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Downtown Portland?

Enfield, CT
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39 posts
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Downtown Portland?

Hi!

I'll be staying in the Wells/Ogunquit area the week of July 29th. My family and I have been vacationing in Maine for 15+ years and usually by-pass Portland to shop in Freeport. I've heard that there is a great (downtown?) area of Portland that has cobblestone streets and excellent shopping and restaurants. Where is this located? I tried finding information on it at portlandmaine.com, but am not familiar with the area. Is it worth visiting? The only time we stopped in this general area was to shop at the giant Christmas Tree Shops store in South Portland.

Any help would be appreciated.

Thanks!

APURK

Brunswick, Maine
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2,492 posts
38 reviews
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1. Re: Downtown Portland?

You're describing the Old Port section of downtown Portland. If you have a map, look for Exchange, Fore, and Commercial Streets. That general are is the Old Port.

You will find cobblestone streets and restored brick buildings with stunning architecture. It's a cool and hip place to shop, full of funky boutiques, bars, restaurants, book shops, fine crafts. Nothing like the Christmas Tree Shoppe and not really any discount/outlet stores like Freeport.

It's probably the #1 draw for most tourists in Portland, so I'd advise you to go there.

Bar Harbor, Maine
Destination Expert
for Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park
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3,871 posts
13 reviews
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2. Re: Downtown Portland?

The Old Port area is <nothing> like the Christmas Tree Shop in South Portland. Old Port has great little shops; a top of the line kitchen store (Le Roux Kitchen---sample their olive oils); excellent locally-owned coffee shops (all better than Starbucks); a Christmas store on Exchange St. that offers the most exquisite ornaments and other holiday-related things; small bookshops; an almost bewildering diversity of restaurants (try Duck Fat for a mid-day snack); a great Italian grocery store---Micucci's on India St; and the Casco Bay Ferry line.

Try it. You'll like it.

Enfield, CT
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39 posts
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3. Re: Downtown Portland?

Thanks for your help! I know that this area is nothing like the Christmas Tree Shop (that's just the only place I've been to in the Portland area)!

Can't wait to check out the Old Port section of Portland! Your descriptions seem to remind me of Ogunquit - another favorite spot of mine.

Thanks again!

Maine
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857 posts
9 reviews
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4. Re: Downtown Portland?

Dear APURK,

While in the Portland area, check out Two Lights Lobster Shack in Cape Elizabeth. Just had lunch there yesterday and the views were absolutely stunning. It sits high on a bluff with rocks below and crashing waves. The view is more than 180 degrees and you can watch the container ships coming in/out of the harbor in the distance.

Be prepared for a line though. However, it moves pretty quickly. They offer all the basic basic lobster dishes, chowders, fried seafood, plus wonderful cookies, pies, etc. I don't think there's a lobster shack type place with a more gorgeous setting than Two Lights.

Oops, there's also views of 2 defunct lighthouses on the western side!

cozyharbor

Bradley, Maine
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685 posts
14 reviews
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5. Re: Downtown Portland?

Two Lights is awesum. Typical "maine shack" line resteraunt. But the outside atmosphere can't be beat. Trick to find though, so make sure you mapquest it.

Brunswick, Maine
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2,492 posts
38 reviews
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6. Re: Downtown Portland?

We went to the Lobster Shack on the Fourth of July when it was foggy, but not too cold to eat outside, and there was no line at all, so I'd recommend you go on an iffy weather day.