Welcome to: Maine
One of the coldest states in the 48 – and the coldest in the spring months – Maine is surrounded by rugged coastline and natural beauty. Originally settled by the Maliseet, Passamaquoddy, Abenaki, and Penobscot Native American tribes, the Pine Tree State is filled with 17 million acres of forest and is home to around 6,000 lakes and ponds. An ocean lover’s dream, the mainland coastline alone stretches 3,500 miles with 65 historic lighthouses doting the coast and islands. When you add in the islands off the coast, the entire length of Maine’s shore is closer to 5500 miles. It became the 23rd state to join the Union on March 15, 1820.
With all the cold New England water, it’s no wonder Maine is the largest lobster producing state in America. The Maine Lobster Festival started in 1947 and has grown to a 5-day affair that’s landed on more than one “Best of Summer” list.
Aside from lobsters and lighthouses, Maine is also the largest producer of another popular culinary treat. An abundance of wild blueberries are indigenous to Maine, and these nutritious and sweet berries are used in everything from jams and jellies to salsas and soups all over the country.
The state capital is Augusta, a city that beat out Portland on account of its central location. Portland does remain the largest city in the state, with a cozy New England mix of vibrant shops, galleries and restaurants lining cobblestone streets. Of course, there’s plenty of rural fun to be had in Maine, too. Acadia National Park’s Cadillac Mountain ranks as the highest point on the East Coast, and from October to March, it’s the first place the sun rises on the United States. With harsh Maine winters you may not find any open roads up to the peak, but during the summer months the park draws millions of visitors.