Travelin’ Maine(rs)

A regular travel blog, written by George and Linda Smith, focused entirely on instate travel.

Spring Creek Bar-B-Q is “uptown” Monson’s hidden gem

City or Town: 
Monson
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 Linda

                We were planning our trip to Moosehead Lake when George mentioned we’d be going right through Monson, which meant one thing to both of us: the terrific little BBQ place we’d discovered there a couple of years ago. My mind couldn’t stop thinking about that hidden gem and the delicious smoky meats produced at Spring Creek Bar-B-Q. So to say it was a bit of a disappointment when we drove up to the old place and saw that it was vacant, is an understatement. But I quickly recovered when I spotted their sign in their new location, two buildings up the street!

A trip into the North Woods is relaxing and restorative

City or Town: 
Millinocket
Ashland
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 George

                Macannamac Camps in the north woods is a relaxing and restorative place, the idealic Maine we talk about but rarely experience. Fifty miles northwest of Millinocket, Jack McPhee built most of his log cabins in the 1980s on Haymock, Spider, and Cliff Lakes. He was a warden pilot, knew every lake and pond in the north woods, and selected these for their remoteness and great hunting and fishing.

                Today, they are still busy in the spring and early summer with anglers, and in the fall when hunters flock here seeking deer, moose, and grouse. Open all winter long, Macannamac is also popular with ice anglers and snowmobilers. Ironically, they are least busy in July and August when we visited. If you are looking for a summer get-a-way in the real Maine, put these camps on your list!

Schoodic Peninsula is Acadia’s Hidden Gem

City or Town: 
Winter Harbor
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 George

                Hang a left in Ellsworth, instead of driving straight ahead to Mount Desert Island, if you want to see the best part of Acadia National Park. Schoodic Peninsula is the park’s hidden gem, a 2,000 acre peninsula just beyond Winter Harbor, and it doesn’t get the millions of visitors to Acadia’s park adjacent to Bar Harbor.

                The six-mile Schoodic park road offers stunning ocean views and many places where you can roam the shore, have a picnic, or take a short hike. The cobblestone beaches are a wonderful place to spend the day. It’s also a great place to bird watch.

Asticou Inn combines history with great food and stunning scenery

City or Town: 
Northeast Harbor
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 The quiet side of Mount Desert Island is spectacular,

Linda

                I first noticed the Asticou Inn last summer when we were searching for Thuya Gardens in Northeast Harbor. I'd love to stay at that inn, I thought. It faces a cove filled with boats of all sorts which creates a perfect picture of the coast of Maine in the summer.

                The Inn celebrated its 130th year in 2013, so it's been around a while. It is large as well as charming and one can almost imagine it as a thriving inn a hundred years ago. On the first floor are two quiet sitting rooms, a large restaurant and bar, and a big deck, all with extraordinary ocean views.

An electrifying evening in Brunswick

City or Town: 
Brunswick
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 Dinner at Henry and Marty’s and the Music Man made for a wonderful evening.

George

                As Linda noted on our way home, “It was an electrifying performance.” About half way through the second act of a wonderful performance of The Music Man at Maine State Music Theater in Brunswick, lightning struck and the lights went out. Curt Clark, the theater’s artistic director who starred in this musical, entertained us for a while with theater trivia, then a group of men and later the theater’s interns sang for us, but eventually Curt announced they would not be able to restore the lights and finish the play. All of us were offered a chance to return to see another performance.

A Typical Day in Tuscany

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Italy’s Tuscany region is the Travelin’ Maine(rs) favorite vacation spot – other than Maine, of course!

 

George

               

                A bus, two planes, and a rental car took us from Portland, Maine to Greve, Italy in less than 12 hours. Most surprising, the trip went without a single hitch, everything on time, no problems at all. The flight is an overnighter and we even managed a few hours sleep in the planes.

Island Hopin’ and Hoppin’

City or Town: 
Portland
Monhegan
North Haven
Swans Island
Lubec
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 George

                As the end of the school year approached, Linda started hoping for an Island hopping adventure, but because she was too busy to write about it, she asked me to tackle this column by myself. It wasn’t hard to do, given all the islands we’ve visited and loved, from Portland to Canada.

Peaks Island, Portland

                The Inn on Peaks Island was the first place we visited enroute to the start of this travel column five years ago and we fell in love with the Inn and the island. We’ve visited in frigid weather in November and beautiful spring weather in May. It’s a great get-a-way anytime of year.

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