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Boston to Maine in June for 7 days. Suggestions please

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May 28th, 2012, 08:48 AM
  #1
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Boston to Maine in June for 7 days. Suggestions please

My husband and I are flying to Boston this weekend. Our only reservation is near the airport the night we fly in. We reserved a rental car and plan to drive the coast to Maine. We prefer sightseeing and nature over shopping and city life. I prefer NOT to pack up and sleep in a different place every night, thinking of settling in a neutral area for appox. 4 nights that would allow us to see many areas and still have time relaxing at a "home away from home" in the evenings. Any suggestions for what area to stay? What we shouldn't miss? Should we reserve before or take a chance of finding somewhere to stay once we are there? Trying to get the most of our limited time without using our energy on nonstop activities or wasting time finding where to stay or what to see next. We are active Cajuns from southern Louisiana, we love to EAT, visit, bike, sightsee, walk and enjoy a refreshing drink on the patio!! Love to see water but he is not a beach guy, thinking a cruise tour to bailey island or to see lighthouses. Is there time for Martha's vineyard or Nantucket or should we just skip them for a later date? Our flight out is 4pm Boston, where should we stay our last night before driving to the airport? Any suggestions appreciated
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May 28th, 2012, 08:52 AM
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It is actually 8 days. We wake up in Boston Saturday morning until the following Saturday afternoon.
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May 28th, 2012, 10:06 AM
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I think I'd stay in Portland. It's a great "city" with lots of fantastic dining. Then you can easily do a day trip to Portsmouth/Kennebunk/etc.

You could also spend a few nights in Acadia.

Acadia is 3 hours or so from Portland so it would be too far for a day trip.

I'd leave out MV/Nantucket.
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May 28th, 2012, 10:29 AM
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Thanks, I will leave them out. I just found an oceanview farmhouse available for the week in Camden. Think we would regret spending all of our nights there and just venturing out each day? or should we stay last 1-2 nights in southern Maine? I was hoping to sneak in a day of vermont NH but really want to avoid rushing!!
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May 28th, 2012, 11:20 AM
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Early June is quite sleepy in Maine. Things are just re-opening over Memorial weekend, hotels and restaurants still don't have their summer staffing in place and are going through training etc (expect spotty service on the coast). You might want to secure accomodation for that first Saturday night just for peace of mind, but you don't really need it as long as you get up to your destination town by 4 or 5pm...motels tend to fill up on Saturdays and front desks may even close at 8 or 9pm.

Ogunquit sounds perfect for you. Check out Terrace by the Sea for modest and clean accomodations/ upscale motel....or are you looking for more B&B or hotel? PinkB.com is another place to consider.

Ogunquit has lots of dining choices and is walkable. Maybe not as "outdoorsy" as you are looking for but you can take drives out to the Shapleigh lakes area, around into the NH lakes and mountains, full days of driving and sightseeing. One day maybe to Kennebunkport and Cape Arundel, another up to see Old-Town Portland (about 45-60 min drive...take route 9 and route 1 up, then the freeway back...maybe also include Cape Elizabeth that day with a lobster roll at lobstershacktwolights.com)

Ogunquit would also be an easy drive down into Portsmouth NH for lunch or dinner and a look-around. I'd plan on maybe Sat Sun Mon nights in Ogunquit, then set out for Camden/Rockport on Tues Wed and Thurs. Maybe from there a beautiful day drive up to Acadia National Park on Thursday?

That leaves your final Friday open, maybe Portland or Portsmouth if you enjoyed your visits there. Portland would be just 2 hours down to Logan Airport and no traffic problems mid-day on a Saturday. You could drive leisurely down route 1 and the coast, hooking up with the freeway should you run short on time. Plan to arrive back at Logan around 2pm to return your car and 2:30 would not be too late since Saturday afternoon is the lightest travel time of the week. You could even spend your final Friday in Camden if you really enjoy the area (lakes to enjoy nearby, easy Mountain climbing at Mt. Battie etc). You would have to leave Camden by 10:30am or so to ensure your arrival down to Logan, but if you left Camden by 9:30 you'd have time for a leisurely lunch maybe at Salem Mass or in Beverly Mass where you'd be just a hop from the airport and could relax.

This week, keep a close eye on the weather forecast. If Maine is predicted rainy over the weekend, you might want to stay in Boston for a couple of days, or head south of Boston to the Cape or to Rhode Island if by chance better weather is predicted there (not likely). At any rate, it will not be difficult to find accomodation on-the-fly in Maine if you are not nit-picky. Several respectable, clean motels along route 1 will have "$59" offers posted on weeknights and "$89" offers for weekends since it is early June. Though I think you'll be perfectly content with Ogunquit and Camden if you prefer to pre-plan and book, it is a great time of year to just let the road take you where it will.
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May 28th, 2012, 11:24 AM
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I think Camden is a great location. There is plenty to see and do within a 2 hour radius for the whole week. Hiking, boating exploring.

I would also consider two other options since you don't want to change lodging much.

A: Go long and head to Acadia/Bar Harbor for a couple of nights. Then spend the rest of the nights in Camden

B: Go to Camden for 5 nights. Include a day trip to Acadia and then spend a couple of nights in Southern Maine. Kennebunkport, Ogunquit or York. One of our favorite places is seachambers.com it is at the mouth of the river, has plenty of out door spaces to sit with a glass of wine while avoiding the sand, and the tidal changes the vista by the hour. Ogunquit also has the marginal walk along it's rocky coast.

Also: Portland is a GREAT food town, but you aren't interested in a city so much.
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May 28th, 2012, 01:09 PM
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Thanks for the useful suggestions. @ Lookin_glass I like the B option. If it isn't too risky maybe I could book first 4 nights in Camden / Acadia area and take a chance on a place to stay the last 3 nights around Ogunquit which would be closer to airport to depart. This gives us the option to view the southern area on the way to Camden. Also gives us the opportunity to decide once we are in Camden if we need more time there. I prefer not to waste travel time unless we are sightseeing. Soooo much to see in so little time,its hard to resist the temptation to try to get it all in....BUT I know we tire easily from rushing,crowds,and too many decisions. We are only equipped for 4-6 hours a day of excitement then we are ready for down time. Our primary reason for choosing this location is to see the natural beauty and chill out, Oh and eat lobster
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May 28th, 2012, 01:16 PM
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joesource nailed it. there will be plenty of lodging available everywhere during the week next week. the weekends can be difficult for choice lodging with views, but you certainly will find decent lodging and not have to sleep in your car.

And if you're not up for a long day to visit Acadia, there is sooooo much to see in the camden rockport area.
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May 28th, 2012, 01:43 PM
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Acadia is now on our must do list..let me clarify: we are fine for an active long day if it isnt crowded or involve shopping and we are enjoying at our own pace. we heard too much about the hiking and beauty to miss it. So my only worry should be deciding where my home away from home(camden area) will be and the friday night before departing? I like the idea of 2 hours away from the airport, I think Camden would be a bit far since my husband is a timely man and will make me get up way too early to be at the airport ahead of schedule. I really appreciate the help!!
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May 28th, 2012, 01:51 PM
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The Camden area is a great place to use as a base. There is much u can visit from that area. Don't miss the harpswell pensiula area -- very untouristed and very lovely. Bath is a small low key town that's fun to explore. Just get in the car and drive and you'll find lots to visit and lots to c. Monehgan Island makes a great day trip. Hiking on the island is beautiful and the boat trip over is fun. NO cars on the island. The gardens at Boothbay harbor are lovelyl and not far from Camden. U won't have any trouble filling up 8 beautiful days. Enjoy your travels.
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May 28th, 2012, 02:15 PM
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You mentioned getting a feel for the southern part of Maine on your drive up to Camden. Hmmmm...maybe not so much. Route 1 northbound, while considered the "coastal route", does not really hug the coast or give you a feel for most of what you're passing. You really have to meander off route 1 to explore or get any feel for Ogunquit, Kennebunkport, Portland/Cape Elizabeth, etc. So, be sure to leave Boston quite early on that first Saturday morning so that you can wander in and out of maybe Salem Mass, take the shore road between York and Ogunquit Maine, detour off into Kennebunkport maybe for lunch, wind up through Cape Porpoise...then maybe hitch back up to the freeway until you hit Portland for a bit. Probably avoid Freeport on a Saturday since you have no interest in shopping. Take the freeway to Augusta with a possible pit stop at the Maine State Museum late afternoon (closes at 4pm however), then route 17 out to Camden?
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May 28th, 2012, 02:31 PM
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Camden is a better location for a day trip to Acadia but if you find something further south i.e. Wiscasset there are more great lobster places to eat including several in the Harpswell area. Agree with Coastal Botanic Gardens. Also easy hike to Owls Head Light near Rockland (lobster at Waterman's Beach). Buy some cheap bag chairs when you get here, bring some picnic supplies and binnoculars. We take rest breaks in scenic areas just to enjoy looking at the water. Best place for a picnic is top of Mt Battie (we take the auto road). Lupines are blooming in NH right now. It's a bit early so be on the lookout for fields of these pretty wildflowers. Stonington has a lupine festival in mid-June but I bet they are blooming early this year.
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May 29th, 2012, 09:54 AM
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we live 30 minutes north of Boston and travel to Maine frequently. I would recommend the Samoset Resort on the coast or go up to Bar Harbor, a long ride ( 4 hours) but well worth it. Stay at the Bar Harbor Inn. You will not regret it. All the New England cruise ships come into this port.
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May 30th, 2012, 05:08 AM
  #14
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There is apparently not enough time to cover the everything in Maine and still have time to relax wherever we choose to stay in just one short week. So I have some decision to make quickly since we leave in 2 days!!! It sounds like every area is lovely and we have made a wise decision choosing Maine. Now to narrow down my search for lodging. Can anyone recommend a private owned cottage, cabin that is clean, comfortable, great view, reasonable priced in Camden area or southern area. I would prefer over hotel stay mostly to have some SPACE, hubby requires more sleep than me and we have never been away for this long in our 24 years together.
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May 30th, 2012, 09:14 AM
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yogachic, if you don't find a cottage, try Glenmoor by the Sea in Lincolnville just north of Camden. They have a variety of accomodations. We stayed in a unit that had a separate sleeping area from the LR section. There was just a wall, no doors. As you entered there was a small kitchenette type area with a table for 4. To the right was the bedroom. To the left the LR. Hotels don't work for us.
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Jun 3rd, 2012, 05:42 PM
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My daughter and I are going to Maine in a couple of weeks. Enjoyed your blog. Curious how did your trip go and if you have any favorites, or least liked, to share. Favorite hotels?
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Jun 5th, 2012, 06:14 PM
  #17
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this is our last night in Lincolnville / camden area. We stayed at a farmhouse found on VRBO which turned out a perfect area to see all. Our favorite was the view from Camden Hills State Park (3 miles from our stay) Mt Battie & Mt Megunticook was the BEST if you can hike it. Also loved Mt Cadillac in Acadia Nat'l Park (1.5 hours). The food was great all over the state. We did most of what was suggested here Bar Harbor/ Camden / lighthouses / Bailey Island (Harpswell)/ Botanical Gardens / Portland etc and alot of eating!! Thanks for the help. I think we would have done fine by moving locations daily since each area was covered fairly quickly. It rained for 3 days and was COLD 48 and under. Now we need help to cover Vermont / New Hampshire for our final 3 nights then back to Boston to fly out
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Jun 6th, 2012, 06:25 AM
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yoga,
We'll be in Lincolnville for 3 nights in September. We plan to do Mt Battie, Acadia and a schooner cruise. We'll be flying into Portland arriving around Noon and then driving up to the Camden area.

Which lighthouses do you like in those areas? How about dining recs? Did you spend any time on the west side of Mt. Desert Island?

We will be spending 2 nights in the White Mts. after Maine and plan to see Mt. Washington...not sure whether to drive or take cog railway. We also want to drive the 'Kanc', actually Rt. 112 which is 26.5 mile scenic highway going east to west thru the mountains. Hope we can see Castle in the Clouds on our way down to Boston.

Enjoy the rest of your trip!
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Jun 6th, 2012, 07:55 AM
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shame about the unseasonably cool weather. Looking forward to hearing where you land next!
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Jun 6th, 2012, 06:17 PM
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found a neat lil place Gilcrst Cottages in Thornton area. Drove Rt 112 today- beautiful and so is the entire area. Didnt do Cog Railway, Stopped at info office and were told the area was closed due to bad weather. The mountains are magnificent as well as the coast harbors and lighthouses. If you hike....do not miss Mt Megunticook, it is absolutley amazing but work to get there!!!! I am so glad we did it, it has been the highlight of our trip. 2 more nights, thinking a drive to Woodstock Vt & Lake Winnipesaukee. Havent decided where to sleep but my inner goddess is ready for 50 shades with "Mr G" in a 4-5 star place heading anywhere down south toward Boston. Open to recommendation!!
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