Four Perfect Days on the Maine Midcoast

Camden, Rockland, Lincolnville Beach & Beyond 

Located just 4 miles north of Camden, on Atlantic Highway (US Route 1) in Maine’s Midcoast area, is the town of Lincolnville Beach. Although it will never rival the name recognition of our more famous neighbor, Lincolnville Beach is within minutes of all of Camden’s attractions while offering quite a few of its own on a road less traveled. Spend a few days, or a week, in Lincolnville and you will truly experience why Maine is such a special place.

Lincolnville Beach, Isleboro Ferry, lobster boats, red picnic tableDay 1

For energetic folks, a perfect day breaks early with a hike at sunrise on one of 30 trails in the Camden Hills State Park or nature trails maintained by the Coastal Mountain Land Trust

. Seeing the sunrise over the Atlantic is hard to beat. But if you prefer a more leisurely start to your day, you may relax with your steaming hot coffee or tea on the veranda of Victorian by the Sea listening to the birds while watching the dawn break on Penobscot Bay. 

With small farms abundant in the area, Lincolnville relied on locally sourced products long before it became a food trend.  Driving to a nearby farm to pick-up fresh eggs, cheese, fruits and vegetables (or lobsters for that matter) is just the way it’s always been done around here. You can be assured that your breakfast will be fresh and delicious.

 No visit to the Midcoast is complete without a sail on the Bay. Try a 10:30 a.m. or later departure with one of several different companies offering two-hour sails from Camden Harbor. I enjoy sailing with Captain Jack Moore and his wife Barbara on their historic schooner, Surprise.

 If you are lucky enough to be in the area on June 21, the Summer Solstice, you can take a sail on island-studded Penobscot Bay on the Schooner Olad which leaves from Camden Harbor at 4:15 a.m. Captain Aaron Lincoln and his crew will take you on a two-hour sunrise sail on a restored classic yacht.

Victorian by the Sea B&B, Grundel Point Lighthouse, Schooner Surprise and Heron, Curtis Island Camden, Maine

After your sail, get your “land-legs” back with a stroll along the harbor docks, city parks and the shopping streets of Camden.   One of my favorite shops is Glendarragh Lavender. The moment you walk into the shop at 22 Main St. you are enchanted by this herb. Proprietor Lorie and her husband started a 26 acre lavender farm several years ago and the shop offers hundreds of items made from their lavender harvest. Handcrafted gifts are also available. 
From the Camden Harbor, drive four miles north on Highway 1 to Lincolnville Beach where you will find one street of delightful shops directly across from the beach and the Islesboro Ferry Terminal. Lincolnville is home to Windsor Chairmakers and Swan’s Island Blankets both producing heirloom quality, hand-crafted products.
By mid afternoon, you’re ready for a break so take a short drive to Cellar Door Winery on Youngtown Road in Lincolnville. In a restored 1790’s post and beam barn, the folks at Cellar Door will treat you to a complimentary wine tasting of their locally produced wines. You’ll be snapping your camera as the tasting room overlooks the picturesque vineyards.

And for further relaxation, continue a mile or two past the majestic cliffs of the Camden Hills and in a few minutes you are at beautiful Lake Megunticook. Swim either at the public beach at Barrett’s Cove or ask me for directions to a “locals” swimming hole where you can take a midday nap on the rocks, or swim in the crystal clear waters. Barrett’s Cove is also home to Megunticook Rowing club and the Megunticook Mini-MarathonRegatta.
Following dinner, relax and watch the moonrise over the bay from the Veranda of Victorian by the Sea Bed and Breakfast -- the perfect way to end the day.

Day 2 

Following breakfast, start your drive south on Highway 1 to tour the lighthouses of Rockland and the St. George Peninsula. Check our Light House Day Trips page for directions to some of our favorite lighthouses. While on the Peninsula you will want to search out one of the lobster pounds for the freshest dockside lobster you’ll ever find. Most pounds have walk-up windows with picnic tables over looking the water.

On your way back, you may enjoy the Owl’s Head Transportation Museum, and in Rockland, we recommend the Farnsworth Art Museum showcasing three generations of Wyeths’ paintings.  The museum also houses the Maine in America Collection with representative art of Maine.  The Maine Lighthouse Museum is also in Rockland hosts a large collection of Fresnel lighthouse lenses and Coast Guard artifacts. Downtown Rockland offers an eclectic mix of galleries, restaurants and shops along its Main Street.  My personal favorite is Archipelago which features art and crafts produced on Maine’s islands. It is a non-profit organization established to preserve the island way of life. 
Lincolnville Beach Harbor, Isleboro Fery terminalDay 3

How about a kayak or bike trip today? For a kayak rental try Duck Trap Kayak near our B&B or Maine Sports, located a few miles south in Rockport, offering both bicycle and kayak rentals.  Let us know the day before your planned outing and we will arrange for a picnic lunch prepared by Dot’s deli of Lincolnville Beach. For a very special dinner, join other lucky guests at Lincolnville’s Salt Water Farm. Opened three years ago by NY chef Annemarie Ahearn, Salt Water Farm is situated on 17 stunning acres overlooking Penobscot Bay. You will be served a fixed-price five-course meal imaginatively prepared from local ingredients. In addition to occasional dinners, the Farm offers cooking classes and gardening lessons. You must plan in advance to catch one of Annemarie’s dinners or classes, but it is well worth the extra effort.  The Youngtown Inn & Restaurant offering exceptional French cuisine is located on Rout 52 in Lincolnville Center.

Victorian by the Sea, your view on Penobscot Bay.Day 4

If the sun shines bright today, it’s your day to travel 80 miles north to visit Acadia National Park.  Let us know the day before if you want to get an early start and we will prepare a special “to go” breakfast for you. In addition to the breathtaking scenery in the Park, you may want to catch a whale watching tour from Bar Harbor. Take the Park Loop Road to visit Cadillac Mountain, Sand Beach, Thunder Hole, Otter Point and the Carriage Road trails. But don’t leave the Park until you try one of the popover sundaes at Jordan Pond’s outdoor dining area overlooking the pond.  It evokes images of the early tourists in the late 1800s.  Or you may want to stop in Searsport at the Penobscot Marine Museum and visit the 19th century seaport village and museum. 

If you would like additional ideas, or have questions while planning your holiday, call us at 800-382-9817. We’re happy to help.