Maine State Parks offer a stunning backdrop to explore the great outdoors as well as historic wilderness relics. This small state is known for its rocky coast, north woods, mountains, lakes and rivers and makes an ideal vacation destination for outdoor enthusiasts as well as history buffs.
Historic Wilderness Relics
The network of Maine State Parks features 17 official State Historic Sites for visitors to enjoy.
This is the area where Teddy Roosevelt became an outdoorsman and a conservationist, and where today visitors can experience a thousand-year-old community, the oldest blockhouse in the nation, a pair of forgotten steam locomotives “lost” in the middle of the forest, and more.
Colonial Pemaquid State Historic Site
Enjoy a hike through the remote woods of Colonial Pemaquid State Park and you’ll come across two rusting 100-ton locomotives frozen in time. In 1926 these trains were part of the Eagle Lake and West Branch Railroad and used to move 10-12 loaded pulpwood cars at a time.
Visit the Site of Popham Colony of 1607
More than 400 years ago, two ships, the Gift of God and the Mary and John carried 100 male colonists to the mouth of the Kennebec River where they started the Popham Colony. They hoped to develop trade for food and furs and to ship timber back to England for money and other valuables. The colony failed but taught valuable lessons to help other colonies survive.
Visitors have the opportunity to see the collection of artifacts that remain.
Oyster Middens of Damariscotta, Maine
Damariscotta is an ancient Abernaki word meaning “river of many fishes.” The middens (shell heaps) along the Darmariscotta in Maine are 25,000 years old. These enormous shell heaps were created by Native Americans over approximately 1,000 years.
In the late 1880s, a large amount of the shells were removed and used to create chicken feed. The small portion that is left today is amazing to witness and offers a glimpse of what once was there.
For an overview of where to camp, hike, and what to see while visiting Maine’s parks, visit Maine.gov for more information.