Top Events

Old Port Festival, June

North Atlantic Blues Festival, July

Maine Lobster Festival, August

Common Ground Country Fair, September

Foliage Season, October

January

Most of Maine is snowed in by January. That's good news for skiers, snowshoers, and other outdoor-winter lovers, who have many miles of trails within reach all across the state.

Polar Plunge

Brave (crazy?) sea lovers converge on the shores of Kennebunk Beach for a frigid dip in the North Atlantic. It typically happens January 1, though tidal fluctuations sometimes push the date back a few days.

February

The deepest, darkest part of winter; snow and cold temperatures continue. Many Mainers retreat to warmer climes, making this an ideal time to enjoy theater, museums and other indoor cultural attractions in places such as Portland.

Ski Season

Though the ski season extends from mid-December until the end of March, its peak is President's Day weekend (third weekend in February), when schools are closed for winter break. Book your accommodations well in advance if you plan to hit the slopes during this time.

Camden Winterfest

For a completely different take on Maine revelry, hit this mid-winter indoor and outdoor festival where you can catch ice carving, concerts and toboggan competitions (www.facebook.com/CamdenWinterfest).

March

Most folks are sick of the sub-zero temperatures and long wintery nights. Ski season continues, however, and there are often good travel deals for those coming just after prime season.

Maine Maple Sunday

On the fourth Sunday in March (and sometimes the fourth Saturday as well), Maine's sugar houses open their doors for free maple-syrup samples, maple-making demonstrations, games, live music and other activities (www.mainemapleproducers.com).

April

Spring is in the air, though it comes later in Maine than most other places in New England. The transition month still sees occasional snowstorms, and both skiing in the mountains and beach walks in southern Maine.

May

The sun comes out on a semipermanent basis and the lilac and magnolia trees bloom all around the region. Memorial Day, the last Monday in May, heralds opening day for many hotels and resorts in Maine.

June

After months of cooler weather, summer at long last arrives, bringing vacationers from near and far. Accommodation prices rise, and thick traffic fills the coastal roads.

Trek Across Maine

This 180-mile bicycle ride, which happens over three days in mid-June, goes from the mountainous terrain of the Sunday River Ski Resort to the seaside at Belfast. The event helps raise money for the American Lung Association.

Old Port Festival

Portland's big shindig welcomes summer with plenty of outdoor amusement: live entertainment (concerts, kids shows, theater) on various stages, plus a parade, crafts and more than 200 food vendors (www.portlandmaine.com/old-port-festival).

Bowdoin International Music Festival

This concert series brings classical music to the town of Brunswick for six weeks each summer. You'll find world-class performers, rising student talent and plenty of free events held around town (including in museums and microbreweries).

July

Summer is in full swing, with long days playing at the seaside, outdoor lobster feasting and a full spectrum of tours and events at Acadia National Park and all along the coast.

Independence Day

Mainers celebrate America's birthday with barbecues, baseball and fun on the beach. Nightfall brings fireworks shows, including an impressive display at Portland's Eastern Promenade, as well as smaller ones in Kennebunk, Bath, Bar Harbor and elsewhere.

North Atlantic Blues Festival

Head to Rockland in mid-July for the region's biggest blues festival. Nationally known performers and local-brewed beers guarantee a good time at this buzzing two-day celebration.

Yarmouth Clam Festival

The southern coastal town of Yarmouth hosts this family-friendly three-day fest in mid-July, with a parade, live music on three stages, fireworks, arts and crafts and ample feasting on bivalves and much more besides (www.clamfestival.com).

August

Summer continues unabated, with hot days and packed beaches. Only at the end of August do the crowds begin to thin a bit, with fall on the horizon.

Maine Lobster Festival

If you love lobster like Maine loves lobster, come for the five-day Maine Lobster Festival, held in the first week in August in Rockland. King Neptune and the Sea Goddess oversee the events and – of course – as much lobster as you can eat.

Machias Wild Blueberry Festival

The state celebrates its favorite berry at this fun festival, complete with pie-eating contests, cook-offs and hundreds of artisans hawking everything from blueberry jam to blueberry-themed artwork. Held on the third weekend in August.

September

The humidity disappears, leaving cooler temperatures and crisp air. The first Monday in September is Labor Day, the official end of summer. The crowds thin and prices dip.

Common Ground Country Fair

The small town of Unity hosts Maine's biggest organic fair, with demonstrations, livestock shows, food vendors and traditional music and dance. It's held over three days in late September (www.mofga.org/the-fair).

October

It's a magical time in Maine as autumn transforms much of the state into a blaze of red, yellow and orange. By late October many coastal resorts have closed for the year.

Foliage Season

Witness Mother Nature at her most ostentatious. The colors all around the region are dazzling, but especially as they blanket the rolling hillsides near Moosehead Lake and Baxter State Park.

Fryeburg Fair

There's something for everyone at this old-fashioned agricultural fair in Fryeburg, from live animals to live music, from fun rides to fireworks. Held in the first week in October.

Harvest on the Harbor

Foodies descend on Portland during this five-day dining and drinking festival, held in mid-October. Expect oysters, lobster, local craft beers and one spectacular brunch.

November

Winter is on the horizon and you can feel it in the air. The first big snowstorms may even arrive this month. Thanksgiving Day – the fourth Thursday in November – kicks off the holiday season.

December

Winter sets in, with plenty of snow arriving before the end of the month. Christmas lights and holiday fairs make the region festive.