While Maine is a hot spot for lobster-loving tourists in the summertime, it’s an excellent place to celebrate the winter season as well. Maine might be cold, but if you love the outdoors, this state has much to offer visitors willing to bundle themselves up and step out their front doors. Maine is a big state with a wide variety of winter activities to enjoy. From snowmobiling in The County to Nordic skiing along the coast, to ice fishing on one of the many western Maine lakes, there are heaps of things to do during the wintertime in the Pine Tree State.
Sugarloaf is one of Maine’s largest ski resorts in Carrabassett Valley. Home to Olympic gold medalist, Seth Wescott, Sugarloaf is one of the best ski mountains in the East. Pack up the skis and head to the only lift-serviced above-tree line skiing on the coast with over 60 miles of trails and an average of 200 inches of fresh snow every season.
For the past 28 years, thousands of people gather at Old Orchard Beach for the largest and oldest ocean plunge to raise money for the Special Olympics. If you’re feeling brave, or just hungover from the night before, sign up for the infamous The Lobster Dip.
Nordic skiing is very popular in Maine, but have you tried skate skiing? Skate skiing is a blood-pumping alternative to classic cross country skiing. Head to Pineland Farms in New Gloucester to ski the 30 miles of perfectly groomed trails winding through Maine woods and farmland.
Every winter during the full moon, Mt. Abram opens to those brave souls who wish to climb nearly 2,000 feet to the summit by the light of the moon. As you hike up, your ski gear will be transported to the top. When you’re ready to head back down, just strap on your skis or board and enjoy the ride.
Celebrate the start of Christmas in one of Maine’s most charming seaside villages. During the weeks before Christmas, Kennebunkport’s Dock Square becomes Maine’s version of the North Pole. Don’t miss the lobster trap tree lighting at Christmas Prelude.
Aroostook County offers thousands of miles of incredible snowmobile trails that will take you through the vast wilderness all the way to Canada. Rent snowmobile or bring your own and enjoy speeding through the Great White North. Just watch out for the moose!
Ice fishing is one of Maine’s biggest pastimes. With loads of lakes across the state, grab your friends, some smelt, and perhaps a bottle of Allen’s Coffee Brandy and spend the day on the ice. Don’t have your own ice shack? You can rent one on Moosehead Lake.
Every February the Camden Snow Bowl hosts the U.S. National Toboggan Championships. Get your team together, don some epic costumes, and hit the hill to see if you have what it takes to be the winner.
Ski racing isn’t just for the kids. Sign up for Racing with the Moon corporate race league for skiers and snowboarders of all abilities. Round up some of your snow loving coworkers and hit up Shawnee Peak midweek for this nine-week race series.
Ice harvesting is a long tradition for Maine’s people. While most people just use their freezers these days, you can still try your hand at harvesting ice from Thompson Pond in South Bristol. Every February the Thompson Ice House Harvesting Museum hosts an annual Ice Harvesting day.
Portland has no shortage of amazing restaurants and food. Every March many restaurants come together and host Maine Restaurant Week with special menus and pricing. For an entire week, you can enjoy lunch and dinner at various restaurants across Portland and the southern Maine region.
Acadia National Park may be a hotbed of tourists in the summer months, but during the winter, it is a quiet and peaceful place. Strap on a pair of snowshoes or Nordic skiing and enjoy the miles of carriage trails that wind through Mount Desert Island.
After a hard day on the slopes or shoving snow from your driveway, make a cozy fire and sit down with your friends and family with a steaming cup of hot chocolate. Maine is full of incredible outdoor winter activities so you’ll need a little R&R by the fireplace.
Maine may be known as a summer destination, but don’t underestimate its winter activities. Whether you’re a ski bunny, a foodie, or just someone who can’t say “no,” Maine is the perfect place to be in the winter months.