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Maine Attraction & Lodging Information Center






The South Coast

Greater Portland & Casco Bay

The Mid Coast

Downeast/ Acadia Region

Western Lakes & Mountains Region

Katahdin/ Moosehead Region

Kennebec & Moose River Valleys

Aroostook County







Maine  'The Way Life Should Be'

Lighthouse on Cape Elizabeth

The rocky Maine coastline offers many beautiful views, such as the Portland Head Light at Cape Elizabeth.

Maine is not only the largest state in New England, it's also larger than all the other New England states combined. It's divided into eight regions: South Coast; Greater Portland & Casco Bay; Mid Coast; Downeast/Acadia Region; Western Lakes & Mountains; Katahdin/Moosehead Region; Kennebec & Moose River Valleys; and Aroostook County.

The South Coast
The South Coast takes you from Kittery to Old Orchard Beach. You can get anywhere in this area quickly by Route 95 and the Maine Turnpike. Or, if you have the time, you can take a more scenic route along U.S. Route 1. And for those with even more time to spare, there are other smaller coastal roads which wind in and out of the towns and villages dotting the coastline.

If you're heading north from New Hampshire, you'll enter Maine at Kittery, a coastal town. As small as it is, this first town of the most sparsely populated state east of the Mississippi also offers the largest collection of factory outlet malls in New England. If you're really into shopping, being in Kittery is like hitting the lottery. But, beware of heavy Route 1 traffic in this busy outlet district.

The Pier at Old Orchard Beach, Maine

The Pier and Town Square are the centerpiece of lively Old Orchard Beach.

Beyond Kittery is a necklace of coastal communities: York; Ogunquit; Wells; and the Kennebunks. Ogunquit is famous for its beach, and is one of the prettiest walk around village towns anywhere. The streets are lined with beautiful inns, shops, galleries and eateries of all kinds. Wells is a quiet town with a number of lodgings, scenic ocean overlooks, a beach and a harbor. Kennebunkport is another charming village which became famous for being the summer White House during the Bush administration. Interestingly, in the first summer of Bush's presidency, many visitors avoided Kennebunkport fearing traffic jams that never came. Just up the coast, Old Orchard Beach beckons with excitement. The downtown is active with the Old Orchard Beach Pier, a waterslide, arcades and restaurants. Old Orchard Beach is truly a great family area.

Beach in Ogunquit, Maine

The Boardwalk Beach in Ogunquit is beautiful, and can be reached on
the Wells-Ogunquit trolley system.

Greater Portland & Casco Bay [back to top]
The real estate boom of the 1980s revitalized Portland, turning it into one of New England's best cities to live in or visit. The city is small, friendly and accessible with a number of restaurants, shops, hotels and small inns. You can stay in the city and walk around, or easily drive in for the day from nearby towns in and around Casco Bay. Strolling along the cobbled streets in the waterfront area and uptown, you can see the architecture and atmosphere of this old port city. Be sure to pass through the Old Port Exchange, a quaint section of the city near the waterfront with boutiques, restaurants, taverns, nightclubs and movie theaters. Some major attractions include the Portland Museum of Art, Southworth Planetarium and the Children's Museum of Maine. Outdoor attractions in this area include the Prouts Neck Cliff Path and Wildlife Sanctuary, and Bradbury Mountain State Park , where you can scale a 484-foot granite bluff. Plus, from Casco Bay, a large body of water surrounding Portland famous for its hundreds of islands, you can take cruises, or catch a ferry to Nova Scotia.

The Mid Coast [back to top]
As you head north along the coast, you notice things getting farther apart. This area may be a bit different than Maine's South Coast region, but it's still beautiful. In fact, the Mid Coast region's attractions, scenic beauty and slower pace make it a favorite spot for vacationers.

Bath is home of the Bath Iron Works, builders of submarines for the American Navy. You can drink in the history of shipbuilding and maritime history at the Maine Maritime Museum . Bath and neighboring Brunswick also have a large number of boutiques and specialty shops, inns, and restaurants. Brunswick is the home of Bowdoin College, which has a summer music festival on campus with weekly concerts in July and August.

Boothbay Harbor and Camden are picture postcard New England harbor villages. They're also major launching points for whale watches, fishing boats and windjammer cruises. Rockland is another popular departure point for the windjammers. In addition, the Mid Coast region is well known for its large number of islands, many of which are accessible by ferry. Some of the most famous and beautiful include Monhegan Island , featuring high rocky cliffs and wildflowers. And the largest and most often visited are Orrs and Bailey Islands.

Downeast/Acadia Region [back to top]

Cottage in Maine

Maine offers a wide variety of hotels, inns and B&B's

Bar Harbor is one of the most popular visitor towns in all of Maine. There's so much to do and see in this ideal harbor village town: you can pick up a ferry to Nova Scotia; enjoy classical music concerts in summer; and visit the Oceanarium , a lobster museum and marine education center.

The Acadia region is partially named for Acadia National Park, which is the oldest national park in the east, established in 1916. The park has extraordinary amenities and things to see, and is the second most visited park in the United States. The 40,000-square mile park includes mountains, lakes, forests, meadows and more. Acadia National Park is located on Mount Desert Island, just off the coast, and is accessible by car.

Western Lakes & Mountains Region [back to top]
The Western Lakes & Mountains Region offers visitors an all-season vacation experience. You can enjoy lakes, mountains, valleys, small towns, swimming, skiing or, if you prefer, the quiet of northern Maine. This outdoor vacation area is great for families or those looking for a real wilderness adventure.

Scenic rivers in Maine

The middle and western sections of Maine take you into the great outdoors.

Major attractions in this region include skiing and golfing at Sugarloaf USA in Kingfield, and Sunday River in Bethel, and skiing at Shawnee Peak in Bridgeton. In addition, the Rangely Lakes area offers over 450 square miles of fishing, hunting, boating, swimming and golfing, and has a large state park with camping areas and boat launches.

There are a large number of lake area hotels, inns and resorts to choose from here as well. This area also offers lake and riverboat cruises, seaplane rides and a host of natural attractions. Sebago Lake State Park is a great area to visit. Or visit Naples, a little town on the border of Long Lake and Brandy Pond, which leads to Sebago Lake for lots of fun, swimming and entertainment. And Fryeburg is where you can canoe down the Saco River, the very same Saco River that heads through North Conway and the Mount Washington Valley of New Hampshire.

Katahdin/Moosehead Region [back to top]
This region in the heart of Maine contains the state's largest lake, highest mountain, and is famous for white water rafting. The fun and excitement here is in exploring nature and all its wondrous possibilities. The main attractions are Moosehead Lake and Baxter State Park. Baxter State Park is a 200,000-acre wilderness, which includes Mount Katahdin, the state's highest peak at 5,267 feet above sea level.

Moosehead Lake features hunting, fishing, mountain biking, kayaking and canoeing. Take the S/S Katahdin , a scenic cruise boat that doubles as a marine museum. Here you'll see artifacts and photos of old-time logging and steamboat days.

The largest city in the region is Bangor, home of fright writer Steven King. Bangor is a nice small city with quaint downtown, featuring a variety of shops and eateries. And for the shop-till-you-drop crowd, there's a large shopping mall. Attractions in Bangor include the Cold Land Transportation Museum , with over 200 antique and military vehicles and uniforms. In winter, this region is popular with snowmobilers and cross-country skiers who come for the wilderness and the solitude.

Whitewater rafting in Maine

Whitewater rafting is especially popular in the Kenebec/Moose River and Katahdin/Moosehead regions.

Kennebec & Moose River Valleys [back to top]
This spectacular region of Maine is home to white water rafting, the state capital of Augusta, Hallowell, the state antiques capital, and a town called China.

Augusta is the state capital and one big attraction here is the Maine State Museum, the most visited museum in Maine. It's rated as an "outstanding" attraction by AAA. Here you'll find a life exhibit, the "Land Called Maine", complete with a real trout stream. There are also treasured archaeological artifacts from prehistoric and colonial times. Along the Kennebec River, there are a number of attractions, including white water rafting, one of Maine's strongest lures. Hallowell is one of the state's major antique destinations with enough shops lining the main streets to satisfy even the most zealous antiquer.

Aroostook County [back to top]
This vast region at the northern tip of Maine is sometimes known as "the County", and is famous as the place Maine potatoes are grown. Not traveled nearly as much as other areas, this is a tranquil haven for those seeking to get back to nature. Needless to say, the major attraction here is the great outdoors. Aroostook County is home to the Allagash Wilderness Waterway. This 30,000-acre area of lakes and streams is popular with white water rafters and canoeists. In addition, Aroostook State Park offers lots of swimming and hiking trails. Fall foliage is awe-inspiring in this part of Maine, where the country roads provide breathtaking views as they wind through the valleys and peaks. Many visit the area in the winter to snowmobile along the numerous organized trails. And in the town of Van Buren, you can visit the Acadian Historic Village which includes 16 reconstructed buildings. This village offers an intriguing look into the French Acadian culture.

To quickly locate attractions, restaurants and shops in Maine, use the Find Attractions search engine. To quickly locate lodgings, use the Find Lodging search engine.

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