Maine has some of the best natural scenery in New England, arguably the best in the country. From waterfalls to coastline, forests to mountaintops, it’s easy to be completely enchanted by our beautiful state. But, there are some places that truly top it all. Growing up, we dreamed of faraway enchanted lands that would make us feel magical. Whether it was a mystical castle or a misty forest hideaway, we imagined being a part of something otherworldly. Believe it or not, you just might find that feeling at these 10 fairytale places in Maine.
1. Enchanted Deer Isle, Stonington
This small lobster village near Acadia is just off the beaten path enough to keep it feeling like it did generations ago. This is what the Maine coast is all about. You can reach it via a bridge, but it feels perfectly removed from the hustle and bustle of the mainland. We won't tell you exactly how to get there - some things need to remain a mystery. But, if you can find your way, you'll be rewarded with the feeling that time travel is real.
2. Quirky Mackworth Island
Mackworth Island is about 100 acres and can be walked completely in about two hours. But, what it lacks in size, it makes up for in quirkiness. Nestled within the wooded area about ten minutes from the parking lot is a fairy village. Fairies are given access to tiny homes built by the local communities out of natural elements. Bring kids and spend an afternoon constructing a home out of leaves, sticks and rocks. A fairy will thank you. Continue the day with a walk around the island which will afford views of Falmouth, Portland, and other islands surrounding the bay.
3. The Debsconeag Lakes Wilderness Area
While the Debsconeag Lakes area is a beautiful place to visit no matter what you do there, the truly magical part is the ice caves. The cave walls hold ice even on the hottest days of the summer and descending into it will make you feel that you've begun your journey to middle earth. But remember that exploring the cave is best for advanced hikers and climbers you'll need the appropriate equipment since the area can be quite slippery and even dangerous.
4. The Norumbega Inn
Overlooking the Pebobscot River in Camden, the Norumbega Castle stands out from just about every other structure along the Maine coast. Built in 1886, it was privately owned and lived in for almost 100 years before becoming a bed and breakfast that you can still stay in today. Fun Fact: The current owner was a winner on popular Food Network show, "Chopped."
5. Treacherous Old Sow Whirlpool
Tidal currents meet between Eastport and Deer Island forming the "Old Sow" whirlpool, which is one of the largest and most dangerous on the planet. The whirling power of this natural phenomenon will remind you that some fairy tales can be quite scary!
6. Mysterious Rangeley Lake
Rangeley Lake is great for outdoor activities, from summer swimming to winter snowmobiling, but the real magic lies underground. The location of the lake is quite near the exact center point between the North Pole and the Equator creating, what some believe to be, a mystical energy force. At the very least, sitting on a summer's night listening to the loons will make you feel like you've stepped into another world.
7. Thunder Hole in Acadia National Park
While Acadia itself will make you feel like you've made it to another world, Thunder Hole will leave you in awe. The thunderous sound is created by a small inlet that has been naturally carved out of the rocks. When the waves roll in, the pressure and power of nature can be heard by everyone.
8. A fresh, snowy morning.
You can find magic anywhere in Maine on a snowy morning. Simply walk outside and look up and around to appreciate the true magic of what the winter can do to our landscape. Trees weighed down by a layer of snow and the way the light reflects off of white forest floors will make you feel like you've stepped into a calm, beautiful new world.
9. Precarious Piazza Rock
Located along the Appalachian Trail near Rangeley, this teetering rock appears to have been placed against a tree by a very strong giant. If you don't believe in magic after seeing this gravity-defying site, you may never!
10. The Harraseeket Inn
When you drive up to a snowy Harraseeket Inn you'll feel like a guest at a cozy colonial party in the early days of New England. Once you're inside, the stately dining room will bring out the debutante in everyone. Go for the lunch buffet and maybe you'll leave with Prince Charming.
What did you think about the places included here? Have you been to any or have any others to add? Let us know in the comments!