Summer Dreaming 2014

 

We’ve scheduled some terrific trips this summer. How about you?

A birding adventure on Monhegan Island. Followed later in the summer by a Puffin Cruise with Monhegan Boat Line. Two visits to Lubec, giving us a healthy dose of fresh ocean air in the most beautiful place on earth. A weekend in Eastport.

A stay at a favorite Maine sporting camp with a tour of the spectacular Fly Fishing Museum in Oquossoc. We’ll enjoy a presentation of the Joshua Chamberlain musical at the Maine State Music Theater, with dinner at one of Brunswick’s fine restaurants.

And we’re excited about our first visit to Deer Isle, where the Pilgrim’s Inn and Whale’s Rib Tavern await. We’ll be doing that trip with our friends Rusty and Sue Atwood. An island adventure on Vinalhaven and our annual trip to the beautiful Blue Nose Inn in Bar Harbor will certainly highlight our summer.

We’ve also lined up visits to dinners at the Winterport Winery, at 11 Central in Bangor and at two local restaurants that have been on our list for some time. And we’re very excited that the Olde Post Office Cafe in Mount Vernon will begin offering dinners in July. This is our go-to place for breakfast and lunch, and we are sure dinners here will be really special. Trust us — we’ll tell you all about it!

And of course, we’ll spend time at camp, hopefully during the Mayfly hatch so we can catch some of those wild native trout.

We also hope to get to a concert at Stone Mountain Arts Center in Brownfield, the Waterville Opera House and, for sure, the end-of-summer, not-to-be-missed American Folk Festival in Bangor.

The Travelin Maine(rs) start summer on May 1 and invite you to join us!

Favorite Inns

If you want a very special experience this summer, these inns would be our top recommendations:

Berry Manor Inn, Rockland. Within walking distance of some fine restaurants and great art galleries and shops, this gorgeous Victorian home, along with hostess Cheryl Michaelsen, provides some of the very best hospitality we’ve ever experienced — plus delicious pies available 24/7.

Craignair Inn in Spruce Head is right smack dab on the ocean, with good food and nice rooms. And it’s on the Spruce Head Peninsula, one of the places where we spend a lot of time in the summer — and very close to the great trips offered by Monhegan Boat Lines in Port Clyde.

If you are looking for something close by, we loved the Inn at Bath and enjoyed a great dinner in that city’s Solo Bistro restaurant and a fascinating visit to the Maine Maritime Museum.

Nebo Lodge, North Haven. Our visit there last fall was spectacular. Dining at the lodge is a very special experience and the island is beautiful.

Oxford House Inn, Fryeburg. Four delightful rooms and a great dining experience, spectacular views and wonderful hosts Jonathon and Natalie Spak.

Noble House Inn, Bridgeton. We really enjoyed our visit three years ago and haven’t been back since Cindi Hooper purchased the inn last year. But her hospitality is drawing rave reviews, and we’ve got it on our summer dreaming list.

Blue Nose Inn, Bar Harbor. Co-owner and manager Jim Ash has turned this trip into one we look forward to all year. The inn stands high above the ocean with gorgeous views. A wide range of rooms is available and one of our favorite chefs, Arturo Montes, provides creative and tasty food at the inn’s Looking Glass Restaurant. Don’t miss the Crab Cake Eggs Benedict for breakfast!

Island Chalet, Campobello Island. Just across the bridge from Lubec, these two-bedroom, A-frame cottages have been our destination at least once a year for more than a decade. Explore the 2,000-acre Roosevelt International Park, enjoy “Tea with Eleanor” Roosevelt and spend lots of time at Lubec’s Main Street restaurants, Monica’s Chocolates, the South Lubec sand bar and West Quoddy Head Light. We’ll be staying at Island Chalet in June, to cheer on brother Gordon who is running in the International Marathon.

Visit George’s website — georgesmithmaine.com — for book reviews, outdoor news and all Travelin’ Maine(rs) columns, found listed in the “Best of Maine” section.

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