Maine June 03, 2017
You’ll Want To Visit These 10 Maine Attractions Before The Tourists Arrive
Let’s be clear about one thing: We love tourists. And we’re not just saying that. You remind us that Maine is something to love even when the weather is cold and snowy. But, once we’re in the thick of tourist season, it can be hard to enjoy the peace and quiet that much of Maine offers. Lines get long, restaurants become busy and spots on the lake are few and hard to come by. That’s why we always urge everyone to get out there now! Here are a few ways to enjoy some of our favorite places during the summer. And, don’t wait until the weather is perfect, don’t wait until school is out – jump at the chance to experience Maine while it’s still (at least a little) peaceful.
1. Head to Old Orchard Beach for sunrise.
While most people are still getting up to pack the car, you should already be on the beach with your sweater on. This is a great time to enjoy one of Maine's most popular tourist beaches. If you're not a morning person, you still stand to get an emptier experience at sunset.
2. Skip OOB and head to nearby Ferry Beach instead.
Head here if you want to be in the OOB area to enjoy those famous Pier Fries at night, but can't stand the thought of a crowded party beach. Nearby Scarborough offers plenty of sandy and waves, with less of the scantily clad booze lovers. We can't promise an empty beach, but we can promise one that's just slightly less rowdy.
3. Another OOB alternative is the nearby Eastern Trail.
Ditch your tourist friends at OOB and hop on the Eastern Trail! This fun route is being created along the old Eastern Railroad Corridor, which once played home to the first railroad to connect Boston to Portland, in operation from 1842 until 1945. Currently, The Eastern Trail winds its way through and around many parts of Southern Maine, including Scarborough and Saco. Just a hop, skip and a jump when you have to return to pick up your visiting loved ones at Palace Playland.
4. Get to Red's Eats in Wiscasset before noon.
This little spot can back up traffic in the small town of Wiscasset faster than you can say "side of butter." But, if you just can't leave it off your list make sure you get there around 11am. The line won't be as long and you'll still be eating in time to call it lunch rather than dinner. For an even smoother experience, try to visit on a Tuesday or Wednesday.
5. Enjoy the local side of Freeport.
While Freeport is certainly synonymous with Maine's beloved boot-selling retailer, there are tons of ways to enjoy this town without getting caught up in the throng of outlet shoppers that descend on it during the summer. One recommendation from the local tourism board is to take advantage of the local shopping scene. And, by that, we mean local. More and more local Maine-owned business are cropping up, including Cotton Weeds Silk Shop, Bowe Art Gallery. These tend to be far less crowded and they have different business hours. Do some Maine-focused shopping and then make your way to a nearby attraction to make the most of a non-touristy day.
6. Hands up if you're not sure what this is!
...perhaps you know it better as part of this beloved Maine Light?
This year, instead of circling Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth trying to get a photo without anyone behind you, visit the keeper's museum. There's rarely a line and you just might learn a thing or two. You can always head back for photos outside when your tourist friends come back for leaf-peeping season.
7. Skip the summit of Cadillac Mountain during the day.
Instead, make your way to the top just after sunset. The stars are incredible up here as a result of the area's light pollution ordinance and you'll be surrounded by far less people - if any at all!
8. Explore the secluded Barred Island Preserve.
With over 4,000 islands off the coast of Maine, there must be SOME without tourists. This one happens to be one of our favorites. Barred Island Preserve is located on the west side of Deer Isle and it's a great place to explore both forest and sea. If you can manage to arrive at low tide you'll have access to a secret sand bar leading you to the uninhabited Barred Island.
9. Skip the tourist cars by using the Island Explorer Bus at Acadia.
We've written quite a few articles about the hiking in Acadia and in almost every one we recommend you park near Sand Beach. Well, if it's July you should ignore us! The best way to see the sights in Acadia without dealing with the hassles of navigating tourists is this bus that will take you throughout the park. It will be packed. But, at least you won't be faced with the prospect of parking for hours.
10. And, in the end, if you can't beat 'em join 'em...at the Maine Lobster Festival in Rockland!
What more could be said about this awesome epic outdoor food festival that hasn't been said before? Not much. Which is why we recommend you go back in time a few weeks and read the article we wrote about it complete with times and directions.
To do that, simply
While you’re out there enjoying Maine, we suggest checking out
this awesome seafood spot hiding in a perfect little fishing village.