So our sun starved minds have been idly flicking through assorted travel mags in search of inspiration. We need briny, balmy, fabulous food, easy peasy travel times, good exchange rates and of course shopping. How about Maine? “Where?” You ask.
Maine is the most North Easterly of the United States and a 3 hour car ride from Boston along scenic shoreland (or mall infested freeway - your choice).It is not called New England for nothing so go ahead and feel like you are on the set of a lot of classic movies as you wind your way up - bandanas and flip flops anyone? We promised easy peasy travel times, and in fact Boston is only just over 6 hours flight time from London. So when you have actually had your fill of Lord and Taylor , Saks Fifth Avenue and the gamut of excellent shopping along Boston’s Newbury street, hop into a car – or take the 50 minute uber-scenic Cape Air flight from Boston to Rockland...to land in the very heart of midcoast Maine and well on your way to ticking all the must-have holiday boxes. If you are short on time stick to the triangle between Camden, Rockport and Rockland and you can’t go wrong. If you have a couple of weeks, drive further north to Bar Harbor and on the way check out the fleet of private jets flying in for a weekend of chic boho charm in “the village”. Did we mention Martha Stewart and David Rockefeller have homes there - you get the vibe…
Back in Rockport, Shepherd’s Pie will set you up with their heavenly cocktails; steaks and seafood are all zingy fresh, locally raised on one of many local farms like Aldermere or fresh off the fishing boat, chargrilled on the indoor “asada” in full drooling view. Maine is of course beyond famous for its “Lobstah” and you can enjoy these at the Lobster Pound-go easy on the drawn butter because you still need to get to Suzuki Sushi in Rockland to taste sushisan Keiko’s yummy morsels. To our mind this is the best Sushi west of Japan.
For very special dinners Saltwater Farm puts on the best of Maine in one epicurean “Moon” feast overlooking open fields. It gives “locavore” a whole new dimension.
Maine is art central in so many ways, but definitely worth a detour is the Farnsworth Museum . Enjoy the works of three generations of the supremely talented Wyeth family in one interesting setting. Magic! You will want to spend a half day in Rockland to browse the cute shops (think Soho NY /beach hut hybrids), grab an iced coffee at Rock City Books and Coffee, and maybe catch an art house movie at the Strand theatre, recently restored to its full 50s glory. Local artists are also on hand to guide the senses.
You can discover your own favourite beaches – they are secretive about the best ones around these parts - or you can check out Down East magazine to get a lot more scoop about Maine in general. Don’t tell anyone we mentioned Owl’s Head has a fabulous stretch of sand and coved beach. Stay away!
Now the biggest scoop of all? Only one place to hang up your hats, Josh’s cabin by the sea pictured here. Well two actually if you count his cottage in town as well .They’re fully equipped and tastefully appointed. If you can’t chill out here you won’t chill out anywhere. Contact Josh at firstname.lastname@example.org or via his Facebook page. Self-catering is made extra special because fresh food abounds at farmers’ markets across Maine.