Summer Travel Guide: Things to do in Maine

Summer on the coast is all about soaking up the sun, relaxing on the shore, exploring our hidden gems, and eating lobster to your heart’s content. When our guests check into our Maine Coast Bed and Breakfast, we always get various questions, like, where should we go and where should we eat? Well, to help ease your planning, we created a guide to summer on the MidCoast of Maine.

Maine Lodging


Exterior shot of Captain Nickels, Maine Coast Bed and Breakfast

While there are endless things to do in Maine and around the area, let us first tell you what you can find right here at Captain Nickels Inn. We offer ten uniquely decorated and eminently comfortable guest rooms. Common spaces available for relaxing include two porches, two parlors, a sitting room, and our 1874 Tavern where a curated selection of local brews are on offer. Our grounds are six rolling acres that meander down to the Penobscot Bay, where we invite guests to enjoy the sounds of the ocean and views of the passing sailboats from our Adirondack chairs. While outside, play a game of horseshoes, bocce ball, corn hole, or croquet. You can even inspect our fruit trees which, when in season, are covered in flourishing apples and peaches!

Beach, Boat, Kayak

Couples kayaking on lake at sunset


Summer vacation is always the most anticipated time of the year for our guests when the snow has melted, and the sun has finally returned. To take advantage of the longer days and warm weather, it’s only fitting to explore the great outdoors. To experience the bay closeup we send guests to Castine Kayak Adventures where you can book guided kayak tours.  Arrange for a unique one- of-a-kind Bioluminescent and Stargazing Night Paddle in Castine Harbor!  Castine’s Harbor is Maine’s own Bioluminescent Bay with a unique ecosystem that creates the perfect environment for these glow in the dark phytoplankton to survive and multiply.  Perhaps you want to experience what a real lobster boat is like; if so, you can book a tour with Buggin’ ME Boat Tours; they start booking in May. Why not drive onto Sears Island for a nature hike or to enjoy the secluded beaches? Nearby Swan Lake State Park has a beautiful freshwater beach and is great for fishing!

Learn, Shop, Explore


Belfast, Maine city/shops

If you want to take a break from the water and experience a day of culture in MidCoast, we are surrounded by towns rich in history! Close by, there are tours of Historic Downtown Searsport and the Penobscot Marine Museum where you’ll learn about the history of Searsport and the Penobscot Bay. Check out Blue Jacket Shipcrafters next and learn how model ships are made; you can even purchase one to take with you! Wander around Historic Downtown Belfast and take some time out of the sun to explore their many shops. Make sure to stop in to pet Jace and meet Cassidy at Grump & Sunshine Bookshop. Just fifteen minutes away from the Inn is the tallest bridge observatory in the world at Penobscot Narrows Bridge & Observatory. While you’re there, we also suggest you go to Fort Knox Historic Site, one of the best-preserved fortifications in New England.

For some excitement, we send guests to the Belfast and Moosehead Lake Railroad. There are several tours to choose from that range from one to two hours. They also offer weekend trips to explore Belfast and Unity, Maine.

Drink, Dine, Dessert

Couples cheering drinks on a boat, with water in the background
After working up an appetite exploring the outdoors, perusing shops, learning about the history of Searsport, you will be ready to stop by one of these restaurants, wineries, or breweries to satisfy your hunger and quench your thirst. Delvino’s is a fantastic Italian restaurant in the heart of downtown Belfast, where you are sure to enjoy great food and service. We personally enjoy the eggplant fries and if you’re still hungry for dessert, the flourless chocolate cake. If you’re looking to get some air before dessert, Chocolate Drop Candy Shoppe is across the road and serves amazing ice cream. Local Maine craft beers are served at Maineport Brewing Company. A trip into Lincolnville to visit the Cellardoor Winery is a must – talk about stunning views! There you can enjoy a wine tasting and purchase a few of your favorites to take home.  You can even make a few stops along the Maine Brewers Guild brewery trail!

During the summer months, the beautiful state of Maine transforms into an unforgettable vacation spot filled with endless outdoor activities, delicious dining, shopping, and more! With so much to do, it can be hard to squeeze everything into one Maine getaway and try as we might, we could never fit everything there is to do into one blog post. We hope our vacation travel guide helps you plan your dream summer trip!

See you soon!

Updated March 2024

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Looking Towards Spring

A tapestry of vibrant blooms, where sunlight dances on shimmering shores

After a busy summer season, the inn will be quiet for most of the winter as we continue our renovation projects and grab a few quiet weeks rest for ourselves. Our hearts are turning towards spring, eager to bask in its transformative magic.

Consider a stay in the Willard Room – our newest luxury accommodation! Located on the third floor, it offers added privacy. Updated amenities such as a walk-in jetted shower and sitting room provide luxury comforts.