Rain or Shine in Portland Maine

Rain or Shine in Portland Maine

The top ten indoor activities in Portland, Maine...

Unpredictable weather is one of the defining characteristics of New England. If you travel to Maine for a week and don’t get at least one day of inclement weather, you haven’t really seen Maine. So if you’re in Portland and mother nature forces you to adjust your plans, here’s the top ten things to do in Portland on a rainy (or snowy) day…


Portland Museum of Art

Though this isn’t the biggest museum, it’s actually the oldest public art institution in the United States. And the selection of art is impressive with pieces from Warhol and Monet and collections of paintings from Maine artists Winslow Homer and Andrew Wyeth. Recently, the Wyeth family collection was expanded when the last two of six N.C. Wyeth paintings were recovered from an art heist. There is plenty to see at this museum and admission is free on Fridays. 

Bayside Bowl

Bowling is one of the best rainy day activities out there and Bayside Bowl (and Broadway Bowl in South Portland) does it right. Good food. Good drinks. Great Happy hour. And if it’s not raining, they have an amazing rooftop bar as well. If you’re looking to try something a little different, check out Big 20 Bowling on Route 1 in Scarborough for classic New England candlepin bowling - it’s great for kids. 

Allagash Brewery

There are a lot of great breweries in Portland to visit, but Allagash is what turned the beer scene around in Maine. They have covered outdoor seating in their tasting room where you can sample from a huge selection of brews. They usually offer brewery tours and Bite Into Maine is serving up lobster rolls and sandwiches out of their Airstream food truck.


Axe Pit

Axe throwing. ‘Nuff said. 


Cryptozoology Museum

Maine has some interesting museums and this might be at the top of that list. Cryptozoology is the study of hidden or unknown animals like Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster. This place is weird and fun and might fuel some nightmares but it’s a perfect rainy day adventure. 


Nickelodeon Cinemas

This old-fashioned cinema skips the big reclining chairs we’ve all gotten used to at the movies, but the nostalgia will provide all the comfort you need. They play a good mix of blockbusters and indie films and on Tuesdays admission is only $5 - which is as close to a true “nickel”odeon as we’ll get nowadays. 



Wadsworth-Longfellow House

Stepping back even further in time, this is the childhood home of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, the famed poet that wrote “Paul Revere’s Ride” among other well-known poems. Nearly all of the furnishings and household items in the Wadsworth Longfellow House belonged to the family.


Victoria Mansion

Another one of the six National HIstoric Landmarks in Portland, the Victoria Mansion is widely regarded as one of the finest examples of Italian Villa style homes in the America. Completed in 1860, it was originally a summer home for two people, Ruggles Sylvester Morse and his wife Olive. Morse made his fortune operating luxury hotels in New Orleans and spared no expense in the construction of this beautiful piece of architecture.


Children's Museum & Theatre

If you've got little ones with you, getting them on board with art museums and historic architecture might not be easy - but the children's museum is definitely another story.  Their mission is to "inspire discovery and imagination through exploration and play," and play you will. Parents, you'll likely be jealous of how much fun museums can be after bringing your kids here.


L.L. Bean

Although its not actually in Portland, L.L. Bean is an essential stop on your Maine visit and a rainy day is the perfect time to go there. Only a 20 minute drive from Portland and open 24 hours, it should be pretty easy to fit into your schedule. Check out the 16-foot tall Bean Boot and more importantly - pickup a pair of L.L. Bean boots for yourself and get outside to enjoy the weather like a real Mainah!



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