Popular Maine Towns and Destination Areas
There are so many places to visit in Maine, from charming seaside villages to historic old towns. Maine has a little bit of everything for any traveler, from family vacationers to history buffs and nature enthusiasts. Visit the Southern Maine Coast for beach fun and delicious dining, or travel further up the coastline to visit charming historic villages and explore scenic outlying islands. We recommend a visit to as many Maine towns as possible, for the full "Vacationland" experience!
Kittery, York Harbor, York Beach, Ogunquit, Wells, Kennebunk, Kennebunkport, Biddeford, Saco, and Old Orchard Beach make up the first 30 miles of the coast, known as the Southern Maine Coast. The Southern Maine Coast is home to most of the beautiful beaches the state has to offer, sandy beaches with gentle waves and sometimes and ideal surf for surfers. Southern Maine also offers great shopping, top rated dining and affordable accommodations.
Visit the outlet shops in Kittery offering great discounts on designer apparel, shoes, brand name kitchen stores, as well as locally made crafts. A shopper's perfect trip to Kittery is not complete without a stop in Kittery Trading Post. And if you and the kids love forts, then a trip out to Fort McClary is a must, with a beautiful view of Portsmouth Harbor and the outlying islands.
York is a quintessential Maine town, home to picturesque Nubble Lighthouse, two beautiful beaches and amusements the whole family will enjoy. Ogunquit and Wells are two of the most premier summer vacation spots for families. With long stretches of beautiful sand beaches, renowned restaurants, charming towns and a plethora of lodging options, there is something to fit every vacation preference in these towns. Ogunquit is famed for its artist community and popular summer playhouse, plus plenty of top restaurants and waterfront inns and hotels. Wells is the Antique Capital of Maine with antique furniture, books and collectible shops along Route 1. Wells also has some the best seafood restaurants in Maine, and plenty of lodging options from beachfront condos and motels to inns and family-friendly resorts.
Wells is home of the Wells National Estuarine Reserve at Laudholm Farm. This captivating saltwater farm preserves 1,600 acres of field, forest and beach, with seven miles of nature trails. Wells also offers beautiful beaches, lots of lodging, and some great seafood restaurants along Route 1.
The Kennebunks offer year-round charm, from the newly improved downtown Kennebunk Main Street to unique boutique shopping in Dock Square, and the rocky shores of Walker's Point. Kennebunkport has many beautiful seaside hotels, romantic B&B's and family resorts, plus lots of great dining on or near the waterfront.
Old Orchard Beach is a lively summer hotspot, with seven miles of beach, a beachside amusement park, golfing, and nightlife on the Pier. Old Orchard beach is popular for families because of its abundant affordable lodging on the beach and at nearby campgrounds in summer.
Further north, Portland offers a taste of a classic New England city. Its waterfront setting and Old Port district are filled with unique shopping and the best dining in Maine. Portland is also home to some of the most famous lighthouses in Maine, including Portland Headlight, Portland Breakwater Light and Spring Point Lighthouse. Nearby Freeport has some of the best shopping in Maine, with plenty of outlet stores and the famous L.L. Bean flagship store.
Travelling through Mid-Coast Maine, visitors will view gorgeous rocky coastlines and drive through many charming seaside villages. Boothbay Harbor could be called the boating capital of New England, with over 25 daily boat excursions for the whole family to enjoy. Keep driving and visit Camden, Rockport, Rockland and Castine, hidden gems of the Maine coast popular with yachtsman, artists and wine lovers. These smaller seaside villages offer historic charm and picturesque towns full of shopping and dining, working harbors, beaches, lighthouses and much more!
Downeast is home to Mt. Desert Island, beautiful Bar Harbor and the spectacular Acadia National Park. Acadia offers fun for the whole family, including miles of hiking, biking and driving trails all with incredible scenery. Bar Harbor itself is a bustling seaside village full of shops and restaurants with many ways to explore the area including boat excursions, kayak rentals and island tours.
Maine's western lakes and mountains region is beautiful for hiking and biking in the summer and fall. Golfing in western Maine is another gem with beautiful resort courses like Sunday River, Sugarloaf, Belgrade and Point Sebago. Wintertime brings another beautiful season to western Maine with snow capped peaks for skiers, and ice covered lakes for ice fishermen, cross country skiers and ice skaters. Throughout this western region of Maine you will find full service family resorts in towns like Bethel, Rangeley, Carrabassett and Casco, and quaint bed and breakfasts in historic towns like Naples, Fryeburg, and Poland Spring.
Way up in the Maine Highlands region, Bangor and the surrounding areas are ideal for outdoor enthusiasts, with many adventures awaiting visitors. The Highlands region is home to Maine's longest river The Penobscot, Maine's tallest mountain - Katahdin, largest freshwater lake Moosehead Lake and much more! In winter, the area is transformed into a snowy paradise for snowmobiling, ice-fishing, skiing and snowshoeing! In summer, white water rafting, fishing, moose safaris, hiking and biking are popular ways to explore the woods, mountains, lakes and rivers of Maine.
Wherever you choose to visit in Maine, you will not be disappointed. The state of Maine is known for its exceptional beauty and rugged coastline making most towns a great vacation destination. Check out some of the more popular towns in Maine and discover The way life should be!