Nestled along the picturesque coastline of Maine, Saco is a charming town that offers a perfect blend of history, natural beauty, and recreational activities. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or someone seeking a relaxing coastal getaway, Saco has something for everyone. In this guide, we’ll explore the top things to do in Saco, Maine, ensuring your visit is filled with memorable experiences.
Things To Do In Saco Maine
- Historic Landmarks:
Begin your Saco journey by delving into its rich history. The Saco Museum, housed in a beautifully preserved 19th-century building, showcases a diverse collection of artifacts and exhibits. Take a step back in time as you explore the historic architecture of Saco’s Main Street, lined with well-preserved buildings that tell the story of the town’s past.
- Outdoor Adventures:
Saco’s natural beauty is best experienced outdoors. Ferry Beach State Park is a must-visit destination, offering sandy shores, tidal pools, and hiking trails. Pack a picnic and spend a day enjoying the sun and surf. For a more active adventure, explore the Eastern Trail, a scenic bike path that winds through woodlands and along the Saco River.
- Thornton Academy and Alumni Park:
If you appreciate educational history, visit Thornton Academy, a prestigious private school founded in 1811. Stroll through the beautifully landscaped Alumni Park, featuring sculptures and memorials dedicated to the school’s alumni, including famed poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow.
- Saco Heath Preserve:
Nature enthusiasts will find solace in the Saco Heath Preserve. This unique ecosystem offers a boardwalk trail through a pristine heathland, providing an opportunity to observe diverse plant and animal species. Birdwatchers, in particular, will appreciate the variety of avian life that calls this preserve home.
- Local Eateries and Cafés:
Saco boasts a vibrant culinary scene with a range of eateries to suit every palate. From seafood shacks serving fresh catches to cozy cafes brewing artisanal coffee, the town’s culinary offerings are sure to delight. Don’t miss the chance to savor Maine’s famous lobster in one of the local seafood restaurants.
- Cultural Events:
Check the local calendar for cultural events happening during your visit. Saco hosts various festivals, concerts, and community gatherings throughout the year. Attending one of these events not only provides entertainment but also offers a glimpse into the town’s vibrant community spirit.
- Lobster Boat Tours:
To truly experience Maine’s coastal charm, embark on a lobster boat tour. These guided excursions provide a hands-on experience of the lobstering industry, complete with breathtaking views of the coastline. Gain insights into the daily life of local lobster fishermen and enjoy the serene beauty of the Atlantic.
- Old Orchard Beach:
Just a stone’s throw away from Saco, Old Orchard Beach is a classic seaside destination. Enjoy a day of sun and sand on the seven miles of sandy shore, or take a stroll along the iconic Old Orchard Beach Pier. With its amusement park, shops, and eateries, Old Orchard Beach is a vibrant extension of the coastal experience.
- Aquaboggan Water Park:
For a dose of family fun, head to Aquaboggan Water Park. Splash around in the wave pool, zoom down thrilling water slides, and enjoy the lazy river. It’s a perfect way to cool off on a warm summer day and create lasting memories with loved ones.
- Saco River Market:
If you’re in town on a Saturday, don’t miss the Saco River Market. This vibrant farmers’ market features fresh produce, handmade crafts, and local goods. Engage with the friendly vendors, sample delicious treats, and support the community by purchasing unique, locally sourced products.
- Run of the Mill Public House and Brewery:
Treat your taste buds at Run of the Mill, a popular local brewery housed in a historic mill building. Enjoy a variety of craft beers brewed on-site, paired with a menu that features classic pub fare with a modern twist. The scenic views of the river from the deck make it a delightful dining experience.
- Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge:
Nature lovers will appreciate a visit to the nearby Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge. Located in Wells, just a short drive from Saco, this sanctuary offers peaceful trails through salt marshes and estuaries. It’s a prime spot for birdwatching and observing the diverse coastal ecosystem.
- Funtown Splashtown USA:
Perfect for families and thrill-seekers alike, Funtown Splashtown USA is a large amusement park featuring rides, water slides, and games. From roller coasters to water attractions, the park provides a full day of entertainment for visitors of all ages.
- Palace Playland:
Adjacent to Old Orchard Beach, Palace Playland is New England’s only beachfront amusement park. Enjoy a mix of classic and modern rides, arcade games, and carnival-style treats. The lively atmosphere and oceanfront location make it a quintessential part of the coastal Maine experience.
- Saco Scoop:
Indulge your sweet tooth at Saco Scoop, a beloved ice cream shop offering a variety of flavors and treats. After a day of exploring, treat yourself to a cone or sundae while strolling through downtown Saco.
In Saco, Maine, the past seamlessly blends with the present, offering visitors a unique and fulfilling experience. From exploring historic landmarks to immersing yourself in the natural wonders of the region, Saco provides a diverse range of activities for every traveler. So, pack your bags and get ready to create lasting memories in this hidden gem along the Maine coast.