Main Library


The main branch of the Portland Public Library is located within the 83,000-sq-ft Baxter Building, an architectural gem that cleverly utilizes vast glass installations and natural light to create an airy, refreshing reading and research area. There's a huge section for kids, and in general this makes for a nice place to relax and soak up Portland's more bookish characters.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Portland attractions

1. Longfellow House

0.07 MILES

The revered American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807–82) grew up in this Federal-style house, built in 1785 by his Revolutionary War–hero…

2. Institute of Contemporary Art

0.15 MILES

This small gallery, attached to the Maine College of Art, showcases an ever-shifting slate of modern artists, and hosts frequent readings, workshops, pop…

3. Children's Museum & Theatre of Maine

0.26 MILES

Kids aged zero to 10 years shriek and squeal as they haul traps aboard a replica lobster boat, milk a fake cow on a model farm, operate a sound studio, or…

4. Portland Museum of Art


Founded in 1882, this well-respected museum houses an outstanding collection of American artists. Maine artists, including Winslow Homer, Edward Hopper,…

5. Victoria Mansion

0.42 MILES

This Italianate palace, whose exterior would work well in a Tim Burton movie, dates back to 1860. Inside it's sumptuously decorated with rich furniture,…

6. Portland Observatory

0.77 MILES

Built in 1807 atop Munjoy Hill, this seven-story brick tower was originally used to alert shipowners when their ships were heading for home. Now restored,…

7. Loring Memorial Park

1.05 MILES

This small art installation honors a local fighter pilot who fought in WWII and Korea. Four 9ft-high granite standing stones inscribed with virtues…

8. Portland Breakwater Light

1.23 MILES

Portland is graced by a handful of handsome lights, including the 1875 Portland Breakwater Light with its Corinthian columns. Dubbed the 'Bug Light'…