Did you know that there are thousands of islands off the coast of Maine? One of our favorites is the beautiful Damariscove Island, a historic, uninhabited isle nearby. It’s a remarkable place to go for a little peace and quiet, where visitors can enjoy hiking and birdwatching. Here’s why a trip to Damariscove Island should be on your Midcoast Maine to-do list.
When you’re not exploring the trails on Damariscove Island, check out some of our other favorite spots. Request your free Vacation Guide now and explore Boothbay Harbor, ME. It’s filled with recommendations on where to eat and what to do nearby. Whether you’re interested in excitement or relaxation, you can find it in our guide.
Why You Should Spend a Day on Damariscove Island
It Has a Rich History
Damariscove Island was one of the first islands to be inhabited by Europeans. Adventurers initially settled here and established a commercial fishing enterprise in the early 1600s, where fish were caught, dried, and sent back to back Europe. During this time, the island was home to 13 year-round fishermen. When the Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony were facing starvation, the fishermen filled their boats with cod to ensure the colonist’s survival. In the early 1900s, more fishermen, farmers, and families inhabited Damariscove Island.
You Can Hike Along Scenic Trails
Today, Damariscove Island is completely uninhabited. It’s owned by the Nature Conservancy and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The island is a quarter mile wide and two miles long, boasting over 200 acres of coastal tundra vegetation. Here, you can admire large populations of wildlife, including nesting seabirds and muskrats. With over three miles of trails, it’s the perfect place for a peaceful hike during the summer months.
Local Tip: The beach at the northern end of the island’s loop trail is very rocky. Be sure to pack some sturdy footwear if you plan on checking it out!
Enjoy a Unique Cruise to the Island
Damariscove Island is a little over five miles off the coast of Boothbay Harbor. The Boothbay Region Land Trust organizes an annual trip there each summer. Hop aboard Balmy Days Cruises in September to explore it for yourself. Tickets are $40 per person and allow you to enjoy this fantastic day trip activity during your stay.
Learn more about the island’s history and interesting facts from your guide during the boat ride. Follow Melissa Cullina, Research Botanist for Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, to discover the wide variety of plant life on the island. The cruise departs from Pier 8, just minutes from Topside Inn. Spend a day hiking, learning about native plant and animal life, picnicking, and even seeing the island’s museum. Then, return to the harbor at 3 p.m. and relax at our coastal inn.
Stay in Luxury Nearby
After a fun day outdoors, return to our bed and breakfast in the heart of Boothbay Harbor. Topside Inn features beautiful guest rooms, top-notch amenities, and spectacular water views. Start each day with a delicious gourmet breakfast and end each evening with a glass of wine on our porch. We even offer Schooler Sail Rides for a unique tour of Maine’s islands, lighthouses, and wildlife up close. It comes with a wine and cheese picnic for you to enjoy.
Your relaxing getaway to coastal Maine awaits. Check our availability and book your stay today. We look forward to having you.
Do you want to check out another remarkable island off our coast? Enjoy a one-of-a-kind Monhegan Island Adventure.