Home Family Travel 19 Best Places to Go in Maine in the Summer for Every Vacation Type

19 Best Places to Go in Maine in the Summer for Every Vacation Type

19 Best Places to Go in Maine in the Summer for Every Vacation Type

Summer in Maine holds a unique charm. The days get longer, the oceans warmer, and a new life is brought to the largest New England state. From picturesque rocky coastlines and iconic lobster rolls to uncounted outdoor vita and culturally rich history, this Pine Tree State serves as a perfect vacation destination, earning its moniker of Vacationland. Deciding where to visit can be overwhelming, so let’s unravel lanugo the wool weightier places to go in Maine in the summer.

After vacationing in Maine for over two decades with my family, I have experienced trips fit for all month and interests. With the little ones, marine life is at the touch of their fingertips with the Maine State Aquarium and Divers Ed wend rides. The Southern Maine coastal towns of York, Wells, Ogunquit, and Old Orchard waterfront offer miles of sandy beaches.

Natural wonders like Acadia National Park and Rangeley Lake are perfect for those looking for some adventure. Portland has a vibrant supplies and brewery scene perfect for a weekend getaway.

Kennebunk port harbor at sunset
Sunset at Kennebunkport

Looking for a specific type of trip? Here are my top favorite places:

Best places to Go in Maine in the Summer

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Kittery, ME

Kittery Point ME - Weightier Places to go in Maine in the summerView of rocky waterfront as the sun sets looking over a small lighthouse in the distance
Sunset at Fort Foster in Kittery Point

Being right off the verge with New Hampshire, Kittery makes for a unconfined day trip from Boston. This quaint town is known for its wide-stretching outlet malls and historic sites.

My family will make the day trip from Massachusetts just to go to When Pigs Fly, a succulent Brick oven Pizzeria. Make sure to trammels out When Pigs Fly Company Store for their sun-dried tomato specie and warm lemon blueberry cookies. Bob’s Clam Hut is flipside local favorite if you don’t mind waiting in the long lines for his crispy fried clams or fresh lobster rolls.

If you are looking to travel when in time, make your way to Fort Foster State Park on Gerrish Island to explore old military forts. This dog-friendly site offers large untried areas to picnic, a wifely rocky beach, and a walkable pier offering trappy views of the mouth of the Piscataqua River.

York, ME

York Waterfront Maine

York is perfect for a weekend getaway with the whole family. This Southern Maine coastal waterfront town is a perfect place for young kids with York’s Wild Kingdom, both a zoo and an yuck park.

Offering family rides, uproarious houses, mini golf, and petting zoos, this one-stop destination is a full day event. Riding the kiddie dragon roller coaster and seeing the tigers up close, was peak excitement as a young kid.

Long Sands Waterfront is increasingly your typical sandy waterfront with decent waves for boogie boarding and surfing. Short Sands waterfront is downtown York with an old school arcade, and bowling alley. Stop by The Goldenrod where you can watch up tropical how salt water taffy is made, and then grab a bag yourself!

Where to Stay: Cliff House is in Cape Neddick and offers luxury accommodations with stunning views. York Harbor Inn is a luxury Inn located on the oceanfront on York Harbor.

Ogunquit, ME

Boats in Perkins Cove Ogunquit Maine
Boats in Perkins Cove, Ogunquit

This quintessential beachtown will need a bit increasingly than a weekend to explore. Located just north of York on the southern tailspin lies Ogunquit Beach, one of the top 25 beaches in the U.S. equal to TripAdvisor’s Travelers Choice.

Hop on the Trolly and ride lanugo to the Ogunquit Playhouse where you can enjoy theater performances. Then, throne lanugo to the ocean and visit the old fishing village of Perkins Cove.

Explore famous restaurants like Barnacle Billy’s known for their luxury lobster and scenic views. For dessert, stroll over to grab sea salt caramels from Perkins Cove Candies and walk withal the drawbridge.

Some quick things to alimony in mind well-nigh visiting Ogunquit:

  • Many accommodations are waterfront on the Ogunquit tidal river instead of Ogunquit beach. At low tide it is possible to walk directly to the beach, but prepare to take the wangle point via waterfront street to find parking.
  • Ogunquit is one of the increasingly touristy locations therefore it is important to plan virtually big crowds and higher prices for supplies and parking.

Where to stay: The Anchorage By the Sea is a nice oceanfront place for families.

Wells, ME

Another stunning Southern Maine waterfront town, Wells is unconfined for families. Wells consists of miles of sandy beaches where you can walk, surf, or search virtually tide pools. Some popular ones include Wells Beach, Moody Beach, and Drakes Island Beach.

Are you a nature lover? The Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge protects salt marshes and local habitats, while offering an immersive and relaxing wits through miles of walkable trails.

You can’t visit Wells without stopping by Congdon’s Doughnuts. These succulent doughnuts are one of the sole things we still remember today from our family vacations. Equal to recent reviews, the world fritter is a must try.

Belfast, ME

Belfast Harbor Maineseveral boats docked in a harbor in front of a rocky waterfront with buoy
Belfast Harbor lined with rocky beaches and sailboats

Belfast, Maine is my family’s all-time favorite summer vacation destination, staying here for scrutinizingly a decade. This quaint, artsy, affordable, mid-coastal waterfront town is nestled into Penobscot bay. The tailspin here consists of rocky cliffs, and sea glass littered beaches. The water is calm, shallow, and slightly warmer due to the bay.

Dogs are increasingly than welcome with dog bowls seeming outside shops downtown. Public art structures follow themes downtown, waffly annually. Rollie’s Bar and Grill, Young’s Lobster Pound, and Dockside Family Restaurant are top stops for fresh seafood.

As someone with a strong sweet tooth, I must recommend Chocolate Drop Snacks Shop which has a wall with every savor of jelly bean. Ice surf is moreover served here in a 1950s dinner style. Perry’s Nut House has divine fudge, a must stop for a sweet treat.

Take a sunset sailboat ride virtually Penobscot bay, visit the Blue Alpaca Ranch & Store, or just stroll withal the footbridge enjoying the harbor views. Your heart will fall for Belfast’s unique charm.

Where to stay: Wonderview Cottages is well-nigh a ten-minute momentum to downtown Belfast and gives you wangle to a private waterfront right on Penobscot Bay. The undercurrent is tranquil, the waterfront is full of rocks and seaglass, and most cottages are dog friendly.

Rangeley, ME

view of a mountain range in the loftiness with pine trees and large rocks in the foreground
Mountain Views from the top of Quill Hill

More of a lake person? Throne Northwest to the gorgeous well-spoken water of Rangeley Lake. Nature lovers will love the increasingly remote setting, perfect for hiking, kayaking, and swimming. Downtown is small but hosts a couple of cute shops like Classic Provisions, where you can enjoy sandwiches, pastries, and smoothies right on the water.

Quill Hill is a spectacular view point without a short momentum up a unique landscape. The momentum when into town is heavily populated with moose so momentum very slow at sunset and alimony your vision peeled!

Rangeley Lake State park is a perfect spot for picnics and hiking, and you can stay in the campsite where you have swimming wangle to Rangeley Lake. Camping here is much closer to nature, far from glamping.

If you are looking for a magical place to hike and swim, visit Cascade Gorge Stream Trail. Once you park, you hike for well-nigh 30 minutes until you come wideness a trappy natural waterfall and crystal well-spoken water perfect for swimming.

Where to Stay: Modern Rangeley Cabin is a cozy and spacious motel located not too far from downtown Rangeley.

Bar Harbor, ME

tall ship in bar harbor maine
Windjammer in Bar Harbor

Located on Mount Desert Island, the largest island in Maine, Bar Harbor is one of the most popular summer destinations. This coastal town is right next to Acadia National Park, moreover the homeland of the Wabanaki. With camping sites, views of Frenchman Bay, and over 150 miles of trails, there are plenty of things to do virtually Acadia National Park.

Drive 3.5 miles up to the summit of Cadillac Mountain, the tallest mountain on the eastern seaboard of the U.S. (just be sure to make a vehicle reservation if you are visiting from late May through October). Thunder Hole is flipside unconfined spot where waves crash into the cliffs creating water sprays that reach up to 40 feet!

Explore the vibrant marine life of Frenchman Bay by booking a trip with Diver Ed’s Dive-In-theater. Diver’s explore wildlife and then bring animals onto the wend in touch tanks where you can wits lobsters, starfish and Sea Cucumbers up close! However a good thing to note, the wend has a Newfoundland dog on workbench so make sure everyone in your party is well-appointed with big dogs.

The Bar Harbor Whale Watch & Nature Cruise moreover gives you up tropical views of seals and unrobed eagles.

Some things to alimony in mind:

  • Bar Harbor attracts large crowds so plan superiority to stave midday traffic
  • It is recommended to take the fare-free island explorer bus instead of driving virtually the island

Where to Stay: Central House has an historic recreate and is rumored to be haunted if that is your style. Smuggler’s Den Campground is a unconfined spot for camping well-nigh 30 minutes outside of the Bar Harbor and Terramor is one of the weightier glamping resorts in New England.

BoothBay Harbor, ME

Boothbay harbor pedestrian bridge
Pedestrian underpass in Boothbay Harbor

Welcome to the midcoast gem of Boothbay Harbor, a quintessential summer destination. This town is full of life from Windjammer cruises, puffin and whale watching tours, and Railway Village rides, to botanical gardens and reversion shops. If you are looking for a sweet treat, visit Downeast Ice Surf Factory or try some salt water taffy from Orne’s Snacks Store. Both shops have a nice historic touch.

The Maine State Aquarium is a unconfined spot for young kids and unprepossessing lovers where you can touch sharks, hold molluscs, and picnic. The space is smaller so not too overwhelming, and there is a little souvenir shop to pick up some fun knick knacks.

See more things to do in Boothbay Harbor.

Where to Stay: Harborage Inn on the Oceanfront is a cute bed and breakfast with water views that is a very short walk to all the downtown shops and restaurants.

Portland, ME

Portland Throne Light
Portlandhead Lighthouse

The largest municipality in Maine, Portland, offers fun for all ages. Old Port is the historic part of the municipality which has unmatched food options and boutiques for shopping. I usually visit Portland on day trips, but you can hands fill up a weekend of activities.

Flatbread Pizza is a longtime favorite known for their brick oven pizza, my personal recommendation stuff the cheese and herb or the homemade sausage pizza. Luke’s Lobster and the Portland Lobster Co. are my go-to spots for lobster rolls and fresh seafood.

The brewery scene is vibrant with beer tasting at Allagash Brewing Company. Museums like the Portland Museum of Art are a unconfined witchery as well.

Day trips via ferry virtually Casco bay islands, like Peaks island or Diamond Cove, is a unconfined way to explore. Lobster wend tours are moreover available. The Portland Throne Light located on Cape Elizabeth, is a picturesque lighthouse and museum in Fort Williams Park that is a must for any visitor to Maine (and grab a succulent lobster roll from the Bite into Maine supplies truck that sets up in the park.)

Where to Stay: Portland can be pricey in the summer, but luckily there are new hotels such as Cambria Hotel Portland Downtown and the Longfellow Hotel to help ease the walk-up shortage.

Rockland, ME

Rockland Maine breakwater light
Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse

Along the midcoast of Maine lies the ungifted town of Rockland. You can find yourself lost in the street art and downtown shopping, or walk withal the Rockland Breakwater to see the historic lighthouse overlooking the harbor. Flipside unconfined lighthouse in the zone is Owls Throne Lighthouse which gives views of Penobscot Bay.

The Farnsworth Art Museum focuses on American art, particularly those with ties to Maine, while modern art lovers should plan a visit to the Center for Maine Trendy Art.

It’s good to alimony in mind that Route 1 is the main way to get in and out of Rockland, and it can get quite congested during peak summer months. Moreover make sure to not miss the Maine Lobster Festival!

Where to Stay: 250 Maine Hotel has a modern touch and views of the water.

Schoodic Peninsula/ Winter Harbor, ME

sunset in winter harbor maine
Sunset over Winter Harbor

Want to visit Acadia National Park but skip the crowds? Schoodic Peninsula is located wideness from Mount Desert Island, but still national park land.

Winter Harbor is located on the northern end of the peninsula and is only well-nigh a 45 minute momentum to Bar Harbor and has a handful of restaurants and shops and you can workbench a small wend tour to see puffins.

The nature here is breathtaking, with the quintessential picture of pine trees lanugo to the water. Both of these destinations are much increasingly secluded, a worldwide theme the remoter you throne downeast closer you get to the Canadian border.

Where to Stay: Mainstay Cottages & RV Park consists of oceanfront cottages on Henry’s Cove.

Old Orchard Beach, ME

Old Orchard Waterfront pier
Old Orchard Waterfront Pier

Seeking an exciting, popping environment, with fun attractions virtually every corner? Walk the old school pier reaching out over the ocean where you can enjoy fresh seafood and live music at the Pier Patio Pub.

New England’s only beachfront yuck park, Palace Playland, consists of thrill rides like the Sea viper roller coaster, but moreover has rides for the little ones like Convey where you ride a child-sized car. The old school undercurrent brings a nostalgic touch.

The waterfront is vast with miles of unappetizing sand fit for sunbathing, swimming, or waterfront sports, and has fireworks every Thursday starting virtually 9:45 p.m. during the summer season. It is one of the widest, most traditional sand beaches in the state.

Sebago Lake, ME

Sebago Lake waterfront front kids swimming in the water tropical to shore with afar mountains in the horizon
Swimming at Sebago Lake Family Campground

Sebago Lake is a unconfined family friendly spot with a perfect value of outdoor activities. Compared to lakes like Rangely, Sebago Lake is located in Southern Maine next to Long Lake, making it increasingly wieldy from the rest of New England and a fun day trip to Portland.

When my family was younger, we camped in Sebago Lake Family CampGround which offered a cute polity with nice amenities. Playing at the playground, wanderlust around, roasting marshmallows at the campfire, and swimming at the waterfront were key memories. Sebago Lake water was clear, clean, and calm, and a bit warmer than Maine’s chillier oceans.

In Naples Maine, we rented a pontoon wend which we took all virtually Sebago Lake and Long Lake. You can fish, jump off the boat, and swim virtually in the refreshing water. A perfect day on the lake.

Where to Stay: Sebago Lake Family Campground

Fryeburg, ME

Heading west closer to the White Mountains is Oxford County’s oldest town, Fryeburg. This town is unconfined for people who prefer lakes and mountains. Weston’s Beach is a highly recommended spot to relax on and swim in the wifely Saco River. There are several water activities like tubing, kayaking, or paddle boarding in Saco River or Kezer Pond.

Bradley Memorial Park hosts concerts on Tuesdays, where you can moreover enjoy picnicking. If you are starving some succulent gourmet food, make a reservation at the Oxford House Inn restaurant, one of the top 100 restaurants in America equal to Opentable! The cuisine is trendy American styles with mixes of Asian, United States Southwestern, and French.

Where to Stay: Oxford House Inn is higher end and centrally located.

Camden, ME

Schooners in Camden Maine
Camden harbor

This midcoast eyeful is upscale and a popular filming place for Hollywood movies. A cute harbor full of sailboats and a culturally rich downtown, makes for a perfect weekend getaway.

Camden offers several festivals year-round, but in the summer you cannot miss Camden’s Jazz In June music festival. If you are looking to wits the nearby nature make sure to visit Camden Hills State Park. Hike Mt. Battie for trappy views of Penobscot Bay. It is dog friendly and has a small tower at the summit where you can eat lunch.

Where to Stay: Lord Camden Inn

MooseHead Lake/ Maine Highlands, ME

Moose near Moosehead Lake in Maine

Escape the precipitance of crowds and venture deep into Maine to Moosehead Lake. As the largest soul of water in Maine, Moosehead Lake stands as an oasis for wildlife and outdoor adventures.

Lily Bay State Park is a popular spot with a fine pebble waterfront for swimming, two campgrounds, a playground, and docks for boating.

Within the Maine Highlands, Baxter State Park is a trappy place to hike and enjoy nature. Alimony in mind that if you want to climb Mt. Katahdin, this is no informal climb. Round trips on Mt. Katahdin ranges from 8 to 12 hours, so make sure to research and prepare and typesetting a parking permit in advance.

Where to Stay: The Lodge at Moosehead Lake is a trappy spot with fine dining and outdoor activities and Blair Hill Inn is flipside good choice. For increasingly space, there are plenty of motel rentals in this zone as well.

Scarborough, ME

Located in between Old Orchard Waterfront and Portland, this cute Southern Maine town is a unconfined family destination tropical to popular attractions. As a kid, my family vacationed at Bayley’s Camping Resort for three years. In true glamping fashion, the campsite had three pools, a movie theater, and a zany store where my siblings and I would practice our independence by using walkie talkies to get candy. Very safe, spacious, and private. Plus, adults get a hot tub!

Funtown Splashtown USA is only a ten minute momentum yonder in Saco. Ride Maine’s only wooden roller coaster Excalibur, and then race lanugo the water slide Amphitrite’s Challenge. Within Scarborough you can moreover enjoy Scarborough Waterfront State Park and Higgins Beach.

Where to Stay: Bayley’s Camping Resort

Belgrade Lakes, ME

colorful sky reflected in water with trees on the horizon
Sunset views from motel dock

If you are seeking a peaceful and relaxing getaway, the Belgrade Lakes are for you. It is conveniently located well-nigh 10 miles from the capital, Augusta. Made up of a total of seven lakes, this zone offers several water sports like boating, swimming, or fishing.

When I visited, the dock outside our motel was a perfect spot to fish as the sun set, located on a river that led into Messalonskee Lake. If you are a big golf fan you will love the nationally ranked Belgrade Lakes Golf Club, an immersive nature and golf experience.

Where to Stay: Maine Motel on the Water is a cozy and spacious motel with a dock for kayaking and fishing.

Monhegan Island, ME

Hop on a ferry from Boothbay Harbor or New Harbor and make your way to this square mile piece of magic. Monhegan Island is a mannerly small island full of rocky cliffs, and cozy cottages. Cathedral Woods consists of walking trails that vamp artists to the island. Many visitors worth for seeing fairy houses in the woods!

Visit the coffee shop The Mooring Chain for coffee, tea, bagels, and pastries. The local owners get fresh bagels from the Trailing Yew every morning.

Where to Stay: Monhegan House is a bed & breakfast which offers the sound of ocean waves, scenic coastal views, and the opportunity to see artists.

Find the place that speaks to you and plan your dream Maine summer vacation!

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Dreaming of exploring Maine’s rocky coastlines, lighthouses, and fresh seafood on a Maine vacation? Make your Maine trip a reality, segregate from one of these weightier places to go to in Maine in the summer. Whether you are looking for a New England family vacation or a weekend getaway, Maine has something for everyone from rocky coastlines, sandy beaches, gorgeous lakes, and climbable mountains.

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