David Bruce

Portside Real Estate Group

David's Midcoast Area Guide

Welcome to Midcoast Maine!

This is your guide to things to do, places to go, where to eat, plus a whole lot more in the Tenants Harbor and Midcoast area of Maine.  My name is David Bruce, Area Guide and Realtor®. I live in Tenants Harbor and I'm here to help you navigate all the fun of Maine's Midcoast. The Midcoast of Maine is a wonderful, fun and spectacular area and I hope you find this resource helpful and entertaining!                    

There's a special magic to Midcoast Maine that makes you happy to be alive!  You see the magic at sunrise and through the sea-smoke as lobstermen head out for the day. You feel it on a boat as you leave Tenants Harbor, past the American flag on Mouse Island, the Lighthouse on Southern Island and as you look back to the mountains of Camden. You hear it in the call of a seagull, the sound of a buoy bell or the laughter of your kids crabbing off a dock. Part of the magic in Maine is the physical beauty, but just as important are the people of Maine and the culture. There is an authenticity to Maine, in her beauty, in her people and in her places. I think Maine is a place you have "to get". Not all people do, but I sure am glad I do!  Enjoy your Maine adventure! The way life should be! 

Questions about the area? Questions about real estate? Suggestions for this guide? Call, text or email me. David Bruce, 207.804.0001,  David@DavidBruceMaine.com

Fun Midcoast Maine Things To Do

The great thing about Maine is there is so much to do, see and experience. Now sometimes doing, seeing and experiencing something might entail sitting in an Adirondack chair, in the backyard, reading a book, watching the lobster boats and experiencing a cool ocean breeze. The views you see of Tenants Harbor are from my backyard and porches.  We spend lots of lazy days in Tenants Harbor just taking it all in. Many times though we are adventurous, active and on the move. Here are some Maine fun things to do in no particular order.

  • Picnic on Mt. Battie.  Just an incredible view that you never get tired of! You feel like you are on top of the world, on top of a mountain look down to the sea. Just north of Camden off Rt 1 in Camden Hills State Park. A must on any visit!  You can drive or hike to the top. 

  • Have a Lobster Cookout! Buy some lobsters, clams and mussels from a local fisherman or a market. Steam them up in a big pot of salted water. Add some potatoes, corn on the cob and melt some butter. Grab some cold Maine craft beer and enjoy!  TIP- I think the bigger the lobster the tougher the tail meat. Instead of eating a 3-pound "bug", eat (3) 1-pound "chicks". There are less expensive and the meat is sweeter! I also like soft-shell (shedders) if available!

  • Hike Clark Island.  A beautiful hike around an old quarry with spectacular ocean views.  Part of the Maine Coast Heritage Trust.  Park at the Craignair Inn and walk across the causeway.  Post hike grab a cool drink and bite to eat at The Craignair

  • Hike to Roaring Spout. The Roaring Spout is located on Roaring Spout Road, which is off of Harts Neck Road in Tenants Harbor. This is a small "forever wild" conservation parcel that is open to the public. Roaring Spout Road is a private road and motorized vehicles are excluded. Pedestrians and bicyclists are welcome. The Roaring Spout is 0.6 miles up Roaring Spout Road. Once there you will experience incredible views of the Atlantic and at high tide (especially if the sea is choppy) you will here the ocean roar through the rock formation and may even get sprayed by the spout!

  • Hike Camden Hills. Maiden's Cliff is a favorite! Access to this trailhead can be found off route 52 in Camden, however you may take longer hikes through various trails within the Camden Hills State Park trail system to reach Maiden Cliff. Beautiful views of Megunticook Lake. Easy hike, about a mile. Another awesome spot for a picnic!  The Ocean Overlook Trail is amazing.  A challenging hike, but the bounty is worth it at the top.  What a view!  Another favorite on the north end of Camden Hills is Bald Rock Mountain.  A shorter hike, but more amazing ocean views at the top.

  • Take a Day Sail! Did you know there is more coastline in Maine than California? Yep! And the best way to experience it is to get off dry land. There are a number of options to see the Mid-Coast of Maine by boat including many old, wooden schooners. Charters are available in Camden, Rockport and Rockland. Private charters are also available. We have sailed numerous times with Capt. Daniel Bennett aboard the Bufflehead out of Rockland.  For bigger parties of if you are okay being part of a group we sail with Capt. Aaron Lincoln on The Olad out of Camden.  We love sailing around the Islands of North Haven, Islesboro and Vinalhaven!

  • Visit Camden Maine!  Hike around town!  Shop, eat, drink and take in this picturesque coastal town.  You'll feel like you are on a movie set.  In fact you are - movies like Peyton Place were filmed here.

  • Visit Rockland Maine!  A vibrant working New England coastal town.  I like to call it a mini-Portland.  A very cool and eclectic food scene, lots of art galleries, shops, festivals and music.  

  • Take a Kayak Tour out of Port Clyde. Our friends take guided tours out of Port Clyde Village. All kinds of options including a Porpoise Tour and a Full Moon Tour!!!  Port Clyde Kayaks

  • Go Mackerel Fishing! What a fun fish to catch! Just find a public landing or wharf, use a "Christmas tree" lure and cast it in the water. They usually run in schools and it's not uncommon to get 3 or 4 on the line at once! Hint- Fish near a lobster wharf wear they dump the old bait and bait juice in the water, Mackerel tend to school there.

  • Go to Drift Inn Beach! Rock and sand Maine beach between Tenants Harbor and Port Clyde. Go at low tide for best conditions! Awesome for kids!

  • Catch a show, concert or movies at The Strand in Rockland.

  • Visit Monhegan Island. A beautiful island 11 miles off the coast from Port Clyde, shaped like a whale, with 150 foot headlands on the north side sloping down to low coves on the southern end. There are 17 miles of hiking trails on Monhegan, with hundreds of species of wildflowers and seabirds. Monhegan Island is also an art colony, with as many as 20 studios open during the peak summer months. Take a ferry from Port Clyde. Have a cold beer at Monhegan Brewing

  • Check out the Owls Head Transportation Museum. The Owls Head Transportation Museum has one of the finest collections of pioneer-era aircraft and automobiles in the world. More than 100 historic aircraft, automobiles, bicycles, carriages and engines are on permanent display.

  • Experience the Camden Snow Bowl. No matter the season the Camden Snow Bowl offers outdoor adventures. In the winter there is skiing, tubing and an awesome toboggan run. The Snow Bowl is host to the US Toboggan Nationals each February. When skiing you can experience a full view of the Atlantic Ocean and Penobscot Bay. Pretty darn incredible! In the warmer months there are mountain biking and hiking trails all over Ragged Mountain. In the fall there are scenic leaf tours up and down the chair lifts. Throughout the year there are parties, festivals and concerts.

  • Visit Marshall Point Lighthouse in Port Clyde. Remember Forrest Gump running back and forth from coast to coast in the movie? Remember him running out to a lighthouse in Maine? Yep, this is the lighthouse! Only 5 minutes from Tenants Harbor. Prominently located on the rocky point, at the entrance to the harbor of the fishing village of Port Clyde. Marshall Point Lighthouse and Museum offers visitors and engaging look at the local history, beauty and wonder of mid-coast Maine. 

  • More Lighthouses! They're everywhere! A great way to tour Midcoast Maine is to visit lighthouses up and down the coast. This will take you to some of the most beautiful, picturesque and natural places in Maine. A quick google search will give you some great options including Owls Head Light and the walk-able Rockland Breakwater Lighthouse.

  • Have a boat? Check out the Maine Island Trail! The Maine Island Trail is a water trail spanning over 200 islands and coastal sites along the 375 miles of the coast of Maine. One third of trail sites are public, and two thirds are owned by private organizations and individuals who trust us to care for their lands and teach our members to "Leave No Trace". More than just the first recreational water trail in America, the Maine Island Trail fosters a culture of grassroots user-stewardship for Maine's islands. 

  • Take on a ropes course! A great family adventure! Maine's first high-flying family adventure park with zip lines!!!! Navigate through more than 30 obstacles from 12 to 50 feet in the air then zoom along one of the FIVE zip lines or a GIANT SWING!  Monkey See Monkey Do

  • Enjoy a Maine Festival! Maine-ers love to throw a good party! Check out a local festival or fair. Some of the more popular are Tenants Harbor's very own "St. George Days", The Maine Lobster Festival, The North Atlantic Blues Festival, Moxie Festival, Union Fair, Camden Windjammer Festival, Maine Boats and Harbors Show, etc. Just "Google" these events or "Maine Festivals" to learn about more events!

  • The Maine Music Scene. Did you know Rockland Maine is considered a part of the Mississippi Blues Trail? Crazy, but true! Some of the biggest names in blues frequent Rockland. Each year in July Rockland hosts the North Atlantic Blues Festival and throughout the year top blues acts visit the Strand Theater and other venues. In addition to blues Midcoast Maine hosts performances by local, regional and national artists in theaters, opera houses, outdoor parks, pubs, clubs and coffeehouses. Check out one of the local newspapers like the Free Press or Village Soup to see a schedule.  

  • Visit the Farnsworth in Rockland. The Farnsworth Art Museum celebrates Maine's ongoing role in American art. It offers a nationally recognized collection of works from many of America's greatest artists, with 20,000 square feet of gallery space and over 10,000 works in the collection. Its Wyeth Center features works of Andrew, N.C. and Jamie Wyeth. 

Midcoast Maine Places To Eat

My favorite places for Breakfast:

  • The East Wind Inn, my next door neighbor in Tenants Harbor. Quaint seaside inn restaurant with a great breakfast and an amazing view! 

  • Home Kitchen Café in Rockland. Fresh organic ingredients. Huevos Rancheros are legendary! Great omelets, pancakes and sticky buns. 

  • Boynton-McKay in Camden. Fresh, eclectic, tasty dishes! Cool café in an old drugstore! Also home of Ruckus Donuts!

  • Mariner's Restaurant in Camden.  Cool, old school diner overlooking the harbor. 

  • Moody's Diner, almost world famous diner in Waldoboro. Incredible blueberry pancakes! 

  • Brass Compass in Rockland. Diner style, good, consistent home style cooking! 

  • Willow Bake Shop. Homemade doughnuts!  On Rt.1 between Rockland and Rockport.

Maine-ly Lunch Places:

  • Ancho Honey in Tenants Harbor.  This place is the bomb!  Eclectic, casual, gormet, hip food.  From gormet grilled cheeses, to craft made burgers, amazing fried chicken and fish sandwiches with a zing - you will love this local spot.  Plus a cooler full of prepared meals, soups, dips and of course their famous pimento cheese spread.  Mostly take out, but a few spots to sit inside and out. Lunch and Dinner.

  • Home Kitchen Café in Rockland. Yes, the same place I just mentioned for breakfast. Well it's a favorite lunch spot too! Same fresh ingredients and awesome flavors. They have a "wicked good" lobster sandwich served on homemade bread with lettuce tomato and mayo. Not your typical lobster roll! Fish tacos are great and they make the tortillas fresh per order right in front of you. Lobster tacos, the reuben, the cheese steak, the chowder and everything else is great as well. Go there! 

  • Owls Head General Store in Owls Head. Voted best burger in Maine. Takes at least 7 napkins to eat! Love it with a Moxie soda! 

  • Picnic on Mount Battie. Imagine sitting on top of a mountain and looking straight down to a beautiful Maine harbor and out to the sea! For this southerner, experiencing this view was my Maine "aha moment". Mount Battie is just outside Camden. Stop in Camden at the Camden Deli, grab a sandwich and drive up to the look out and enjoy the best view in Maine! 

Lobstah Shacks & Dives - what I call "Seafood in the Rough"

  • McLoons Lobster Shack an authentic Maine lobster shack located directly across from a working lobster wharf on the beautiful island of Spruce Head. Its really really good! Awesome lobster and crab rolls, dinners, clams, etc. Incredible view! 

  • The Black Harpoon in Port Clyde. Love this place! Good seafood dishes, pasta, steaks. Fun décor and the best fisherman's bar in Maine. Separate bar from restaurant. Peanut shells on the floor, area lobster buoys hanging from the ceiling. Come hang out with the locals. Careful with the drinks though, they are strong! Don't get "pooned"!!! 

  • The Happy Clam in Tenants Harbor. Classic Maine-German cuisine. Yep, it's a husband and wife team. He is from here and she is from Germany. Have a German beer with your fried clams or a Moxie soda with your Weiner Schnitzel! Family restaurant with a playground for the kids and a Biergarten for the adults! 

  • The Slipway in Thomaston. I hesitated classifying the Slipway in this section, but it is at the town landing in Thomaston. There is more outside seating than inside seating, it has a really cool outside bar on the water and it's staple is classic Maine "seafood in the rough". Shore dinners, classic seafood baskets and a killer raw bar menu. I usually order up oysters on the half shell, the Port Clyde shrimp app with Cajun mayo and the Mosquito Island crab claws with mustard sauce. You can also order inspired entrees and specials with a nice bottle of wine. One of those places where you can come in a t-shirt without shaving or in your blue blazer and pressed Vineyard Vine khakis. Awesome spot! 

  • The Dip Net in Port Clyde. Wharf-side dining with full outdoor and indoor bars and table service. Meals that are informal, fun, and tasty, specializing in hot toasted lobster rolls, steamed lobster dinners, and seafood specialties. Great vibe and great view! 

  • The Barn in Port Clyde. a funky informal place to gather between 4 and 9 pm. Enjoy, cold beer, cocktails and a fresh raw seafood bar. An art gallery is upstairs. Thursday happy hour is an awesome local event!  Located directly across from the Port Clyde General Store.

  • Doug's Seafood in Thomaston.  A small family run business serving up classic New England fare.  Lot's of fried goodness and lobster rolls! 

My Favorite Area Restaurants

  • The Quarry Tavern in Tenants Harbor.  I have to start with my next door neighbor.  Cozy tavern with a great, casual menu.  I call it a gastro-pub. Good pub food, specials, fresh seafood, salads - Chef Colin does it right.  Live music on occasion, darts, friendly staff and outdoor seating in the summer.

  • Café Miranda in Rockland. Crazy eclectic décor and menu. Something for everyone and I mean everyone. You must check out the menu! Did I say crazy eclectic? Incredible flavors, many dishes cooked in wood fired oven. Seafood, steak, pasta, salads, American, Italian, Polish, burgers, pizza, chicken, veal, fresh vegetables, vegan, homemade bread etc. If Elvis and LL Bean opened up a restaurant together it would be Café Miranda! I love sitting at the 4 person chef's bar and watch them cook! 

  • Long Grain in Camden.  Although many consider Long Grain a Thai restaurant, the dishes are inspired by many different Asian cuisines and cultures, including Thai and Vietnamese street food, that are served in small eateries in Singapore and meals on dinner tables in Indonesia and Japan can all be found at Long Grain. If you are a foodie - this is a must visit! 

  • 18 Central Oyster Bar & Grill in Rockport.  Awesome raw bar, fresh seafood, steaks, fried chicken, apps and small plates.  Good selection of Maine craft beer.  Love to sit at the bar and make a meal out of a couple appetizers.  The space is great and oh - it's overlooking Rockport Harbor.  

  • Nina June in Rockport.  A local from Camden, Maine, but raised in Italy, Spain, and Lebanon, now brings her Mediterranean passion to the magnificent array of products from Maine's oceans and farms. Take the finest Maine has to offer, then give it a fresh, tasty Mediterranean spin-that's what you'll find at N?na June.  You will love this place, the food, the view and the experience.

  • The Waterfront in Camden. You can never go wrong at The Waterfront. Beautiful spot right on Camden harbor. Good place to sit and talk about which boat in the harbor you would like to buy! Eat inside and out. Maine inspired entrees always good, always fresh. Good bar too! 

  • Frannie's Bistro in Camden. A local, upscale neighborhood restaurant. Wonderful dining experience. Great spot to take your bride for that anniversary dinner or special occasion! 

  • Ada's Kitchen in Rockland.  Homemade pastas, pizza, Maine craft beer & specialty cocktails offered in an informal bistro with an upbeat vibe. Awesome bartenders and staff!

  • Sammy's Deluxe in Rockland.  Sammy, the owner and chef makes delicious, simple, not fussy, seasonal, prideful meals--using the best of Maine ingredients. Definitely a "foodie" spot.

  • In Good Company in Rockland. Known for its small plates and wine list designed for food pairings, well-crafted cocktails, daily menus that focus on locally-sourced, fresh ingredients, and a comfortable casual atmosphere. Set in a renovated former bank. 

  • Pizza? Yep- Mid-Coast has some good ones. Our favorites include Flatbread Company in Rockport  and the Camden House of Pizza (mostly takeout). Gourmet pizza is available at Ada'sCafé Miranda and also at Rustica in Rockland.

  • Sushi? Yep- Actually on of the best in the country is in Rockland at the award winning Suzuki's!

  • Hot Dogs? How about the famous Wasses in Rockland!  Boy they taste good!

Coffee and Coffee spots, cafes and houses

The way to end a day in Maine! Ice Cream! After a long day of fun on land or at sea ice cream is the perfect ending. It's sometimes good in the morning and afternoon too! 

Midcoast Maine Local Craft Breweries

After sailing Maine's sparkling seas, kayaking and canoeing its pristine lakes and harbors, hiking its mountains or skiing down its snow covered slopes, what could be better than an icycold beer, especially a handcrafted one from a local microbrewery or brewpub? Maine now ranks fifth in the nation for the number of breweries per capita. The Maine craft beer revolution, steadily brewing for nearly 30 years, shows no signs of slowing down. Here are my favorites close by!  

  • Waterman's Beach Brewery - An old waterfront lobster shack transformed 2 years ago to an awesome brewery. Great beer and views!  10 minutes from Tenants Harbor in South Thomaston.

  • Liberator Brewing in Rockland On the south end of Main Street. Cool spot, tasty brews. 

  • Blaze Brewing in Camden - Amazing selection of craft beer made on site - and a few guest beers. On the harbor with great views and food. One side a wood fired cuisine, the other side Asian fusion. 

  • Monhegan Brewing - Great craft beer, 10 miles out to sea!   Worth the adventure! Grab the ferry in Port Clyde to Monhegan. Go on a hike, check out an art gallery and then grab a cold IPA! 

  • Rock Harbor Brewery - Two locations in Rockland including a brewpub on Main Street.  Great selection of ever changing brews!

  • Sea Dog Brewery - Waterfront Brewery and restaurant in the heart of Camden. 

Markets, Shopping, Galleries & More

  • Hedgerow in Martinsville/Port Clyde. Part garden center, part gallery, part gift store, part farmers market Really cool spot.

  • Port Clyde Fresh Catch in Port Clyde. Local, sustainable, community supported fresh seafood market.  

  • The Sugar Tree in Tenants Harbor.  A small shack filled with amazing baked goods, jams, prepared meals and more!  Check it out!

  • Spruce Tree Studio in Tenants Harbor.  A wonderful art studio and gift shop! 

  • Fresh vegetables and fruits from the farm? Beth's Farm Market in Warren just south of Thomaston.

  • On the St. George peninsula check out the Tenants Harbor General Store and the Port Clyde General Store for sundries, drinks, ice and plenty of goodies. 

  • Fresh baked bread and goodies? Atlantic Baking in Rockland.

  • Willow Bake Shop in Rockland.  Old style cake donuts - delicious! 

  • Farmers Markets?  Rockland Farmer's Market and  and one in Camden Farmers Market.

  • Sugar Tools in Camden.  One of our favorite shops! Carefully chosen things for the house, garden, clothes and more. Owned by a St George resident!  

  • Art Gallery Guide for Rockland, Camden, Monhegan and more! 

  • Visit Main Street in Rockland and Camden for an array of shopping!

Got a question? Need a recommendation?   Call, text or email David Bruce, Area Guide & REALTOR®   207.804.0001 DavidBruce@PortsideREG.com


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