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Winter Activities in Portland, Maine: Your Guide to Seasonal Fun

January 12, 2024 3:52 pm

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As the chill sets in and snow blankets the charming city of Portland, Maine, there’s no shortage of winter activities to keep you enchanted. Our Holiday Inn By the Bay team has curated a list of must-try experiences that promise to make your winter getaway memorable. From thrilling hockey games to serene ice skating and everything in between, Portland has something for everyone.

Maine Mariners Hockey Games

maine mariners hockey game

photo via Maine Mariners

Get ready to immerse yourself in the excitement of ice hockey as you cheer for the Maine Mariners. The Cross Insurance Arena comes alive with the cheers of fans, creating an electrifying atmosphere. Grab your tickets, don your team colors, and prepare for an unforgettable evening of fast-paced action on the ice.

Ice Skating at Thompson’s Point

ice skating rink

photo via Facebook

For a magical winter experience, head to Thompson’s Point for a delightful ice skating adventure. Glide gracefully across the ice, surrounded by the scenic beauty of the Portland waterfront. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned skater, the rink provides a perfect setting for all skill levels.

Sledding & Ice Skating at Pineland Farms

people sledding down a hill

photo via Pineland Farms

Pineland Farms offers a winter wonderland for those seeking outdoor thrills. Grab a sled and race down the slopes, or enjoy the classic joy of ice skating on their picturesque frozen pond. With crisp winter air and breathtaking landscapes, Pineland Farms is a haven for winter enthusiasts.

Visit a Museum

portland museum of art

photo via Portland Museum

Warm up indoors by exploring two of Portland’s premier museums. Art enthusiasts will find solace in the impressive collections at the Portland Museum of Art, featuring works ranging from contemporary artists to classic masters. Take your time to appreciate the carefully curated exhibits that showcase the richness and diversity of artistic expression. Families with young ones will delight in the interactive and educational offerings at the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine. Designed to spark curiosity and creativity, this museum engages children through hands-on exhibits and live theatrical performances. From imaginative play areas to interactive science displays, the Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine fosters a learning environment that is both entertaining and enriching for kids of all ages. Immerse yourselves in a world of discovery and play at these gems in the heart of Portland.

Explore the Shops and Restaurants in the City

portland old port shops

After a day of outdoor adventures, unwind by exploring the unique shops and restaurants scattered throughout the city. Portland’s Old Port district is a treasure trove of boutique stores, art galleries, and cozy eateries. Warm up with a cup of hot cocoa or indulge in a hearty meal at one of the local restaurants.

Portland, Maine, transforms into a winter wonderland with a plethora of activities that cater to every taste. Whether you’re a sports enthusiast, nature lover, or culture connoisseur, our vibrant city has something to offer. Embrace the beauty of winter and create cherished memories with the diverse array of experiences waiting for you. Plan your winter escape at the Holiday Inn By the Bay and make the most of the season in Portland.

Maine Mariners: Your Ultimate Portland Hockey Experience!

October 19, 2023 7:44 pm

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If you’re planning a visit to the vibrant city of Portland, Maine, and are in search of a thrilling and unforgettable activity, we have just the ticket for you – a Maine Mariners hockey game! Our very own Holiday Inn By the Bay is thrilled to be at the heart of the action, as the Cross Insurance Arena, where the Mariners play, is conveniently located right across the street. Join us as we dive into what makes the Maine Mariners and the hockey environment in Portland an absolute must-see for our guests.

A Glimpse into the Maine Mariners

The Maine Mariners are Portland’s beloved professional ice hockey team, and they proudly represent the city in the ECHL (East Coast Hockey League). With a triumphant return to Maine in 2017, the Mariners have been a staple of sports and entertainment in the community. Their games are a testament to the high-energy spirit and camaraderie that make hockey such a thrilling sport to watch.

The Hockey Environment in Portland

The Maine Mariners provide more than just a hockey game; they offer an experience that’s unmatched in the world of sports. When you attend one of their games, you can expect:

1. Electric Atmosphere: The atmosphere in the Cross Insurance Arena is nothing short of electrifying. The cheers of the fans, the sound of the puck hitting the ice, and the impressive skills of the players will keep you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.

2. Fan Engagement: Mariners games are renowned for their commitment to fan engagement. From contests and giveaways to intermission entertainment, you’ll be entertained every moment you’re in the arena.

3. Family-Friendly Fun: Hockey is a fantastic family outing, and Mariners games are no exception. With a welcoming environment for fans of all ages, it’s a great way to bond with your loved ones.

4. Affordable Entertainment: Unlike many professional sports events, Maine Mariners games offer an affordable option for a night out filled with excitement.

Convenient Location – Right Across the Street!

What makes the experience even more convenient and accessible for our guests is the proximity of the Cross Insurance Arena. Our Holiday Inn By the Bay is located just across the street from the arena, ensuring that you’re just a short walk away from the game. No need to worry about parking hassles or long drives – you can focus on enjoying the game to the fullest.

Why Our Guests Should Attend a Mariners Game

So, if you’re looking for an exciting and memorable activity during your stay in Portland, consider catching a Maine Mariners game right across the street from our hotel. With the hockey season in full swing, now is the perfect time to immerse yourself in the thrill of the game and create lasting memories. Don’t miss out on this incredible experience – book your stay with us at the Holiday Inn By the Bay and score big with the Maine Mariners!

Fall into Fun: Must-Visit Festivals and Events in the Area

September 15, 2023 3:40 pm

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As the crisp autumn breeze sweeps through the coastal city of Portland, Maine, it’s time to embrace the vibrant colors, warm apple cider, and the enchanting fall festivals that make this season truly special. From lively fairs to charming pumpkin festivals, the Holiday Inn By The Bay is your gateway to an unforgettable fall experience. Join us as we highlight some of the most exciting events happening in the area, including the Freeport Fall Festival, Fryeburg Fair, Cumberland County Fair, Camp Sunshine Pumpkin Festival, Hurricane Meadows Fall Festival, Pineland Farms Harvest Festival, and Shaker Village Harvest Festival.

Freeport Fall Festival

freeport fall festival

photo via Visit Freeport

Kickstarting the fall festivities in the area, the Freeport Fall Festival promises a delightful weekend of arts, crafts, music, and delicious food. Stroll through the historic streets of Freeport, just a short drive from our hotel, and discover unique handcrafted goods, enjoy live entertainment, and indulge in mouthwatering treats. Don’t forget to check out the local shops and take home a piece of Maine’s artisanal charm.

Fryeburg Fair

fryeburg fair horse racing

photo via Facebook

Venture inland to Fryeburg, where the Fryeburg Fair has been a cherished tradition for over 160 years. This agricultural extravaganza boasts everything from thrilling rides to farm animal exhibits. Savor classic fair foods, explore arts and crafts, and experience the excitement of harness racing. A short scenic drive from Portland, this fair is a must-visit for those seeking an authentic taste of rural Maine.

Cumberland County Fair

photo via Facebook

The Cumberland County Fair offers family-friendly fun just moments away from the Holiday Inn By The Bay. Enjoy carnival rides, live entertainment, and a variety of food vendors. This fair celebrates Maine’s agricultural heritage and is the perfect place to create lasting memories with loved ones.

Camp Sunshine Pumpkin Festival

pumpkin festival

photo via Facebook

Support a heartwarming cause at the Camp Sunshine Pumpkin Festival in nearby Freeport. This event brings the community together to celebrate fall and raise funds for families dealing with life-threatening illnesses. Illuminate the night with carved pumpkins, enjoy live music, and partake in delicious food options, all while contributing to a meaningful cause.

Hurricane Meadows Fall Festival

hurricane meadows fall festival

photo via Hurricane Meadows

For a dose of rustic charm, make your way to Hurricane Meadows Fall Festival in Falmouth. This local gem offers a true taste of Maine’s countryside, complete with a sunflower field, pumpkin picking, corn pit, potato cannon, pie pumpkin basketball, a corn maze, and more. It’s a perfect outing for families and those seeking a laid-back fall experience.

Pineland Farms Harvest Festival

pineland farms corn maze

photo via Facebook

Indulge in the beauty of New Gloucester’s Pineland Farms during their Harvest Festival. This event showcases the best of rural Maine with a corn maze, pumpkin patch, and apple cider demonstrations. Don’t miss the chance to savor fresh apple cider—a quintessential fall experience.

Shaker Village Harvest Festival

shaker village harvest festival

photo via Shaker Village

Immerse yourself in history and culture at Sabbathday Lake Shaker Village’s Harvest Festival. Located just a short drive from Portland, this event offers a unique blend of traditional craft demonstrations, wagon rides, live music and food. Explore the beautiful Shaker buildings and witness the vibrant fall foliage surrounding this historic site.

As autumn leaves paint the landscape with shades of red and gold, the Portland, Maine area comes alive with fall events and festivals. Whether you’re seeking the thrill of a fair, the charm of a pumpkin festival, or the tranquility of a rural retreat, there’s something for everyone. And when you stay at the Holiday Inn By The Bay, you’re just moments away from all the fall fun. Don’t miss the chance to make unforgettable memories and experience the best of fall in Maine.

Travel Photography: Best Photo Spots in the Area

August 25, 2023 6:12 pm

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Welcome to a visual journey of the most picturesque spots near the Holiday Inn By the Bay. From iconic landmarks to serene landscapes, we’ve curated a list of must-visit locations where you can capture stunning photos and create lasting memories.

Portland Head Light: A Beacon of Beauty

portland head light

A short drive from the hotel, the Portland Head Light stands as a symbol of maritime history and beauty. Perched on rocky shores, this historic lighthouse offers a stunning backdrop for photos, especially during sunrise or sunset. The rugged cliffs, crashing waves, and the iconic lighthouse itself create a captivating scene that embodies the spirit of Maine’s coastline.

Old Orchard Beach Pier: Seaside Splendor

old orchard beach pier

Head to the Old Orchard Beach Pier for a blend of natural beauty and coastal charm. Capture candid shots of families enjoying the sandy shores, the vibrant pier, and the joyful atmosphere. Whether it’s a candid snapshot of people building sandcastles or a scenic shot of the pier stretching into the horizon, this spot is a treasure trove of photo opportunities.

L.L. Bean: Rustic Charm and Urban Delight

llbean freeport store

L.L. Bean Flagship Store (95 Main St, Freeport, ME) / Facebook

Venture to the L.L. Bean flagship store in Freeport for a taste of rustic Maine and shopping paradise. Capture shots of the iconic L.L. Bean Boot sculpture, the charming storefront, and the bustling atmosphere. The mix of outdoor gear and warm, friendly vibes make for an Instagram-worthy moment.

Fort Williams Park: Nature’s Playground

fort williams

TMack82 / Tripadvisor

Nestled within Cape Elizabeth, Fort Williams Park presents a canvas of natural beauty and historic significance. The sprawling lawns, rocky shoreline, and the park’s namesake fort offer endless photo possibilities. The juxtaposition of historic structures against the backdrop of the open sea invites you to capture both the past and the present in a single frame.

Creating Timeless Memories

Whether you’re an amateur photographer or a seasoned pro, these spots near the Holiday Inn By the Bay offer a diverse range of backdrops for your visual storytelling. From lighthouses to piers, urban landscapes to coastal panoramas, each location invites you to capture the essence of Maine’s beauty. So grab your camera, explore these photo havens, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Rainy Day Delights: Indoor Adventures in Portland, Maine

August 18, 2023 4:53 pm

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Rainy days in Portland, Maine, don’t have to put a damper on your plans. Whether you’re a family with kids or a group of friends seeking indoor excitement, the Holiday Inn By the Bay has you covered. Check out these fantastic rainy day activities that promise fun and memories:

Children’s Museum & Theatre

childrens museum and theatre of maine

Children’s Museum & Theatre of Maine / Google Maps

When the rain starts falling, let your children’s creativity soar at the Children’s Museum & Theatre. With interactive exhibits and engaging performances, this imaginative haven is the perfect place to explore, learn, and have a blast.

The Escape Room

inside of an escape room

The Escape Room / Facebook

Get your team ready for an adventure like no other – take on an escape room challenge! Check out The Escape Room right on Congress Street! Work together to solve puzzles, uncover clues, and beat the clock. Rainy days just got a lot more exciting!


bayside bowl

Visit Portland / Google

Bring the whole family or your friends to the bowling alley for hours of laughter and friendly competition. There are many bowling alleys in the area including Bayside Bowl, Spare Time Portland, and Round1 Bowling & Amusement. Rain or shine, bowling always delivers strikes and smiles. 


x golf indoor golfing

X-Golf Portland / Facebook

Golf enthusiasts, rejoice! Rain won’t stop your swing at X-Golf, an indoor golfing experience that brings world-class courses to you. Play a round with friends, raindrops be darned!

Muse Paintbar

muse paintbar

Muse Paintbar / Facebook

Discover your hidden artistic talents at Muse Paintbar. Rainy days are perfect for trying your hand at painting while sipping on your favorite beverage. Create a masterpiece and memories that’ll last.

The Axe Pit

the axe pit

The Axe Pit / Facebook

Take aim and release some stress at The Axe Pit. Rainy days provide the perfect backdrop for trying your hand at axe throwing. With expert guidance, you’ll hit the mark in no time.

Rainy days in Portland, Maine, are no match for the diverse indoor activities that await. The Holiday Inn By the Bay invites you to make the most of every moment, rain or shine. So, gather your group and explore these fantastic options – unforgettable memories are just a rainy day away!

Embracing Nature: Portland’s Top Outdoor Activities for Adventurers

August 3, 2023 8:35 pm

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Welcome to the scenic city of Portland, Maine, where the stunning outdoors beckon you to embark on unforgettable adventures. If you’re a nature enthusiast, adrenaline junkie, or just looking to unwind amidst breathtaking landscapes, we’ve got you covered! Join us as we take you on a journey through some of the finest outdoor activities this charming city has to offer.

Eastern Promenade Trail

eastern promenade trail and ocean

Immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Portland by exploring the Eastern Promenade Trail. This picturesque trail stretches along the waterfront, offering panoramic views of Casco Bay and the surrounding islands. Perfect for a leisurely stroll, jog, or a bike ride, this 2 mile paved path is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Don’t forget your camera, as you’ll encounter some of the most stunning vistas and sunsets along this trail.

Fort Williams Park

fort williams park and portland head light with ocean views

Stephen Horgan / Tripadvisor

History and nature enthusiasts will be captivated by Fort Williams Park. This sprawling 90-acre park is home to the iconic Portland Head Light, one of the oldest lighthouses in the United States. Take a leisurely walk through the park’s well-maintained trails, have a family picnic on the spacious lawns, or explore the rocky coastline while the waves crash against the cliffs. Fort Williams Park offers a unique blend of history, culture, and natural beauty.


kayaking in the ocean with fort in background

Management / Tripadvisor

Get ready to paddle your way through the serene waters of Portland’s picturesque harbors and waterways. Kayaking is a popular activity in the area, and whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, there’s an adventure waiting for you. Discover hidden coves, observe diverse marine life, and get up close and personal with the city’s vibrant waterfront. It’s a fantastic way to experience the tranquility of nature while exploring the heart of the city.

Deering Oaks Park

deering oaks park

Deering Oaks / Google

For those seeking a peaceful escape right in the heart of Portland, Deering Oaks Park is the place to be. This urban oasis boasts sprawling green spaces, towering trees, and a lovely pond. Perfect for picnics, reading a book under the shade, or simply taking a leisurely stroll, Deering Oaks Park offers a relaxing atmosphere amidst the hustle and bustle of the city.

Sailing Adventures

portland schooner co sail boat

Portland Schooner Co / Google

Embark on an unforgettable sailing adventure on the Casco Bay. There are many cruise options in Portland, one being The Portland Schooner Co. Climb aboard one of their historic schooners and set sail on Casco Bay. Feel the wind in your hair and the salty sea breeze on your face as you experience the joy of traditional sailing. Whether you choose a relaxing day cruise or a romantic sunset sail, this experience will leave you with cherished memories and a deep appreciation for the maritime heritage of Portland.

Bike Rentals

person on bike in front of portland head light

Lighthouse Bikes / Google

If you prefer exploring the city on two wheels, Portland has you covered with numerous bike rental options. Rent a bike and pedal your way through the city’s charming streets, historic neighborhoods, and scenic routes. Feel the sense of freedom as you uncover hidden gems, stop at local cafes, and absorb the unique atmosphere that Portland exudes.

There you have it – a collection of some of the finest outdoor activities that Portland, Maine, has to offer. From breathtaking trails and parks to thrilling water adventures, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Make the most of your stay at Holiday Inn By the Bay and immerse yourself in the natural wonders of this coastal gem.

So, pack your bags, lace up your shoes, and get ready to create everlasting memories in the great outdoors of Portland, Maine!