My family has been vacationing in the Scarborough, Maine area for decades, several decades before I was even born. Though I haven’t been in years, this is my favorite place to take a vacation. Though I travel often, I rarely use the word vacation. But a few days, a week, or even a weekend in Scarborough is a vacation. I can’t wait until the next time I’m there and these are five of my favorite activities that I never miss when in Maine.
Whole Belly Fried Clams At The Clambake Seafood Restaurant
This enormous restaurant has an enormous menu, but all I ever need is lobster stew and fried whole belly clams in batter or crumbs. Whole belly clams are not your Howard Johnson’s clam strip. They are whole, fresh steamer clams that were removed from their shells, dunked in batter or seasoned crumbs, and deep fried. They’re juicy and tender and good dipped in tartar sauce. There is nothing healthy about them and that’s okay; you’re on vacation. The restaurant in located on a salt marsh, so sit in the back where you can watch the birds through the big picture windows.
Ice Cream At Len Libby Chocolatier
It’s not a vacation if you don’t stop for ice cream. While there are many good ice cream stands in the area, Len Libby is a long-time love of mine. You have to go if for no other reason than to see Lenny, a life-size chocolate moose who will be celebrating his twentieth birthday in a couple of years. There are a myriad of other items to distract from your ice cream mission as well like fudge, Maine gifts, taffy, and mini chocolate Lenny replicas, but stay focused on that ice cream. It’s delicious. And the flavors are unique. Have you ever had Grape-Nut ice cream? It’s Grape-Nuts cereal stirred into a vanilla base. The Peanut Butter Swirl and Needham (dark chocolate and coconut) are also awesome.
Hangout At Two Lights State Park
Every summer, we drove out to the twin lighthouses at Two Lights State Park. These were the first twin lighthouses on the coast of Maine. One is still an operational lighthouse today, while the other is a private home. It’s an easy drive to see both lighthouses and make a stop at the famed Portland Headlight. There’s also an excellent seaside restaurant, The Lobster Shack at Two Lights, in the park where you can see Portland Headlight across the bay. The state park also has many hiking trails along the shoreline.
Go Play At Funtown, USA
After one random trip to Funtown, my family was hooked on making at least one visit per vacation each summer. Whether you prefer the thrill of a wooden roller coaster or the slow putter of antique cars on a track, there’s an attraction to suit all types of amusement park go-ers. I, for example, could happily ride the Log Flume over and over again all day. But I also love the roadsters, roller coasters, and that one time my Dad and I braved the Dragon’s Descent. Happily, the tickets prices are very reasonable for an amusement park.
Eat At DiMillo’s On The Water
You’ll have to drive up to Portland to visit DiMillo’s, but it’s so worth the tiny effort of leaving your Scarborough bubble. Make a day of it (we always do) by enjoying the lovely shops, galleries, and coffee houses in Portland before or after your meal. Or take a cruise with Casco Bay Lines. And then, indulge at DiMillo’s for lunch or dinner. The restaurant is a docked boat. What better place to eat food fresh from the ocean? Begin with a cup of clam chowder or lobster stew. Follow it with your favorite seafood. Our family favorites are the Lazy Lobster and the Fisherman’s Platter.