Maine Travel Guide

Are your kids growing bored of the same old vacations? Shake things up this year with a trip to Maine. Catch some lobster, plan a hiking adventure, or take advantage of all the arts and culture that Maine vacations provide. From white-water rafting to encountering wild moose in national parks, there won’t be a dull moment during Maine family vacations.

The perfect complement to this type of vacation is your own peaceful vacation rental. Minutes away from fishing, hiking, or the beach, a private rental will be the icing on the cake to your trip. So dig out those hiking boots and let VacationRentals.com show you how affordable your dream cabin can be!

What to Do in Maine

maine travel guideSome of our most popular Maine vacation spots include Wells, Old Orchard Beach, Sebago Lake, Ogunquit, Bar Harbor, and York Beach.

Outdoor Adventure

There is a reason why Maine has earned a reputation as a great location for outdoor adventure. From kayaking and canoeing in the summer to skiing the slopes in the winter, you can plan Maine family vacations all year long!

Many visitors love the fresh spring air and fall foliage of Maine. These are great times of the year to bring your family on a bicycling adventure. Whether you are looking for easygoing trails or something more challenging, Maine vacations will have the perfect match for you.

Despite all of the other enticing options, fishing remains the most popular outdoor activity in Maine. If you’ve always wanted to teach your kids how to fish, there’s no time like the present. From river fishing to off shore experiences, fishing offers quality time for the family. Watch your kids’ faces light up when they pull a lobster out of the water!

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Kicking Back

If you would rather relax, there is more than 5,000 miles of coastline to get cozy in the sand. Maine coast vacation rentals are in high demand, especially those that offer direct access to the white sand beaches. Whatever beach you choose, you will find families building sand castles, enjoying the surf, or just catching some rays!

Beyond Maine coast vacation rentals, there are more opportunities to feel the sand between your toes. With more than 6,000 lakes and ponds, Maine is home to an incredible variety of fresh water beaches. If you can picture your family renting a cabin in the middle of a lush forest and taking refreshing swims in the cool lake, than these rentals might be perfect for you!

State parks are another great place for families to relax. Take a day away from the beach and pack up the cooler with some BBQ materials. Most parks offer picnic areas with grills, playgrounds, and nature trails. This is one of the best ways to enjoy the beauty of Maine vacations!

Just for the Family

Beyond the fishing, swimming, and picnics Maine has even more tricks up its sleeve for families. Play a round of miniature golf or treat the kids to a trip to one of the many carnivals or water parks. Funtown Splashtown USA is one of the most popular water parks in Maine. Spend a day zipping down the slides or just splashing around!

Every kid loves a zoo, and Maine vacations wouldn’t be complete without a visit to York’s Wild Kingdom. This attraction is both a zoo and an amusement park, and combines family rides, zoo animals, and paddle boats for a day of fun.

If you encounter a rainy day, Maine family vacations don’t have to be any less entertaining. A variety of children’s museums will keep your kids fascinated. Choices include the Children’s Discovery Museum, the Maine Discovery Museum, and the Children’s Museum of Maine. Other indoor entertainment options include the Maine State Aquarium or attending a professional hockey, baseball, or basketball game.

maine golf

The Sophisticated Side to Maine

While Maine family vacations have a reputation for fishing and outdoor adventure, the sophisticated side of the state is less well-known. During a trip to Maine, you will learn this is not a result of an absence of choices! If you’re on a romantic vacation, spend the day on one of Maine’s 120 golf courses before dining at a gourmet restaurant in the evening. Plan a night at the theater or the symphony to complete the perfect sophisticated day.

Are you looking for a little excitement too? Maine vacations offer many chances to test your luck. Betting on the horse races is a tradition that dates back almost 200 years in Maine, and is continued today at the Scarborough Downs. If you would rather try your luck with the slot machines, visit Hollywood Slots in Bangor.

Adults will love the historical sightseeing available during Maine vacations. If you can squeeze in a trip to a lighthouse or two during your family activities, you will be rewarded by legends of fascinating historical figures and well-preserved landmarks. Lighthouses dot the Maine coastline (there are 65 in total), but some of the most famous sites to visit are Portland Head, Whaleback Ledge, and Fort Popham.

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What to See in Maine

Encountering wildlife in their natural environment in one of the most exciting parts of Maine family vacations. Let your kids be part of the planning process and choose from whale-watching tours, searching for the famous Maine moose, or heading out to see rare bird varieties. If you get lucky and see a snowy owl, be sure to have your camera with you to capture the moment!

If you want to add a little education into Maine vacations, there are many historical attractions you can squeeze in between fishing trips and family picnics. Historic homes worth a visit include the former home of poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Kids will enjoy a trip to the Maine Maritime Museum and seeing the various forts throughout the state.

The most famous landmarks in Maine are definitely the lighthouses. There are over 60 lighthouses along the Maine coastline that helped guide boats along the craggy shores. From Nubble Light in York to West Quoddy Head, it would be possible to spend an entire trip to Maine exploring these historic landmarks!

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Where to Shop and Eat in Maine

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Family Dining and Romantic Tables for Two

Maine has a serious reputation for lobster. Foodies around the globe all crave high-quality Maine seafood. Maine vacations wouldn’t be complete without popping into a restaurant or two to see how local chefs creatively prepare the daily catch!

If you plan on cooking at home, farmer’s markets will be a great complement to Maine family vacations. Pick up your fresh produce and take a cue from local chefs for simply prepared meals. Along the coastline, spectacular seafood restaurants are sure to lure you out of the kitchen. Try Cook’s Lobster House in Bailey Island or Reading Room for incredible sea views.

If you’re looking for a romantic table for two, Maine vacations should include visits to award-winning restaurants. Local chefs have attracted the attention of the media with their simple and fusion preparations of seafood. For a special night on the town, follow the James Beard foundation winners to find the best chefs. Award-winning chefs at Hugo’s in Portland and Arrows in Ogunquit are sure to impress with their culinary excellence.

Where to Shop and What to Look For

Serious shoppers don’t need to be told about the options for outlets in Maine. If there’s one thing to draw you away from Maine coast vacation rentals it will be the deals on offer at outlets in Freeport, Kittery, and Ellsworth. If you’d rather pick up something special in a boutique, you will have dozens of options in Bangor or Portland’s Old Port.

Some shoppers are thinking more local than labels, and for this type of traveler, Maine has many galleries and craft shops that are worth visiting. You may arrive in Maine looking for handicrafts and leave with bags full of outlet finds from Ralph Lauren, J.Crew Factory Store, and Banana Republic Factory Store.

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When to Visit Maine

From the warm summer sunshine beating down on Old Orchard Beach to the crisp autumn air in the apple orchards, Maine vacations can truly be planned all year long. Nature takes the stage year-round, luring travelers from across the US and beyond to see the colors, seasonal changes, and white capped mountains.

Maine coast vacation rentals are obviously most popular in the summer months, but increasingly these properties are being recognized for their serenity during the spring and autumn. While you may not be able to spend the day sunbathing, the quiet beaches are perfect for a stroll or romantic picnic.

From spring through autumn, Maine is a wonderland for nature lovers. Try fly fishing, bike the trails, or taste fresh cider at one of the apple orchards. Maine family vacations in winter capture all the magic of the holiday season. What better place is there for a horse-drawn sleigh ride? Your family will also enjoy skiing and snowmobiling. If you need a reason to get cozy by the fire with a mug of hot cocoa, Maine does the trick for this as well!

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What to Bring to Maine

Deciding what to bring on Maine vacations varies depending on the season. The best way to pack is to think of what activities you are planning. If you booked Maine coast vacation rentals for a beach getaway, remember all of your essentials such as a bathing suit, towels, beach toys, sunglasses, sunscreen, and a few good books to read. Keeping the kids entertained will make your trip all the more relaxing as well.

If your interest in Maine family vacations is more adventurous, make sure everyone has their hiking boots, raingear, and don’t forget insect repellent! For activities such as mountain biking or white water rafting, safety equipment will be provided, but remember to bring along a small first aid kit.

No matter what season you travel to Maine, the natural beauty is sure to blow you away. Remember your camera and give your kids the opportunity to be creative and capture the wildlife, fall foliage, or sweeping views on film. The most important thing to bring to Maine is an open mind—this state is a great place to try a new activity with your family!

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Local Services in Maine

During Maine vacations you may require the use of local services. Tourist offices are great sources of information for hiking including maps of trails. From spring through autumn it will be possible to rent bicycles, plan a white-water rafting trip, or enjoy a kayaking excursion. These activities will have their longest hours in the summer months.

Banks, ATMs, and grocery stores are widely available in Maine. If you plan on doing some cooking at your vacation rental, stop into the farmer’s markets for fresh ingredients. Whether or not you plan on dining out, you must try Maine’s seafood! Stop in to the market and pick up the daily catch as a treat for your family.

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What to Know About Maine

The thing to know about Maine is that it is a pretty well kept secret. Many travelers don’t think "Maine" when they think summer, but this is a mistake! Maine vacations are full of everything a family could want: adventure, sunshine, beautiful scenery, and opportunities for quality time.

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Getting to Maine

For many families, one of the pleasures of Maine vacations is the journey. Many people choose to drive to Maine, and take in the beauty of nearby states such as Vermont and New Hampshire along the way. This provides even more freedom to explore historical attractions and restaurants from Maine coast vacation rentals.

If you’re too far away to drive, Maine airports can be a good solution. From there, you can rent a car to have all the same freedom as if you made the journey in your own vehicle! The two largest airports are Bangor Airport and Portland Airport. Smaller airports include Bar Harbor Airport, Presque Isle Airport, and Rockland Airport.

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Why Maine Vacation Rentals?

The natural beauty of Maine demands more space to relax and take in the scene! This just isn’t possible from a cramped hotel room. If you’re looking for an affordable family vacation, Maine coast vacation rentals are the solution. Everyone in the family will have their own space, and you will be in close proximity to activities that will please everyone! If your daughter wants the beach, your son wants to go white-water rafting, and your husband wants to golf, this can all be combined in Maine family vacations! Skip the overpriced hotels and inns for a home away from home in one of America’s unspoiled treasures.

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