Vacations are a relaxed time to hunt for bargains, special gifts, and lasting mementos; treat yourself to something new in Maine.
Photo: Jennifer Kearns
SHOPP ING It’s easy to see why so many people add shopping to their list of reasons to come to Greater Portland; from handcrafts to haute couture, the pleasures of unearthing unique items and plentiful bargains are numerous.
The Old Port district of Portland is lined with one-of-a-kind boutiques featuring authentic Maine-made and imported goods. Stroll the cobblestone streets, duck into a café, and smell the salt air roll in from the bay. You’ll find shops and galleries occupying revital- ized warehouses with exposed brick and beams; sometimes the stores them- selves are as unique as the wares they display! Portland has specialty shops for dog lovers, sock collectors, those who love to cook (and eat!), and for antique and vintage connoisseurs. The state’s largest shopping center, The Maine Mall, is located in South Portland with over 140 of your favorite stores and restaurants. The surrounding mall area contains many smaller shopping plazas
and eateries, and all of it is just 10 min- utes from downtown Portland. Outlet shopping has become a major- league sport in Maine with Kittery at the state’s southern entrance, and Free- port, just 20 minutes north of Portland, offering scores of designer and name- brand outlets. Freeport is also home to L.L. Bean, one of the most well-re- spected outdoor outfitters in the world; there you’ll find all the gear to make your outdoor adventures successful. Take advantage of free in-store clinics on everything from birding essentials to basic kayaking strokes. Get an up-close look at the beautiful fibers and textures at Angela Adams and Company C and imagine redeco-
rating your home to incorporate an elegant rug or fresh bedding. Searching for a great souvenir of your visit? Lisa-Marie's Made in Maine offers a wide selection of items, all hand-crafted in the state. Or seek out a shop specializing in tourmaline jewelry fashioned from beautiful gems unearthed in the state’s western moun- tains. Or an earthenware mug or bowl inspired by Maine’s natural land and seascapes. Or specialty honey products, from wine to lip balm, made from local bee hives. Before your visit, check out visitport- land.com for shopping coupons to extend your dollars. And be sure to leave some room in the car.