Camden, Maine is one of the most famous and picturesque places in New England. It's referred to as the place "where the mountains meet the sea." It's true; Camden is located at the foot of Camden Hills on the shores of Penobscot Bay. Even better, Camden is just seven short miles south of Lincolnville on U.S. Route 1!
When you arrive here, you might want to head straight downtown. Here, you'll find an eclectic array of great restaurants, boutique shops, historic Victorian architecture and art galleries.
While many people go seaside when they’re in Camden. Boating is a huge draw and the sailboats, yachts and schooners you’ll see in the harbor will take your breath away. Many visitors love Camden Harbor Park and Camden Amphitheater with its panoramic view of the harbor and places to sit for a just minute or an entire day and take in the wondrous view. If you time it right, you might be lucky enough to experience a concert, theater production, or craft fairs which are all relatively common during Camden’s busy summer months.
Of course for an absolutely amazing view of Camden Harbor and Penobscot Bay, go to Camden Hills State Park and take the short drive up to the summit of Mount Battie.
After your stroll, head into town and go straight to the Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center. This museum, with its huge gallery (20,000 square feet of exhibition space) of American art is a beautiful representation of artists primarily from the late 18th to 20th century. The Wyeth Center is part of this nationally-recognized appeal, with an outstanding collection from this famous family spanning three generations.
Do yourself a favor and book your reservation at Primo Restaurant well ahead of your planned trip, because after a full day at this museum and exploring the town you won’t want to pass up the chance to dine here. It's a true farm to table restaurant, always featuring the freshest and most local Maine organic meats, cheeses, and vegetables (many grown in their own gardens). Even Anthony Bourdain (Travel Channel’s famously harsh critic) couldn't come up with a critique. This meal is a perfect way to wrap up your culture-rich day in Rockland.
Every July, the Public Landing in Rockland, Maine (overlooking the picturesque Rockland Harbor) becomes home to this amazing annual two-day blues music festival featuring some of the best blues performers in the nation. In addition to all day live entertainment, the festival also offers blues fans plenty of food, drinks and crafts! Visit the website for specific dates, more information, and online ticket ordering.
Here’s this amazing annual August event in a nutshell: over 20,000 pounds of lobster, a huge parade, the world’s greatest lobster cooker, a sea goddess, entertainment, an international crate race, fine art, talented crafts people and vendors, US Navy ship tours, all you can eat pancakes, free shuttle service, US Coast Guard Station tours, professional and amateur cooking contests, marine heritage, road races, and kids events. How can you possibly pass this up? Visit the website for specific dates, more information, and online ticket ordering.
Acadia National Park; not only is this the spot to visit in Bar Harbor, it's also one of the most stunning places to visit on the East Coat. With over 50 square miles of mountains, breathtaking coastline, lakes and land, it is simply gorgeous. Within this park, almost all people head to Mount Desert Island, instantly recognizable by its beaches and sweeping cliffs. And all this natural beauty is just a little more than an scenic hour’s drive away from Lincolnville.
Acadia National Park has over 120 miles of hiking trails, and about 45 miles of groomed, auto-free roads, more geared toward the bicyclists and cross-country skiers. You may even come across wild blueberries as you make your way along the trails if you're visiting in July or August. People also choose to spend their days here sailing, swimming, or kayaking. Time and time again we hear that one day isn't enough in this spot, so you may want to make this a two-day daytrip!
In this second day, book an adventure with Bar Harbor Whale Watch Co. Fully narrated by professional naturalists, you get the opportunity to see one of our many Maine wildlife creatures: humpbacks, finbacks, porpoise, dolphins, sharks, tuna, and puffins. This company also has other nature cruises, including seal, lobster, and lighthouse excursions. The trips are seasonal, running May through October.
Other things you can do at Bar Harbor? Take a scenic air tour, go fishing, go golfing or explore the downtown area filled with restaurants, museums, and specialty shops.
With a quick 20-minute drive from Lincolnville, you’ll arrive in this great seaside village of Belfast. Just like many Midcoast Maine coastal towns, it’s packed with history, food, maritime activities, and a downtown area that will keep you busy all day!
While there are so many shops here (we are talking everything from antiques, books, fine crafts, furniture, jewelry, specialty foods, cooking supplies, clothing, gifts, to home décor - you name it and it’s here!), we’ve narrowed it down to a few must-visit destinations:
145 High Street
Belfast, Maine, 04915
Great for gifts and great for our country; all of their products (yes, 100%) are made in the United States – many handmade in Maine and/or New England. Here, you will find some incredible items like wooden utensils, cutting boards, hand printed cotton and linen towels, stoneware pottery, pewter oil lamps and more. It’s open year-round, and they offer product shipping.
74 Main St.
Belfast, ME 04915
A taste of Italy here in Belfast? Yes! Vinolio is a purveyor of ultra-premium extra virgin olive oil from around the world and balsamic vinegar from Modena, Italy. If you don’t know what you’ll like the best, you can sample over 30 products to pick your favorites. Made with their EVOO and vinegars, they also sell some great specialty foods – many of them made locally. You can stock up on craft beers and fine wines, too; their selection is impressive. Insider tip: visit this shop during their free monthly tastings if possible!
123 High Street
Belfast, ME 04915
Foodies will love Maine’s largest and oldest food co-op with fresh-from-the-farm products first from local growers and producers. They have an immense selection and variety of organic and local foods including things like produce, cheeses and all-natural local meats and poultry (grass-fed and organic options) – as well as store-made artisanal sausages. If you are here for lunch, stop by the deli and café – it features a monthly art exhibition, too. Weekend brunches are always from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., and there are monthly wine tastings with a local wine distributor!
Finally, if you feel like taking a more “educational” walk around this town to learn about its history, take in Museum in the Streets – offered by The Belfast Historical Society. The self-guided tours are free, super simple to follow, and really fun! You can pick up a tour at the Belfast Museum (http://www.belfastmuseum.org) and the Belfast Area Chamber of Commerce.
If you’re interested in heading out to one of Maine’s best little islands, jump on the Maine State Ferry Service at Lincolnville Terminal and visit Islesboro [Link to Islesboro article] for the day. This tiny fourteen mile long by one mile wide island is like taking a refreshing step back to a simpler, uncluttered, unplugged place in time. Of course, that doesn’t mean you might not see a Hollywood celebrity or two who summer on Islesboro.
The ferry ride from Lincolnville Beach is only about 20 minutes, but delays during the summer season when the traffic load is high are a fact of life.