Those who live in, or visit Maine can attest to its natural beauty. But those who live in one of its many island communities can bring further insight into the most hidden and enchanting areas of the state. This blog covers some of the best communities in the state along the jagged coast and raging sea.
Deer Isle is much more than one island; it’s a conglomerate of over 20 islands, each offering their own unique charm. Though it is one of the most secluded areas within the state, residents stay for their whole lives. Boat builders and fishermen still make Deer Isle their home as they have for hundreds of years. The community has always put out some of the most talented sailors and boat builders in country, such as the winners of the 1896 American Cup. The delightful summers in Downeast Maine showcase the natural beauty of Deer Isle. Sandy beaches stretch the length of shoreline, as rockbound and pebbly areas occasionally interrupt. Local restaurants open their patios, allowing people to dine on fresh seafood as the smell of the ocean blows in. Whether you go to Deer Isle for work, play, or to live, it is certain to enchant all who come.
Mount Desert Island
Mount Desert Island is located in eastern Maine, also referred to as Downeast. Mount Desert is most recognized by Cadillac Mountain, the tallest on the Atlantic coast. As it is one of eight mountains that make up the island’s interior, you can expect varying terrain and majestic views from all around. The island has gone widely unchanged, appearing as it did when it was first inhabited by the Wabanaki tribe. Thanks to the Department of Interior and the Rockefeller Family, the Acadia National Park (which covers most of Mount Desert) has hundreds of trails and carriage roads that allow people to explore the pristine landscape.
Isle au Haut
Isle au Haut is located just off the coast of Mount Desert Island, also encompassing portions of the Acadia National Park. Accessed only by boat, the island is largely secluded, having only 80 permanent residents. In the summer months, droves of adventurous tourist come to Isle au Haut to escape into the Maine wilderness. Rustic cabins, seaside shanties, and primitive lean-tos provide places to stay, as visitors explore the landscape.
Peaks Island is just three miles from Portland’s busy harbor. Only taking about 15 minutes to get there by ferry, it is a popular spot among people looking to catch the next boat out of town. Around 1,000 people call the island home year round though in the summer months the population increases threefold. There are parks, restaurants, and shops throughout, offering an array of activities and amenities. The backside of the island is particularly beautiful as it is heavily wooded and encompassed by public lands that feature walking trails and scenic vistas. People have been coming to Peaks Island since the 1600s when the Abnaki indians spent their summers along the shore. It was until the 16th century that the island became permanently populated, as fishermen and farmers took up residence.
Georgetown Island is located just south of Bath, along Route 127. Its sprawling marshes and estuaries feature thriving wildlife along Maine’s coast. Rippling channels and inlets invite fishing boats to pull in their catches, as tiny pine laden islands dot the shoreline. Georgetown Island is also home to the famed Reid State Park where Mainers come from far and wide to relax along many sandy beaches, and explore scattered rocky ledges. Josephine Newman Sanctuary is yet another place you can enjoy the beauty of the island. Its miles of trail traverse the marshy landscape around Indian Point, not far from the quaint shops of downtown. If you’re looking for home in Midcoast Maine, check out MyMaineProperty.com for more information.
(Photos courtesy of Lee Coursey, Diana Moos, Frank H, and Sogrady)