Friday, October 18, 2013

Hello from Maine

My husband and I took a few days vacation and traveled to Maine.  It's not any great hardship, since we live in Massachusetts.  We are about 2 hours from Cape Cod, 1 hour from some Rhode Island beaches, about an hour from Marblehead and Cape Ann and  no more than 90 minutes from southern Maine.  I need my ocean fix several times a year, and this time we went to Maine.

Maine is my absolute favorite place.  The craggy coast and cold ocean waters stir my creative juices and I come back rejuvenated and ready to work on the myriad of projects I always have going.

This time we took our Lab mix, Finn, with us.  It was the first time that we've stayed at a hotel with him and I was a little leery about taking him, since he's more than a bit exuberant.  I had visions of being ordered to leave the hotel because of him.

I needn't have worried.  He was exceeding well behaved and the all the hotel staff we came in contact with loved him.  If your traveling in Maine with your furry best buddy, I highly recommend the Hampton Inn in Saco Maine.  It doesn't have a spa atmosphere but when we travel to Maine, we simply need a home base.  It had comfortable beds, clean, newly renovated rooms and that's all we needed.

  They don't charge a fee per night for your pet to stay, they gave Finn a cookie when he arrived and all their staff seem to be pet lovers.  I ran into a couple who were traveling with their two cats, so it's not only dogs who are welcome at this hotel.  They do place a $200 charge on your credit card which is removed once they are sure your pet didn't trash the room.

Here's Finn in "his" hotel room.

The first day we went to Old Orchard Beach ME.  Years ago this beach had a boardwalk, carnival rides, cheesy games with even cheesier prizes and the best pier food around.  There are still some carnival rides, games, arcades,  and food booths but it is becoming much too dignified for my taste, with new condos and higher end shops.

 When we took our kids there when they were small, it was grungy, noisy, sweaty and wonderful.  My kids loved it!  I don't think they would like the changes.  The beach, however is still one of the best in Maine.  For those of you who aren't familiar with Maine's beaches, some of them disappear at high tide leaving only a sliver of rocky shoreline behind.  Old Orchard has a pretty good beach, even at high tide.

Finn Enjoying the Sand  At Old Orchard Beach ME

The roller coaster, Old Orchard Beach ME at twilight

Twilight over the ocean at Old Orchard Beach ME

The second day, we visited Ogunquit, a quaint little town, whose name means "beautiful place by the sea". There are  lots of shops, hotels and bed and breakfasts, and a killer bakery with the best fresh made apple cider I've ever tasted, unfortunately I can't remember the name but it's the only bakery on Route 1 in the center of town
  Ogunquit  is also the home of Perkin's Cove and the Marginal Way.  Perkin's Cove is a collection of small shops and restaurants.   The Marginal Way is a 1 and 1/4 mile paved footpath along the Atlantic Ocean.  It has spectacular views of Maine's rock strewn coast and a number of benches to sit and enjoy the view.

Finn enjoying the ocean view along the Marginal Way, Ogunquit Maine

Dogs are allowed on the Marginal Way after September 30th, so if you want to take your pooch, go there in October.

One of the many rock totems on the Marginal Way.  I don't know who made this one, but it is one of many.

Maine is famous for its rocky coast.  These shots from the Marginal Way proves the point.

Across the water from the Marginal Way is the Ogunquit public beach.  There was free parking the day we went and the tide was on its way out so there was lots of beach for Finn to play on.

We met this seagull couple on the beach.

But when Finn went to introduce himself, chaos ensued.

Crashing waves of the incoming tide at Ogunquit beach

This is a picture of some of the most colorful seaweed I've ever seen.  Most is an olive green but this group has some beautiful pinks to reds to burgundies.

There were lots of Halloween decorations at the various hotels and shops.  these giant pumpkins caught my eye.

Wednesday was our last day in Maine.  We visited Wells beach.  The first place we tried to access the beach proved my point that a lot of Maine's beaches disappear at high tide.  The ocean was crashing against the cement stairs that led to the sand.  Finn enjoyed himself anyways.

We finally found a place where there was still sand and walked along the ocean for a while.  Then we moved on to York, home of Nubble Light on Cape Neddick.  This is one of my favorite lighthouses.  It sits on a small island right off the coast and is accessible only by boat.

Finn found another seagull to annoy.  This shows the bird pre-annoyance.  The poor gull was just sitting there minding its own business but Finn was having none of it.  A bark and a leap and the gull lifted into the air.  Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of the bird in flight since I was too busy scolding Finn.

Just before we left, I noticed this couple, backs to the land and sitting in a small boat, I call the photo "Love in a Dingy"

We had a wonderful time in Maine but it was too short.  I'd love to retire there.  You can keep the balmy breezes of Florida and the warm winters of Arizona, I'll take the smell of decaying seaweed and the cold of winter any day!


  1. Thanks so much for posting about so many of the places that evoke a feeling of home! I've taken a few walks along the Marginal Way and then stopped for steamers at Perkin's Cove. Great pictures. That's one thing I miss about living in Michigan.....the sea. Lake Michigan is great, but it's just NOT the same!

  2. I really enjoyed your photos from your Maine holiday. I haven't been to Maine in over 25 years! It still looks lovely around Ogunquit. I loved going even farther up the coast at that time. PS - I love the briny smell of seaweed, but you can have the black flies and the green heads! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Beautiful pictures. Looks like Finn had a great time!

  4. I've never been to Maine but it seems it's beautiful and peaceful. I'm glad that everyone (including Finn) had a great time.

  5. Visiting Maine is definitely on my bucket list and your photos certainly whet my desire to go even more! So nice that you could enjoy your time there with your favorite pooch!

  6. Thank you so much for sharing your trip with us, Nancy. Maine has always held a fascination for me, especially after I worked with a lady who was a Park Ranger at Acadia Nat'l Park for several seasons. The way she described the Maine coast has always held in my mind. Am so glad Finn had a great time, too, and behaved himself at the hotel. Belly rub and a tasty biscuit to him from our goofus, Seamus (: Thanks again!

  7. Labs are the best! Looks like a relaxing little getaway, and you got some great pictures.

  8. I'm so glad I checked out your post from the blog hop. I went on my first trip to the East Coast (other than a trip to NYC and a quick work trip to Mystic where I saw nothing but the ride from Providence airport to Mystic, one restaurant and a quick view of the water). The trip was in the fall and we did 5 states in 5 days. It was fun. We definitely wanted to go to Maine and a couple of people we met on the trip said we had to go to Ogunquit so we did. It was wonderful and one of the highlights of the trip. I even have a picture of the lighthouse that could be a duplicate of your picture!

    Thanks for sharing. I didn't take my dog with me on the trip, and it would simply be too far to get him to Maine since I don't want to have him fly cargo. I guess I'll have to find some other beach for him to discover.

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  10. Maine is amazing! On one beach, we saw five horses with riders thundering down the beach! Everyone should visit Maine at least once in their life.