Camden Maine and Penobscot Bay
Camden Harbor is one of the most picturesque harbors in Maine. Since 1936, a fleet of wooden schooners has sailed from Camden carrying vacationers on scenic cruises amid the islands of Penobscot Bay. Maine is the host to the largest schooner fleet in the world, and is known as the schooner capital. Take a 2-hour cruise on one of Camden’s schooners, such as the Schooner Lazy Jack, the Schooner Olad, or the Schooner Surprise. Take a lobster cruise on the Lively Lady Too to see the local coast. Or take a longer cruise on a large windjammer.
Board a tour boat to see wildlife, lighthouses and scenic unpopulated islands or enjoy a traditional Maine lobster bake on an island cruise. Knowledgeable captains demonstrate lobster fishing and explain the laws and customs that regulate our vital fishing industry.
Provide your own “power” and quietly paddle a sea kayak around Camden Harbor and along our beautiful coastline. Guided tours and rentals are available at the harbor.
Wonderful museums are within a short distance of Camden, including the Shore Village Museum in Rockland and the outstanding Owl’s Head Transportation Museum. Do not miss the Farnsworth Museum and Homestead in Rockland. It is one of the finest regional art museums in the country and houses a permanent collection of NC, Andrew and Jamie Wyeth works. The museum is nationally recognized for its permanent collection which spans three centuries and specializes in Maine and American art. The Farnsworth Homestead, one of the finest Victorian homes in the country, adjoins the museum. Visit the Conway Homestead - Cramer Museum, home of Camden’s Civil War hero William Conway. See traditional Maine craft demonstrations or explore nearby Merryspring Gardens, a unique horticultural treasure.
Explore nearby lighthouses. Maine has more lighthouses than any other state. In addition to Camden’s Curtis Island Light, there are 3 local lighthouses and 10 within an hour’s drive. Visit nearby nautical history museums.
Attend one of our annual tours of homes, gardens, kitchens and artist’s studios. We are home to many beautiful parks and gardens.
Enjoy a concert or play at Camden’s beautifully restored Opera House, many of which are produced and directed by the Camden Civic Theatre, continuous operation for more than 30 years. Enjoy a relaxed stroll through Camden’s famous outdoor art festivals, held twice yearly.
Attend weekly Bay Chamber Concerts at the Rockport Opera House, featuring world-renowned artists year-round.
Visit our timeless library and admire the noted collection of maritime paintings and ship models. Marvel at the recent expansion, built underground to preserve the natural beauty of the surrounding amphitheater park and historic landscapes, some designed by Bert Olmstead, America’s premier landscape architect.
Camden Maine is proud to be home to some of Maine’s finest artists and craftspeople. Explore our art galleries, antique shops and unique craft shops and meet the artists and artisans Nearby Rockport is home to Maine Coast Artists Gallery, which features changing exhibits of contemporary art by Maine artists. Our annual Country Roads and Artisans Tour showcases the highly refined skills of local craftspeople. It includes a wide variety of work, all carefully and thoughtfully handmade at our shops here in Midcoast Maine. Exceptional pottery, metal work, paintings, woodwork, blown glass, weaving, linens, jewelry, musical instruments, boats and wine all await your discovery.
Enjoy a round of golf on a spectacular course beside the sea or in a peaceful setting in the Maine woods.
Camden Hills State Park signature location is the scenic vista high atop Mt. Battie where sweeping views of Camden, Penobscot Bay, and surrounding islands await. On a clear day, visitors can see Cadillac Mountain at Acadia National Park. Mt. Megunticook, the highest of the Camden Hills - and highest peak on the mainland - is a moderate climb by foot trail. 30 miles of hiking trails with access from five major trailheads; a 107-site camping area includes flush toilets and hot showers; picnic area; rocky shoreline. Two miles north of Camden on U.S. Route 1.
Drive or hike to the top of Mt. Battie in Camden Hills State Park offers a spectacular view of Penobscot Bay. Whether facing Mt. Desert Island or overlooking Camden Harbor, the views are breathtaking and the photography excellent. Climb Mt. Megunticook for a higher viewpoint or hike along the shore beside the bay. Beautiful spots for picnicking and trails for hiking abound.
Chestnut Street heads out of Camden toward Rockport. After passing Aldemere Farm with its unique Belted Galloway cows, turn left at Calderwood Lane which leads to the Vesper Hill Children’s Chapel and its beautifully landscaped gardens. Perched on a bluff overlooking the bay, the open-air chapel is a popular setting for summer weddings.
Study at the internationally acclaimed Maine Photographic Workshops in Rockport Harbor. They offer summer workshops and master classes.
Search for treasures in some of the best antique hunting grounds in the country. Your helpful innkeeper will be happy to steer you toward the best finds.
Winter skiing in the Camden areanjoy a winter getaway. Winter activities abound. Ski downhill less than 5 miles away at the Camden Snow Bowl and ski cross-country in many nearby locations. Camden also offers skating, ice fishing, tobogganing, hiking and that perennial favorite, cuddling by a warm fire.
Camden and Penobscot Bay Day Trips
Using Camden as a home base, you can take many short drives and day trips to some of the better known attractions of Maine. Your knowledgeable innkeeper will be glad to give you directions. Some of the more popular trips our guests enjoy are:
Acadia National Park
It is only a 73 mile drive from Camden to the park gate. This is truly one of the treasures of the National Park System.
Aldemere Farm - The Belted Galloways
Travel out of Camden along Chestnut Street, and you will wind past the home of the country’s original herd of Belted Galloways, black Angus-like beefcattle breed with a distinctive broad, white midriff.
Pemaquid Peninsula and Point
35 miles long, a lovely drive with vistas of sea and forest to a lighthouse perched on spectacular glacier carved rocks.
The Penobscot Marine Museum
Located in Searsport, 25 miles. A wonderful museum in the homes of actual sea captains.
Outlet Shopping is located here, including L.L. Bean.