Jessie Pinkham photo of Dogfish Head Beach, Southport Island
Other swimming areas in the Boothbay region: Barrett’s Park, Boothbay Harbor; Grimes Cove, East Boothbay
The following listings include COVID-19 changes for these attractions, nature areas, art galleries, etc.
*COASTAL MAINE BOTANICAL GARDENS - advance reservation required. Call 633-8000.
*BOOTHBAY REGION LAND TRUST - all properties open, bring a mask in case social distancing requirement can’t be met.
*BOAT TRIPS - (Please call for days and hours of operation) - *Whale watches *Puffin cruises *Monhegan Island trips *Lobster Trap Hauling trips *Fishing * Cabbage Island Clambakes, *Rowgattas *Road Races *Kayak Tours/Rentals.
*ART GALLERIES - number of people permitted at one time varies, based on the size of the gallery, masks required.
* OPERA HOUSE AT BOOTHBAY HARBOR - throughout the summer months (maybe longer) there is seating is limited to 50 people. Al tickets must be purchased through the box office; no online sales.
*HALLOWELL COMMUNITY BAND CONCERTS - This year the concerts will be held on the Boothbay Common (best suited for social distancing. Bring lawn chairs, blankets and ... masks.
To view the 2020 SUMMERTIME GUIDE, click here
PLEASE NOTE: DUE TO COVID-19 some of this year’s events have been canceled: 58th Boothbay Harbor Windjammer Days & Tall Ships Festival, Boothbay Harbor Fest, Books in Boothbay, the annual House & Garden Tour, First Friday Art Tours, Wiscasset Art Walk, Rotary Auction, Summerfest/Wiscasset, Strawberry Festival /Wiscasset; Open Farm Days.
CLOSED for 2020: Burnt Island Living History Tour (due to restoration process on the island for its 200th year in 2021) and the Maine State Aquarium.
Boothbay Region Land Trust is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. The nationally accredited, non-profit land conservation organization’s mission is to conserve for the public benefit the natural habitat, scenic beauty and working land of the Boothbay region.
Guests are welcome at the visitor center at Oak Point Farm where you can enjoy the trails and scenery, learn more about the organization, get maps, buy BRLT merchandise, or sign up for free educational programs. Explore the natural beauty of our region at our many public preserves, accessible by land and sea.
Due to COVID-19, reservations are required. Call the number below.
132 Botanical Gardens Drive, Boothbay ~ 633-8000
The Interpretive Theme for 2020: Wicked Wetland Wonders: Mud flats, sand flats, salt marshes, tidal freshwater wetlands, floodplains, ponds, reefs, vernal pools, muskegs, sedge meadows, bogs, peatlands, shrub swamps, fens, and seeps ... They are the link between land and water, hosts to complex relationships that encompass everything from the base of the food web to the recycling of nutrients.
So much to explore … the Vayo Zen Meditation Garden, Bibby and Harold Alfond Children’s Garden, Lerner Garden of the Five Senses, Giles Rhododendron Garden; Fairy House Village, Native Butterfly House …
Check out this map of the Gardens.
Closed due to COVID-19
588 Wiscasset Road/Route 27, Boothbay ~ 633-4727
Travel back in time ...
There’s a lot to see and do during a visit to Boothbay Railway Village, set on 30 acres. Over 24 buildings – exhibits in themselves – house artifacts and displays related to Maine’s railroad history and life in the 18th through mid-19th centuries. Awesome antique car collection, model railroad, old schoolhouse, rides on the narrow gauge steam train, and more.
Throughout the season, traditional artisans demonstrate and teach their craft, such as blacksmithing.
Reconnect to a simpler time.
No public trains until Aug. 7. In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, WW&F has adopted a plan to safeguard those visiting and working at the Railway. The museum expects its guests to extend it the same consideration by following these precautions and plans. Please read the WW&F COVID-19 Pandemic Safety Plan here before visiting. The goal is to ensure visitors and personnel remain safe and healthy during their interactions.
97 Cross Road, Alna ~ 882-4193
Maine’s Wiscasset, Waterville, and Farmington (WW&F) Railway was a two-foot narrow gauge common carrier railroad that operated from 1894 until 1933. The line ran from Wiscasset in the south, to Albion and Winslow in the north, never making it to either Waterville or Farmington. The Great Depression brought about the railroad’s scrapping in 1937.
The WW&F Railway Museum was founded in 1989 to restore and rebuild the original railroad. Since then the museum has restored 2.6 miles of railroad and several railroad cars, and rebuilt an original WW&F steam locomotive.
CLOSED for 2020
194 McKown Point Road, W. Boothbay Harbor ~ 633-9559 ~ Open Memorial Day through Columbus Day
The Aquarium features extraordinary lobsters in all sizes and colors. In the lobster’s den is Neptune, a jumbo male who likes to show off his mammoth claws, while next door see the various stages of young lobsters from larval to juvenile.
Colorful marine life, including red sea anemones and sun stars, can be admired in the Downeast tank, while the fascinating behaviors of northern shrimp, squid and bottom-dwelling fish will surely capture your attention. A special attraction is the 20 foot-long touch tank that houses a multitude of invertebrates. Come feel the spiny skin of a sea star or sea urchin and get squirted by a sea cucumber or scallop.
18 Granary Way, Boothbay Harbor ~ 633-7140
Rent a kayak or paddleboard!
The Boothbay Region stands out as one of the best destinations for sea kayaking, with water ranging from the open seas to calm, protected rivers. The Harbor is also home to three historic lighthouses and many public islands that can be yours for an afternoon of exploring or peaceful picnicking.
You can spend an afternoon eye-to-eye with seals and herons amongst the secluded islands of the rivers or set off through the waters of a harbor that windjammers and fishermen have called home for over 400 years. Whether it be on one of our tours, in one of our rental boats or if you simply want to drop by the shop for an idea on where to paddle on your own, the staff of Tidal Transit will happily get you set up to make the most out of your vacation.
Paddle boards are very stable, making it much easier than it looks. We offer Liquid Logic Versa Boards which can be used like a sit-on-top kayak if you get tired of standing. If you are looking for a little more speed, rent one of the Liquid Shredder Shred-X Paddle Boards.
The number of passengers permitted aboard Bennie Alice is lower due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Ticket booth: 22 Commercial St., Boothbay Harbor ~ Reservations: 633-7200
Cabbage Island has been the home of traditional clambakes since 1956 and your hosts, the Moore Family, welcome you to experience and enjoy a succulent feast of a Downeast meal where your lobsters and clams are cooked in seaweed at water’s edge.
This authentic meal includes a steaming cup of traditional New England fish chowder, two luscious bright red lobsters, tender white steamed clams wrapped in foil, sweet golden corn on the cob, onion, potato, and a hard boiled egg. For dessert, you’re sure to love our famous blueberry cake.
Bay Lady and Miss Boothbay are not running this season.
All COVID-19 guidlines are being observed. Boat capacity is lower in 2020.
The Balmy Days II - built for the trip to Monhegan Island; Novelty, the Squirrel Island mailboat - 47-foot fiberglass vessel also for sightseeing. Harbor tours, lighthouse tours, mackerel fishing ... get out on the water!
Captain Bill Campbell has been navigating the waters off Boothbay Harbor for over 40 years. His first job as a deckhand was on the Squirrel Island Ferry, Maranbo II with Captain Bob Fish and then on the deep sea fishing boats. Bill got his captain’s license at 20 and ran the Squirrel Ferry for Capt. Fish for two seasons. In 1981, Capt. Bill and his father, Capt. Bob Campbell, teamed up after buying the Maranbo II and the Balmy Days from Captain Fish.
Pier 8, Commercial Street, Boothbay Harbor ~ 633-2284
- COVID-19 Guidelines:
- Vessel capacities are reduced to ⅓ normal capacity (50 instead of 150) to allow for ample space and social distancing between groups.
- All vessels and high touch areas are thoroughly cleaned and sanitized and every surface of all vessels will be disinfected using a hospital grade sanitizer fogging system.
- We operate open air vessels. In situations where six feet social distancing requirements may not be possible, please wear a face covering.
- Hand sanitizer stations are located throughout our boarding locations and vessels.
- Social distancing will be enforced, when possible, during boarding and line organization.
- Indoor areas are monitored to limit the total number of people sharing the space at any one time.
- Food and beverages services may be limited to reduce food preparation.
- Clear protective barriers have been installed in strategic locations.
Cap ‘n Fish: Boothbay Harbor’s official whale and puffin watch company! Trap hauling! Harbor Cruises ... and more. Check out that website!
Pier 1, Commercial St., Boothbay Harbor
Sailing the Eastwind in 2020:
We have limited the maximum number of passengers to 16 instead of our usual 28. Seating will not be available in the cockpit area. We will try to spread people who are not part of a couple or group out from each other as much as possible. If you are unhappy with the arrangement presented, you are welcome to decline to go out on that sail and will receive a full refund. If you need to make changes to a reservation, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org since we will not have a staffed booth.
Five minutes before the departure time, a crew member will open the gate directly to the right and behind the ticket booth in the Fisherman's Wharf Inn parking lot (20 Commercial St.) so we can all can go down to the boat. Masks are strongly encouraged, but not required. This requirement may change, so please bring a mask as a precaution.
No water on board, you are welcome to bring your own. We will not be handing out blankets, coats, or rain jackets, so please bring your own blankets, coats, rain jacket, hat, sunscreen.
Sailing aboard the Eastwind ... a two-hour voyage aboard Boothbay Harbor's largest schooner gives you time to relax and see the Maine coastline.
Lighthouses, working lobstermen, wildlife, and remote islands accessible only by boat dot the seascape.
Due to COVID-19, all seating is reserved; maximum number of audience members: 50. Masks. All tickets must be purchased through the box office.
With fine acoustics, historic charm, a great old bar room upstairs and a commitment to reasonably priced tickets, the Opera House is a gathering place for the community and visitors alike.
This summer’s schedule: July 25 - Kevin Kiley & Devin Dukes; July 30 - Murky Waters Band; Aug. 1 - Golden Oak; Aug. 8 - Sean Mencher; Aug. 12 - Opera On Tap; Aug. 19 - Ragtime master Bob Milne; Aug. 21 - Cattle Call; and Aug. 29 - Don Campbell playing the music of Dan Fogelberg.
Seating is socially distanced at 6 feet. Masks must be worn entering the opera house, going to the downstairs bar for drinks, and to the restrooms. When seated at a table, masks can be removed.
86 Townsend Ave., Boothbay Harbor ~ Box Office: 633-5159
Historic New England is taking precautions to prioritize the health of our guests and staff. In compliance with CDC safety guidelines, we require face coverings and social distancing for all guests and staff. Hand sanitizer is available. Enhanced cleaning and disinfectant measures are in place. Please arrive 10 minutes before your scheduled tour time and meet your guide at the front entrance to the museum. Our visitor centers are closed. Wear a mask as soon as you get out of your car. Leave all large bags in your car or at home. Maintain at least six feet of distance from other groups. If you are feeling unwell, please call to reschedule.
2 Lee St., Wiscasset ~ 882-7169 (Historic New England)
Visit Castle Tucker, built on a hill overlooking the Sheepscot River and Wiscasset Harbor in 1807. The house was later redecorated and furnished to satisfy modern Victorian taste and sensibilities. When Mollie and Richard Tucker bought the house in 1858, one of the first changes they made was to an Italianate entrance on the Lee Street Side, which required a redesign of the landscape. They created a circular driveway with lawn and flowers in the center. Touring this landmark offers a glimpse into the everyday life of Mollie and Richard Tucker and their five children at the turn of the 20th century. With three generations of family possessions on view, Castle Tucker is a time capsule that echoes with the voices of a remarkable Maine family.
For more information and a full calendar of summer programs, call 882-7169 or visit www.HistoricNewEngland.org
No tours are scheduled in 2020 for Nickels-Sortwell as of July 17.
121 Main St., Wiscasset ~ 882-7169 (Historic New England)
The mansion became a summer home for his large and active family. Mayor Sortwell’s wife Gertrude and daughter Frances lovingly restored the house over the years, decorating and furnishing it in the Colonial Revival style. The Sortwell family enjoyed the mansion as a private home and family gathering place until 1956, when it was given to Historic New England. Nickels-Sortwell House offers a warm and intimate picture of life in the Gilded Age through the early twentieth century, when Wiscasset was a charmed summer getaway filled with relaxation, yachting and entertaining.
Building closed due to the pandemic, but you are welcome to walk the grounds.
133 Federal St., Wiscasset
The 1811 Old Lincoln County Jail in Wiscasset, with attached 1839 Jailer’s House, offers visitors a rare view into an earlier criminal justice system and the lives of the people who enforced and endured it. It is one of the oldest remaining jails in New England.
From 1820-1824 the Jail also served as the penitentiary for the new State of Maine. Lincoln County housed prisoners here until 1913 and continued to hold prisoners here on court day until 1953.Trained docents conduct tours throughout the summer.
The Old Jail also contains several unique and remarkable examples of prisoner graffiti – a beautiful drawing of a large sailing ship, a detailed navigational map of the world, a cartoon-like drawing of a soldier, fragments of poetry, names and dates – all still on the walls where there were left well over 100 years ago.
50 Sugar Maple Lane, Boothbay ~ 633-3673
Boothbay Harbor Country Club is the perfect Maine Golf Course, featuring breathtaking vistas, challenging holes, and a sea breeze blowing off the ocean. Our 18 championship holes are truly a pure Maine golfing experience with innovative design, incredible conditioning, and beautiful landscaping. The stunning new clubhouse is unlike any other facility in Maine with luxury amenities and unparalleled service. It's a course not to be missed.
After your round of golf, plan to dine at Paul’s Steakhouse (the formal dining room), Grille 19 (the casual dining place with gourmet bar menu) or Over the Ledge (lighter menu, cocktails).
Through mid-October, Boothbay Harbor tours are offered Tuesday and Friday through Sunday at 10:15 a.m. Rockland tours are offered Mon-Fri at 11:15 a.m. For more information or to book a tour, visit: www.mainefoodietours.com/history-tours
It is our pleasure to introduce the many imaginative and flavorful local dishes and confections – each often with an intriguing history of its own – created by resourceful Maine chefs and purveyors, brewmasters, bakers, distillers, chocolatiers and more! Join Maine Foodie Tours as we uncover the storied past and current culinary scene of these vibrant towns with our highly entertaining guides.
On all of our tours, you’ll enjoy tasty samplings of local fare created by talented artisans who continue to create and inspire!
Beginning our 11th season, MFT has expanded to offer history tours in many of our communities. All of our tours include a great deal of local history and the “Walks Through Time” will focus specifically on the social, cultural and maritime events that helped shape what we enjoy today.