It’s no secret that Maine is a spectacle of wonderful scenery in the spring, summer and fall, but winter in Maine has a beauty and vibe all its own. For those who enjoy getting away from the usual crowds that come with warm-season vacations, winter in Maine is an option that shouldn’t go unnoticed or untried.

 Go Metro

Once the visiting hordes are gone, it’s much easier to enjoy great food at the many wonderful restaurants in Maine’s urban areas. There are also several places along the coast that stay open through the winter, too. The smaller towns have their own winter charm as well. A place like Conti’s, a little ramshackle-looking place in Rockport, serves up some of the most memorable lobster dishes to be found across the entire New England area.

Go Rural

For intrepid lovers of the outdoors, Maine offers wide expanses of untamed wilderness that takes on an almost other-worldly personality once the snow starts falling. Ice fishing, hunting, hiking, cross country skiing and even camping are all part of Maine’s winter scene. There are also miles and miles of snowmobile trails that wind through some of the most spectacular winter scenery in the world. If just chilling out and getting away from it all are the main objectives, there are plenty of secluded lodging choices all over the Pine Tree State.

Go Coastal

The smaller towns and villages along Maine’s coastline slow down in the winter, but that doesn’t mean they fold up the sidewalks. In Freeport, L.L. Bean stays open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It’s still the pre-eminent spot to shop for outdoor clothing and gear. Even if nothing gets bought, it’s a great place to soak in the Maine way of approaching and appreciating the great outdoors. The really tough folk tend to gravitate to the rugged beauty of the Atlantic, as it relentlessly pounds into the rocky coastline. And the toughest of the tough don’t let winter stop them from fishing, sailing, and even surfing.

Though not for everyone, wintertime Maine can be one of those experiences that won’t be forgotten.