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Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

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Secaucus, New Jersey
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Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

I'm not sure which would be a better location.

We want:

A clean hotel directly on the beach

Walking distance to a coffee shop for breakfast

Walking distance to a restaurant for dinner

****Close to Antique malls (w/ multiple dealers) we collect 50's stuff, nothing fancy. Can you recommend any places? When I say close I mean no more than a 25 min. drive...

Driving for dinner is ok, but we wouldn't want to venture too far at night.

What do you think would be the best? We'll probably go to the Kittery outlets one time and heard how great the Maine Diner is in Wells, so that would be a benefit......not sure.... is one more expensive than the other? WHICH BEACH IS BETTER?? Any advice is appreciated!

Shaftsbury, Vermont
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1. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

Well let see which way would I go.

York Beach is actually two separate beaches. Long Sands and Short Sands. Short Sands is located next to York Village, it has a parking lot, and a lawn area with a playground. This beach is next door to the world famous Golden’s where you can spend hours watching taffy being made. Also a short walk away is the Wild Kingdom Amusement park. There is a great breakfast place called the Purple Palace right across the street from Golden’s. I haven’t ever stayed on Short Sands, although there a couple of Inn and Hotels along the beach.

That brings me to Long Sands Beach. When I stay in York I stay at the Anchorage which is right on the beach [well across the street from the beach, everything here is]. They nice rooms, but not memorable, but than your not in Maine for the room, your there for the ocean. From this hotel you can see the world famous Nubble Light House. There are two great restaurants, one right across the street, on the beach [sorry I don’t remember the name] they have the best views, and I can’t say enough about their Scallops. Two place down the street you will Mimeos [I know I didn’t spell it right], a great Italian place, your bring your own wine. For breakfast there is a little store down the street that make good coffee and a great egg sandwich. I’m a walker, so I consider all of the York area walk able, and I include a walk up around to the lighthouse, and ice cream at Browns.

As two Wells beach it is a nice beach, but I don’t stay there. There really isn’t anything in walking distance here. This beach town just isn’t set up that way. However Wells is where you’ll find the movie theater. As a family restaurant in Wells I recommend Mainex, you’ll want there Smoores. Also Billy’s Chowder House.

There are antique shops all up and down Route 1, which you’ll be driving one once you get to the coast. You can shop antiques until you drop.

Massachusetts
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2. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

Don't forget Ogunquit beach! We stay at the Norseman on the beach, sure its old, mostly everything is in that area, however, your right on the beach and they have nice restaurants right there at the resort or you can walk into town which is very close, the Gypsy sweetheart restaurant is our favorite but their are lots more to choose from and as far as Antique shops, well they're everywhere! Checkout their web site. Norsemanresorts or do a Google search. Good Luck.

Portland, Maine
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3. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

I would most definately stay away from Wells beach. I grew up in Wells and have never been enamored with the beach there. Antique shops can be found anywhere along Rt 1 from York to Portland. If I were planning a vacation to the area with the beach in mind, I would go for Ogunquit which is right between York and Wells. One suggestion I have is to stop in at Stonewall Kitchens on Rt 1 for a sandwich and some taste testing!

Florida
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4. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

Have you considered Ogunquit? There is a great motel there that I always stay at called the Sea View Motel. Very reasonable and there is a little breakfast diner up the street about 2-3 blocks called the Egg and I. There are also pretty good antique stores along the main drag in Ogunquit. I have been to York beach and I was not very impressed with it.

Cape Elizabeth...
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for Portland, Antigua
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5. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

I concur with the other posters----Ogunquit is a better bet for you. Much nicer place than Wells (which is more of a Route-1-"strip" in the bad American definition of that), rather than a village. Although I will say....there are a couple of places in Wells, just 5 or 10 minutes from the beach, where you can rent a fairly nice condo (2 bedrooms, 2 baths even) for less than the price of a beach hotel room.

The other posters, however, seem to have forgotten York Village, which is beautiful. The Stage Neck Inn there is on a point of land surrounded nearly 360 degrees by the ocean....a small beach, the harbour entrance.....gorgeous! I would consider that first, even before Ogunquit (and my parents own a place on Marginal Way in Ogunquit, so I do know the area. I think York has....slightly???? fewer tourists? Not sure)!

Secaucus, New Jersey
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6. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

WOW! You all are terrific and I greatly appreciate your thorough responses and advice! We are definitely going to look into Ogonquit. But how is Old ORchard Beach compared to Ogonquit or Wells? Just curious. Like I said we want a nice area with things to walk to (breakfast and possibly dinner), nice clean hotel (nothing fancy, just clean) and definitely on the beach.

Please keep the fabulous responses coming! We appreciate them and will consider all of them!!!!! :) Much thanks!!

Cape Elizabeth...
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for Portland, Antigua
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7. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

I would doubt Old Orchard ("OOB") is your cup of tea.....although keep it in mind as a day trip for the experience!

OOB is honky-tonk to the extreme, and the beach is quite crowded in July and August. However, that's part of the OOB scene, which obviously thousands of people enjoy or they wouldn't be back year after year! There is a long pier with amusements, bars, beach-food places (pizza, fried dough, etc). There is a small amusement park area with rides. Loads of restarants (one, Joseph's by the Sea, is high-end and lovely) but mostly the area restaurants are either family-friendly or night-life places.

OOB caters to the many Quebecois who come to Maine for their summer holidays. Canadian French is spoken virtually everywhere. Also, this is one place where, while (most of)the motels are not elegant, you will find that most motels offer some sort of kitchenette facilities as that is what is expected by the Canadian tourists.

The beach itself is gorgeous---I think it must be about 4 miles long from Pine Point onwards south. You will find all of your requirements in OOB (clean motel directly on beach, walking distance to stuff, etc). But it's really a different league than the other places you are considering, so be aware of that.

Maine
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8. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

What time of year are you visiting? York is clean and family friendly (stay away from OOB- sorry.) Wells is just tough to get to, and I agree that Ogunquit is beautiful, but have to get up early to get a pkg space.

San Francisco...
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9. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

Hi, In my opinion, York Beach is fine as is Wells Beach. However,

I have found Wells Peach to be more expensive. When I check out my

AAA book, the prices are higher at York Beach. I would guess this

is because it is closer to Boston and less of a drive north, making it

more convenient. York Beach has a nice playground right on the beach

which is great if you have little kids. They seem to have some nice

resorts and places to eat...we have never stayed there; only drove

through and stopped when staying in Wells/Oqunquit. The beaches

at Wells and Oqunquit are larger (more sand amount).

If you want to try Lafayette's on Wells Beach, they have a number of

clean hotels, some are directly on the ocean, and there is a coffee

shop in season and some restaurants in the area. Off season there

isn't much in the way of food there. There is also a McDonalds in

Wells if you want to save money that way. In my opinion, the restaurants

we tried in Wells were overpriced and not that great. The Lobster

Pound (or Lobster Barn I cant remember) in Oqunquit on the min

street is good for lobster (but I don't think much of the rest of their

food) and it's expensive.

I think either place will be OK.

San Francisco...
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10. Re: Wells Beach vs York Beach - Help!

Whhops I made a mistake. I said Wells Beach is more expensive...NOT

What I meant is I have found York Beach (and that area) to be more

expensive.

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