By car, U.S. Route 1 passes directly through the center of Rockland. Concord Coach (www.concordcoachlines.com; tel. 800/639-3317) runs one to two daily buses from Portland and Boston.
Surprisingly, Rockland’s tiny local airport (Knox County Regional Airport, airport code RKD) is served by daily direct flights from Boston on Cape Air (www.capeair.com; tel. 866/227-3247 or 508/771-6944) that are often remarkably affordable. There’s a local taxi on call, and rental car kiosks at the terminal. The airport itself is actually in Owls Head, off Route 73.
The Penobscot Bay Regional Chamber of Commerce (www.therealmaine.com; tel. 800/562-2529 or 207/596-0376) staffs an information desk on Park Drive by Harbor Park. It’s open daily from Memorial Day to Labor Day, on weekdays the rest of the year.
The Maine Lobster Festival (www.mainelobsterfestival.com; tel. 800/562-2529) takes place at Rockland’s Harbor Park the first weekend in August (plus the preceding Thursday–Friday). Entertainers and vendors of all sorts of Maine products—especially, of course, the famous Maine crustaceans—fill the waterfront parking lot for thousands of festivalgoers who enjoy the pleasantly buttery atmosphere. The event includes the Maine Sea Goddess Coronation Pageant. Admission is $5–$10 per day for adults, $2 for children; food, of course, costs extra. Four-day passes are also available.
During the last 2 weeks of October, Rockland celebrates the changing of colors—though with a unique twist: a scarecrow-making contest. It’s part of the city’s Festival of Scarecrows and Harvest Day celebrations.
Later, in late November, Rockland’s Festival of Lights kicks off with Santa arriving not by reindeer but by Coast Guard boat—make of that what you will—then moves on to a program of caroling, horse-drawn carriage rides, a parade, and interesting tours of some of the area’s most historic inns. Call [tel] 207/596-0376 for more information.