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Exploring Coastal Maine: Lobsters, Lighthouses and Hidden Inlets

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard National Geographic Sea Lion
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The National Geographic Sea Lion hosts an eight-day voyage around Maine's coast. Enjoy the shores of Massachusetts and Maine as well as their coasts, refreshing landscapes, rocky beaches, and lobsters throughout the route. Paddle, paddleboard, or Zodiac your way around the rocky islets to observe the first restored Atlantic puffin colony and the only national marine sanctuary in the state of New England. Eastern Egg Rock is a great place to see seabirds. Your journey comes to an end in Portland, Maine. 
Zakim Bridge reflection on the Charles River in BostonSpringtime in BostonExplore wild MaineExplore Maine's beautiful rugged coastSailing in Boston
Highlights
  • Search for whales in the Stellwagen Bank Marine Reserve
  • Visit the offshore seabird colony of Eastern Egg Rock
  • Explore the artist communities of Provincetown and Monhegan Island
  • Enjoy a classic and delicious Maine lobster boil
Activity Level: Relaxed
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Boston | Embark

Arrive in Boston and transfer to the National Geographic Sea Lion

Day 2: Provincetown | Cape Cod National Seashore

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Overnight, National Geographic Sea Lion has sailed out of Boston Harbor and arrived at the tip of Cape Cod: Provincetown. Choose to tour the many galleries in town, featuring the thriving community of local artists, or opt to explore the Cape Cod National Seashore further south. Learn about the history of the Cape when on a visit to the Wellfleet & Eastham communities, where we'll tour the Three Sisters Lighthouses and the beautifully restored Atwood-Higgins house. Construction on the house was completed in 1730, making it likely the oldest house on the Cape. George Higgins donated the house and the many outbuildings on the property to the National Park Service in 1961. And of course, as we continue our tour of the National Seashore, we are always on the lookout for wildlife. The Cape is home to 450 species of amphibians, reptiles, fish, birds, and mammals.

Day 3: Stellwagen Bank | Isles of Shoals

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
As we make our way north towards the New Hampshire/Maine border, we sail through some of the world’s richest cetacean waters with the possibility at this time of year of watching finback, minke, and pilot whales. With luck, we may encounter seabirds including Leach’s storm petrels and Manx or great shearwaters. This afternoon, National Geographic Sea Lion arrives at Isles of Shoals—a photographer’s dream and the place where 19th Century New England poet Celia Thaxter lived and worked. We will visit the Isle of Shoals Marine Lab, where the staff will show us around the island and speak about the success of their breeding colonies of Common, Roseate, and Arctic Terns.

Day 4: Monhegan, Maine / Eastern Egg Rock

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Meaning “out-to-sea island” in the Algonquian language, Monhegan is a special place, rich with history, as the island often fell in dispute between warring European countries. At times it was completely abandoned, but at other times, the island was utilized as a British fishing camp and later an artist’s colony beginning in the late 19th century. Today, watched over by the Monhegan Island Lighthouse, this remote outpost has a full-time population of about 70 residents. After our Monhegan morning, National Geographic Sea Lion makes its way to Eastern Egg Rock. Setting precedents and establishing protocols for seabird colony restoration, Eastern Egg Rock was the first project of its kind, beginning in 1973. The seven-acre treeless island saw the last nesting of Atlantic puffins in 1885, and after an extensive restoration project there are now 172 nesting pairs on the island. It is truly an environmental success story.

Day 5: Penobscot Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Labyrinthine Penobscot Bay beckons adventurers, and today we heed the call, exploring the many coves and islets by Zodiac and, conditions permitting, by paddleboard or kayak. These coves are home to numerous interesting invertebrate species, including mussels, barnacles, sea urchins, and sea anemones.

Day 6: Island Exploration

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Spend the day winding in and out of the many islands that bedeck the Maine coastline. We will put kayaks and paddleboards in the water, explore the ins and outs of the shoreline by Zodiac, and enjoy the lure of the rugged island vistas. This afternoon we will meet up with a local lobsterman and learn about his way of life. In the evening, we enjoy a traditional Maine lobster boil on the beach.

Day 7: Schoodic Peninsula | Acadia National Park

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
A day of exploration awaits us as our adventure continues up the coast to the Schoodick Peninsula, located in Acadia National Park. Today, traversing this less-traveled point of land will bring us into beautiful spruce forests and along rocky inlets fed by small creeks. The day is wide open here, and we go where our whim takes us.

Day 8: Portland | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
This morning, National Geographic Sea Lion arrives in Portland where we disembark.

Ship/Hotel

National Geographic Sea Lion

Dining Room

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$5,760
Sea Bird & Sea Lion's Category 1 and Category 1 Single Cabin.
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Cat 1
Main Deck Cabins #300-305. Conveniently positioned between the dining room and lounge, these cabins feature two lower single beds, a writing desk and a large window.
Sea Bird & Sea Lion's Category 1 and Category 1 Single Cabin.
Select a Date
Cat 1 Single
Main Deck Cabins #300-305. Conveniently positioned between the dining room and lounge, these cabins feature two lower single beds, a writing desk and a large window.
Sea Bird & Sea Lion's Category 2 and Category 2 Single Cabin.
Select a Date
Cat 2
Bridge Deck cabins #100-104 and Upper Deck cabins #200-212, 215. These well-located cabins include two lower single beds, outside access and a window.
Sea Bird & Sea Lion's Category 2 and Category 2 Single Cabins.
Select a Date
Cat 2 Single
Bridge Deck cabins #100-104 and Upper Deck cabins #200-212, 215. These well-located cabins include two lower single beds, outside access and a window.
Sea Bird & Sea Lion's Category 3 Cabins.
Select a Date
Cat 3
Bridge Deck cabins #105, 106 and Upper Deck cabins #214, 216, 217, 219. These cabins feature a seating unit with table, outside access and two large windows. Upper Deck cabins include two lower single beds which can convert to a double bed and a pull-out
Included
  • 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 6 Dinners
  • 7 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Excursions and activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • The Guidance and Company of the Expedition Staff
  • Hotels Ashore as Indicated in the Itinerary
  • Sightseeing & Entrance Fees
  • Special Access Permits, Park Fees, Port Taxes
  • Snorkeling, Including Wetsuits, Masks, Fins & Snorkel Where Relevant
  • Presentations and Guest Speakers in the Lounge
  • Non-Alcoholic Beverages
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Scuba Diving
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • Alcoholic and non specified beverages
  • Private Transfers
     
  • Expedition Extensions 
  • Laundry 
  • Internet & Phone Charges
  • Rubber Boots: Please bring your own. 

Map

When to Go

Jan
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Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen
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