Popular Portland (Maine) Shore Excursions
Maine Narrow Gauge Railroad: Take a ride on a historic narrow gauge steam train. The train departs on the hour between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., and passengers can enjoy the view of Casco Bay while riding along the waterfront by the Eastern Promenade (58 Fore Street).
Portland Head Light: Maine's oldest lighthouse, built during George Washington's presidency, is located on the shores of Cape Elizabeth. Originally, the 80-ft. tower was lit with 16 whale-oil lamps. Today there are a number of interpretive displays at the onsite museum (1000 Shore Road).
Portland Observatory: Climb the 103 steps to the top and enjoy the views of Portland and Casco Bay. This signal tower is the only remaining wooden maritime signal station in the U.S. It was built in 1807 and is currently listed on the National Landmark Registry (138 Congress Street).
Victoria Mansion: Originally built in 1858 for a wealthy New Orleans hotelier, the Italian villa-style mansion has graceful verandahs, a four-story tower and a lavish interior. The house was named for Britain's Queen Victoria when it was turned into a museum in 1941. Visitors can tour the property, which still boasts 90 percent of its original contents such as gas light fixtures, elaborate wall paintings and exquisite woodwork (109 Danforth Street).
Wadsworth-Longfellow House: Built in 1785, this is the boyhood home of poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. It was the first wholly brick dwelling in Portland and now features a collection of Maine's historical artifacts (489 Congress Street).
Maine Historical Society Museum: Located next door to the Wadsworth-Longfellow House, this museum houses exhibitions that feature art and artifacts that bring Maine history to life (489 Congress Street).
Shop in Freeport: The well-known outlet shopping destination includes the L.L. Bean flagship store, which is open 24 hours a day and 365 days a year (95 Main Street). New attractions in the store include a 24-ft. riverbed aquarium alive with fish and turtles native to Maine.
Stroll the Village of Kennebunkport, Maine: Located about 45 minutes south of Portland, this charming coastal village features several Federal- and Victorian-style homes built by wealthy merchants and sea captains in the 1700's and 1800's. Today it is regarded as one of the most expensive vacation areas in the Northeast (the Bush family has a home here). Visitors can explore the small district of art galleries, seafood restaurants and souvenir shops.