Maine, a northeastern state in the United States, is well known for its rocky coastline, stunning landscapes, and delicious seafood. Located on the southeastern coast of Maine, this region is home to many hidden gems that are just waiting to be discovered by adventurous travelers. From charming seaside towns to historic landmarks, this area is a must-visit for anyone looking to explore the Northeast. In this insider’s guide, we will be taking you on a journey through the hidden gems of South Eastern Coastal Maine.
Begin your journey by exploring the charming coastal town of Kennebunkport. This picturesque village is home to a vibrant downtown area filled with quaint shops, art galleries, and delicious restaurants. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through Dock Square, the center of the town, and be sure to visit the famous Bush Compound, where the Bush family spends their summers. Afterward, take a scenic drive along Ocean Avenue and marvel at the stunning sea views. Stop by the St. Ann’s Episcopal Church, a historic landmark, and soak in the natural beauty of this idyllic village.
Next, explore the town of Ogunquit, known for its beautiful beaches, galleries, and museums. The town’s main attraction is the Marginal Way, a breathtaking trail that spans just over a mile along the rocky coastline. Enjoy stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and explore the tidal pools at low tide. Finish off at Ogunquit Beach and dip your toes in the crystal-clear water.
For a more rural setting, visit the town of Freeport, known for its outlet shopping and charming harbor. Take a boat tour to the nearby Eagle Island and visit the historic summer home of Robert Peary, the famous explorer. Explore the rugged coastline and take in the stunning natural beauty of this hidden gem.
Just a short drive north and you will find the town of Brunswick, home to the renowned Bowdoin College. Stroll through the town’s historic district and visit the Bowdoin College Museum of Art. This museum boasts an impressive collection of art with works by renowned artists such as Winslow Homer, Mary Cassatt, and Edward Hopper.
Finally, discover the quintessential Maine charm in the town of Bath. Known for its rich maritime history, this town is home to the legendary Maine Maritime Museum. Learn about the state’s rich maritime heritage and explore exhibits such as the Lobstering and Fisher Folks displays. End your visit with a walk through Bath’s historic district and take in the town’s stately Victorian-era architecture.
Red’s Eats - Anyone driving up Route 1 through Wiscasset, Maine, will have noticed the small white and red shack with the endless line out front. The crowd is so large and the number of visitors looking for parking so substantial, it tends to slow traffic to a crawl. Which begets the inevitable question: Is Red’s really worth the wait? Yes, actually, it is. First, there’s the quality of lobster meat, whose freshness and sweetness are matched only by its abundance. Then there are the fixings or lack thereof. Red’s lobster roll comes unadorned, served with mayo and/or butter on the side, so you can customize the roll to your preferences. What may seem like a cheat is actually its strong suit. By not being mixed in with sauce ahead of time, the lobster retains its pure flavor. The buns, meanwhile, are tender, buttery, and perfectly griddled. With all this delicious customizability, butter lovers can sit down with mayo aficionados in peace and enjoy the water view and the salt air at one of the outdoor picnic tables.
Palace Diner - This 15-seat diner is the oldest in Maine, and it's lasted so long for a reason: the breakfast and lunch dishes are totally on point. Buttermilk pancakes, corned beef hash, tuna salad melts, and fried chicken – the menu might be simple, but everything is executed with skill and craftsmanship.
Lincoln Hotel - a boutique hotel in Biddeford, Maine, set in a luxuriously reimagined mill that has defined the community since the 1850s. With 33 stylish guest rooms, a state-of-the-art fitness center, and a coveted downtown location, The Lincoln offers a chic yet functional hub from which to immerse yourself in Biddeford’s surging dining and cultural scene. While you’re here, we invite you to start your day at Spinning Jenny’s — our coffee shop and bakery, explore our artist galleries, unwind in our lively lobby bar, and enjoy a spectacular meal at Batson River Brewing and Distilling.
Blind Tiger Portland - Blind Tiger occupies two homes in Portland’s famed West End neighborhood. Blind Tiger on Danforth is set in a Federal style mansion house on Danforth Street in Portland, Maine, and Blind Tiger on Carleton occupies an 1869 Victorian townhouse just a few blocks away on Carleton Street. The guest houses’ design is inspired by the city and its spirit of passionate entrepreneurship and creativity. Gathering spaces are rich in texture and color, vibrant areas for gathering with friends or hosting a casual event. When you’re ready to venture out, local tastemakers offer exclusive guides to Portlanders’ favorite haunts.
Vignettes of Maine - Everything you find at Vignettes is an embodiment of the quality and craftsmanship for which Maine is so well known. Even our "From Away" offerings (a few select items created by some honest, hard-working out-of-staters) have been carefully juried to make sure they meet the standard that folks have come to expect from Vignettes.