Walking and hiking from sea to mountains are great activities in Maine
Come to Maine's cities, towns, seacoast, and mountains for walking and hiking in beautiful settings for people of all ages and abilitiesss
Gilsland Farm Center of the Maine Audubon Society
20 Gilsland Farm Road
Falmouth, ME, 04105
Nordic skiing and snowshoeing allowed on year-round walking trails; snowshoes, only, for rent.
This headquarters for Maine Audubon is just a few milesfrom Portland, located along the Presumpscot River estuary. It has an environmental center and a 65-acre sanctuary with two miles of trails winding through woods, meadows, and salt marsh. Trails are open for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Snowshoes available for rent. Trails open daily, dawn to dusk. Nature center open daily, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Sunday, noon-4 p.m.
806 Spencer Pond Road
Beaver Cove, ME, 04617
Good Night’s Sleep Rewards Hikers
This cluster of comfortable but rustic cabins aside Spencer Pond in Maine’s Moosehead Lake Region provides an ideal retreat for people who love the unsullied outdoors. The sounds of brezes in the pines, lapping pond waves, peeping frogs and the occasional loon call replace the squawk of modern life: there’s no electricity here. That means a quiet night’s sleep will prep you for mountain hikes among any of the many trails accessible from Spencer Pone Camps. Passing through forests, crossing bogs, tracing old lumber roads: these walks will take you close to the life of the Maine forest. Sightings of moose, beaver, ospreys, and all manner of birds are in store for hikers. The Camp managers, who are registered guides, can offer guided eco-tours.
425 Spring Street
Four Seasons Lodge and Trails is the home base or people who love year-round outdoor recreation in the stunning heights of Maine. Guests can enjoy cross country skiing, mountain biking, snowshoeing and nature hikes. There’s a modern lodge, 8 km of Nordic ski trails, a Kid’s Terrain Park, a sliding hill with a ski-through tunnel. Snowshoe trails weave among the ski system. Ski and snowshoe rentals are available. All trails start from the lodge. Trail maps.
Pigeon Hill Road
The trail up Pigeon Hill climbs steadily through open woodlands and ascends a steep rocky section before it breaks open to reveal the summit and its glorious views. It is moderate difficulty. Descending by the less steep Summit Loop Trail and the Silver Mine Trail creates a figure eight loop, provides additional views and passes an old silver mining area. The Historic Trail offers the most direct route to the top, but you can combine the Summit Loop, Ledge Woods and Silver Mine trails for a slightly longer journey.
Total length of the hike is about 1.6 miles.
off Weld-to-Byron Road
The Tumbledown Mountain and Little Jackson Mountain trail network is composed of six trails and two trailheads for advanced hikers wishing to see some of the most unique features in Maine. Tumbledown Mountain includes three peaks, 700-foot cliffs and a pond near the summit. Little Jackson Mountain is higher elevation and offers different views, like Saddleback and Sugarloaf to the north and Mount Blue and Webb Lake to the East.
See website for description of trails: Brook Trail (1.9 miles, moderate); Parker Ridge Trail (2.9 miles, advanced); Loop Trail (1.5 miles, advanced); Tumbledown Ridge Trail (0.7 miles); Pond Link Trail (1.1 miles); Little Jackson Mountain Trail (3.6 miles, advanced). Trail guide.
Morse Mountain Road
This conservation area includes Morse Mountain and the upland edge of undeveloped and unspoiled Seawall Beach. The conservation area is managed by Bates College. The public is invited to walk during daylight hours. The hike is not difficult -- Morse Mountain which is only 177 feet above sea level. The walk is two miles each way on a partially paved road. There are hills to get to the peak, but then the rest is mostly downhill to the beach. You will travel through woodlands, salt marshes, up Morse Mountain to an overlook, and on to Seawall Beach. Take water and bug repellent. No services. No dogs, fires, or camping gear allowed.
Off Deep Cove Road
Shackford Head State Park is on Moose Island overlooking Cobscook Bay. This promontory encircles the west side of Broad Cove. Several miles of interconnected trails cross the headland. The trails range from easy to difficult. A hiking trail from the parking area leads through woods to a rocky headland 173 feet above sea level, passing several pocket beaches and protected coves.
The best shore access is at Cony Beach (by the parking area) or from the Broad Cove Trail. Opportunities to see birds and other wildlife are excellent, Shackford Head State Park is not routinely staffed; take extra precautions when you visit. Wear sturdy footwear and be prepared for uneven terrain.
153 Hospital St.
Augusta, ME, 04332
Viles Arboretum offers 150 acres of fields and 74 acres of forest for recreation and nature viewing, particularly bird-watching. Six miles of trails off plenty of room for walking, jogging, biking, and even horseback riding. Tables and benches for rest and picnics are scattered throughout the property. In the winter, trails are groomed separately for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing. Also, there is a sledding hill.
Fore Street, Old Port, and Congress Street Walk
Portland is so dense with elegant 19th-century urban architecture and waterfront views that any walk through the city is a scenic stroll. A couple of the standout areas are Fore Street along the waterfront, famous for its progressive food culture; the Old Port waterfront; and Congress Street, including the city's Museum of Art, City Hall, and other monumental buildings. These routes all pass waterfront and urban parks, with neat public sculpture and busy social scenes. See the attached map for points of interest.
973 South Lubec Road
Lubec, ME, 04652
Magnificent views of New Brunswick; walks along cliffs; near historic lighthouse
Marvelous views and walks along the cliffs of this easternmost island in the United States. Park trail map.
See full description
of Quoddy Head State Park.
Near Hulls Cover Visitor Center, 25 Visitor Center Road
Bar Harbor, ME
The Jesup and Hemlock loop is an easy walk through the Great Meadow featuring stands of birch and hemlock trees. Distance: 1.5 miles.
From ME Route 3, turn off at the Hulls Cove Entrance to the park. Follow the Park Loop road 2.8 miles. Then turn left toward Sand Beach. Leave Park Loop Road at Sieur de Monts; take an immediate right; follow signs to the Nature Center. The walk begins to the right of the Nature Center.
At a length of 6.5 miles, Kennebec River Rail Trail is open for walking, running, cycling, skateboarding, rollerblading, and dog walking. The trail runs alongside the rail bed along the Kennebec River, and extends from Waterfront Park in Augusta, and through the towns of Hallowell, Farmingdale, and Gardiner.
Access points to the trail are Greenville Street in Hallowell; and four sites in Farmingdale: Kennebec Bike and Ski at 357 Maine Avenue, Pine Hill Drive, Bowman Street, and Sheldon Street. Trail walkers and hikers may park in Augusta at MSHA parking lot on Water Street, the trail head under the Memorial Bridge, and at Capitol Park. In Hallowell, parking is at the municipal lot on Front Street. In Gardiner, park at Hannaford, 100 Maine Avenue.
Perkins Cove to Ogunquit Beach
This one-to-one-and-a-half mile foot path runs along the shoreline, offering spectacular water views. There are several areas where it is possible to exit the Marginal Way between the two end points.
The south end is Jackie's To Restaurants on Perkins Cove Road and the north end is Beach Street and River Road at Ogunquit Beach. You can enter the path at Perkins Cove or the Marginal Way Lighthouse or at the Sparhawk.
Two municipal parking lots serve the Marginal Way. One lot is at Perkins Cove, at the south end of the Marginal Way. Obed's Lot is at the north end of the Marginal Way, and can be entered from Cottage Street (off of Shore Road).
Marginal Way Trail Map.
Park Loop Road
Bar Harbor, ME
The one-and –a-half-mile Great Head Trail is considered moderate difficulty. It loops around the perimeter of the Great Head peninsula just east of Sand Beach. Good for both adults and kids, Park in the lower Sand Beach parking area located on the left of the Park Loop Road. You also can get to the trail from Schooner Head Road outside of Bar Harbor. Granite steps lead down to the beautiful Sand Beach. This hike has views of The Beehive, Thunder Hole and the ocean.
Bar Harbor, ME, 04609
Vast national park with outdoor activities year-round on Maine coast; carriage roads, hiking and rock climbing; gardens; tidepools; camping
Lots of trails and 19th-century carriage roads lace this magnificent park. You can walk to the top of Cadillac Mountain. See full description
of Acadia National Park.
North of the West Street town pier
Bar Harbor, ME
bridge. From the island you see a sprawling view of Mount Desert Island and the town of Bar Harbor. Before going, check for the local times of low tide and allow yourself enough time to return. You will have no more than 1.5 hours before and after the low tide to use the land bridge. Take a hiking shoes or boots. The island is great for walking and for playing on rocks and in tide pools.
426 Wolfe's Neck Road
Good for picnicking, hiking and walking; an entry fee is charged.
Walk or hike along Casco Bay Trail. Follow scenic paths to views of nearby Eagle, Counsin, and other islands. The longer Harraseeket Trail offers one-and-a-half miles of bay views and is more difficult in comparison to the half-mile North Loop Trail, which is a less challenging walk with views of a nearby farm.
See full description
of Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park.
off Route 112 / Buxton Road
You can find and explore a real peat heath much nearer to home than the novels of Victorian England. The Saco Heath Preserve formed when ponds filled with decaying plant material grew together to form a raised coalesced bog. The preserve offers a self-guided hike along a woodland trail to a boardwalk through the heath’s varied peatland communities. In the spring, the heathland plants bloom, spreading a carpet of lavender, pink and white across the heath. To get there: Take Exit 36 off I-95/Maine Turnpike. Take the first exit after the tollbooth and turn left onto Industrial Park Road. Turn right onto Route 112, Buxton Road. Follow Route 112 about two miles. The parking lot for the preserve will be on the right in a wooded area.
Saco Heath Preserve Brochure (PDF)
-- Trail map (PDF)
Via Kittredge Road or Tripp Drive, off Stillwater Avenue
Bangor City Forest is 680 acres of wildlife habitat and working forest. More than nine miles of trail are available for running, hiking, biking, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing. It is owned by the city of Bangor and it is open throughout the year.
Dogs on Main Road, Shannon Road, Tripp Drive, and East Trail must be on a leash at all times. Hunting is prohibited.
Walden-Parke Preserve, owned by the Bangor Land Trust, encompasses more than 300 acres adjacent to City Forest, on the west side of the former Veazie Railroad bed. It features more than three miles of hiking, biking, skiing, and snowshoeing trails.
To Get There:
The forest is accessible via Kittredge Road and Tripp Drive. Kittredge Road is at the intersection of Hogan Road and Stillwater Avenue, near the Bangor Mall. Tripp Drive is off Stillwater Avenue, 1.6 miles north of the junction of Stillwater Avenue and Hogan Road, just before the kennel and concrete factory. If you're coming from the south on the interstate, you can take Exit 186 (Stillwater Avenue) or Exit 187 (Hogan Road). Click here to view a trail map.
The Forks, ME
The first half of the Moxie Falls Trail is flat, through mixed woods as it travels towards the falls. Halfway down the trail, a welcome sign indicates the falls are not far. Within a quarter of a mile, the trail begins to get a little steeper, followed by stairs and boardwalks surrounding the falls. There are several observation platforms. This is not a loop trail, return by retracing the walk.
Directions: The township of Moxie Gore is 50 miles north of Skowhegan on US Route 201. Upon reaching the village of The Forks, look to turn right onto Moxie Pond Road (Lake Moxie RD on DeLorme's Maine Atlas & Gazetteer). There is a rest area between the Moxie Pond Road and the river. The trailhead is located approximately 2.3 miles further on this road on the left.
Near Hulls Cover Visitor Center, 25 Visitor Center Road
Bar Harbor, ME
The trail follows the shore of Jordan Pond, offering views of mountains carved by glaciers and a sweeping valley, along with the pond itself. It is a 3-mile loop trail of moderate difficulty, and the trail is rugged in some places. Wear sturdy shoes or boots. Dogs are allowed on leash.
From ME Route 3, turn off at the Hulls Cove entrance to Acadia National Park and the Hulls Cove Visitor Center. Follow the Park Loop Road. At 2.8 miles continue straight, following signs for Jordan Pond. Use the North Lot parking area on the right just before the Jordan Pond House. Walk down the boat access to the pond. The Jordan Pond Trail crosses the boat launch. The hike can be taken in either direction.
During the summer months, parking is difficult to find. Leave your car at the Hulls Cove Visitor Center and take the Island Explorer Bus.
Carrabassett Valley, ME, 04947
Set on 35,027 acres, this preserve is along Flagstaff Lake. There are many mountains within the preserve. Extensive trails for both hiking and cross-country skiing are for experienced hikers and skiers. There is also swimming, paddling, fishing, and hunting. Snowmobile trails traverse the park. Trail map.
1941 Bear River Road
Newry, ME, 04261
Back country hiking; birdwatching; snowmobiling
Back country hiking with fantastic views. Walks near waterfalls and gorges. The rugged terrain includes a dozen of the toughtest miles along the entire Appalachian Trail. Easier trails and loops also are available.
See full description
of Grfton Notch State Park
Camden to Rockport Walk
To enjoy the gorgeous views of Maine Midcoast and Casco Bay near Camden, start at 2 Elm Street and walk along Bay View Street to Laite Beach, with views of the harbor and Curtis Island Lighthouse. Continue on Bay View to Seaview Cemetery and take a left onto Chestnut Street. Soon you will pass Aldermere Farm, a breeder of Belted Galloway cattle. Continue and take a left onto Calderwood Lane and watch look for stunning views of Casco Bay. Turn right onto Chapel Road, which passes Vesper Hill Chapel, with its lovely gardens.
Turn onto Continue down Chapel Road and turn right onto Beauchamp Road, which sticks close to shore of Rockport Harbor. From Beauchamp, you will connect to Mechanic Street. Follow this to the end. To return to Camden, take a right at the end of Mechanic Street and back into Camden Village. This 6-mile walk through the beautiful seaside village of Camden was adapted from www.camdenmaineexperience.com with our thanks.
64 Balsam Drive
Millinocket, ME, 04462
A large state wilderness that offers recreational activities in the water and on land; a popular camping and hiking spot
Hiking throughout 200,000 acres of preserved wilderness on the Trout Brook Farm, South Branch Pond, Katahdin Lake, Roaring Brook, and Abol Trails.
See full description
of Baxter State Park.
280 Belfast Road
Camden, ME, 04843
Park on the top of Mount Battie has beautiful views of the Bay; camping; hiking; bird watching
Nice trails allow plenty of opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, and, in winter, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
See full description
of Camden Hills State Park.
North Main Street to Riverside Drive
Presque Isle, ME
This four-and-a-half-mile biking and walking path
follows the rail bed of the former Canadian Pacific Railway through Presque Isle. The path, which is paved, traverses the city and the grounds of the University of Maine, offering beautiful views of Presque Isle Stream. The trail travels aside the river for a short bit in Bicentennial Park on the north end before crossing to Chapman Street and continuing south. At the south end of the walk, enter the path at the convention center (Green Hill Road at US 1). At the north end of the walk, park off Riverside Drive right near the river behind the district court building.
Off Shore Road
Cape Elizabeth, ME
Seaside park includes beloved lighthouse; good for walks, picnics, ocean views
The park on the ocean just south of Portsmouth contains the famous Portland Head Lighthouse and Museum, along with many pleasant paths for walking and bicycling.
See full description
of Fort Williams State Park.
528 Hallowell Road
Pownal, ME, 04069
Great views from top of Mount Bradbury; lots for trails for walking, mountain biking, horseback
Lots of multi-use trails on the mountainside park allow walking, mountain biking, horseback riding. See full description
of Bradbury Mountain State Park
Timber Point Trail of the Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge
end of Granite Point Road
Biddeford (Wells), ME, 04090
Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, named for the pioneering environmentalist, was established to protect coastal habitats of birds and other wildlife. It includes 11 parcels of land along the Maine coast between Kittery and Cape Elizabeth, and it is headquartered in Wells. The refuge welcomes visitors for walking and hiking, fishing, hunting, kayaking and canoeing, and wildlife photography and observation. Information: www.fws.gov/northeast/rachelcarson/opportunities.html#trails
The trail passes a fresh water wetland and has beautiful salt marsh, river and ocean views. A wheelchair-accessible trail ends at an observation platform overlooking the mouth of the Little River. At the end of the trail, Timber Island is accessible by a land bridge at low tide, only. The trail is open from sunrise to sunset. No pets are allowed on the trail. Foot traffic only. Trail map.
Park Loop Road
Bar Harbor, ME
This is an easy trail along a handsome stretch of coastline between Sand Beach and Otter Point. The path travels along Park Loop Road. The trail passes several famous spots, including Sand Beach, Thunder Hole, Monument Cove, and Otter Cliff. This is a flat gravel path and the elevation gain is a mere 100 feet. The distance is two miles one way from Sand Beach to Otter Point. Note that Park Loop Road is closed December to April
Access is at Sand Beach parking lot or Otter Point parking lot.
40 South Edmunds Road
Edmunds Tpk, ME, 04628
Camping, walking, exploration at this park on a dramatic tidal bay
Lots of hiking and walking trails are found at this interesting park on a tidal bay, with dramatic high and low tide changes.
See full description
of Cobscook Bay State Park.
28 Oldfields Road
South Berwick, ME, 03908
This park encompasses 250 acres for forested land along the Salmon Falls River. The park has several hiking trails through stands of pine and hemlock. The trails make up a large loop of three miles in all. Shorter loops may be used. There are locations for picnicking.
305 Commercial Street
This organization maintains a 50-mile network of trails in Greater Portland. Thirty-one
, offering a great variety of surroundings, are described in detail, with helpful maps. A few highlights of the system are:
Eastern Promenade Trail
This trail is located on a former rail corridor and it has harbor and ocean views. You can find benches and picnic tables along the trail and at East End Beach.
Paved and stone dust trails run in parallel and follow the water’s edge. The trail slopes slightly near the Portland Water District treatment plant and at Tukey’s Bridge, where it connects to the Back Cove Trail. Handicapped accessible, dogs allowed on leash. Length is 2.1 miles. Accessible by: Bus 1 and Bus 8
Fore River Sanctuary
. This sanctuary is where you will find the Jewell Falls waterfall and the location of the old Cumberland and Oxford Canal. The lowland brackish area, where saltwater and freshwater marsh join, is a place where bird watchers thrive. A short walk down Congress Street sidewalks leads to the Fore River Trail and Stroudwater Trail. To connect to the Capisic Brook Trail, follow a path from Frost Street up to Riverview Street. Open from dawn to dusk, year-round. Dogs are allowed in some areas. Park on Frost Street in the signed spaces in Maine Orthopedic Center’s lot or on Rowe Avenue.
Back Cove Trail
. Back Cove offers great views of the Portland skyline. Ideal for walking, running, biking (road/mountain) and dog walking. You will find benches and two water fountains along the trail. Toilets are in the parking lots at Preble Street and Payson Park. This is a loop trail with stone dust and paved surfaces–mostly flat with a slight rise along I-295. The Back Cove Trail connects to the Bayside & Eastern Promenade Trail under Tukey’s Bridge. Dogs allowed on leash. Length is 3.6 miles. Accessible by: Bus 8.
Presumpscot River Preserve
. The trail follows a deep ravine into the Preserve and it is steep in places. Boardwalks and bridges pass over wet areas and permit for mountain bike access. At the river’s edge, signs direct walkers and bikers upstream or downstream, both with beautiful river views. Upstream, the trail had short loops into wooded, upland areas and then continues along the shoreline and under the highway overpass for another mile. Downstream, the trail reaches Presumpscot Falls. Length is 2.5 miles
Uses include dogs walking, biking, mountain biking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, bird watching. Accessible by Bus 9B, Stop: Summit & Curtis streets.
Just east of the Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse on Route 102A
Mount Desert Island, Bar Harbor, ME
This loop trail is easy walking from the road to the ocean, through forested land. Enjoy classic views of the rocky shoreline. Bird watching is fruitful on this walk. Parking is easy and convenient. Total length is 1.3 mile.
The 4.8 miles section from South Windham to Westbrook is now open for pedestrian use. The first 1.5 milesfrom South Windham is a flat, easy walking path on an undeveloped rail bed. The remaining 3.5 miles, to Bridge Street in Westbrook, is on railroad tracks. Members of the Sebago to the Sea Trail Coalition have been working to a continuous trail from Sebago Lake to Casco Bay. (Google map link shown here is approximate.) See map.
Carson Trail of the Rachel Carson Wildlife Refuge
321 Port Road
Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, named for the pioneering environmentalist, was established to protect coastal habitats of birds and other wildlife. It includes 11 parcels of land along the Maine coast between Kittery and Cape Elizabeth, and it is headquartered in Wells. The refuge welcomes visitors for walking and hiking, fishing, hunting, kayaking and canoeing, and wildlife photography and observation. Information: http://1.usa.gov/102Wp2v
The Carson Trail starts at the Carson headquarters in Wells. It is a one-mile walk with views of one of southern Maine’s most valuable ecosystems. Leashed dogs are allowed on the Carson Trail. All refuge trails are open 7 days a week during daylight hours only. Leashed dogs are allowed on trails. Trail map
Eastportis across the bay from New Brunswick, Canada. Eastport attracts visitors who enjoy 18th- and 19-century architecture, including rstored sea captains' homes, history buffs, painters and photographer, whale watchers, and families. Local festivals celebrate spring, bird-watching, the Fourth of July, Passamaquoddy Tribal history and culture, pirate fun, salmon and a one-of-a-kind international New Year’s Eve. The walkable downtown includes 29 buildings on the National Historic Register.
Fort Point State Park Cape Jellison Road
Park on a peninsula offers picnicking with waterfront views; bicycle path, boating & fishing; lighthousse
Nice walking trails with beautiful views of Penobscot River from this park on a peninsula. See full description
of Fort Point State Park.
Off Tripp Drive
The Orono Bog Boardwalk is a place to see the fascinating plants and animals of a Maine bog. The 1-mile boardwalk loop trail begins at the forested wetland edge in the Bangor City Forest and crosses into the Orono Bog. The boardwalk passes through a range of vegetation and environments on its way to the open, peat moss carpeted center of the Orono Bog. Boardwalk visitors can read colored signs with illustrations of common species of bog plants and animals, and explanations to go along with them. The boardwalk accommodates wheelchairs. Benches for rest and contemplation are provided at least every 200 feet. Bicyclists can park their bikes at the bike rack. Dogs are not allowed on the boardwalk.
Hours: the boardwalk is open to the public May 1 until Thanksgiving weekend or the first snowfall, whichever comes first. Admission is free.
Dodge Point, on the western shore of the Damariscotta River, has 8,000 feet of frontage on the Damariscotta River with small sand and pebble beaches, vistas from the river shore, and freshwater ponds.
Four easy-to-moderate trails crisscross the property: Old Farm Road Trail (2 mile loop, easy; Ravine Trail (1.2 miles, moderate; Shore Trail (1.5 miles, easy; Timber Trail (0.8 miles, easy).
Take the interpretive trail that starts at the Old Farm Road and make sure you explore the Shore Trail for the best views.
Trailheads: Oak Hill and Kaler roads in Belfast; Routes 9 and 139 in Unity
Unity to Belfast, ME
This 47-mile footpath links Unity Village with City Point in Belfast where the Passagassawakeag River enters Belfast Harbor. Across the street from the Belfast trailhead is the northeast terminus of the Belfast Rail Trail, which winds southeast for 2.3 miles to downtown Belfast. The whole trail crosses nearly 7,000 acres of conserved lands; 30 miles of the trail is on private lands. Temporary trail closures, mostly related to hunting, are in place in several locations during the fall. The last closure ends on December 31. Dogs are allowed on most of the trail but must be kept under control; dogs are not allowed in a few locations. The middle section of the Hills to Sea Trail uses an existing 28-mile footpath network in Montville. These network trails have names and in some cases are marked with different colored paint blazes.
Trail map East Side.
Trail map West Side.
Trailheads at Elm Street and Casco Bay end of Marginal Way
This 1-mile trail is a flat, paved surface through the Bayside and East Bayside neighborhoods. It extends at the south end from Elm Street between Somerset Street and Marginal Way and parallels Marginal Way, linking with the East Promenade and the Back Cove Trails near the highway overpass where Route 1 crosses Back Cove. There are several benches and three water fountains. Trail is good for walkers, runners, and bicyclists.