Berwick Maine is a beautiful town located along Maine’s border with New Hampshire. Situated in York County, there are plenty of fun things to do in Berwick Maine throughout the year.
The town is known for its charming main street, rich history, and relaxed pace, particularly compared to the crowds that flood the coastal cities. And it’s not the only Berwick to visit in the Southern Maine Coast.
Although different towns, neighboring North Berwick and South Berwick offer their own charm and activities. This guide will cover everything you need to know about The Berwicks in Maine so that you can start planning your visit.
Maine History of The Berwicks
Before the first European settlement in 1631 in what is now The Berwicks, the area was inhabited by Native Americans. After the settlers arrived, Berwick was part of Kittery.
It was originally called Kittery Commons but was later renamed Unity to honor Scottish prisoners of War who had been transported to the colonies following the Battle of Dunbar.
Wars & Resettlements
Late in the 17th century, battles ensued between the European settlers and Native Americans, particularly during the King Philip’s War and the King William’s War. Multiple buildings in the settlement were burned, and the area was resettled multiple times.
The Berwick Splits
In 1713, the town’s name was officially changed to Berwick Maine. South Berwick split from Berwick in 1814, and North Berwick split in 1831.
Lumbering & Milling Industries
During the early years of the United States, the area was a major hub for the lumber industry. Berwick exported a large number of barrel staves and clapboards. It also contributed to the rapid growth of the mill industry in the area.
The Berwicks Now
Berwick, North Berwick, and South Berwick remain important towns in Maine and are central to its relationship with neighboring New Hampshire. These towns are also popular tourist destinations because of their history, weather, and quaint atmospheres.
Berwick Maine Weather
The weather in Berwick Maine is similar to the rest of New England. The temperature regularly dips below zero degrees Fahrenheit during the winter. Also during winter, the town receives its fair share of snow.
However, it can get warm during the summer, reaching over 90 degrees regularly. The region is relatively humid because it is not far from the Atlantic coast.
Outdoor Things to Do in Berwick Maine
There are plenty of fun outdoor activities to do across The Berwicks. Here are several examples to keep you busy during your Southern Maine Coast getaway.
Spend Some Time at Vaughan Woods State Park
If you want to explore the natural scenery of Berwick, you need to visit Vaughan Woods State Park. Located in South Berwick, the park is heavily forested and has a variety of hiking trails to check out.
The park itself rests on the Salmon Falls River, which means that you have some amazing photo opportunities as well. If you want to learn more about the history of the local area, you can sign up for a guided tour of the home and forest.
Don’t forget to bring your binoculars because there will be some unique birds living in the trees. You might even spot a few ospreys.
Play a Round at The Links at Outlook
If you love golf, The Berwicks is the place to be. One of the top golf courses in the local area is The Links at Outlook.
This golf course is a bit challenging for someone who has never played before, but the scenery is absolutely gorgeous. It is known for having changes in elevation, beautiful water hazards, and unique trees.
During the summer, tee times can fill up quickly, particularly if you want to play on the weekend. To make sure that you get the opportunity to play, book your tee time in advance. If you play during the afternoon, you might be treated to live entertainment as well.
Try Kayaking on the River
Particularly when the weather is nice during the summer, you may want to give kayaking a try. In the heart of Berwick Maine, there is a place where you can launch your kayak. This is a well-known kayaking launch site, so you may be able to talk to some locals about the best way to get your kayak into the water.
There are even convenient options available for individuals with disabilities, so if you want to get out on the water during the summer, consider launching your kayak from Rochester Street in Berwick.
Go Fishing in the Salmon Falls River
If you love to go fishing, the Salmon Falls River is one of the best places to do so. There are plenty of fish, and if you see some birds diving into the water, you know you are in the right spot. Berwick even has some great opportunities for fly fishing.
NOTE: If you plan on fishing, keep in mind that you might need a Maine fishing license. You need to purchase a license ahead of time and follow all rules and regulations. Also, make sure you are allowed to fish in that specific location before you cast a line.
Hike the Madeline Blaisdell Walking Trails
North Berwick is home to a variety of hiking trails, and one of the most popular options is the Madeline Blaisdell Walking Trails.
This is the perfect option for families, particularly those with children who are looking for a more laid-back experience. The trails are relatively easy, you can explore the trees, and you might see some birds flying above.
NOTE: There is a shooting range not that far from the walking trails. The participants are not close enough to cause any problems at all, but you may hear a few gunshots while you are walking.
Explore the Negutaquet Conservation Area
Another popular outdoor activity in North Berwick is the Negutaquet Conservation Area. It includes a beautiful river, creative rock formations, and towering oak trees. Also, there is a 2.5-mile hiking trail, so if you want to get some exercise, this could be the perfect location to explore.
NOTE: Remember to bring a camera with you because the park has scenic views. If you want to try the hiking trail, don’t forget to wear some hiking shoes and take plenty of water.
Indoor Things to Do in Berwick Maine
The weather may not always be favorable for outdoor activities. If that happens to you, or you’re just looking for something to do indoors, check out these top indoor activities in The Berwicks of Maine.
See a Show at the Hackmatack Playhouse
For more than 50 years, the Hackmatack Playhouse in Berwick Maine has put on a variety of plays, concerts, and musicals, particularly during the summer. You may want to take a look at the program ahead of time to see which shows are happening.
Many of the shows are appropriate for people of all ages. You might even want to try some local food and beverages from the nearby Hackmatack Farm, which is home to pigs, bison, and other animals.
Visit the Hamilton House
One of the top historical attractions in The Berwicks is the Hamilton House. It was constructed at the end of the 18th century by a shipping executive. The house is located in South Berwick, and it was constructed in the Georgian style, one of the most popular classic styles of the era.
The home has been meticulously preserved over the years, making it a must-see for anyone who loves history and architecture. The clothes, furniture, and art in the home are all reflective of the era. Do not forget to take a look at the cottage and garden on the property as well.
There are plenty of opportunities to read about everything you are looking at, and you can imagine what life was like in Berwick two centuries ago.
Visit the Oak Woods Meeting House
Even though North Berwick is mostly known for the outdoors, it still has its fair share of history. One of the most popular attractions is the Oak Woods Meeting House. It was built in 1852 and has been meticulously maintained since that time.
You can learn more about what life was like in the middle of the 19th century in North Berwick. The house is also a popular location for weddings and special events.
Explore the Sarah Orne Jewett House
Another popular indoor attraction located in South Berwick, the Sarah Orne Jewett House is the historical home of a famous author who was prominent during the 19th century. The residence is extravagant, particularly when it is placed in the lens of the 19th century.
You can see a variety of furniture and art from different periods of the colonial era because Jewett and her family accumulated some eclectic items during their lives. These items might not look like they belong together, but they provide a window into what their lives were like.
This is a great opportunity to learn about not only a famous author but also life in South Berwick during the 1800s.
Explore the Counting House Museum
You may also want to visit the Counting House Museum, which has numerous attractions dedicated to the early Industrial period. Berwick grew rapidly during the Industrial Revolution thanks to the rapid modernization of the region.
Located in South Berwick, the Counting House Museum has a variety of memoirs and exhibits throughout two floors, and many of them date back to the Victorian era in Maine.
Additional Attractions Near The Berwick Region
If you want to extend your adventures beyond The Berwicks, there are tons more options nearby. Check out a few of our favorites.
Visit the Woodman Institute Museum
The Woodman Institute Museum is located in Dover New Hampshire, which is not far from Berwick Maine. There are four galleries that each have their own themes. They include science, history, and art.
The museum itself was founded in 1916, and it has expanded significantly since its inception. It isn’t expensive to visit the museum, and it can provide a unique window into the past.
If you would like to learn more about the early years of the United States, you should definitely check out this museum during your visit to Berwick.
Explore the Ogunquit Playhouse
Ogunquit Maine is not far from Berwick, and it is situated along a beautiful portion of the coast. One of the top attractions that you should check out is the Ogunquit Playhouse, which has a variety of productions throughout the year.
Since this is one of the most popular locations in the region to see a show, you should check out the schedule ahead of time. During the winter, you may not have to purchase seats too early, but the shows can fill up fast during the spring and summer.
Visit the Tendercrop Farm
If you are looking for delicious local produce, you should visit Tendercrop Farm in Dover. In addition to strawberries, you can purchase muffins, pies, and cakes made using local ingredients.
If you would like to spend extra time on the farm, you may want to purchase a sample of cheese, which you can pair with its local wine. Also, there are plenty of opportunities to learn about local farm animals and the important role they play in the New England economy.
Best Restaurants in Berwick, North Berwick, & South Berwick
If you want to try some delicious restaurants in Berwick Maine, tons of options are available. Here are our favorite eateries for casual and upscale dining, ice cream, and craft brews.
If you are looking for a casual meal with family members and friends, you may want to check out NoBo. Located in North Berwick, the restaurant makes sandwiches right in front of you. Or, you can grab a prepackaged option and head out as quickly as possible.
NoBo is also one of the most affordable options in the local area, so consider it if you are looking for something quick.
You can find Dufour in South Berwick at the Stage House Inn, one of the most romantic locations in the local area. It is one of the nicest restaurants in The Berwicks, and it is known for having a variety of dishes made with local ingredients.
With everything from delicious wine and charcuterie boards to the finest seafood and steak in the area, this is the perfect place to go if you are looking for a night out on the town during your time in Berwick Maine.
Johnson’s Dairy Delite
The ice cream in Maine is unparalleled, and Johnson’s Dairy Delite has certainly added to this legacy over the past 30 years. While you can certainly try a local lobster roll, you do not want to pass up the ice cream.
There are a variety of flavors available and plenty of outdoor seating where you can enjoy the summer weather. Johnson’s typically only serves ice cream during the warmer months of the year, so you may want to call ahead to see if you can get a taste.
Corner Point Brewing
There are plenty of delicious breweries in the region, and one of the top options is Corner Point Brewing Company. The brewery is named as such because you can see both Maine and New Hampshire from its seating area.
There is a long list of beers from which to choose, and the brewery has some delicious food options on the menu. You may want to pair your beer with a panini or pretzel.
Hotels in The Berwicks & Other Lodging Options
If you want to get the full experience of The Berwicks, you need to know where to stay. There are plenty of local options available, and here are some of the best.
The Stage House Inn & Bar
If you are looking for a hotel that places you close to the heart of the action, consider the Stage House Inn in South Berwick. There are 20 guest rooms and a few suites available.
The hotel is home to a delicious restaurant too. Because there are not many rooms available, you may want to book your stay well in advance.
The Lady Mary Inn at Hurd Manor
If you want a hotel that transports you back to the elegance of the 19th century, consider staying at The Lady Mary Inn at Hurd Manor in North Berwick. Sometimes called the Angel of the Berwicks, the inn is located very close to Orchard Hill Farm.
Since the inn is one of the most popular hotels in the area and provides a luxurious experience, you may want to book your room far in advance.
If you are looking for rustic, traditional accommodations, consider staying at Riverhouse. You will have a beautiful view of the Salmon Falls River and be close to some of the top hiking trails in the area. This is a great way to get away from the crowds, relax, and enjoy the great outdoors.
Frequently Asked Questions About Berwick Maine
Is it cold in Berwick Maine?
Yes, it can get very cold in Berwick Maine during the winter, but it is also very warm during the summer. Berwick is a town that has four distinct seasons.
During the winter, you can spend time outdoors skiing. During the summer, there are plenty of hiking trails and fishing opportunities in the region.
How far is Berwick Maine from the closest beach?
The closest beach to the center of Berwick Maine is Crescent Beach in Wells at less than 30 minutes away by car. However, many other Southern Maine Coast beaches are nearby in Ogunquit, York, and Kittery as well. If you’re in North or South Berwick, some of the beaches may be closer.
Are there a lot of lobster rolls available in Berwick Maine?
There are plenty of lobsters available in Berwick, just like the rest of Maine. Even though lobsters are harvested throughout the year, the summer months are the busiest for lobster activity. If you want to maximize your chances of getting a plump, delicious lobster, consider visiting in June.
Plan Your Itinerary of Things to Do in Berwick Maine
Berwick is a beautiful Maine town situated on the state border with New Hampshire. There are plenty of indoor and outdoor activities and a tremendous amount of history to explore. In particular, Berwick Maine is known for its delicious food, gorgeous weather, and charming feel.
If you are looking for a quiet place in Maine to explore, consider visiting The Berwicks. It can get popular during the summer, so book your restaurant and hotel reservations far in advance. There is something for everyone in Berwick!