The Loop

everything you need to know

  • 11 things to do with out-of-town friends & family in southern Maine

    These ideas will help you keep everybody entertained, well-fed and happily exhausted by day's end. Careful, though - your visitors are going to fall in love with Maine (and they're going to think you're the best tour guide ever) and they'll be coming back every year. Lucky you. Read on

  • Enchanted Maine: 8 magical Maine places that’ll leave you feeling spellbound

    In story after story, our "sages" reveal to us that magic lives with us and around us, always – experienced by falling down a rabbit-hole, walking through a wardrobe or taking a boat out into the fog. Or possibly, we can find it by venturing into some of these more accessible and magical Maine gateways Read on

  • So many concerts this summer! 42 outdoor concerts (7 are FREE) and some great indoor shows too

    Highlights include new series the Maine State Pier and Thompson's Point in Portland, free shows at L.L. Bean in Freeport, and more big shows again this year at Darling's Waterfront Pavilion in Bangor Read on

  • Live cheap: FREE things to do in Maine this summer

    So you're broke. Or maybe saving up for something special, like a running kilt or hovercraft. That doesn't mean you can't enjoy your Maine summer. There's plenty of free things to do around here. Read on

  • How to savor a Maine summer (and make it feel as long and leisurely as it did when you were a kid)

    The messages blasting us from supermarket check-out stands is especially clear now that summer's official June 21st start date has passed: There is no time to waste, so pack it all in right now or be sorry when the leaves start to turn. Read on

  • Get trapped here: 20 Maine tourist traps that even we locals can love

    Maine has developed its fair share of so-called tourist traps - those shacks, shops and roadside stops (heck, sometimes entire towns) that beckon to the out-of-towners. But some of them beckon to us, too, because great is great, even if you're surrounded by out-of-state plates. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Giant’s Stairs, Mackerel Cove, Island Candy Co. on Bailey and Orr’s islands

    Bailey Island and Orr's Island offer easy access to dramatic scenery and small-town charm less than one hour from Portland Read on

  • Take a trolley ride to hike the trails: Seashore Trolley Museum & Smith Preserve, Kennebunkport

    It's a novel way for hikers to trek into the woods and, between you and me, I think the trolley cars love the chance to once again do the work they were made to do: take us places. Read on

  • 10 easy paddles in southern-ish Maine: Calm waters to explore by kayak, canoe or SUP

    You don’t have to have be an expert paddler to explore many of Maine's waterways - and you don’t have to go far to find them. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Camden is a great place for a weekend novel, sail and vintage cocktail

    If you have a free Saturday or Sunday, you should head up to Camden. There, you can find one heck of a cocktail, a cheap sail in one of the prettiest spots of coast in the world and one of my favorite book nooks. Plus: vintage cowboy boots. Read on

  • 25+ can’t-miss summer events in Maine

    What we've rounded up are some of summer's highlights - things we think you shouldn't miss if you've got a choice in the matter. Read on

  • Take it outside: 59 outdoor decks and patios to drink in the sun

    Feel that? It's called the sun. It's nice, isn't it? Take advantage of the rays and warm weather and have your drink outside on one of the sweet decks at these Maine bars and restaurants, because cocktails always taste better outside: Read on

  • 7 of the most beautiful beaches within 45 minutes of Portland

    You could visit a different beautiful beach every day of the week - all within 45 minutes of the city. Beaches around here are a little like our restaurants; different ones appeal to different moods and different tastes. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Explore forts, admire the lighthouse, eat lobster at Pemaquid

    Pemaquid is a coastal town rich in colonial history and (oh yes!) delicious lobster. Explore the forts, break for dinner & admire the lighthouse at sunset. Read on

  • 8 art shows to visit around New England this summer

    Summer tends to be the strongest art season in New England and arts venues put their best foot forward for the larger leisure-time audiences. But there are also venues that are seasonal because they include gardens and outdoor work Read on

  • 3 Maine islands you should stay on this summer (for cheap or free)

    You don't have $500 to blow on an island adventure, but you need to get out of dodge — like, really really really out of dodge? I have 3 islands you should know about. You can stay at them for $0-60. Sweet. Islands are magic. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Fort Popham, ocean kayaking & lunch at Ledges Pub in Phippsburg

    I’ve learned that when traveling through most of Maine’s coastal towns there’s no reason to rush to get from here to there. Often the best part of the trip is when you pull a U-turn on a whim and make an unexpected discovery. Read on

  • Five places to dine down on the farm in Maine this summer

    From casual dinners on picnic tables under the stars to elegant evenings in historic barns, Maine offers a variety of places to enjoy fresh-from-the-field food in a bucolic setting. Read on

  • 10 easy Maine hikes anyone can do: Great views for the casual hiker

    All these hikes are less than 2 miles. They're not difficult, but they are super gratifying. 6 of them are within an hour's drive of Portland. If you're not a hardcore hiker, but want a mountaintop view, here's our picks for you: Read on

  • Summer festivals in Maine: 40+ ways to celebrate Moxie, lobster, windjammers & more

    We sure do love a good festival in Maine. And we have plenty of them. From waterfront lobster celebrations to street festivals that champion Maine blueberries, clams, whoopie pies and hot air balloons (and one with a rolling wheel of cheese), these festivals make Maine summers even greater. Read on

  • 3 top summer canoe trips in Maine

    Here are the three best river trips in Maine if you're looking to experience our state and make memories you'll look back on for decades. Any experience level, any length of time - you're covered. Put it on the calendar. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Forget the outlets. Books, smoothies & beach in Kittery

    Maine's southernmost town has evolved into a mecca of good food, quaint stores and natural beauty. Read on

  • 10 dog-friendly places to stay in Maine – from York to Northport

    Throughout the Pine Tree State, many tourism businesses don't just permit dogs they welcome furry guests with open arms and treat them like Very Important Dogs (VIDs). Read on

  • 9 Maine food and drink events to jump start your summer

    It's June, which in Maine means the days are (mostly) warm enough to be outside without a jacket and feet are slipping back into flip-flops. It's also when you can eat and drink to help hungry kids, learn to make cheese, and drink lots and lots of local beer. Read on

  • Unleash your inner Earth child: 7 folksy festivals around Maine and New England

    Want to have your own Summer of Love? We've gathered up seven hippy-friendly celebrations that are sure to entice, exercise and educate. Read on

  • Maine summer bucket list: 24 ways to make the most of it

    It's August. We all know summer in Maine breezes right by (it feels like it already has, no?) so we've got to make the most of every 70-degree moment. Your mission: Make this summer the most memorable summer ever. Read on

  • Kayak to your campsite during these 5 guided overnight camping trips

    Weekend getaways are all about getting away - at least as far as you can get and still be back to work on Monday. Those precious few days are a chance to relax and recharge. Add a kayak and a campsite into the mix and you've got yourself an adventure you'll be talking about for years. Read on

  • Maine Mini Adventure: Blueberry Mountain, baked treats & a dip in Rattlesnake Pool

    Evans Notch, about 20 miles north of Fryeburg, on the Maine side of the White Mountains National Forest that offers some amazing mountain views. Blueberry Mountain is one of my family’s favorite places to hike. The mountain offers a moderate challenge and a wonderful, slightly off-the-beaten-path swimming spot that is a fun way to cool off on a hot day. Read on

  • 8 outdoor Maine adventures to do as a group (with old friends or to make new ones)

    Maine is full of adventures – including adventures for groups. Whether you’re looking to have a getaway with your 14 closest buddies or if your 14 closest buddies are all busy and you don’t want to vacation alone, here are eight fun group trips. Read on

  • Coastal camping: 12 Maine campgrounds close to the coast (and other cool stuff)

    Amid Maine's diverse geography are more than 100 comfy campgrounds close to a myriad of things to see and do in summertime, like forts and lighthouses, picturesque towns and villages, museums and historic sites, public and private lands with trails of every kind, plus lobster rolls and blueberry pies. Read on

  • Machias is a dream for paddlers, bikers and history buffs — your guide to the area

    “They’re coming up this way to see more of what the ‘old Maine’ is like. The coast is unspoiled.” Machias is a dream town for paddlers, cyclists and history buffs. Read on

  • Mt. Blue State Park is great for camping, hiking, fishing: A guide to Maine’s largest state park

    Mount Blue State Park is Maine's largest state park, but isn't the most visited. It's beautiful and remote. Perfect for tent camping, hiking and fishing. It’s almost two parks in one, separated by Webb Lake. Read on

  • Where to rent a kayak, canoe or paddleboard

    You want to get out on the water (be it ocean, river or lake), but don't own the gear? No problem. There are plenty of places to rent paddleboards, kayaks and canoes around Maine, and many of them deliver. Here's a list of just some of the rental shops. Read on

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