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    The home of the WXToad
  • Boothbay Harbor, ME


    We recently celebrated our 50th anniversary and decided to return to where we spent the first two nights of our honeymoon. The weather gods were definitely on our side as we enjoyed a full week of spectacular September New England weather: comfortable temperatures and bright blue skies. Our choice of lodging was  excellent - the inn was located right in town so we were able to walk everywhere - restaurants, shops, tour boats all were close-by. We only used the car a few times.

    Date of visit: September 2017

    Well, I lied just a tad - the day we arrived was cloudy and showers were on and off most of the day. But that did not dampen our spirits as we checked into our room and saw what an amazing view we had of the harbor. Our room was at the far end of a building built on a pier out into the harbor and we had water and boats all around us.

    It was still cloudy and foggy the next morning, but by noon the fog and clouds were gone, leaving us with a nice sunny afternoon to enjoy the view from our deck.

    How can you possible beat that for a room location?

    Fifty years ago we spent the first two nights of our honeymoon at Spruce Point Inn in Boothbay Harbor. So last winter when we started thinking about what to do on our 50th, our first thought was to return to Spruce Point. When we checked prices, it was apparent that Spruce Point Inn was now far out of our league.

    Fifty years ago our room was in this little cottage.

    So we went on an internet search to find another place to stay, visiting lost of websites and reading lots of reviews. Eventually we settled on the Tugboat Inn and made our reservation. September is still a busy time in Boothbay, but somehow we were able to snag the best room in the place.

    The inn got its name from this old tugboat which is an integral part of the property. In the early 1970's the owners at the time bought the tugboat "Maine" and moved it to the property, converting it into a lounge. Later a restaurant was built off the side of the tug. Guests at the inn can have a complimentary breakfast every morning, while lunch and dinner is served daily. The night we ate there with some old friends we enjoyed some fresh swordfish - most tasty!

    Finding a place to eat is most definitely not a problem in Boothbay! Within walking distances were dozens of cafes and restaurants. One of our favorites for breakfast was the Blue Moon Cafe with its covered deck out over the water. Right beside it is Kaler's Restaurant where we enjoyed lunch one day.

    Now there's a Blue Moon Cafe stack of pancakes for you, complete with wild Maine blueberries and real maple syrup.

    Across the harbor from our hotel, but still within walking distance, was the Lobster Dock. Dine outside on the deck and watch all the activity in the harbor. Lobster rolls were great here with a choice of hot or cold.

    At many dining places you order your food at a window or counter and are given a random number so a server can find you to deliver your food when it's ready. We found this one very appropriate since we were celebrating our 50th anniversary. Another day we had the number "67", which, of course, was the year we got married.

    Somehow we found our way to the Ice Cream Factory most afternoons. Our favorite treat was their Brownie Supreme Sundae which was large enough for us to share.

    To help us celebrate our 50th, our daughter's family gave us the gift of tickets to the Carousel Music Theater. A lobster roll dinner followed by a show featuring songs of the 1960's - how appropriate!

    The Maine State Federation of Firefighters was holding its annual convention in Boothbay while we there. Saturday morning the group paraded through town, with at least one truck from every town in Maine! Most were newer trucks now in service, but there were also a lot older restored trucks.

    When not stuffing our faces or stretching our legs we relaxed on our private deck observing the boating activity. We noticed dogs on quite a few boats.

    This wooden bridge allows pedestrians to get from one side of the harbor to the other. Built in 1901 the bridge features what is now a private home in a little cottage at the middle of the bridge. Originally it was the toll house where bridge crossers had to pay their toll. Yankee Magazine featured it in a 2014 House for Sale article.

    The weekend in the middle of our stay turned out to have perfect weather for several weddings that held on islands. Local boaters were kept busy ferrying members of the wedding party and guests back and forth.

    One morning we took a two-hour cruise on the Pink Lady II.

    What cruise would be complete without a lighthouse or two. The Ram Island light was built in 1883 and automated in 1965. In 1985 the keeper's house and buildings were taken over by the Grand Banks Schooner Museum and the grounds are maintained by a part time caretaker.

    Burnt Island Lighthouse is a thirty-foot-high, white, conical tower made of brick and covered by rubblestone that guards the entrance to Boothbay Harbor. Its foundation is secured to the natural rock of the Island's southern shore. The base of the tower is fifteen feet in diameter with walls that are four feet thick. Its orginial structure was built in 1821.

    Returning to Boothbay we passed by two US Coast Guard patrol boats.

    If your preference is for sailing, there are several different boats which offer cruises.  This is the Lazy Jack, built in 1947 in Ipswich, MA.

    Wandering about in our car we found two other lighthouses on or near Southport Island. This is Hendricks Head Lighthouse on the west side of Southport. The 39' tower was built in 1875. Now privately owned, this is as close as one can get without a boat.

    Cuckholds Lighthouse is located about a mile off the southern tip of Southport Island. It was built in 1907 with a 48' tower. The associated lightkeeper's house is now operated as a inn.

    Boothbay Harbor has many shops with something for everyone. The store in the red building features some amazing whirl-a-gigs. Clothes, art, knick-knacks - you can find them all here.

    I'd have to say that Captain Sawyer's Bed & Breakfast is the most picturesque lodging in town.

    This little cottage is what we decided would be our pick if we the choice of any property in town. It's small and has a screened porch on the rear overlooking the harbor. Only two problems: it wasn't for sale and I'm sure we could never afford it if it were.

    Here we are on the final evening of our stay as the sun starts to set. What a wonderful week it was!