Belfast & Beyond
The East Penobscot Bay Region reaches from Belfast in the east to Ellsworth in the west, taking in a number of peninsulas and islands. In summer this is an ideal area for sailing and kayaking; in fall, the scarlet wild blueberry barrens are a sight to see.
Belfast offers an unmatched view of the open sea. This stunning seascape along with the remarkable collection of Federal, Victorian, Greek revival and Italian style homes built by sea merchants has lured artists, writers and crafts people to live in the area. Boasting a quaint downtown with shop-lined streets, Belfast is an ideal place to find antiques, souvenirs, collectibles, Maine-made crafts and much more.
Searsport got its name from David Sears who made a fortune in the sea business and the China trade. You can see many of the artifacts brought back from these travels in the Penobscot Marine Museum. If you like antiques and flea markets you’ll be in heaven walking the brick sidewalks in the historic downtown.
The town of Blue Hill is on the east side of the peninsula. Today, it is known for it crafts, pottery, and an eclectic collection of 620,000 music titles available at Bagaduc Music Library. Students perform at the Kneisel Hall Summer Music Center.
On the west coast of the peninsula you’ll find the quiet harbor town of Castine. Today Castine is the home of Maine Maritime Academy. Visitors to Castine may enjoy several historic sites and parks, a deep-water harbor, tennis, golf, great restaurants, and more.
You can reach Deer Island by a short drive across the bridge from the Blue Hill Peninsula. Fishing communities dot this picturesque island which artists have discovered and captured with their paintings. The romance and mystique of Deer Isle was captured by John Steinbeck in his book Travels with Charley.
Stonington & Stockton Springs
Stonington, at the southern most tip of Deer Isle, remains an active harbor town that invites touring and picture taking. West of Belfast and Searsport you’ll find Stockton Springs home to Fort Point State Park and Fort Point Light, both located on Fort Point, a peninsula on Cape Jellison.
Penobscot Narrows Bridge
Traveling up Rt. 1 toward Bucksport prepare yourself for a spectacular scenic view - thanks to the new Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Observatory. Spanning the Penobscot River, this engineering marvel has a 42-story tower as one of its support structures making it America’s only observatory bridge. Looking out from the observation tower you have a breath-taking 360-degree panoramic view that stretches to the Camden Hills to the south, Mount Desert Island to the east and Mount Katahdin to the northwest.