Maine Travel Guide
Packing for Maine is sort of like packing for an adventure: You'll want to bring your sturdiest boots and most weather-resistant jacket, and the kind of bag that has room for fresh blueberries. Scenic Maine is known for its relaxed New England lifestyle, not so much the mansions of Greenwich or Newport as the earthy, sea-dashed homes that look like they've got stories. Bring your flannel, your favorite Stephen King novel (for the full experience of Maine's most famous resident, of course), and a taste for lobster, and you'll be ready for anything.
Eastern Standard Time
Best Time to Go
Maine gets cold in the winter, so unless winter is your favorite season and you are a big fan of the cold (no judgment here), summer and fall are the best times to go. While summer is peak tourist season and allows visitors to enjoy all that Maine's beaches and seafood have to offer, fall might even win out — the weather is usually brisk and comfortable, and the New England fall foliage can't be beat. In fact, Maine has entire events planned around its famous foliage: Harvestfest in York, Fryeburg Fair, OgunquitFest, and more. Craft fairs are extremely popular during the fall throughout Maine, so if your favorite part of traveling is discovering unique treasures, you'd be hard-pressed to find a season to visit better than autumn. And, of course, there's Halloween. Though not as popular a New England destination as Salem, Massachusetts, or New England neighbor Sleepy Hollow, New York, Maine nonetheless does Halloween in style, and fans of the holiday will find themselves among like-minded people.
Things to Know
Maine is a largely laid-back, outdoorsy state. If you're too clipped when speaking to locals, you might come off as uptight — be friendly with your communication and you can't go wrong. Don't eat lobster with a bib, don't ask if the blueberries are local (they are), and get comfortable with small talk, because Maine locals love to talk about the weather. For a state where so much of what there is to do is outdoors, it makes sense.
For some local delicacies, try Moxie, a soft drink that can be an acquired taste. Amato's pickles are based in Portland, and have the market cornered in Maine. And, of course, whoopie pies. The very first ones were sold in Lewiston, Maine, and nowhere does them better.
There's also a huge antiquing scene in the state, and if you're at all interested in ferreting out some vintage finds, Maine is an excellent choice for you. Almost every town has its own antique shop that folks swear is the best around. Even if you're not an avid thrifter, it's worth checking out some of Maine's most famous antique shops, just for the experience.
How to Get Around
Depending on where in Maine you're spending your time, there are a variety of ways to get around.
Trains: Amtrak runs a local service known as the Downeaster, which runs from Boston, Massachusetts, to Brunswick, Maine. Hop on for easy transportation to major towns and cities throughout Maine.
Buses: There are several bus lines operating throughout Maine, depending on what counties you're in. Greyhound runs throughout, but there are several more localized services that might be better for your needs.
Taxis: Taxis are available throughout Maine, but as in most places, you must call a service directly if you're not in an urban area already.Ferries: Maine is serviced by two ferry lines specific to Casco and Penobscot Bays.
Things to Do
Spring: Summer temperatures range from 20°F to 65°F on average, with a bit of rain but generally lovely weather. If traveling during spring, be sure to bring an umbrella, just in case.
Summer: Summer is peak tourist season — no wonder, given Maine's stunning beaches and delicious lobster. Summer is also the best time for wild blueberries. Maine sees occasional summer thunderstorms, but overall, the weather is warm and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from 51°F to 75°F, though they can sometimes reach 80°F and beyond.
Fall: Fall is a stunning time of year in Maine, thanks to the legendary foliage. It can be chilly, especially later in the season, and temperatures range from 25°F to 50°F on average. Fall in Maine tends to be a drier season — if you choose to visit at peak foliage time, you should enjoy beautiful weather.
Winter: Winter is very cold, and Maine sees a lot of snow. You should visit during winter if it's your favorite season, but otherwise, stick to milder seasons. Winter temperatures frequently get into the single digits – the average is 4°F — and below with wind chill. The average high for the season is 40°F; if you choose to visit, bring a warm coat.
Apps to Download
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