What to do in Portland, Maine


Maine is a state famous for its forests, its mountains, and its lobster. It's not the first place you think of when you're looking...

Maine is a state famous for its forests, its mountains, and its lobster.  It's not the first place you think of when you're looking for a sophisticated art scene or a great shopping experience.  But Portland, Maine's largest city, is full of wonders to be explored.  Here's the best of Portland, ME.

Old Port District

Cobblestone streets, old bookstores, art galleries and specialty boutiques are all part of the Old Port District.  Stroll the streets and explore the shops, and eat your way through this charming neighborhood. 

Check out the art scene

Portland has plenty of art galleries, boutiques, and craft shops, but it also has some great museums.  The Portland Museum of Art is a small but quality museum with an eclectic mix of local artists and some beautiful pieces by more famous artists as well.  The Native American Collection is especially popular.  You can also visit the Winslow Homer Studio, where Homer painted many of his famous works.  Or check out the Museum of African Culture, a small but surprising museum with a fascinating collection.

Explore historic landmarks

Portland is an old town, with some stellar architecture and historically significant buildings.  The Victoria Mansion is a beautiful house from before the Civil War.  If you like visiting historic homes, this is one of the best in the area.  The Portland Observatory has been providing amazing views since 1807.  If you're interested in poetry, the Wadsworth-Longfellow House is also located in Portland.

Take a scenic cruise

You can explore Casco Bay and its many islands by navigating the local ferry system, or taking a scenic cruise.  If you visit Peak Island, plan to rent a golf cart or bring your bike, because there is a lot to see. 

Portland, Maine has a pretty big following in the Northeast.  What did I miss that's worth checking out?  Let me know in the comments!


This was originally written for Roadtrippers, a great resource for anyone interested in travel.
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