This summer, explore the offshore townships of Maine the old-fashioned way—under sail. At 3,478 miles, Maine’s coastline is longer than California’s, and its northernmost stretches are best seen from the water. We’ll spend five days living and traveling aboard a pair of classic schooners, complete with cozy bunks, handcrafted styling, and an experienced crew. Along the way, we’ll visit local communities and discover the wonders and oddities that make up this beautiful, remote corner of the world.
You should plan to arrive by 10 a.m. on Wednesday, August 7 at the main pier in Rockland, Maine. The trip will end back in Rockland around 6 p.m. on Sunday, August 11. Travelers are responsible for getting to and from Rockland. Portland International Jetport (PWM) is the nearest major airport and is a two-hour drive from Rockland. Rockland has several car rental companies including Enterprise, Budget, and Avis if you’d like to arrange two one-way rentals.
Keep in mind that life aboard a boat is fairly active. You should feel confident climbing up and down a ladder, as well as moving about as the ship leans over while in motion. You can also expect to walk between 2 to 3 miles per day, often on rocky coastline and dirt paths.
You should also feel comfortable on and around water. Since these are bigger boats, life jackets are not mandatory unless the weather gets choppy. If you feel more comfortable in a life jacket, you are more than welcome to wear one.
Our group will be staying aboard a classic wooden vessel, the schooner Alamar. Alamar is 45 feet long and holds six guests plus two to three crew members. The sleeping quarters are steeped in sailing tradition, meaning that they are comfortable but compact; each guest will have a bunk in a shared cabin and shared access to a bathroom equipped with a manual pump marine toilet. Showers can be taken on deck with water heated from the sun.
Sailing on traditionally rigged boats along the coast of Maine is a bit like traveling back in time. Over the course of the trip, you’ll have the opportunity to handle sails and take the helm, learning a traditional skill that still survives on these historic vessels. Each boat also has a small library for those who’d like to read more about the area’s local history, nature, and folklore.
August in Maine is usually the most pleasant month for sailing. Daytime temperatures reach up to around 80°F, dropping to the low 60s in the evenings, while humidity can reach 75 percent. The water is warmer than early summer and there is less fog. You can expect some amount of rain during the week.
Nope! This trip is open to all levels of experience, and is a great chance to...ahem...learn the ropes. Your guides are seasoned sailors and they'll be taking care of the boat's operation, navigation, and maintenance, but they're always happy to share their knowledge if you're curious to learn.