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May Trip Boston to Maine

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May Trip Boston to Maine

Hi there. We are a New Zealand couple who are travelling to NYork in late May. We have a total of 14 days in the States. We will spend a few days (4?) there with friends and then train to Boston. Our intention is to pick a car up there and travel up to Maine to Bar Harbor and return. We would like to travel up via inland perhaps some covered bridges on the way if possible and do the coastal route on the way back. Drop the car and spend the day in Boston as we have a late flight out to Europe. After New York we would prefer to stay in small towns and really would like the quintessential Maine experience. We are foodies and like to stay in nice places. We enjoy walking and pottering around little places. Happy to travel a couple of long distance days if needed and enjoy off the beaten track routes. I would also like to squeeze in Mystic/Nantucket etc in but can drop this off the list unless we could fit it in before Boston. I have trawled through the forums but am a bit confused as to how to fit in the inland version with the coastal version.

Thanks in advance.

Central Maine
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1. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

You may need to adjust the days-in-places a bit, but I'd consider something like:

Days 1-4 New York City

Day 5 Train to Boston

Day 6 Drive to Jackson NH via I-93 from Boston to Lincoln, NH then NH Rt 112 (very scenic) to NH Rt 16 in Conway, visit Conway covered bridge just off West Side Road, then up NH 16 to Jackson NH -- entry road to this small New England village is through a one-lane covered bridge. Overnight Jackson NH (or for a wider variety of lodging and dining choices, the more commercial North Conway just down the road). Total driving time from Boston to Jackson, not counting stops along the way, would be about three and one-half hours.

Day 7 Drive from Jackson NH to Bar Harbor ME with covered bridge stop en route. Take NH Rt 16 north from Jackson NH to Gorham NH, then US Rt 2 east through the White Mountains National Forest into Maine.. After passing through Bethel, ME on US Rt 2, begin watching roadside signs for Newry, ME and Artists Covered Bridge, also known as Sunday River Covered Bridge (bridge information and specific driving directions can be found at maine.gov/mdot/…index.htm After visitng the bridge, return to US Rt 2 and continue east through Rumford, Farmington, and Skowhegan to Newport, Maine, where you can pick up I-95 North to Bangor -- then I-395 east to Brewer, ME -- then US Rt 1A south to Ellsworth, ME and ME Rt 3 too Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park -- some great views today of New Hampshire and western Maine mountains, the Androscoggin River valley, Maine farmlands and rural Maine countryside. Total driving time,not counting stops should be about four and one half hours.

Day 8-9 Touring Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park

Day 10 Morning of last-minute touring in Bar Harbor/Acadia (re-see things you want to see again or things you haven't gotten to yet). Mid-day departure via Rt 3 to Ellsworth and US Rt 1 south for overnight in Camden or Rockland, Maine. En route visits to Penobscot Narrows Bridge Observatory just off Rt 1 just south of Bucksport -- 2-story enclosed observatory built into the top of a tower of a large suspension bridge (turn right at the traffic light after you cross the bridge) -- great views from the top; Mt Battie Auto Road in Camden Hills State Park on Rt 1 just north of Camden for great views of town and harbor; and Camden Harbor for great little scenic harbor. Stay in Rockland or Camden but check out "foodie" opportunities in Rockland...becoming widely known for its dining options. Driving time today not counting stops -- just over two hours.

Day 11 -- Camden/Rockland to Portland via US Rt 1 Plenty of time for stops in small villages like Damariscotta, Wiscasset and Bath en route... possible side trip for lunch in the coastal town of Boothbay Harbor...Driving time, not counting stops, Rockland to Boothbay just over an hour; Boothbay to Portland, just over an hour. Fantastic "foodie" district in Portland called the "Old Port" area -- check restaurant reviews here on Trip Advisor.... If you get into town in time tonight, take the short ride out to Portland Head Light lighthouse in nearby Cape Elizabeth -- one of Maine's "must see" destinations (Google it for photos and driving directions)... if not tonight, see it tomorrow morning before leaving town.

Day 12 -- Morning touring Portland -- maybe a Casco Bay Lines ferry ride to see a Maine island (Google them for route and pricing options). Afternoon, take I-95 south to Kennebunk, then visit Dock Square in Kennebunkport before heading down to Ogunquit for a visit to Perkin's Cove before checking into your lodging for the night. Total driving time of an hour and a half not counting stops...

Day 13 -- Ogunquit to Boston, Massachusetts with en-route stop at The Nubble Lighthouse in York Beach, Maine (Google for exact driving directions). Return your rental car, and enjoy a great meal and quiet eveninng in Boston before heading home...

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2. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

Wow. Thank you so much for that, exactly what I was after! That gives me a great guide. Do you think we will need to book accommodation?

Central Maine
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3. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

Book accommodations? I would say "that depends"... Your original post says you plan to make this trip in "late May" but gives no specific dates. Here in the U.S. the Memorial Day three-day weekend occurs each year in late May. This year it takes place on May 24-25-26. It is considered the traditional beginning of the summer tourism season for most coastal locations and is a popular weekend for visitors to other tourist areas (like New Hampshire's White Mountains) as well. If your trip ends prior to May 24, advance reservations may not be an issue. But if you know from your research that there is a specific property you really want to stay at, or for any nights during the holiday weekend, I'd make those reservations ahead of time.

Phippsburg, Maine
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4. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

There is a train station in Mystic that's walking distance or a very short cab ride to the Seaport. If you're wooden boat nuts (as I am) or just enjoy boats and boating in general, Mystic Seaport shouldn't be missed and would be an easy stopover en route to Beantown.

We lived in NZ for 6 months a long time ago, then moved to Maine immediately thereafter. I think you'll be amazed how similar the 2 are.

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5. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

Thanks for your response. Will try and fit that in too. Hopefully we will have some nice weather while we there. Will be interested to see what part of NZ it like. Cheers

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6. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

Thanks for help guys. I see that in the area of New Hampshire there is a place called Holderness which is where they filmed On Golden Pond. This film has a sentimental meaning to us and wonder what it would be like to overnight there instead of Jackson. thanks.

Bar Harbor, Maine
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7. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

I see tripadvisor has a page on Holderness: tripadvisor.com/Tourism-g46122-Holderness_Ne…

You could certainly overnight there and still do a loop tour of the White Mountains from that spot, although it's a bit further away from most of the usual attractions, like Franconia Notch and the Kancamagus Highway.

8. Re: May Trip Boston to Maine

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