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Things To Do In Portland, Maine

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If you are looking for a travel destination that has an amazing natural beauty and a mix of rich culture and delectable food choices, then you should definitely head to Portland, Maine.

portland boats docked

In May, I had the pleasure of spending a few days in Portland, Maine for the Women In Travel Summit. I was a speaker on a panel titled “Raising Adventurous Travelers” with several other amazing family travel bloggers. It was so nice to get together with these ladies and many of the other ladies I met while on this trip!

things to do in portland maine
From L to R – Marcie, Nicky, Myself, Iliah, Astrid

Portland is one of the bustling cities in Maine and is also considered as the economic center of the state. The city offers many wonderful attractions and activities which are suitable if you are travelling with your children. The picturesque waterfront in the Casco Bay is one of the most visited areas of the city and there are also other cool destinations just a little far from the main area. Although I did not take the kids on this trip, I am definitely planning a trip back with them because I loved it so much.

How To Get To Portland, Maine

Finding an affordable flight to Portland Maine from Los Angeles wasn’t the easiest task and I ended up purchasing my ticket using Skyscanner. Plane tickets to Portland International Jetport (PWM) were expensive, so I flew to Boston Logan International Airport (BOS) on Frontier Airlines and then took Concord Coach Line directly from the Boston airport to Portland. The bus ride was about 2.5hrs, but it went by really quickly. You can also take the Amtrak train as well if you prefer. Do note that the Amtrak train is not at the airpor so you’ll need an Uber/Lyft/Taxi to get there.

Planning a trip and wondering how to get affordable flights? Then click the links below to read exactly how I am able to get flight deals, save on flights and more.

Heading to Portland, Maine soon, then you’ll appreciate this list below of “Things To Do In Portland, Maine” with and/or without kids in tow.

Allagash Brewery

The brewery was launched in 1995 and is owned by Rob Tod. The establishment offers beer pour and tours every day of the week with their Belgian inspired beers. This tour is definitely for adults who are looking for a good time and a bit of history.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Longfellow Books

This stop is definitely great for parents who want to introduce their kids to literature or perhaps to encourage them to read. The store also has their cat mascot who enjoys the occasional snuggles from customers. The bookstore is known for their extensive collection of old and new books and you can even join a book group especially if you are staying in the city for a longer period of time. Longfellow Books was even picked as the “Best Bookstore” in the 2017 Yankee Editors’ Pick.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Portland Farmer’s Market

The best way to know more about a new city or place is to check out their food. Portland offers classic and hipster dishes that are all delectable. The Farmer’s Market begins by the end of April up until late November. The Saturday market morning rush is located in the Deering Oaks Park and is the best place for any kind of produce that are fermented, grown, raised or tended in the Portland area. The market is where the chefs would shop for the most unique ingredients such as wild mushrooms grown from the North Spore. Every item is guaranteed fresh and of course in season and you will never go wrong with all the products that you can buy from the Farmer’s Market. In fact, it a 2018 Yankee Editors’ Pick for the Best Farmers’ Market award.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Victoria Mansion

The Victoria Mansion is hailed as the most magnificently ornamented structure of its period and the mansion has retained 90% of the original furnishings of the famous designer, Gustave Herter. The mansion boasts of a 6 x 25 foot stained glass ceiling window, colorful and intricate patterns of their Turkish Smoking Room, amazing ceiling flourishes and as well as a mind-blowing trompe l’oeil wall. The Victoria Mansion was also named as 2016 Yankee Editors’ Pick for the award in Best Historic House Museum.

Things To Do In Portland, Maine

Explore Downtown Portland

Downtown Portland is beautiful and such a great place to explore with friends. There are also many amazing restaurants within a few minutes of each other, so you won’t have a hard time finding something to eat. My hotel was in downtown so I walked the area a lot and it was very busy during the day, so keep that in mind when heading out to grab lunch.

black women in downtown portland with friends

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Portland Head Light

This is located at the Fort Williams Park which is just about four miles from downtown Portland. The Head Light is the state’s oldest lighthouse which was commissioned by George Washington. There are so many great spots in the park where you can set up a picnic day for the family. There is also in interesting museum in the keepers’ house where visitors can take a look at the display. The Portland Head Light was even named a 2016 Yankee Editors’ Pick for the award in Best Iconic State Attraction.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Portland Schooner Company

If you are up for a two hour adventure, then hop on board the historic windjammers named Bagheera and Wendameen. This tour lets you cruise by forts, islands and lighthouses wherein you can also enjoy the changing hues of the sun as the moon prepares to rise. This is a wonderful tour to end an amazing day enjoying the natural beauty of Portland.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Lucky Catch Lobster Tour

As previously mentioned, Casco Bay is a haven for tourists wherein you can cruise the bay aboard the Lucky Catch. This fun tour lets tourists know more about the world of lobsters and also catch their dinner. The tour not only offers a tour all over the bay but the crew will also teach the tourists how to bait, haul and set traps which can be a very exciting activity for everyone to enjoy.

Things To Do In Portland Maine

Portland Museum of Art

There is always room for art and beauty even when you are on a vacation. The Museum of Art boasts of three centuries of works which include collection of paintings by American impressionist and realist masters; the likes of Andrew Wyeth, Marsden Hartley and Rockwell Kent just to name a few. What better way to introduce art to your children than to spend a day at the museum. The Portland Museum of Art also houses fine and decorative arts. The museum was also named as 2015 Yankee Editors’ Pick for the award in Best Historic Highlight: Art & Architecture.

Activities For Kids in Portland, Maine

  1. Take the kids to a ferry ride going to Peaks Island where you can rent bikes or strollers to take you around the island. For a more exciting tour, don’t forget to check out the old tunnels.
  2. The Children’s Museum and Theatre of Maine offers the Camera Obscura which is situated at a pitch black and windowless room which they can use to spy on the passersby.
  3. The annual Old Port Festival is a great event for kids with their kick off foot parade. The event also has other activities such as live music, food fair from the local restaurants and they also showcase arts and crafts from the state during the month of June.
  4. Fairy Fridays is a great event at the Coastal Marine Botanical Gardens which happens during the months of July and August.
  5. Kids can learn more about sea trades in the “Walk the Working Waterfront” event during the month of June. Kids can go on tour the Billy and Andy lobster boat and they also get to color or design their own buoys.

Best Eats In Portland, Maine

Anyone who has heard of Portland, Maine knows that it is a foodie town. I ate at so many amazing restaurants and the food did not disappoint at all. I had the best clam chowder and lobster roll I have ever had in my entire life. That’s little how good the food was.

A few of my favorite restaurants in Portland, Maine are:

  • Eventide Oyster Co.
  • Duckfat
  • The Green Elephant
  • Marcy’s Diner
  • Fishermen’s Grill
  • B.Good
  • Holy Donuts
  • Thirsty Pig
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