Last time we were visiting MidCoast Maine, we stayed at Camden Hills State Park and found ourselves driving south on many days, exploring Camden, Rockland, Bath, and Boothbay. One afternoon, after a very busy day, we decided to take a drive to the north. To be honest, the boys were probably asleep in the car, and we most likely had time to kill.
However it happened, we ended up in Lincolnville which has one of those main streets that you can miss while blinking (or checking the GPS). A short stretch of sidewalk includes a few restaurants, a post office, and some shops filled with breakable items.
And also a beach. A small sand beach that almost disappears during high tide, it is the perfect place for young kids who love nothing more than splashing in chilly water without getting pummeled by waves. Three years ago we spent a lovely afternoon there and then had dinner at the lobster pound that is just a few short steps to the south of the beach.
This visit, we were staying farther north in Belfast. So we knew exactly where to go when trying to meet up with our friends from Rockland. Right smack in the middle, just a 20 minute drive for each of us, was Lincolnville.
It is the kind of place where our five kids could play, while five adults chatted and caught up on the news of life. The kayak was easily launched, and the calm waters meant that we could let the kids mess around and practice a little bit of paddling. The adults also took their turns a bit farther out in the kayak…and yes, seals were spotted.
At the south end of the beach, about 30 feet from where we were sitting, is McLaughlin’s Lobster Shack, with its huge green lawn, clean picnic tables, adirondack chairs, and beautiful water views.
You will not get us to say that this is the best lobster roll in Maine. But it is very, very good. The chowder is just fine, but I’m picky right now since Wesley is on a serious chowder kick and we have ordered it at every single seafood joint in Maine, it seems. The boys devoured their fish ‘n chips, and the small bites we stole tasted extremely fresh and flavorful.
This place is not cheap, but let’s be clear about the value here. Can you put a price tag on your kids being able to run around like maniacs while you order, wait for, and eat pretty darn good lobster?
And remember, you are all sandy and in bathing suits, sitting on towels and (how could I not mention?) drinking local beer. Yup, pay the extra couple of bucks and enjoy.
After another swim, we dried off, changed the kids and loaded up the cars. One final conversation before pulling out led to the understanding that there was a local coffee roaster just a minute or two south on Route 1. Jeremy’s eyes lit up and off we went.
Yes, the pounds of coffee that he bought from Green Tree Coffee & Tea have been excellent. And yes, Jeremy will most certainly be ordering some for shipping. Most likely in the cold, cold months of winter when the RV is all closed up and he is dreaming of MidCoast Maine.