Each year we search for activities and experiences that offer guests a special touch of the Maine experience. Blue Hill is convenient for exploring the small seaside villages and coastline of the secluded and beautiful peninsula or for day-tripping to Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor, Camden, or Downeast Maine. Hiking, biking, kayaking, boating, sailing, sightseeing, concerts, galleries, antiquing, flying, visiting lighthouses, and exploring islands are all area activities. Help with planning fabulous vacations is a specialty of the inn and available to all guests before and during their stay. Below is just a selection of special events and attractions. Specific dates are listed for some events, while others are available throughout the season. Most of the calendar events require advance reservations.
July 4. You’ll find small town patriotism from Stonington to Castine to Bar Harbor.
July 13. Lobster Boat Races, Stonington, answers the question, “How fast can they go?”
July 20. Fishermen's Day, Stonington, has family fun on the Stonington Fish Pier with crafts, slippery cod contest, whacky boat races, great music and lots of food!
July 25-26-27. Bucksport Bay Festival, Bucksport has something for everyone with a line up of live music, a classic car and motorcycle show, a fun run, and a kids area.
August 3. 5th Annual Blueberry Festival at the First Congregational Church of Blue Hill. This is the church's fifth annual Blueberry Festival. Blueberries reign at this local festival, 7AM-3PM.
September 13, We celebrate Maine Open Lighthouse Day.
We celebrate Maine Open Lighthouse Day. When you check in, you'll receive a package of information about Maine lighthouses, including a state map with the history of each lighthouse. You can explore the region and find ways to spot all eight of the closest lighthouses. Whether by car, boat, or plane, catching the lights and exploring the coast during the beautiful September weather will make for a memorable trip to Blue Hill. Lights include Robinson Point Light, Isle au Haut; Saddleback Light, remote; Brown's Head Lighthouse, Vinalhaven; Goose Rocks Light, Fox Island Thoroughfare; Heron Neck Light; and Mark Island Light, Deer Isle Thoroughfare. Inn staff can assist with all your sightseeing plans.
Sept. 19-21. The Common Ground Country Fair, Unity, is a celebration of rural life. It features demonstrations, Maine organic produced foods and crafts and livestock exhibits.
Oct. 10-20. Foliage, Food, and Wine Festival, Blue Hill, celebrates fall at its best with fine food and wines. The inn is proud to team with local restaurants and purveyors for this festival. Events have included wine dinners, beer and sparkling luncheons, chocolate making classes, lobster bakes, and cider and artisanal cheese tastings. Blue Hill art galleries and museums will host open houses and local producers will host a farmer's market.
On Sunday, October 12, you can visit us and oodles of local purveyors of fine things at the Taste of the Peninsula right here in Blue Hill. We will again this year partner with the team at El El Frijoles and Max from the Blue Hill Wine Shop to offer you a wine dinner with a Latin twist. Check with us for the full schedule.
Off-season availability of the Cape House Suite and Studio, November-May
Area Attractions and Activities
The Blue Hill, Maine, area offers a bit of everything. You’ll find a partial listing here. Sarah Pebworth and her staff will have updated information, or will find it for you, and can make recommendations and reservations for you. You may find bluehillme.com, the local chamber, and the local newspaper informative as well.
For a biking-island adventure, plan to catch an Old Quarry Ocean Adventures cruise from Stonington to Isle Au Haut where cars are few, scenery is spectacular, and half of the island is owned by Acadia National Park. We can help you with the details. Or you can take the mailboat to Isle au Haut. While you’re there, be sure to check out Black Dinah’s café.
Kayaking rentals and guided tours are available from several providers, including Castine Kayaks and Old Quarry. Advance reservations are suggested since the companies are small, often limited to one tour at a time, and have just a few rental kayaks on hand. Rental kayaks can be delivered to some places of put-in, including the boat landing just two blocks from the inn. The pristine waters of the area are great for kayaking with access in Blue Hill, Naskeag Point, Castine, and Deer Isle. Blue Hill's reversing falls are perfect for the kayaker wanting to experience "white water" at a controlled pace. The Activity Shop is the place, right in Blue Hill, to rent kayaks. Advanced reservations assure you have the vacation you are dreaming about now.
Puffins, lighthouses, and lobsters sightseeing trips are all available from Old Quarry Adventures, which has specialty cruises each day of the week, June to September. Especially appealing are the Puffin Watch and Lighthouse cruises conducted on Sundays. Puffins look like the clowns of the sea and you only get to see them if you cruise to one of the two nesting islands in local waters. Maine lighthouses are mostly located offshore. The lighthouse cruise offers views of 5 to 7 lighthouses with narration by the Captain.
Five whales may be spotted at sea: Humpbacks, Finbacks, Minkes, Harbor Porpoise, and, very rarely, Right whales. Old Quarry Adventures takes a small boat, the Nigh Duck, from Stonington. Daily whale watching cruises are also available from Bar Harbor. The inn can assist you with reservations.
Eco-cruises are offered by Old Quarry on the Nigh Duck and on the mailboat, both out of Stonington.
Fishing is possible with Dave’s Guide Service. Dave Cassidy offers guided trips and beginning fly-fishing instruction, scenic canoe trips and more.
Fly with Acadia Air Tours, which offers biplane or glider ridesa great way to see the beauty of the area. What a memory to take home! Have your own plane? There are small airports in Stonington and Bar Harbor.
Island Heritage Trust Trails provides information about trails on land on Deer Isle and surrounding islands that they have preserved, including favorites like Settlement Quarry and the Tennis Preserve.
Golf and Tennis
Kneisel Hall is internationally known with students from around the world. The faculty, all accomplished musicians from across the United States, performs twice-weekly concerts in a small hall nestled in an idyllic wooded setting, within walking distance of the inn. Concerts are often sold out and pre-season reservations are recommended. We will purchase tickets for you upon request.
Historic Sites and Museums
The Blue Hill, Maine, area is rich in history and has preserved many homes of early, distinguished colonists. Volunteers generally staff museums and homes and the times they are open varies. As the volunteers are typically very enthusiastic about the local history, the inn can sometimes arrange for private showings with advanced notice.
In Blue Hill take a tour of Jonathan Fisher's Home (the first minister of Blue Hill, inventor, eccentric, learned man from Harvard) and the Holt House, home to the Blue Hill Historical Society and a well-restored 18th century homestead.
In Ellsworth visit the Woodlawn Museum, home of Colonial Black. Hike the paths, tour the home, attend the farmers market, or reserve for an afternoon of croquet. Venture to the Cornelia Stanwood Museum and Birdsacre Wildlife Sanctuary to explore the 100 acres, the noted ornithologist's homestead, and the bird sanctuary.
The least opened museum, but a fascinating one, is the Granite Museum in Stonington. It is generally open in July and August.