The beauty of living on the water is that you can enjoy nature at its best while still being close enough to civilization for convenience. Whether you are looking for a vacation home or a permanent residence, there are many great options available in Maine. In this article, I will share with you some of the highlights of waterfront cottage/home rentals. At the end of the article, I will give some suggestions that you can take advantage of right now.
Think about these great benefits.
There is great convenience if you enjoy fishing in that you can take just a few steps and plop your bait in the water. You can often see if the fish are feeding just by looking out a lakeside window and see the swirling on the water’s surface.
Sunrise & Sunsets
Many times your spot on the water will either give you a view of the eastern or western sky. The reflections of a colorful sunrise or sunset on the water is hard to beat. If your view is obstructed, simply get on the water in a kayak or canoe, listen to the loons, and watch it rise or set. However, you do need to realize that sunrise in Maine comes very early in the morning. At the earliest point in the year (June 16th-ish), the sun will rise at 4:48AM (Bangor, Maine). That means to catch the best color in the sky, you need to be up and ready at 4:18AM. Here is a great tool if you are interested in seeing sunrise and sunset times, Sunrise Sunset Calendar - Maine, USA.
This is often overlooked. If you are photo-bug, then maybe you want to consider when the moon will be in full. Or maybe if you like astrophotography then you want to make sure it is a new moon during your vacation so you can get great pictures of the Milky Way. The tool above can also give you moon phases, moonrise, and moonset times as well.
Staying on, or at least near, water will give you twice as many exercise options. Many locations will offer free access to kayaks, canoes, paddleboards, paddleboats, etc. But don’t worry if you location doesn’t have these as you can often find places nearby to rent the gear you desire. Then there is exercise that requires nothing more than your body and a willingness to get into the water, like swimming. I will tell you this, if you are from the south and used to lukewarm lake water, then Maine water is likely going to shock you a little. You will find it much cooler, however, at the same time it will be much clearer.
You can bring your own boat (or jetski) or rent one. If your rental properly doesn’t have a boat landing, you can usually find a public landing not too far away. Be sure to scout out the boat landing options if this is a requirement before booking your stay. If this works out, then you can add tubing, water-skiing, jetskiing, and wakeboarding to your list. Of course, then you can fish from the boat in the downtime.
More than likely, if you stay on a lake then you will see Maine’s iconic lake loon. You can hear their call at various times of the day, but particularly in the morning and evening (perhaps the sounds carry better at those times of the day). Animals need to get water and the lake is their sink and bathtub. If you are planning a stay on a secluded lake then your opportunity to spot moose, deer, eagles, and other wildlife increases significantly.
Access to Trails
Many lakes in Maine have trails nearby with some extraordinary views. If you want options on dry ground, then look for these before booking your stay. Our Maine Vacations directory will make finding these easy. The google maps integration we use should show trails if you pan and zoom the map accordingly (they should show as dotted lines and sometimes have the names of the trails on them).
The Great Outdoors
If you love the outdoors, then you will find plenty of opportunities to explore the natural world of Maine. From hiking trails to fishing spots, there is something for everyone and it keeps everyone active!
With so much to explore it will likely be much easier to keep the kiddos off the electronics and embracing God’s creation. If you enjoy photography, then you will likely have plenty of opportunities to get some great pictures. However, I would personally take a dedicated camera, so I wasn’t toting my phone all around. If you need to use your phone as a camera, then perhaps you can put it in “airplane mode” so texting and apps are less likely to distract you from being in the moment.
A Place to Relax
There are many reasons people choose to rent waterfront cottages in Maine. They enjoy spending time with family and friends while at the same time taking advantage of the beautiful scenery (and escaping the stress of daily life).
For me, personally, this has always been the biggest plus. I work in tech and my brain gets overloaded by big issues that my business is trying to solve. Yet, when I go to my in-laws on Pleasant Lake in Alexander, Maine, I can just sit, look at the water and truly unwind. There isn’t any other place like it for me.
In addition to relaxation, your vacation time will be quality. When your time is quality then you make quality memories. Memories help build anchors in life for you and your family. You want thinking about vacation to be filled with “Remember when…” kinds of conversation that spurs on the great times you had in our wonderful state.
A Phone Call Away
Ok, I know that in our instant-gratification-culture picking up the phone and calling ahead before booking a reservation isn’t always the top thing on your mind but let me encourage you to do that. Every location on the water is going to be different and no one knows this better than the rental owners themselves. I tell you this, Maine business owners are some of the most hospitable people in the world. They will love to tell you all about the experiences they have to offer. You will likely be able to tell quickly if this kind of vacation is something that will resonate with your family. A 10-minute investment in a phone conversation can make a world of difference.
Cost of a Lakeside Adventure
If you are budget-conscious then I know what you are asking, “But won’t renting on the lake be too expensive?” The answer will surprise you. It is much less expensive than you might think.
Hidden Gems (updated August 2022) – these are some of the most affordable options we know of right now
East Grand Lake:
A couple more options…