kay, okay… I know I often say that I will not be bringing a lot of Maine-related vlogs to you, as that’s often what you see on my Instagram account. But today, I am going to do it! In July 2018, I had a friend visit from out of town and I really wanted to show her a good time and cram as much as possible, into what I call a perfect Maine weekend.
Some will argue that we should have visited Southern Maine. I would agree, but we simply didn’t have time to drive that far. So, we will exclude the Portland area’s potentials from this experience.
When traveling around Maine, the go-to for me is always Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park. For those of you who follow me, you know that I love hiking. We had to hit one of the best views and most comfortable hikes you will find, which was the Acadia Mountain and St. Sauveur Mountain Loop. This trail is perfect when you do not have a long amount of time to drive to the beautiful 4,000 foot hikes near Katahdin or Carrabassett Valley. The views in Acadia are amazing and the hike fits just about any skill level. This hike should take you a total of three hours from the parking lot to complete the loop. Keep in mind, you will arrive at your first peak within 30 minutes!
After a nice hike along the coast, you will be hungry. Some people say that Downtown Bar Harbor is not worth the traffic on a busy weekend, but I disagree. I love going into town to spend time bouncing around the shops, grabbing coffee at Coffee Hound on Main Street, walking on the Ocean Trail, and eating some lunch on a beautiful patio. When looking for some grub on a hot sunny day, one of my favorite spots is Stewman’s Downtown Lobster Pound. The deck here is gorgeous, the food is delicious, and you can sit on the water with a perfect breeze. My experiences here have always earned a 5-star rating, including the service. Check it out!
No matter how beautiful it is, you can’t just focus on Bar Harbor when showing someone around the state. There are so many other gorgeous and exciting harbor towns that you would be foolish to not see. For me, Camden is at the top of that list. This midcoast town is one of the most sought-after locations for wealthy out-of-staters to purchase huge ocean-front mansions, dock their sailboats, and more. Naturally, we went sailing when visiting this coastal gem.
The Schooner Surprise recently had its 100-year anniversary on the waters. To celebrate this milestone, the vendor offered excellent service to participants. The captain often has some really cool local stories about homes, prominent individuals, and the islands in the cove. Food or beverage are allowed on board, so yay, alcohol! We grabbed some sandwiches from the Camden Deli and brought some beers from Orono Brewing Company. You can get a real hands-on experience, as the staff will ask for volunteers to get involved in setting the sails and rigging. They did an excellent job, so I threw them 5 stars on Trip Advisor.
After a beautiful sail, delicious lunch, and a walk around Camden, it was time to work our way home. One of the best things about going to Camden is the drive back toward Bangor and the fact that Route 1 runs close to Cellardoor Winery. This is one of my favorite places of all time. It’s in a beautiful location and has great staff and delicious wine. You will not be upset after stopping off for a free tasting, which includes four local wines. You could also pay $8 for a tasting with eight varietals. If you’re there before 3 p.m. on a Sunday, you’ll have the opportunity for a free cheese pairing.
Finally, what Maine weekend would be complete without eating real Maine Lobster? I am talking about eating meat in the shell, cracking it and soaking it in melted butter! On our way back, we stopped at Young’s Lobster Pound in Belfast. This maybe one of the most unique spots I have ever had lobster in my 28+ years living and traveling in Maine. Believe it or not, this was my first trip here and I’m hooked.
This lobster pound may be extremely chaotic if busy, but well worth the visit. Step up to the counter, figure out what you want, and grab someone’s attention right away order through the hustle and bustle. I highly recommend their large combo plate, which includes oysters, shrimp, steamers, two 1.5 lb. lobsters, and two heads of corn! This was a massive plate, but a normal and very reasonable price, and it all tastes delicious. Of course, make sure to get extra butter to cover it all.
Don’t forget that Young’s is a BYOB establishment, so make sure to bring whatever drinks you want to pair with this massive meal and post up on their back deck.
Well, that’s it! Today you watched a short video highlighting some of my favorite things to do in Maine, jam packed it into two days. I hope this inspired you to make the most of your visit Downeast. Stay tuned for my comparison of hiking a section of the Appalachian Trail in winter versus summer. You can find announcements on my Instagram (@ethanoutthedoor) or subscribe to my YouTube channel!