Art and garden itinerary
museums, galleries, and exhibits with a splash of outdoor adventure
Get a little bit of everything in the Portland region and beyond. Embrace the “greats” and the great outdoors. by spending your days basking in the salty, sea air and visiting local gardens and farms and your nights explore the museums, exhibits, and galleries of our metropolitan center.
day one | portland
First, visit the Portland Museum of Art featuring many wonderful permanent collections, as well as internationally renowned visiting exhibits, with art and sculpture from the last 300 years on display. Then, head to The Tate House for a pre-arranged herb garden tour. Built in 1755, it is the only pre-revolutionary home in Greater Portland open to the public and its garden reflects what was commonly used by the household during the 18th century, including medicinal herbs and plants for mattress stuffing. For the remainder of your day, stroll through the Old Port where numerous galleries, exhibits, and historic homes have long been a draw for visitors. The Old Port is also the perfect spot for dinner with many chefs sourcing products from local farmers and fishermen.
day two | boothbay
Take a day trip up to the beautiful Maine Midcoast. This scenic, seaside region is just an hour and a half from Portland. It’s worth the drive to check out the small coastal towns with their lobster shacks, parks, and beaches. Spend the day at the spectacular Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens in Boothbay. The gardens have wonderful art and sculpture throughout, as well as scenic trails. Once you are back in town, If it’s the first Friday of the month, be sure to enjoy Creative Portland’s First Friday Art Walk through the Arts District of Portland, Maine.
Day three | rockland
Head north to Rockland (approx. 1 hour from Boothbay). Today you will spend the day at The Farnsworth Museum, and the Farnsworth Homestead and Olson House, both of which are part of the Museum’s complex. The Wyeth Center at the museum is dedicated to N.C., Andrew and James Wyeth’s work. Opening in a beautiful new building in downtown Rockland in 2016, the Center for Maine Contemporary Art features Maine artists and well-known works of contemporary artists. Allow time for browsing downtown Rockland, which has been named a Distinctive Destination by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. There are several galleries, shops and restaurants to visit.
Day Four | Bar Harbor & Mt. Desert Island
Continue your tour up the coast of Maine and head to the glorious, garden-rich Mt. Desert Island (approx. 2 hours from Rockland), home to Acadia National Park. Visit Asticou Azalea Garden in Northeast Harbor. Then it’s off to explore Acadia National Park and the flora and fauna of this beloved landmark. Be sure to check out the Wild Gardens of Acadia, at Sieur du Mont Springs in Acadia National Park. Here there are more than 300 native species well labeled for identification. The Wild Gardens share the general space with the Nature Center and the original Abbe Museum, whose focus is on the Native American culture and its history in Maine.
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From family vacations to wedding weekends, and everything in between, we have the travel plan for your picture perfect vacation. Whether you’re interested in our art & culture scene, food + drink, or outdoor adventures—we got your back. Safe travels! Learn more.
Rent a bike, ride your own, or take a scenic bike tour across Greater Portland. There are options for both avid cyclists and casual sightseers.
Those itching to get into a studio or admire the work of world-class artists local and touring—are in luck.