Wiscasset is right on U.S. Route 1, between Bath and Damariscotta. Boothbay Harbor is off Route 1, southeast down a peninsula on Route 27; coming from the south, turn right shortly after crossing the bridge in Wiscasset. Both Greyhound (www.greyhound.com; tel. 800/231-2222) and Concord Coach (www.concordcoachlines.com; tel. 800/639-3317) buses stop in Wiscasset.
As befits a place where tourism is a major industry, the Boothbay region has three visitor information centers in and around town. On U.S. Route 1, at the Route 27 turnoff, there’s an info center open seasonally, a good place to stock up on initial brochures. A mile before you reach the villages is the also-seasonal Boothbay Information Center (open June through October). If you zoom past that one or it’s closed, don’t fret: the year-round Boothbay Harbor Region Chamber of Commerce (www.boothbayharbor.com; tel. 207/633-2353) is at the intersection of routes 27 and 96.
Summer hasn’t truly kicked off in the Boothbay region until the midcoast’s fleet of windjammers—old-school, tall-masted sailing ships docks in Boothbay Harbor for Windjammer Days (www.windjammerdays.org; tel. 207/633-2353). From the end of June through Fourth of July weekend, as many as a dozen historic ships offer tours and day sails. There’s live music all over town nearly every night of the week, plus a staged pirate invasion, oyster-shucking contests, a race across lobster traps bobbing the bay, a codfish race, and other types of marine tomfoolery.
Get Your Kicks on Route 1? Umm . . . No.
While there’s a certain retro charm in the idea of traveling Maine on historic Route 1, the reality is quite different. It can be congested (Wiscasset) and unattractive (Waldoboro) in this part of the state, and you’re not missing anything if you take alternative routes. For memorable explorations, be sure to leave enough time for forays both inland and down the lesser roads along the coast.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.