Things to do in Maine

Things to do in Maine

From moose encounters and mountain hikes to seafood feasts and sea life spotting, Maine contains a wealth of adventure waiting to be discovered. With 3,500 miles of rocky coastline, punctuated by historic lighthouses and home to a thriving wildlife population, it's no wonder that this picturesque state in New England is fondly nicknamed Vacationland. So roll up your sleeves and grab a lobster bib, or lace up your hiking boots, and get stuck into our list of the best things to do in Maine.

  1. Conquer Cadillac Mountain
  2. Soar above Moosehead Lake
  3. Admire Pemaquid Lighthouse
  4. Indulge in Portland’s foodie scene
  5. Take a whale watching tour
  6. Explore the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens
  7. Snack at a lobster shack


Conquer Cadillac Mountain

If you're a morning person, Cadillac Mountain in the beautiful Acadia National Park should be high up on your list of things to do in Maine. As the highest point on the East Coast, it's one of the first places in the US to see the sunrise during the winter months, which is quite the accolade. With soaring views across Frenchman Bay and the Porcupine Islands from the sky-high peak soar, you can opt to either hike to the top or enjoy a scenic drive. Either way, you're in for a treat.


Soar above Moosehead Lake

Moosehead Lake is Maine's majestic playground, stretching for 40 miles in the remote highlands of interior Maine. You'll find this beautiful tree-ringed lake up in the Longfellow Mountains, about seventy miles north of Bangor. Aptly named for its resemblance to the antlered head of a moose from above, see it for yourself from aboard a float plane in Greenville or, if you're feeling active, hike up Mount Kineo. Upon reaching the peak, you’ll find yourself surrounded on three sides by water and dramatic views. You might even see a moose or two, as they’re known to outnumber humans here three to one.


Admire Pemaquid Lighthouse

Maine is home to a collection of charming, historic lighthouses dotted along its coastline – over 60 of them, to be exact. Each with their own distinct stories and views, you can follow a trail from the Portland Headlight to the West Quoddy Lighthouse, passing through a few cute coastal towns along the way. The Pemaquid Lighthouse is the most popular; not only can you climb the lighthouse tower for incredible views, but you can also explore the Fisherman's Museum, wander through an art gallery and relax on the nearby white sand beach.


Indulge in Portland’s foodie scene

Portland isn't just the state's largest city, it's also a mecca for food enthusiasts. With a flourishing culinary landscape, it’s well-known for its succulent seafood, artisanal breweries and a commitment to farm-to-table dining. Stroll through the historic Old Port district, where you can savour local brews and indulge in exquisite oysters while gazing at the waterfront. There's so much to chow down on in this city that you might have a tough time choosing where to eat. This is where a culinary walking tour comes in handy; you get to work up an appetite while walking, learn some local history and sample tasty treats.


Take a whale watching tour

Between April and October, Maine becomes the ultimate dining spot not only for humans, but also for majestic marine giants. These months are a special time for animal lovers, as humpback, pilot, minke and finback whales flock to the state's coastal waters. While you can occasionally see them from the shore with binoculars, the best way to see them up close and personal is on a whale watching cruise. Many companies offer these trips from both Bar and Boothbay Harbors, with some sightseeing tours even setting sail from Portland.


Explore the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens

Located on the Boothbay Peninsula, the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens is a 270-acre lush oasis, with diverse plant families stretching along a mile of waterfront. Since opening in 2007, it has quickly become one of the best things to do in Maine. From April to October, you'll find acres of meticulously curated plants that are native to Maine and other northern coastal regions. Sprinkled among the natural splendour are sculptures crafted by local artists. Your visit can be as simple as a stroll through the verdant gardens, or you can opt for a more in-depth experience by taking part in an educational workshop.


Snack at a lobster shack

For many, lobster is the first thing that comes to mind when Maine is mentioned. The state’s history is deeply intertwined with its bustling coastal fishing fleets and seafood industry, with the lobster roll reigning supreme as their most iconic dish. Maine lobster is considered to be some of the best in the United States, and there are plenty of fresh lobster variations all over the state. Local Mainers are fiercely loyal to their favourite lobster shacks, and we recommend you join them during your visit. These unassuming seaside spots are renowned for dishing out delicious fresh lobster rolls – heavenly submarine sandwiches overflowing with tender lobster and creamy sauce. Red's Eats in Wiscasset, Five Islands in Georgetown and The Clam Shack in Kennebunk serve up some of the absolute best.