Planning your vacation is an exciting time. Camden Maine and the surrounding areas have so much to offer. I have compiled a list of items to help make your planning a little easier. The Captain Swift Inn is an ideal starting point for all daily excursions. The Inn’s downtown location makes walking to the harbor, opera house, restaurants, and boutique shops easy. The location of the Town of Camden Maine, exactly halfway between Portland and Bar Harbor make it an ideal stop for summertime drivers. Whether you are here for a night or a week, there are lots of things to do. From hiking to lighthouses, to shopping, to art galleries there is something for everyone.
After you have enjoyed a candlelit breakfast at the Inn, head to Camden Hills National Park for a morning of hiking. Our favorite trail is the Carriage Trail. The Carriage Trail is accessible from Rt 52, Mountain Street. We enjoy this trail because if you follow it to the Carriage Road Trail, it is a gradual incline that culminates at the top with the stone lookout tower. The trail is approximately 1.5 miles, round trip 3 miles. You can be up and down in little over an hour. When you get back into town, refresh at the Inn and get ready for the afternoon.
Day one we highly suggest you stay by the water, either on the water or near it with a cocktail.
You can choose from many daysailers in Camden Harbor, Rockport Harbor or even Rockland Harbor. Each harbor is unique in its landscapes. If you choose to stay in Camden Harbor, you might want to go down to the landing and look at the boats and see what boat you prefer. Each boat has its own characteristics and entertainment. Three daysailers we enjoy are Schooner Olad, Schooner Surprise and the Appledore.
In Camden, there is both lake kayaking and ocean kayaking. For the lake kayaking, you will need to rent a kayak from Maine Sport Outfitters and either have them deliver the kayak to a launching point or put it on top of your car and drive it to the launch. We really like Megunticook Lake for kayaking. BogsBridge on Rt 105 is a great place to put a boat in the water. If you kayak straight out from the launch, you will hit Land’s End. Land’s End is a hidden gem that the locals enjoy.
If you want to ocean kayak, you can also rent a kayak from Maine Sport. The Camden public ocean launching point is at the end of Sea Street. It is suggested that if you have never ocean kayaked before that you hire a guide from Maine Sport to show you how to navigate the harbor and open seas.
For your first night in Camden Maine, treat yourself to a special dinner at Hoxbill. The menu is sophisticated and the views are fantastic. The restaurant is a short walk from the Inn.
On Day 2, venture out to the surrounding towns. Rockport, Rockland, and Lincolnville are a short drive. Each town has its own special places. Lincolnville is known for their beach area and winery, Rockport is known for its beautiful harbor and fantastic walking trails and Rockland is the art capital of Maine.
Rise and shine at the Captain Swift Inn and enjoy a cup of coffee and a full breakfast. The towns of Lincolnville, Rockport and Rockland are all nearby and you could potentially go to all 3 towns in one day.
After breakfast, head to the town of Lincolnville. Drive North on Rt one. Lincolnville Beach is approximately 15 minutes away. Once at the beach, you can sit and watch the boats, or stroll in the little beachside stores. The beach is a real treasure at low tide. You are able to walk out far and admire lots of little tidal pools of water. If you can, plan this trip at low tide. When you are done admiring the landscape of Lincolnville Beach, head inland to Cellardoor Winery. The Winery is a short drive into the hills. The winery is a great place to have a light lunch and sample some of the local wines.
After lunch head to Rockport Harbor and enjoy the views. Rockport Harbor is home to the famous Andre the Seal and Schooner Heron. The Schooner Heron is, in my opinion, the most beautiful boat in the Midcoast. Bonnie and Twig are the captains of Schooner Heron and great hostesses. Read more about Schooner Heron Here.
Next, as you head out of Rockport into Rockland, stop off and see the Breakwater Lighthouse. The Breakwater Lighthouse is a mile walk on a granite jetty. Get your cameras ready for some awesome selfies. The harbor surrounding the jetty is alive with lobsterman and fisherman collecting their daily traps. The harbor is a true working harbor and it is fun to see the day to day activities of those that fish there.
The little downtown of Rockland is full of art. There are galleries and museums in downtown Rockland. Spend the rest of the enjoying the Farnsworth Art Museum and the Center for Maine Contemporary Art (CMCA). The downtown is lined with cute restaurants and boutique shops. My favorite restaurant in downtown Rockland is Suzuki. For a real authentic and fresh Japanese dinner, treat yourself to this restaurant. You will need a reservation.
At the end of the day, retire back to the Captain Swift Inn and enjoy the comforts of all the common areas, decks or the privacy of your guest room. This itinerary is just a suggestion. There are many things you can do. We wouldn’t even hold it against you if you chose to lounge around the Inn and read a book. Either way, it will be our pleasure to assist you in having a relaxing and rejuvenating vacation in Camden Maine.