Lebanon is located in York County at the southern tip of Maine, about 50 kilometers north of Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
It’s not far from one of the most scenic and resource-rich lake districts in many northern states, and it’s close enough to the Atlantic coast for a convenient day trip.
Like much of the state, it’s a nature lover and outdoor enthusiast’s paradise, filled with incredible state parks, museums, art galleries, and historic sites, so discovering things to do won’t become a problem.
Here are the 15 best things to do in and around Lebanon, Maine.
1. Bear Brook State Park
Although you’ll discover it in the neighboring state of New Hampshire, Bear Brook State Park is shut sufficient to Lebanon to be on the radar of company wanting to expertise the New England wilderness in all its glory.
Protecting greater than 10,000 acres, it’s the most important of its variety in the state, and with almost 50 miles of trails, it’s not too troublesome to see most of it.
The park options virtually 100 campsites and consists of mountains, bogs, rivers, and streams which are massive hits with outdoorsmen and nature lovers of all stripes.
Try the welcome middle and tenting store earlier than heading out.
2. The Kids’s Museum of New Hampshire
Although it’s not the most important museum in the world, what The Kids’s Museum of New Hampshire lacks in dimension it greater than makes up for in enjoyable.
It’s a kind of uncommon locations that not solely entertains children, however engages and educates them too.
Positioned on Washington Road in Dover, many earlier company have acknowledged that their expertise far exceeded their expectations, and that even after two or extra hours, their little ones weren’t bored.
Many of the museum’s reveals encourage youngsters to actively take part, not simply watch passively, so that they’ll work up a sweat and eliminate that pent-up vitality.
3. Portsmouth Escape Room
For a really distinctive and suspenseful afternoon or night out of the weather, there’s nothing higher than a very good escape room.
Portsmouth Escape Room options quite a lot of rooms with completely different themes, and the extent of problem will be matched effectively – even for teams with youngsters.
In case you’ve by no means skilled an escape room, they’re nice methods to construct camaraderie and teamwork, and so they train the gray matter as few different recreation actions do.
Escape rooms are nice concepts for double dates too, and since they’re in downtown Portsmouth, there can be loads of eating places close by for a post-activity dinner or drink.
4. Rachel Carson Nationwide Wildlife Refuge
Rachel Carson was one of many unique heavyweights in the environmental consciousness motion that swept the nation a long time in the past.
Her ebook Silent Spring continues to be a basic in any case these years, and there’s no extra becoming means to honor her legacy than by spending a while on the Nationwide Wildlife Refuge named after her.
The refuge is a crucial layover level for migrating waterfowl and wading birds, particularly when extra northern and inland freshwater lakes are frozen.
The refuge’s entrance is on Port Street in Wells, and it was established in 1966 to shield the very important coastal ecosystem and the animals that reside there.
5. USS Albacore
In case you’ve by no means seen a submarine up shut, they’re exceptional machines; after they’re completely out of the water, their spectacular dimension and girth is one thing to behold.
The USS Albacore is a ‘50s period sub that’s now a museum and is open to the general public.
In some ways, boats just like the Albacore had been test-beds for experimental know-how, a lot of which led to advances that are actually frequent on submarines.
Like most guests, you’ll doubtless discover the cramped areas claustrophobic, however you’ll get a captivating look right into a stealthy weapon system that was on the entrance line for a lot of the chilly conflict.
6. Uncover Portsmouth Heart
Positioned in a constructing that previously housed town’s library, the Portsmouth Historic Society features a distinctive mixture of reveals and shows that contact on matters like science, historical past, tradition, artwork, and the pure world.
In that respect, it’s one among a form, and with such a spread, it’s doubtless that nearly everybody will discover one thing that pursuits them.
Most of the middle’s reveals have been designed with youngsters in thoughts, and fairly just a few of them are interactive. As well as to their everlasting reveals, they typically host non permanent ones from different establishments, so that you by no means know what you’ll see till you present up.
7. Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion Historic Website
Initially constructed in the mid-1700s, the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion was as soon as the house, workplace, and library of a colonial governor. The mansion is comprised of greater than 40 rooms, and its grounds had been a working farm for a lot of its life.
The historic web site is positioned on Little Harbor Street only a few miles from downtown Portsmouth; it is among the most effectively preserved of its sort from the colonial days.
The intensive mansion’s grounds are a wonderful place for a stroll when you’ve toured the home, and supply wonderful views of scenic Little Harbor.
8. Strawbery Banke Museum
Positioned in one among Portsmouth’s most historic districts, Strawbery Banke Museum consists of greater than 10 acres of grounds and an incredible residing historical past museum that’s one of many state’s most full repositories of historic and cultural artifacts.
The museum has completely different hours at completely different instances of the 12 months, and guided excursions can be found, lots of which embrace different historic properties and buildings in the realm.
For vacationers who’re solely in the realm a short while and have an interest in getting an outline of the realm’s historical past, spending just a few hours on the Strawbery Banke Museum could be a smart means to do exactly that.
9. Woodman Museum
With a lot historical past courting again lots of of years – to the times when most of New England was nonetheless a territory of Nice Britain – it’s no surprise there are such a lot of superb museums in Maine and New Hampshire.
The Woodman Museum was based in 1916 and consists of components of artwork, historical past, Native American tradition, and the pure world.
The museum consists of 4 buildings which have distinctive histories of their very own; they had been the residences of a few of the space’s most attention-grabbing and traditionally vital characters courting again to the 1600s, when the realm was a wild and harmful frontier stuffed with hostile natives and animals.
10. Portland Museum of Artwork
In years previous, New England was dwelling to most of the nation’s most revered and completed artists.
Portland Museum of Artwork is the state’s oldest and most complete artwork museum and consists of quite a lot of incredible artwork – a few of which is priceless.
Although most of the museum’s items are conventional, there are a lot of up to date ones as effectively. As well as to its everlasting gallery, it hosts non permanent ones from different establishments all year long.
Positioned in historic Congress Sq., the easiest way to maintain abreast of their occasions and reveals is to verify their web site periodically.
11. Store on the Previous Port
Portland’s Previous Port District is town’s outdated waterfront space that was as soon as a thriving wharf stuffed with ship berths, warehouses, and horse-drawn carts clip-clopping over cobblestone streets.
Now after a transformative renaissance, it’s one of many space’s most fashionable and common retail areas, full of retailers, galleries, and eateries that often draw fairly a crowd.
Most of the store’s objects are distinctive bits of New England-style Americana. Although the costs aren’t low, what you’ll get has far more character than what you’ll discover at nationwide retail chains.
The Previous Port is a good place to chill out with a glass of wine or cappuccino whereas ready for the solar to set.
12. Take a Historic Properties Tour
With so many historic properties positioned downtown, Portland is the proper place to take a historic properties tour.
For do-it-yourselfers, it’s fairly simple to compile an inventory of properties inside just a few blocks of each other. In case you’d quite let another person fear in regards to the particulars, there are a selection of professionally guided dwelling tour choices out there as effectively.
Irrespective of which route you determine to take, you’ll get a captivating glimpse into the previous. It’ll additionally enable you get your bearing on town’s structure, which is able to come in helpful as you proceed to discover all town has to supply.
13. Japanese Promenade
Portland definitely isn’t missing in the waterfront division, and the Japanese Promenade is arguably essentially the most quaint, scenic, and beloved space by locals and guests alike.
Set on a gorgeous piece of land between Fore River and Again Cove, the almost 70-acre park is stuffed with trails, seashores, and large open areas that’ll maintain you and your journey companions occupied for hours.
It’s open year-round, and although it’s significantly common in the nice and cozy months, a few of the most dramatic scenes will be seen on blustery winter days, when the view appears to be like like a basic oil portray.
A lot of the park is comparatively distant and can make you’re feeling such as you’re farther away from civilization than you actually are.
14. Vaughan Woods Memorial State Park
Positioned close to the city of South Berwick, Vaughan Woods Memorial State Park sits alongside the shores of Salmon Falls River that, for a lot of its course, is the dividing line between Maine and New Hampshire.
The park is open year-round, and although there aren’t any amenities to converse of, it’s stuffed with unbelievable vistas and loads of path choices that comply with the river.
For many who’d like to mix a bit of historical past with the park’s pure magnificence, it’s doable to attain Hamilton Home by following a well-marked path.
The house sits on a bluff overlooking the river that’s one picture op that needs to be taken benefit of.
15. Fort Allen State Park
Portland’s Casco Bay is among the space’s pure jewels, and there’s no higher place from which to view it than Fort Allen State Park.
As they’re doing with unused area in many cities and cities, the land that’s now a part of the state park was as soon as sitting idly. Now, it’s a terrific group useful resource that gives quite a lot of out of doors exercise choices common with locals and guests.
Stuffed with simply walkable paths, picnic areas, and coated gazebos, it has the whole lot you’ll want for an exquisite time.
The park is open year-round and isn’t very busy, particularly in the autumn and winter months.