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Portland Observatory

138 Congress St., Portland, ME 04101
207-774-5561
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Ranked #10 of 64 attractions in Portland
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Observation Decks/ Towers, Observatories/ Planetariums, Historic Sites, Landmarks/ Points of Interest
Activities: Group tours/walking tour
Owner description: In the 1800s, Captain Moody used this observatory to monitor the routes of ships as far as 30 miles away. Today visitors can tour a museum focusing on... more » Owner description: In the 1800s, Captain Moody used this observatory to monitor the routes of ships as far as 30 miles away. Today visitors can tour a museum focusing on the history of the watch tower and get a stunning bird's-eye view of Portland and the harbor. « less
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115 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
7 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 23, 2014 NEW

Nice informative experience at one of the landmarks of Portland, the observatory tower. This was an extra item on our last day, Sunday, to get a bird's eye view of the city. Very nice. We had a tour guide giving some historical context to the tower, as well as the history of Portland, which was very enlightening. When we got... More

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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
83 reviews 83 reviews
31 attraction reviews
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014 NEW

We walked to the observatory via Munjoy Hill - yes, I did not know about the infamous Munjoy Hill until we were half way up and said wth - this is really steep! haha After doing this hill the approximate 109 steps to the top of the observatory was nothing, especially since you stop on each floor. This place not... More

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london
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2014 NEW

This was a great landmark to check out. Our tour guide (you have to be accompanied up the tower, tours take place every half an hour or so in the summer) was very knowledgeable about the tower and local history around the time it was built and in use. I'm not a marine enthusiast but I found it fascinating and... More

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Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2014 NEW

The last day of a family vacation in Portland we toured the observatory. We had a great tour guide who knew Portland inside and out. The view from the top is worth the trip up all the steps. A must if you are interested in Portland history.

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SE NH
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
9 attraction reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2014 NEW

RE: History galore....see 360 panorama of Portland, Casco Bay, and the Islands ...and I was a docent here years ago... Built 1807.... you can climb the stairs in Captain Lemuel Moody’s (sea captain, architect and builder/owner) footsteps. He used his Doland telescope to spot ships coming into port, giving the docks advance warning. Using flags they could communicate with the... More

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Bath
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
7 attraction reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2014 NEW

Easy to walk to from the waterfront. The building is pretty iconic in itself and well worth a few photos. The tour taking you to the top floor lasts about half to three quarters of an hour and cost us $9 per person, which isn't entirely cheap - but the view is worth it. Our tour guide kept up a... More

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North Carollina
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 17, 2014

You pass this site on your bus tour around Portland (about which more later), and you may be able to get off the bus here and pick up a later bus after visiting the Observatory. (I know you can at the Art Museum, at least on the tours I have taken.) The climb to the top is semi-strenuous, but you... More

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Bloomfield Hills, Michigan
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
7 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2014

We came upon the Portland Observatory while looking for a restaurant. Made it just in time for a tour and really enjoyed learing about the history of the city and the observatory. The views from the top are breathtaking, although someone has built high-rise condos on the water blocking part of the view. Well worth the price of admission.

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Glen Allen
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2014

It's a Wow all around. The history, architecture and views are tremendous. A must do in Portland! Climb is not strenuous since guides stop at each floor to cover the construction. At the top, you can see to New Hampshire!

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Nashville, Tennessee
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
8 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2014

$9 guided tour, 45 minutes, history of Portland and fabulous view from the top with 7 flights of stairs. Parking is a challenge in this town. Great fun. Had lunch at Duckfat prior (had to wait 30 mins. for seating for 4 for lunch on a Wednesday) within walking distance.

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