Category Archives: Things to do on the Coast

Maine Lobster Boat Races

Its like NASCAR on the Atlantic… as lobster boats race on a sunny summer Sunday afternoon in Maine, in front of hundreds of floating fans. Boats raft up to one another, coolers are brimming with beers, and BBQ grills are as fired up as the lobstermen throttling their boats down the marked channel for bragging rights. Spectators cheer for each set of speeding boats – typically two to four boats race at a time – plying the waves and each other’s wake – charging for the finish line and the best time.

Each summer Lobster Boat races are hosted up the coast and Down East, from Portland to Harpsell, to Pemaquid, Boothbay and beyond…

There’s no cost to attend. It’s a free for all, free for all! Most of the these Maine fishing and lobstering vessels are designed to fish …not to go fast. That’s what makes it fun – funny even! Seeing a lobster boat speed at upwards of 30 mph is exciting… especially when competing head to head amongst friendly fishing friends – turned competitors.

Lobstering is hard work, on often cold mornings, in harsh seas, fog, rain, Maine weather, so its nice tosee lobstermen on a day off, having fun, enjoying their boats in a friendly competiton in front of their fans and families.

The best place to watch these fun summer races is on a boat. Some Maine harbors also charter special boat trips and ferries on race day to bring spectators out to the fleet field. Best bet, find a friend with a large barge or comfy cruiser, offer to bring lunch and beverages in trade for a ride and front row seat. Or hop on an ferry. Bring a cooler, snacks, sunscreen, a swimsuit for a quick “cool” dip between heats,  and a hat – its a long day viewing in the sun – often starting with small work boat class, a wooden boat division, diesel vs gas classes, and building up to the bigger beefier working boats, ending with a tug boat tug of war for the win. The sup’ed up lobster boat heats are by far the loudest, a real crowd pleaser…

2019 Maine Lobster Boat Schedule:

June 15 Boothbay Harbor Lobster Boat Races
June 16 Rockland Lobster Boat Races
June 23  Bass Harbor Lobster Boat Race and Blessing of the Fleet
June 29  Moosabec Reach Lobster Boat Race at Jonesport – Beals Island bridge
July 7  Stonington Lobster Boat Race
July 21 Friendship Lobster Boat Races
July 28 Harpswell Lobster Boat Races – land lubbers can view the race from Dolphin Cove Marina Restaurant – one of our fave waterfront restaurants in Maine!
August 10 Winter Harbor Lobster Boat Races & Downeast Maine Lobster Festival
August 11 Pemaquid Lobster Boat Race & Olde Bristol Days celebration and fireworks
August 17 Long Island Lobster Boat Races
August 18 Portland Lobster Boat Race, MS Harborfest, and Tugboat muster. View from Eastern Prom

Got some great lobster boat race pics, post on facebook and insta #visitmaine

See more on Top Things to Do on the Southern Maine Coast and where to stay in southern Maine also known as  #vacationland !
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Top Things to Do on the Southern Maine Coast

If Maine is the way life should be, you should be here… we think the best of Maine is the southern Maine coast. Its easiest to reach, has the most sandy beach, plenty of lighthouses and lobster, everything iconic Maine, without the long drive upta Bar Harbor and beyond….

  1. Lobster – get ya lobstah just ovah the bordah… (Maine slang) you can stop in York, Kittery, or carry on further “down east” to satisfy your crustacean craving. We love the lobster at York Harbor Inn or Dockside, both have a water view, for a lobster roll, baked stuffed lobster, steamed and more. See How to eat a Maine lobster
  2. Lighthouses – Southern Maine has a dozen lighthouses, including two of the world’s most majestic and most photographed- Cape Neddick’s Nubble Light, and Portland Headlight – Maine’s oldest – 1791. See this Guide to Maine Lighthouses on the southern Maine coast.
  3. Beaches – our coast is loaded with lovely sand beaches, from York’s Long Sand and Short Sands Beach to Ogunquit Beach, Wells Beach, several beaches in Kennebunk and Kennebunkport and Goose Rocks, to Old Orchard Beach and near Portland Ferry Beach, Scarborough and Higgins beach. Sand, surf, salt air and sea views…. Here are Maine’s best beaches on the south coast.
  4. Boating – the best way to see the Maine coast is by sea. Charter a sailboat cruise, hop on a lobster boat tour to pull some traps, take a Whale Watch to the outer banks, a Ferry around Casco Bay, or just kayak the harbors and along the coast. See our guide to Boating, Sailing and Fishing Charters.
  5. Bike around the beautiful country roads and scenic ocean side drives in southern Maine. To rally appreciate the serenity and scenery of Maine, take the road less traveled and pedal, along Ocean Ave in Kennebunkport, or the Eastern trail, or the more adventurous mountain bike paths of Mt Agamenticus.
  6. Shop the treasure of southern Maine. Whether its that weathered antique you seek from a Wells boutique- the antique shoppers capital of Maine, or a cool Maine made craft from Perkins Cove in Ogunguit, to the bargain hunters haven of Mardens  and Reny’s in Biddeford. Last but not least is Kittery – the outlet capital of Maine, and Freeport – home to LL Bean, open 24/7/365.
  7. Explore the seaside towns – many of New England’s best towns are in the southernmost part of Maine. Kennebunkport has its cute shops, galleries and restaurants, while Portland’s Old Port is packed with cool boutiques and bars. Ogunquit is an art community with flair, while Freeport has a beautiful hidden waterfront – on the Harasseeket – most don’t see when they beeline to the outlets on Main Street..
  8. Eat Maine – its not just lobstah and buttah. Maine has a real up and coming foodie scene. Top Chefs are coming to Maine and the cuisine is up and coming because of it. Portland has amazing restaurants, James Beard award winning chefs, and Maine is home to some hot food and wine festivals like Harvest on the Harbor and The Kennebunkport Festival – fun food and wine infused celebrations on the cusp of going big.
  9. Stay for a day, a night or two. Since southern Maine is so easy to get to, just over an hour from Boston, you can come for just an overnight or two, play all day – hit the beach, the boutiques, have that bite of lobster, go for a boat ride, and book a beautiful room at The Boathouse Waterfront Hotel, a waterfront resort like The Cliff House or Stage Neck Inn, or a cozy BnB like Captain Lord Mansion or an inn like Breakwater Inn and Spa in Kennebunkport or The Seaside right on Kennebunk Beach.
  10. Leave only your footprints on the beach, but take lots of photos. Maine is a most photonic place, so you’ll want to snap lots of picks to post on facebook and insta #visitmaine #vacationland#Sea you soon on the southern Maine Coast!
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The Patriots are coming to Ogunquit this Spring

The beautiful coastal town of Ogunquit was established in 1686. To this day, Ogunquit carries a proud heritage of sea faring, coastal art and seafood. The “beautiful place by the sea”, Ogunquit’s translation in Abenaki, celebrates its seaside vibrancy with festivals.  perhaps the biggest event is Ogunquit’s Annual Patriots Day Weekend celebration April 12-14!

The entire ocean front communities turns out and celebrates with historical characters walking the streets, musterings, and fife & drum concerts, craft fairs, Colonial treasure hunts, and a Chefs’ taste of the Town. this year marks the 29th Annual Patriots Weekend in Ogunquit with some extra fun events like a Pooch Pageant, Washington Crossing the Delaware, and Maine Street – Ogunquit’s biggest nightclub – celebrating with a big Friday night party. For lodging during this fun festive weekend, see our Guide to Ogunquit’s best lodging.

Ogunquit’s Annual Patriots Day Weekend Events:
All Weekend Long
TREASURE HUNTS:
 Complete your Patriots Day booklet to the Chamber at the Main Beach tent, and be entered to win a prize! As a bonus, answer the question on the entry card correctly, and we will double your prize!

HISTORICAL BUILDING HUNT (throughout Ogunquit) Patriots Day celebrates Ogunquit’s history. Draw at least six of the following the most historic buildings and landmarks in your Patriots Day booklet and be entered to win a prize: Ogunquit Memorial Library, Ogunquit Heritage Museum, Ogunquit Museum of American Art, Ogunquit Playhouse, Marginal Way Lighthouse, Perkins Cove Bridge, Footbridge (at Footbridge Beach), pedestrian bridge (at end of Wharf Lane)

FRIDAY, APRIL 12, 2019
9:00am-5:00pm: LIBRARY BOOK SALE (Ogunquit Memorial Library) Used book sale, with proceeds to fund the Ogunquit Memorial Library.

5:00pm: FUNDRAISING FRIDAY (Bintliff’s Restaurant, 335 Main Street). 

7pm: HISTORICAL RE-ENACTMENT: Boston Tea Party,  You’ve heard the dramatic tale  – now see it come to life at Perkins Cove.

8pm: FIFE & DRUM PARADE (upstairs at Ogunquit Baptist Church, Shore Road) Historic characters play revolutionary music in a fife and drum concert at the Ogunquit Baptist Church!

9pm: MAINESTREET party (Mainestreet). – Ogunquit’s biggest wildest night club. Fun music, drinks, dancing, 21+.

SATURDAY AND SUNDAY:
OGUNQUIT STOCKS, AND  PHOTO OPS (Main Beach Parking Lot & Perkins Cove) Selfie photo opportunities for the whole family! Don’t worry, the stocks don’t lock, but they will be available all weekend for photo opportunities. Another fun photo opportunity available with a life-size cut-out stand-up where you can take a photo of yourself dressed in old-time bathing suits, as Uncle Sam, and more!

COLONIAL FLAG TREASURE HUNT (under the tents at the Beach) Find all of the flags at the craft fair. Using the page in your brochure, draw each flag in the appropriate colony’s box. Don’t worry, you aren’t being judged for artistic talent! We may throw in some other Colonial-era flags in to throw you off the trail! Turn in your solution at the Ogunquit Chamber table under the tent, and be entered to win a prize.

GUESS THE WEIGHT OF THE TEA CHEST (under the tents at the beach) How much did a tea chest weigh? Look at the chest and guess what it would have weighed when full of tea. No, as a safety precaution, you will not get to lift the box! As a bonus, answer the question on the entry card correctly, and we will double your prize! 

SATURDAY, APRIL 13, 2019
9:00am – 4:00pm: BEACH BAZAAR ( Kennebunk Savings Bank tents at the Beach parking lot) Over 50 vendors will sell their wares under the tent! We’re collecting donations of non-perishable food for York County Shelter Program, and pet food for the Animal Welfare Society.

9:00am-5:00pm: OGUNQUIT MEMORIAL LIBRARY BOOK SALE (Ogunquit Memorial Library)

10am – 11am: COLONIAL CHILDREN’S GAMES AND CRAFTS (Ogunquit Baptist Church, 157 Shore Road) Play games from the colonial era, and make your own to take home and play later!

12:00 noon: AMERICAN PIE CONTEST (downstairs at the Dunaway Center, 23 School Street) Submit one home-made pie in an “American” flavor to our “celebrity judges”. Pies will be judged during Taste of the Town in the following categories: theme, appearance, and taste. The grand prize winner will receive $50 in Gift of Ogunquit gift certificates, and the recipe will be featured in the next edition of our Ogunquit cookbook. Of course the best prize is the bragging rights for having made the best pie in Ogunquit! Winners will be announced after Taste of the Town.

11:30 – 1pm: “TASTE OF THE TOWN” (Dunaway Center, 23 School Street) A variety of Ogunquit restaurants’ top Chefs will serve up their special dishes for you to try out! Buy tickets at the door or ahead of time under the tent at the beach. Tickets  are $10, $15 for VIP admission early at 11am. Brign a donation for the local food pantry or animal shelter.

1:30pm: FIFE AND DRUM COPR CONCERT (Ogunquit Heritage Museum) .

SUNDAY, APRIL 14, 2019
10:00am – 3:00pm: BEACH BAZAAR (at the Kennebunk Savings Bank tent at the Main Beach parking lot) See Saturday description.

10:00am – 3:00pm: HAY RIDES (Main Beach Parking Lot. Weather permitting.) $5 per person.

11am: RE-ENACTENT OF THE FLAG RAISING AT IWO JIMA (Marginal Way) While the flag raising at Iwo Jima did not take place during the Revolutionary War, we take a moment to remember and give thanks to all of those who have fought for our freedom throughout our history. Weather permitting.

12:30pm: PATRIOTIC POOCH PAGEANT AND FASHION SHOW (Liquid Dreams parking lot, 696 Main Street. Weather permitting.) Dress your dog in costume, or just come to watch the show! Two costume categories: Patriotic(red, white, and blue) and Favorite American figure. Prizes will be awarded for most patriotic costume and best costume impersonation. Animal Welfare Society will be there to feature some of their adoptable dogs.

See more Southern Maine Coast events and festivals, like the Kennebunkport Festival, and visit Ogunquit, Wells, Kennebunkport and Portland Maine soon.

For Maine lodging, visit Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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Shore Signs of Spring In Maine

Spring has arrived in Maine…sometimes its slow to arrive, with snow in April and skiing til May at Sugarloaf. Maine winters can be long, cold and snowy – skiers and snowmobiler love it but some folks just long for spring. Longer warmer days, beach weather and beautiful flowers. Cheers – spring is here!

Here are 7 shore signs of Spring in Maine:
Flowers popping their tender heads out of garden beds… the bright yellow daffodils, purple pansies, regal red tulips and golden forsythia buds busting forth – say that 3 times!

Shrink wrap ripping of boats as trailers and hauls drop boats into the water – well not literally dropping the boats – that would be a bad start to the yacht season!

Shorts – As the barometer peaks over 60, bold brave eager Mainers shed their long LL Bean layers and don shorts for the first time since September. Beware the bright white legs that have been under rap all winter.

Decks at your favorite Maine restaurants on the water are opening up faster than you can say “let’s get a drink down by the water.”

Portland’s Sea Dogs are playing ball. Nothing says spring in Maine like a home opener of baseball at Portland’s Hadlock Field with Slugger the Sea Dog and the Boston Red Sox Double A Team.

Lawns – the purr of lawnmowers returns as homeowners greet and groom the green grass they have missed  – buried under a winter coat of snow.

Lobster – yes it’s the season to start cracking into Maine lobster again. Here’s praying for a plentiful yield of crustacean this year. Maine lobstermen have set and exceeded their records for the biggest catch for seven straight years… insert clap of claws here.

Cheers to spring in Maine! Get in your short, get on a boat, go to the beach, catch a ballgame, enjoy a beer on a waterfront deck, and enjoy some Maine lobster.

For Maine lodging, visit Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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What is there to do on the Southern Maine Coast in winter?

5seaside-inn-winterWhat is there to do on the Southern Maine Coast in winter? Plenty – walk the beach, shop, eat, drink, ski, sled, skate, surf, cozy up to a fire at a romantic seaside inn, eat lobster, snowshoe, paint, read, write…

You can walk the beach all year round. In winter, Ogunquit, Wells Beach, Kennebunk Beach and Old Orchard are all beautiful. You can watch the surfers ride the winter waves, walk your dog, take pictures of the snow and sand, and just enjoy an entirely different season on the beach, read: not wearing your bikini.

Cross country skiing or snowshoeing at nearby Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm on their 7 mile of beautiful trails or Harris Farm in Dayton makes for a great day, even an hour outside enjoying the snow and the scenery.

2dock-square-kbpt2For a more relaxing romantic endeavor, take a horse drawn carriage ride through Kennebunkport’s Docks Square, Ogunquit and Kennebunk both have beautiful outdoor ice skating rinks. Kennebunk’s Waterhouse Pavilion is a free public covered ice rink in downtown Kennebunk next to the Kennebunk Inn.

Sledding hills are peppered throughout the coast – Kennebunk’s Sea Road Dump, no longer a landfill, is very popular for sledding on the well-pitched hill. Munjoy Hill and the Eastern Prom in Portland have some good sledding spots too.

99love-kbpt-davidsAs for fun festivals, Kennebunkport celebrates Paint The Town Red and February is For Lovers with red and white lights, Ice Bar at David’s KPT, heart decorations and romantic specials on lodging at fabulous inns, happy hours, dining and shopping.  Ogunquit throws a Mardi Gras party in February 20 weekend with fir jugglers, a Masquerade Ball and a Hat and Mask Parade down Ogunquit’s Main Street. Let the good time roll in Ogunquit in winter.

4dock-square-kbpt7Shopping is a four season sport, and Maine is no exception, especially with LL Bean open 365 24/7. Winter shopping in Maine means deals and sales – whether you are at Kittery Outlets, Freeport’s Outlets, or the many boutiques and shops in Kennebunkport, Ogunquit and the Old Port of Portland. You can also find bargains at Mardens and Reny’s  -two classic Maine shopping experiences – buy it if you see it – these Maine shopping institutions are never the same twice. The local people watching is a hoot to.

davids-serverMaine restaurants host Maine Restaurant Week March 1-16, 2016 – so it’s actually two weeks of great Maine dining deals at the best restaurants in southern Maine. Maine’s foodie scene as rocketed to top chef status, in fact Portland recently topped Boston as the coziest city in America – with the great dining spots as a number 1 reason.

Per capita, Portland Maine has more restaurants than any other city in the United States, and many are walkable and wonderful! Winter is a better time to tackle the Top Restaurants in Portland – less lines and less waiting for a table and better dining deals than peak summer. Don’t worry, lobster is always on the menu, clams too.

6captain-lord-mansion-kennebunkportLastly, cozy romantic lodging along the Southern Maine Coast in winter is a great deal. You can score a beautiful suite or a fireplace room in a BNB for less than spring, summer or fall, and you have the place to yourself. Many lodging properties like Seaside Inn and Captain Lord Mansion in K’port, and Ogunquit Resort Motel offer packages including wine and flowers, or dining certificates to local restaurants during your stay, even late check outs. Family resorts like Rhumb Line in Kennebunkport and Village by the Sea and Misty Harbor in Wells have indoor heated pools perfect for a family vacation.

love-kbpt-davids6See our Southern Maine Coast lodging guide and plan a winter getaway today – bring the kids, the dog to a pet friendly place, or just your sweetheart to a romantic inn in Maine.

Photos by Greg Burke, see more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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What to wear in Maine in Fall Y’all

Maine fall landscapeIts sweatah weathah to quote my friend in her salty Maine accent. Mainahs just love fall, except for the raking of the leaves that fall in your dooryahd.

Fall along the Southern Maine Coast brings warm sunny days, usually a perfect 65-70-degrees so you can stroll the sandy beach, bike along pretty coastal paths, or kayak on the rivers to enjoy the spectacular kaleidoscope of colors. Maple, oak, and birch provide reds oranges and yellows contrasting Maine’s state pine tree in green and family-poolthe sparkling ocean and waters that turn a deep dark blue. Evenings on the southern Maine coast, the temperatures drops to a cool 50, perfect for a fireside dinner, and the sky fills with fantastic stars following a brilliant orange sunset.

w-farm-pumpkins4w-farm-pumpkins4Fall foliage is the highlight of a Maine visit in autumn. And there is still so much to see and do. For your planning, peak foliage is typically Columbus weekend, but the last few weekends in September through the third week of October offer prime viewing in various locations from the coastline to inland lakes and rivers.

Fall is a great time to go apple picking, Kport1 (3)hiking, biking and walking along nature trails. Fall also marks the harvest, with farmers markets,  craft fairs and agricultural fairs. While the  Fryeburg Fair is the big daddy of fairs, followed by the Cumberland County Fair, there are Maine craft fairs galore in York, Wells, Ogunquit, Kennebunkport and on up to Portland, Camden, Boothbay and Bar Harbor featuring locally made Maine crafts, art, food and entertainment. See our list of Fall events, fairs and festivals in Maine.

Fall is also a great time to score a deal on lodging along the southern Maine Coast as peak summer is over, and rates really fall after Columbus Day weekend while the leaf peeping remains prime for a few more weeks. So lobster_platepack your sweater, your camera and be prepared to be wowed by the display of foliage, and don’t forget to make time for a Maine lobster dinner at a waterfront restaurant before winter arrives.

September in Wells – The Laudholm Nature Crafts Festival

Mid September in Freeport – The Lobstermen’s Triathlon

Mid September  – Maine Open Lighthouse Day

Early October The Fryeburg Fair – Maine’s largest agricultural fair

Sept 29-30 The Dempsey Challenge in Lewiston – Actor Patrick Dempsey’s annual Cancer Fundraiser walk/run/bike ride

Oct 6 Columbus Weekend Sunday River hosts the North American Wife Carrying Championships

5bass-harbor-maine18Oct 13York Harvestfest

Oct 19-21 OgunquitFest

Oct 17 – 21 Harvest on the Harbor in Portland food and wine festival

Oct 13  Camp Sunshine’s Maine Pumpkin Festival at LL Bean in Freeport

See more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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15th Annual OgunquitFest – Fall for Maine!

Its fall y’all and that means  Ogunquitfest in the beautiful seaside village of Ogunquit. For this year’s 15th annual Ogunquit, get ready for a festive Dog Costume Parade and Pooch pageant, Maine Whoopie Pie Eating contest, wine tastings, Antique Car Show, and the world-famous high heel dash and Waiters’ Race. The Ogunquit fall events range from family friendly to silly to a total scream… Ogunquitfest is Friday- Sunday October 19-21.

Come celebrate Halloween a weekend early in Ogunquit Maine, join in the fall festivities including pumpkin decorating and an Autmn Bzaar full of maine crafts, art and food locals food items. Its also a great peak foliage weekend to dine on that last fresh Maine lobster of the season, shop, walk the beach on a crisp fall day, and stay at one of Ogunquit’s best lodging properties, or nearby in Wells Maine or lodge in The Kennebunks.

15th annual OgunquitFest Calendar of Fun Events

Saturday, October 20, 2018
AUTUMN BAZAAR 9am-4pm, Ogunquit Beach. 75 vendors with Maine crafts, perfect for holiday shopping! Non-perishable food donations are accepted for local food pantry or pet food for the Animal Welfare Society.

GREAT PUMPKIN PATCH PRESENTATION 10-11:30am, Dunaway Center, School Street. An autumn delight for kids of all ages. Pumpkins, paints, markers, and stickers supplied, however no sharp instruments or carving for everyone’s safety.

ANTIQUE & CLASSIC CAR SHOW 10am-1pm, Main Beach parking lot. Vote on your favorite classic car! Winners announced at 12:30pm. Free admission.

WHOOPIE PIE EATIN CONTEST 11:30-12:30 old Village School , Cottage Street. Who can eat Maine’s favorite dessert treat fastest?

WINE TASTING 2pm-5pm. Village Food Market, 230 Main Street. Wine tasting with fall foods and Thanksgiving pairings in mind.

RIVER RALLY  Kayak and SUP 2-4pm, Ogunquit Footbridge, end of Ocean Street. Meet at the Footbridge,  paddle to the Beach Street bridge and back. It’s not a race, just good fun. Kayaks and SUPs welcome. Weather permitting.

RUCK FOR OUR FALLEN 12-6pm Footbridge Beach fundraiser for Gold Star families.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

AUTUMN BAZAAR 10am-3pm, Main Beach parking lot. See Saturday description.

DOGTOBER POOCH PARADE and POOCH COSTUME AWARDS 11am, Ogunquit Main Beach. Costumed kids, adults and canines welcome! Pooch pageant to follow at 11:30am!

WAITERS RACE Noon  Beach Street. Ogunquit’s best waiters race with full trays to the beach and back. Anyone can enter!

HIGH HEEL DASH AND WALK-OFF 3pm, Perkins Cove Road. Watch this hilarious high heel race as men, ladies and a mix of brave souls put their best, highest foot forward and dash for cash. The race around Perkins Cove in high heels is fun to watch, even better to participate! Racer’s HighHeels must be at least 2” high. Prizes are awarded for Best Time, Highest Heel and Most Outrageous Costume! Proceeds from registration will go to Frannie Peabody Center.

OgunquitFest Weekend is sponsored by the Ogunquit Chamber of Commerce, our thanks to them from the SouthernMaineCoast.com

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Vacation Guide to the Southern Maine – Ogunquit, Kennebunkport, York, Old Orchard Beach – Resorts Inns

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Fall sun, fun, music, beer and boats

1cape-arundel-inn-oceanFall on the Southern Maine Coast is super. The warm summer weather continues, ushering cool clear evenings and autumnal sunsets. You can still have your beach days, boat rides, and the towns of Kennebunkport ,Ogunquit and Wells are far less busy as kids have gone back to school. September and October are full of festivals, fairs, art and music in Maine.

vinegar-hillMusic, craft fairs and concerts fill the fall air. Ogunquit Playhouse has wonderful Broadway style plays in September while Vinegar Hill Music Theatre hosts amazing acts and Tribute Bands.

The 2nd Friday of the Month is Kennebunk & Kennebunkport’s the Village Art Walk, always the 2nd Friday. Art galleries and artisan studios in LoweKport1 (3)r Village Kennebunk and Kennebunkport open their doors and serve snacks and drinks for patrons to enjoy while browsing local art, photography and crafts.

The weekend of September 8-9 is the big Laudholm Nature Crafts Festival in Wells at Laudholm Farms.

While you are visiting Southern Maine, be shore to get aboard a boat, The Rugosa Lobster Boat Tour is a great hour and half trip out the Kennebunk River, you will haul lobster traps, see the Bush’s estate – Walkers’ Point from the water, and maybe a few harbor seals during your beautiful cruise. If you prefer pineapple-ketchto sail, The Pineapple Ketch is a beautiful sailboat which also departs from the docks at the Nonantum for daily sails and a spectacular sunset cruise. If fishing is your thing, then Captain Bruce will take you out aboard the Libreti Rose II to catch some striper and have a fun charter at sea.

See our Maine lodging guide for the best places to stay in Kennebunkport, Wells, Ogunquit, York and Old Orchard Beach, Portland and Freeport too.

DCIM100GOPROGOPR0749.Photos by Greg Burke, see more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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Copyright SouthernMaineCoast.com.  Text and photos property of IMS-21.net.

Maine Beach Getaways in Winter

The true beauty of the southern Maine coast is you can walk the beach year round. Southern Maine is legendary for its long sandy stretches of pristine, picture perfect beaches, from York to Wells, Ogunquit to Kennebunkport, Old Orchard Beach to Portland! While everyone comes for a Maine beach vacation in the summer.

Spring, fall and winter on the Maine coast are undiscovered gems for long beach walks, finding smooth beach stones, sea glass and shells, even the occasional lobster pot after a storm out to sea. What’s especially enjoyable about the southern Maine coast is that the Atlantic Ocean provides warmth in colder weather, with the sea temperature averaging in the 40’s. So seaside towns are more temperate often than inland and toward the Maine mountains.

The other bonus of a winter Maine beach vacation is great off-season lodging rates at the best waterfront inns and hotels, not to mention free available parking by the beach.

Here are some great oceanfront resorts, steps to beaches  – ideal for a winter getaway:

York Harbor Inn  in York Maine – a romantic BnB walking distance to Harbor Beach, with a cozy Ships Cellar Pub for happy hour.
Ogunquit Resort Motel in Ogunquit – near Footbridge Beach and Town, affordable and friendly lodging.
Cliff House Resort and Spa– which just underwent a complete renovation in Cape Neddick near Ogunquit.
Misty Harbor Resort in Wells is a short walk to Wells Beach Maine – with suite lodging and an indoor pool and spa too!
Village by the Sea in Wells is not far from the beach, and has an indoor pool and condo style lodging!
Seaside Inn in Kennebunk is steps to the a beautiful sandy beach, with an outdoor ocean view hot tub,  and its a nice walk to Kennebunkport.
Breakwater Inn and Spa is right on the river with ocean views, a short walk to a beach, shops and restaurants,  and a pleasant stroll to President Bush’s Walkers Point home on scenic Ocean Ave in Kennebunkport. Stripers Waterfront Restaurant is on site with a great happy hour, sunsets and lobster specials!
Rhumb Line Resort in Kennebunkport has an indoor pool and spa, plus an outdoor hot tub, and is great for families, in Kennebunkport, a short drive to several sandy beaches.

Sea Cliff is located directly on 7-mile Old Orchard Beach, open in winters with great rates and the sound of waves from your suite at night.

In Portland Maine, stay in town in the Old Port at Portland Regency and you’re a short drive to Portland Headlight and beaches, best of all you walk around Portland’s great boutiques and bars from the hotel.

So make plans for a Maine beach break – this winter! Stroll the beach, save on lodging with off season special, walk in to your favorite restaurants for lobster and enjoy local happy hour specials at some of Maine’s best restaurants…  it’s a shore cure for cabin fever and winter blues, and sure easier and less expensive than flying to a tropical island.

See more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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10 Waterfront Dining Spots in Maine – south up into the lower midcoast

lobster-bake-maine-style3aMaine’s legendary seafood just tastes better with an ocean view, it’s true. Where better to savor succulent Maine lobster than by the sea from which it came? Here are some beautiful oceanfront spots with top Maine chefs for waterfront dining. Get your clams, scallops, mussels and more near the shore at these Top 10 Maine Restaurants…

Davids’ KPT in the Boathouse Waterfront Hotel
The Boathouse Waterfront Hotel is home to this great riverfront restaurant – David’s KPT love-kbpt-davids6hangs over the Kennebunk River, just steps from Dock Square in central Kennebunkport. Portland’s popular chef David Turin is the host, and his creative menu has lots to choose from –a raw bar, light bites to pizzas and entrees. David’s has three vibrant bars plus a spacious outdoor deck with cozy seating for Happy Hour or late night overlooking the river lights. David’s KPT is a locals’ favorite. 21 Ocean Ave, Kennebunkport, 207-967-8225

stripers-fishing-boatStripers at the Breakwater Inn and Spa in Kennebunkport
Right near the breakwater out to sea in Kennebunkport, hence the name of the Inn where Striper is located – you can watch fishermen catch stripers from this choice spot. Go for cocktails on the gorgeous lawn at sunset, then enjoy mussels or duck or lobster in the beautiful waterfront dining room. 131 Ocean Avenue, Kennebunkport 207-967-5333

1cape-arundel-inn-oceanOcean Kennebunkport
Ocean at Cape Arundel Inn overlooks Walker’s Point, so you can enjoy a gourmet dinner with a presidential view of the Bush Compound. An elegant dining room and old fashioned wrap around porch in this classic seaside Inn are extraordinary. Chef Pierre is European trained, his sophisticated menu features local seafood and farm raised fare artfully prepared. Go to Ocean before sunset so you can enjoy the ocean view. Cape Arundel Inn is at 208 Ocean Ave, Kennebunkport, 207-967-2125

pineapple-ketch-nonantum95 Ocean at Nonantum Resort in Kennebunkport
This historical and friendly hotel on Ocean Ave in Kennebunkport has water view dining with live entertainment most nights in the summer time. Favorite dishes include fresh seafood and famous Blueberry Chipotle Ribs along with funky cocktails at Heckman’s Pub and the more formal 95 Ocean. Foodies can also enjoy dancing to live music view grand views of the Kennebunk River. Nonantum Resort, 95 Ocean Avenue, Kennebunkport, 207-967-4050

dine_view21637 and Ships Cellar Pub in York Harbor
York Harbor Inn’s Ship’s Cellar Pub is great for a casual lunch or dinner, modeled after an old wooden ship, or dine upstairs in the more elegant 1637 – same menu – with ocean views and plenty of fresh seafood. Executive Chef Bonsey is a top chef in Maine. 480 York St, York Harbor. 207-363-5119

Dimillos in Portland
Waterfront restaurant doesn’t get any better than being on a boat. DCIM100GOPROGOPR0721.Dimillos is in fact the only floating restaurant on the upper East Coast, opened in 1982 on an old car ferry. But the Dimillos family has a history of great eateries dating back to 1954 in the Old Port. Dimillos restaurant and Marina is an ideal location on Commercial Street, near the Old Port, right on the waterfront so you can watch the fabulous yachts and ferries come and go while you enjoy fresh seafood and drinks in the casual setting. There are several outside decks plus two levels of inside seating – all with Portland Harbor views. 25 Long Wharf Portland, 207-772-2216

Doplhin Cove MarinaDolphin Restaurant in Harpswell
About 40 min from Portland on a most spectacular point in the heart of Casco Bay is the Dolphin with extraordinary waterfront views and delicious handmade Maine food. This family owned and operated restaurant and bar in Harpswell’s beautiful Potts Harbor serves the freshest seafood with homemdae legendary blueberry muffins, in a panoramic restaurant. Arrive by car or boat to Dolphin Marina docks. Open for lunch and dinner. 515 Basin Point Rd, Harpswell, 207-833-6000

sebasco-harbor-resort1200Sebasco Pilot House
Sebasco Harbor Resort has two waterfront dining spots, the casual Ledges Pub and the upstairs more elegant Pilot House. Seafood is always on the menu, salmon, lobster, crab, scallops and clams, at this classic Maine resort with lodging and golf course plus an outdoor salt water pool. Arrive by boat at the marina or stay at Sebasco in the summer for a night or a relaxing week. Sebasco Estates, 207-389-1161

grey-haven-inn-georgetown-blueBlue at Grey Havens
Blue at Grey Havens Inn is an extraordinary setting with equally fine food – and of course ocean views. On peaceful Georgetown Island, not far from Wiscasset and Boothbay, this 1904 Inn sits atop a bluff overlooking Harmon Harbor on the Sheepscot River and sea beyond. You can just make out Cuckold Light. Enjoy a drink on the porch before dinner at Blue. The Chef has fresh specials daily from tuna to lobster inspired treats. Innkeepers Eve & Dick are lovely hosts at this most magical place, we suggest you stay the night and enjoy this bold oceanfront setting. 96 Seguinland Road, Georgetown, ME. 207-371-2616

osprey-restaurant-wine-flightOsprey Restaurant at Georgetown
Osprey Restaurant in beautiful Robinhood Cove in Georgetown serves the freshest seafood and fun pub fare overlooking Robinhood Marina and the picturesque cove where osprey and seals play. Located 50 minutes north of Portland, southeast of Bath and west of Boothbay, in quiet Riggs Cove off the Sheepscot River, you can arrive by land or sea for lunch or dinner, sitting inside or out. Enjoy live music Sunday afternoons and Jazz Friday nights, cocktails specials in a casual Maine seaside setting. 340 Robinhood Road, Georgetown, 207-371-2530

Enjoy your Maine lobster and seafood with a sea view. Be shore to book waterfront lodging so you can relax and savor the sights, tastes and sounds of being on the waterfront in Maine. And let us know your favorite place for fresh Maine seafood with a view, on our Southern Maine Coast Facebook page.

Photos by Greg Burke, see more at Southern Maine Coast Lodging Guide , Visit Maine Lodging Directory, and Kennebunkport Maine Lodging Guide.

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Copyright SouthernMaineCoast.com.  Text and photos property of IMS-21.net.