artwork constructions observe themes downtown, altering yearly. Rollie’s Bar and Grill, Younger’s Lobster Pound, and Dockside Household Restaurant are prime stops for recent seafood.
As somebody with a robust candy tooth, I need to advocate Chocolate Drop Sweet Store which has a wall with each taste of jelly bean. Ice cream can be served right here in a Fifties dinner fashion. Perry’s Nut Home has divine fudge, a should cease for a candy deal with.
Take a sundown sailboat trip round Penobscot bay, go to the Blue Alpaca Ranch & Retailer, or simply stroll alongside the footbridge having fun with the harbor views. Your coronary heart will fall for Belfast’s distinctive allure.
The place to remain: Wonderview Cottages is a few ten-minute drive to downtown Belfast and provides you entry to a non-public seashore proper on Penobscot Bay. The ambiance is tranquil, the seashore is stuffed with rocks and seaglass, and most cottages are canine pleasant.
Extra of a lake individual? Head Northwest to the attractive clear water of Rangeley Lake. Nature lovers will love the extra distant setting, good for mountain climbing, kayaking, and swimming. Downtown is small however hosts a few cute outlets like Basic Provisions, the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in sandwiches, pastries, and smoothies proper on the water.
Quill Hill is a spectacular view level after a brief drive up a novel panorama. The drive again into city is closely populated with moose so drive very sluggish at nightfall and preserve your eyes peeled!
Rangeley Lake State park is an ideal spot for picnics and mountain climbing, and you may keep within the campsite the place you’ve gotten swimming entry to Rangeley Lake. Tenting right here is far nearer to nature, removed from glamping.
If you’re searching for a magical place to hike and swim, go to Cascade Gorge Stream Path. When you park, you hike for about half-hour till you come throughout a stupendous pure waterfall and crystal clear water good for swimming.
The place to Keep: Fashionable Rangeley Cabin is a comfy and spacious cabin situated not too removed from downtown Rangeley.
Bar Harbor, ME
Situated on Mount Desert Island, the biggest island in Maine, Bar Harbor is likely one of the hottest summer season locations. This coastal city is correct subsequent to Acadia Nationwide Park, additionally the homeland of the Wabanaki. With tenting websites, views of Frenchman Bay, and over 150 miles of trails, there are many issues to do round Acadia Nationwide Park.
Drive 3.5 miles as much as the summit of Cadillac Mountain, the tallest mountain on the japanese seaboard of the U.S. (simply you should definitely make a car reservation in case you are visiting from late Might by way of October). Thunder Gap is one other great place the place waves crash into the cliffs creating water sprays that attain as much as 40 ft!
Discover the colourful marine lifetime of Frenchman Bay by reserving a visit with Diver Ed’s Dive-In-theater. Diver’s discover wildlife after which deliver animals onto the boat in contact tanks the place you’ll be able to expertise lobsters, starfish and Sea Cucumbers up shut! Nevertheless an excellent factor to notice, the boat has a Newfoundland canine on board so be certain everybody in your celebration is comfy with large canine.
The Bar Harbor Whale Watch & Nature Cruise additionally offers you up shut views of seals and bald eagles.
Some issues to remember:
- Bar Harbor attracts massive crowds so plan forward to keep away from noon visitors
- It is strongly recommended to take the fare-free island explorer bus as a substitute of driving across the island
The place to Keep: Central Home has an historic allure and is rumored to be haunted if that’s your fashion. Smuggler’s Den Campground is a good spot for tenting about half-hour outdoors of the Bar Harbor and Terramor is likely one of the greatest glamping resorts in New England.
BoothBay Harbor, ME
Welcome to the midcoast gem of Boothbay Harbor, a quintessential summer season vacation spot. This city is stuffed with life from Windjammer cruises, puffin and whale watching excursions, and Railway Village rides, to botanical gardens and vintage outlets. If you’re searching for a candy deal with, go to Downeast Ice Cream Manufacturing unit or attempt some salt water taffy from Orne’s Sweet Retailer. Each outlets have a pleasant historic contact.
The Maine State Aquarium is a good spot for younger youngsters and animal lovers the place you’ll be able to contact sharks, maintain molluscs, and picnic. The house is smaller so not too overwhelming, and there’s a little reward store to choose up some enjoyable knick knacks.
See extra issues to do in Boothbay Harbor.
The place to Keep: Harborage Inn on the Oceanfront is a cute mattress and breakfast with water views that may be a very brief stroll to all of the downtown outlets and eating places.
The most important metropolis in Maine, Portland, provides enjoyable for all ages. Outdated Port is the historic a part of the town which has unmatched meals choices and boutiques for purchasing. I normally go to Portland on day journeys, however you’ll be able to simply refill a weekend of actions.
Flatbread Pizza is a longtime favourite identified for his or her brick oven pizza, my private advice being the cheese and herb or the do-it-yourself sausage pizza. Luke’s Lobster and the Portland Lobster Co. are my go-to spots for lobster rolls and recent seafood.
The brewery scene is vibrant with beer tasting at Allagash Brewing Firm. Museums just like the Portland Museum of Artwork are an amazing attraction as properly.
Day journeys by way of ferry round Casco bay islands, like Peaks island or Diamond Cove, is an effective way to discover. Lobster boat excursions are additionally accessible. The Portland Head Mild situated on Cape Elizabeth, is a picturesque lighthouse and museum in Fort Williams Park that may be a should for any customer to Maine (and seize a scrumptious lobster roll from the Chunk into Maine meals truck that units up within the park.)
The place to Keep: Portland could be dear in the summertime, however fortunately there are new inns equivalent to Cambria Resort Portland Downtown and the Longfellow Resort to assist ease the lodging scarcity.
Alongside the midcoast of Maine lies the artsy city of Rockland. You’ll find your self misplaced on the street artwork and downtown purchasing, or stroll alongside the Rockland Breakwater to see the historic lighthouse overlooking the harbor. One other nice lighthouse within the space is Owls Head Lighthouse which supplies views of Penobscot Bay.
It’s good to understand that Route 1 is the principle solution to get out and in of Rockland, and it will probably get fairly congested throughout peak summer season months. Additionally be certain to not miss the Maine Lobster Competition!
The place to Keep: 250 Maine Resort has a contemporary contact and views of the water.
Schoodic Peninsula/ Winter Harbor, ME
Wish to go to Acadia Nationwide Park however skip the crowds? Schoodic Peninsula is situated throughout from Mount Desert Island, however nonetheless nationwide park land.
Winter Harbor is situated on the northern finish of the peninsula and is barely a few 45 minute drive to Bar Harbor and has a handful of eating places and outlets and you may board a small boat tour to see puffins.
The character right here is breathtaking, with the quintessential image of pine bushes right down to the water. Each of those locations are way more secluded, a typical theme the additional you head downeast nearer you get to the Canadian border.
The place to Keep: Mainstay Cottages & RV Park consists of oceanfront cottages on Henry’s Cove.
Outdated Orchard Seashore, ME
Looking for an thrilling, bustling surroundings, with enjoyable sights round each nook? Stroll the old fashioned pier reaching out over the ocean the place you’ll be able to take pleasure in recent seafood and dwell music on the Pier Patio Pub.
New England’s solely beachfront amusement park, Palace Playland, consists of thrill rides just like the Sea viper curler coaster, but additionally has rides for the little ones like Convey the place you trip a child-sized automobile. The old-fashioned ambiance brings a nostalgic contact.
The seashore is huge with miles of flat sand match for sunbathing, swimming, or seashore sports activities, and has fireworks each Thursday beginning round 9:45 p.m. in the course of the summer season season. It is likely one of the widest, most conventional sand seashores within the state.
Sebago Lake, ME
Sebago Lake is a good household pleasant spot with an ideal quantity of out of doors actions. In comparison with lakes like Rangely, Sebago Lake is situated in Southern Maine subsequent to Lengthy Lake, making it extra accessible from the remainder of New England and a enjoyable day journey to Portland.
When my household was youthful, we camped in Sebago Lake Household CampGround which provided a cute group with good facilities. Enjoying on the playground, biking round, roasting marshmallows on the campfire, and swimming on the seashore have been key recollections. Sebago Lake water was clear, clear, and calm, and a bit hotter than Maine’s chillier oceans.
In Naples Maine, we rented a pontoon boat which we took throughout Sebago Lake and Lengthy Lake. You may fish, bounce off the boat, and swim round within the refreshing water. An ideal day on the lake.
The place to Keep: Sebago Lake Household Campground
Heading west nearer to the White Mountains is Oxford County’s oldest city, Fryeburg. This city is nice for individuals who want lakes and mountains. Weston’s Seashore is a extremely really helpful spot to loosen up on and swim within the calm Saco River. There are a number of water actions like tubing, kayaking, or paddle boarding in Saco River or Kezer Pond.
Bradley Memorial Park hosts live shows on Tuesdays, the place it’s also possible to take pleasure in picnicking. If you’re craving some scrumptious gourmand meals, make a reservation on the Oxford Home Inn restaurant, one of many prime 100 eating places in America in line with Opentable! The delicacies is modern American kinds with mixes of Asian, United States Southwestern, and French.
The place to Keep: Oxford Home Inn is larger finish and centrally situated.
This midcoast magnificence is upscale and a well-liked filming place for Hollywood motion pictures. A cute harbor filled with sailboats and a culturally wealthy downtown, makes for an ideal weekend getaway.
Camden provides a number of festivals year-round, however in the summertime you can not miss Camden’s Jazz In June music pageant. If you’re trying to expertise the close by nature be certain to go to Camden Hills State Park. Hike Mt. Battie for stunning views of Penobscot Bay. It’s canine pleasant and has a small tower on the summit the place you’ll be able to eat lunch.
The place to Keep: Lord Camden Inn
MooseHead Lake/ Maine Highlands, ME
Escape the bustle of crowds and enterprise deep into Maine to Moosehead Lake. As the biggest physique of water in Maine, Moosehead Lake stands as an oasis for wildlife and outside adventures.
Lily Bay State Park is a well-liked spot with a advantageous pebble seashore for swimming, two campgrounds, a playground, and docks for boating.
Inside the Maine Highlands, Baxter State Park is a stupendous place to hike and revel in nature. Take into account that if you wish to climb Mt. Katahdin, that is no breezy climb. Spherical journeys on Mt. Katahdin ranges from 8 to 12 hours, so be certain to analysis and put together and guide a parking allow prematurely.
The place to Keep: The Lodge at Moosehead Lake is a stupendous spot with advantageous eating and outside actions and Blair Hill Inn is one other sensible choice. For more room, there are many cabin leases on this space as properly.
Situated in between Outdated Orchard Seashore and Portland, this cute Southern Maine city is a good household vacation spot near well-liked sights. As a child, my household vacationed at Bayley’s Tenting Resort for 3 years. In true glamping style, the campsite had three swimming pools, a movie show, and a camp retailer the place my siblings and I’d observe our independence by utilizing walkie talkies to get sweet. Very protected, spacious, and personal. Plus, adults get a scorching tub!
Funtown Splashtown USA is barely a ten minute drive away in Saco. Journey Maine’s solely wood curler coaster Excalibur, after which race down the water slide Amphitrite’s Problem. Inside Scarborough it’s also possible to take pleasure in Scarborough Seashore State Park and Higgins Seashore.
The place to Keep: Bayley’s Tenting Resort
Belgrade Lakes, ME
If you’re looking for a peaceable and enjoyable getaway, the Belgrade Lakes are for you. It’s conveniently situated about 10 miles from the capital, Augusta. Made up of a complete of seven lakes, this space provides a number of water sports activities like boating, swimming, or fishing.
Once I visited, the dock outdoors our cabin was an ideal spot to fish because the solar set, situated on a river that led into Messalonskee Lake. If you’re an enormous golf fan you’ll love the nationally ranked Belgrade Lakes Golf Membership, an immersive nature and golf expertise.
The place to Keep: Maine Cabin on the Water is a comfy and spacious cabin with a dock for kayaking and fishing.
Monhegan Island, ME
Hop on a ferry from Boothbay Harbor or New Harbor and make your solution to this sq. mile piece of magic. Monhegan Island is an enthralling small island filled with rocky cliffs, and comfy cottages. Cathedral Woods consists of strolling trails that entice artists to the island. Many guests account for seeing fairy homes within the woods!
Go to the espresso store The Mooring Chain for espresso, tea, bagels, and pastries. The native house owners get recent bagels from the Trailing Yew each morning.
The place to Keep: Monhegan Home is a mattress & breakfast which provides the sound of ocean waves, scenic coastal views, and the chance to see artists.
Discover the place that speaks to you and plan your dream Maine summer season trip!
Visiting Maine? You may additionally be excited by…
Lily O’Neill is a contract content material author set to graduate from the College of Massachusetts Amherst in spring 2024. She additionally blogs on her personal web site, Humanscrapbook, the place she focuses on life-style, wellness and journey content material. With a background in psychology and cultural anthropology, Lily combines social sciences and her personal travels to craft significant tales.