By Laurie, our Maine Campcierge™
Fresh lobster rolls, oysters and steamers. Refreshing blueberry ales and delicious Whoopie pies. Incredible active adventures and breathtaking sunsets on harbors in coastal towns. A week’s vacation in Maine really lives up to its motto “Maine: The Way Life Should Be.”
Maine Camp Experience campers and parents have the ideal combination of incredible camps and vacation opportunities to explore the great state of Maine, which I did for a week post-Visiting Day with my husband and friends. In fact, many of the trips parents take are the same places the campers visit, which is fun to share and compare stories and pictures. Here’s a snapshot of our adventures.
Bar Harbor & Acadia
We started north so we’d drive down the coast toward home at the end of the week. We began the trip with two nights in Bar Harbor for some really fun adventures! The first full day we went whitewater rafting on the Kennebec River in the Moosehead Lake region (a day trip from Bar Harbor). We had a terrific experience with Northeast Whitewater, which was well organized and had great guides. (Adventure Bound and Moxie Outdoor Adventures are also recommended outfitters.) The next day we went to Acadia National Park where we hiked/rock climbed “Beehive Trail” (OMG!), visited Cadillac Mountain, and had an al fresco lunch, including popovers, at Jordan Pond House. Throughout Bar Harbor/Acadia, there was no shortage of Lobster Pounds (we patronized many!); Thurston’s was our favorite. It was worth the wait and we learned that soft lobsters were easier to crack open and have sweet, tender meat. We stayed at Harborside Hotel, Spa & Marina – a great location with nice rooms and beautiful harbor views. It was also nice in the morning to walk on the beach at low tide. For those interested in B&B’s, the Inn at Ullikana is a very nice place to stay – it features a tranquil setting with gracious hosts. I’ll remember the striking bright wildflowers throughout the region.
An overnight stay in Camden was a nice way to enjoy more of the coast and break up the drive. We strolled the town during the day. At night we enjoyed scenic views of boats in the harbor while having sunset cocktails on the rooftop bar at the new 16 Bay View Hotel. We had an amazing gourmet dinner and next day’s breakfast at Hartstone Inn, where we stayed. A morning kayak trip gave us the chance to get on the water to enjoy the sea breeze and a closer look at the boats.
A stop along the way at Red’s in Wiscasset is definitely worth noting. Never have I seen a lobster roll so stuffed that I couldn’t even see the bun beyond the lobster! I’d say it was worth the wait.
So many adventures to be had! On the way into Portland, we stopped at Allagash Brewery for a tasting, which was great. Downtown in Old Port, we walked around and shopped. In the morning, we took a ferry to Peak’s Island where we enjoyed renting bikes and riding around (I even liked a sign I saw there at the pier for “Laurie’s Landing”). Throughout our stay in Portland, the “foodie capital of the Northeast,” we had some great meals at Fore Street and Eventide (not to mention the delicious dinners I had eaten during Visiting Day weekend, including Scales and Street and Co.). We also savored inventive craft cocktails at Vena’s Fizz House. We stayed at and enjoyed the Press Hotel.
We’d had so many active adventures along the way, so the end of our trip was some R&R in Kennebunkport. We stayed at Hidden Pond where our individual cabins offered peaceful luxury. We loved riding bikes around the property, taking morning yoga, exploring fresh vegetable gardens and vegging out at the pool. We enjoyed a real foodie dinner at Earth restaurant, as well as the fresh baked treats delivered to our rooms each morning. We also rode our bikes to sister property The Tides which had one of the nicest soft sand beaches we saw in Maine. We had happy hour sips and bites on the porches of The Tides and the Cape Arundel Inn and Resort and at The Ramp, and even made some great new friends from Maine and Massachusetts. In Kennebunkport we also took a lobster boat fishing excursion on the Rugosa, which left from the Nonantum Hotel. We got to hold and band lobsters, and learned so much about the Maine lobster trade from Captain Bob and Annemarie.
A show-stopping Maine sunset, a game of Scrabble and some final lobster rolls capped the trip. In all honesty, I can’t begin to remember – no less count – how many lobster rolls we had along the way, nor was I able to detail here every stop we made and experience we enjoyed. Let’s just say that we left Maine with full bellies and full hearts with so many delicious memories of “Vacationland” that we will forever treasure.
Maine Camp Experience Resources & Tools
Looking for the perfect Maine camp for your child? Try out our helpful tool where you can select a camp by choosing: type of camp (girls, boys or coed) and session length (1-8 weeks). It helps to narrow down a few camps to a manageable list that includes rates. Then you can research these camps in more depth.
Next, be sure to contact our Maine Campcierge™ to discuss these camps as well as for free, year-round advice and assistance on choosing a great Maine summer camp for your child.
Talk to Laurie, our Maine Campcierge™, about choosing the right camp for your child and what to do in Maine.