Off the Beaten Path …

10 Very Cool Things to Do on Your Ogunquit Vacation

There are plenty of mainstays to your visit to The Dunes and Ogunquit. The Beaches. Marginal Way. Perkins Cove. And lots of museums, art galleries and great culinary hotspots. Of course, there are also plenty of cool, unusual ways to really make the most of your visit too.  Probably some activities and attractions you’ve never thought of doing. We’d like to introduce you to a few things that are a bit off the beaten path that will definitely add a twist to your vacation. 

1.)  A Bewitching Experience

Who says you have to wait until Halloween to explore the more macabre nature of the area? The Old Burial Grounds of York have gravestones that date back to the early 1600’s. But the most storied tenant has to be Mary Nassdon – a purported witch who died in 1774. Somehow, a legend arose around the slab of stone covering the grave; that it was purposely put there to prevent Mary from rising from her burial place. Creepy.

2.) Soar to New Heights

We go to great heights to make sure visitors have a really good time here in  Ogunquit. Come try your hand at zip lining and ropes courses. It’s a great way to take a break from the beach and gain a fresh perspective on your trip to Ogunquit. Take Flight will add a little excitement for anyone looking for a catch-your-breath outside adventure. Great for the entire family.                   

3.) Surf’s Up!

Whether you’ve been riding the swells for years or just decided to check surfing off your bucket list, the waters around Ogunquit will test your board skills on some of  Southern Maine’s gnarliest waves. At Liquid Dreams Surf Shop, you’ll find everything you need to hang 10. Visitors can buy or rent surfboards, wetsuits and more importantly, take lessons from some very patient, experienced instructors. Private and group lessons are available.  So bring on those cool surfer vibes.

4.) Spelunking by the Shore.  

Spelunkers are all about exploring caves. And believe it or not, the area provides plenty of opportunities for non-spunkers to explore some unusual formations including stalactites, flowstone and helictites. Blowing Cave,located in nearby Kennebunkport, is a cave that features a huge water spout. And if you’re up to a daytrip and even more underground sightseeing, head over to neighboring New Hampshire and Kinsman Notch and the Lost River Gorge & Boulder Caves.

5.) Colorful Monarchs

What could be better than watching the kids chase Monarch Butterflies across the grounds here at The Dunes? Or witnessing a splash of vibrant orange fluttering by? Monarch Butterflies are regular visitors to our property. In fact, we have been officially certified as a waystation and official stopping point on the Monarch Butterfly’s migratory path through MonarchWatch. The main reason for our designation is our effort to incorporate lots and lots of milkweed into our gardens. Monarch butterflies can’t survive without it, as it serves as food for their caterpillars and a ground for laying eggs. We’ve been doing all we can to support the growth of milkweed and other butterfly-supporting plants here at The Dunes for quite awhile now. So keep an eye out for these colorful wonders when strolling past our lush gardens.

6.) Get Up Close and Personal with the World’s Largest Mammal

We’re talking whales here. There are plenty of opportunities to whale watch all along the coast of Southern Maine. A variety of local companies offer whale-watching cruises this time of year offshore in the Gulf of Maine. Here’s your chance for an-once-in-a-lifetime chance to get splashed and soaked by such magnificent cetacean giants as humpback, finback, and blue whales. And while you’re at it, you just might spot a few sea seals, sea lions and dolphins as well.  Venture out into the Atlantic with First Chance Whale Watch in Kennebunkport and Odyssey Whale Watch up in Portland.

7.) The Blacksmiths Mall Antiques

Theodore Hutchins wouldn’t know what to make of his blacksmith shop today.  Established in 1840, the historic building has moved from horseshoes to antiques.The Blacksmiths Mall is now home to over 80 dealers offering antiques, collectibles, and decorative items. It is considered one of the most popular antiques shops in Southern Maine. You wouldn’t want to miss out on touring this amazing place, would you?

8.) A Grand Classic

Established in 1923, The Leavitt Theater is one of the last of the great art deco cinemas dating back to the silent film era. Today, it offers a series of interesting first run movies, classic, independent and local films. It is also home to live events, craft cocktails, a light food menu and nightly live entertainment. Over the years, the Leavitt Theater still features classic silent horror movies like “Nosferatu” (1922). Open from summer through the fall, the theater provides a place of community, entertainment and support for the performing arts.

9.) A Hands-on Way to Relax

Vacations are all about relaxing. But even the best family vacation can be a bit stressful. So why not slip away for the ultimate in relaxation? A massage. Enjoy the relaxing and nurturing environment of a Swedish, Deep Tissue, Sports or Hot Stone massage. Pay a visit to Your Body Works Massage and Day Spa. Then close your eyes, take a deep breath and unwind.

10.)  Architecture and Books

Okay. Who in their right mind would be stuck inside a stodgy old library in the middle of a beach vacation? Well you haven’t experienced the Ogunquit Memorial Library. Built in 1897, this historic structure is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Come for the architecture alone –  its stunning Romanesque and Romanesque Revival architecture are extremely rare in New England; Oh, by the way, its collection contains over 12,923 volumes. And its air conditioned too.

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