Auburn, a charming city nestled in the state of Maine, is home to approximately 23,000 residents. As the county seat of Androscoggin and the “twin” city of Lewiston, located just across the river, together they form the dynamic L-A region.
The city’s rich history dates back to its initial settlement in 1786, undergoing various name changes before officially adopting the name Auburn in 1842. Interestingly, the inspiration behind the name came from the village depicted in the renowned poem “The Deserted Village,” which dates back to 1770.
Auburn thrives on a diverse range of industries and offers an abundance of delightful attractions and experiences. From exciting activities and unique shops to delectable restaurants, picturesque parks, scenic trails, and captivating cultural offerings, the city is a treasure trove of possibilities. There’s something for everyone to enjoy and explore in Auburn.
So, join me as we delve into the top 15 things to do in this vibrant city. Together, we’ll uncover the hidden gems, embrace the local charm, and create unforgettable memories in the welcoming embrace of Auburn.
1. Stroll along the Auburn Riverwalk
When the weather permits, the Auburn Riverside Walkway beckons as the perfect destination for an enjoyable afternoon. Whether I opt for a leisurely stroll, a refreshing jog, or a delightful bike ride, this scenic trail promises a serene and invigorating experience.
The well-paved and impeccably maintained path ensures a comfortable journey, allowing me to immerse myself in the beauty of my surroundings. One of the greatest advantages is that the walkway is typically not overly crowded, granting me the opportunity to savor the tranquility and solitude that nature provides.
As I traversed the trail, the breathtaking Androscoggin River unfolds before my eyes, revealing its captivating waterfalls, majestic rocks, and picturesque bridges. The river serves as a mesmerizing backdrop, accentuating the charm of the cities of Auburn and Lewiston that lie alongside it. I find myself captivated by the harmonious fusion of natural splendor and urban landscapes.
2. Explore the Spring Road Trail
For those seeking a scenic adventure, the Spring Road Trail beckons with its enticing hiking and jogging opportunities. As I set foot on this trail, I was greeted by picturesque views that encompass the surrounding area, lush forests, and a serene lake. The possibility of encountering wildlife along the way adds an element of excitement to the journey.
If I find myself still brimming with energy after my invigorating exercise, I chose to extend my hike towards the dam or explore the inviting picnic areas near the charming barn in West Auburn. These additional destinations offer a chance to further immerse myself in the natural beauty of the area and create lasting memories.
While the trail is well-maintained, it is essential to come prepared with appropriate clothing and sturdy shoes to ensure comfort and safety throughout the adventure. This way, I was able to fully embrace the outdoor experience and revel in the wonders that the Spring Road Trail has to offer.
3. Watch a hockey game at the Norway Savings Bank Arena
Attending a hockey game at the Norway Savings Bank Arena in Auburn is an incredibly enjoyable experience, even if you’re not an avid fan of the sport. The modern arena is thoughtfully designed, catering to the needs and desires of both players and spectators alike.
The arena’s state-of-the-art facilities ensure a seamless and immersive viewing experience, allowing me to fully appreciate the fast-paced action unfolding on the ice. The energy of the crowd is contagious, further enhancing the thrill of the game.
For those who have a passion for skating, a visit to the arena’s skate shop is a must. The shop offers a wide range of items and accessories, catering to skaters of all levels. Whether I need new equipment, stylish apparel, or essential accessories, the skate shop has me covered.
Beyond hosting exhilarating hockey games, the Norway Savings Bank Arena is a versatile venue that accommodates a variety of events. From captivating shows to informative expos, the arena never fails to offer an exciting and diverse entertainment lineup.
4. See a play at the Community Little Theatre
Nestled within Auburn, the Community Little Theatre stands as a small but inviting venue where the local talent takes center stage, bringing captivating plays to life. As I stepped into the cozy theater, I was greeted by an atmosphere that exudes warmth and creativity.
The skilled local actors grace the stage, transporting the audience to captivating worlds through their performances. The sets, meticulously crafted with vibrant colors and attention to detail, serve as a visual feast, immersing me in the mood and emotions of each play. From comedies that tickle my funny bone to poignant dramas that tug at my heartstrings, and even musical shows that ignite my passion for music, each performance at the Community Little Theatre leaves me in awe.
The theatre’s popularity in the area is well-deserved, drawing a diverse crowd of enthusiasts and those seeking to explore new artistic experiences. Regardless of whether I am a seasoned theater-goer or someone looking to expand my horizons, the Community Little Theatre offers a captivating escape into the world of performing arts.
5. Ski at the Lost Valley
If you find yourself in the L-A area during the winter months, a visit to Lost Valley is an absolute must. This winter wonderland offers a plethora of trails, catering to skiers and snowboarders of all levels, ensuring everyone can enjoy the thrill of gliding through the snow.
As you hit the slopes, you’ll be delighted to discover a variety of trails perfectly suited to your abilities. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or a beginner seeking to sharpen my skills, Lost Valley provides a safe and enjoyable environment for all. The learning program and practice area are invaluable resources, offering guidance and support to those who want to improve their technique.
When it’s time to take a break and warm up, I made my way to the lodge. The cozy atmosphere welcomes me, with the crackling wood stove casting a comforting glow. The dining area beckons, inviting me to savor a delicious meal and recharge my energy for more adventures on the slopes. In the mood for a refreshing drink or a celebratory toast? the lodge’s bar has a wide selection to choose from.
For those who like to stay connected, Lost Valley has thoughtfully provided free Wi-Fi in the lodge. This means you can easily share my thrilling skiing or snowboarding moments with friends and family by posting photos and videos of my snowy escapades.
6. Hike Mt. Apatite
Auburn truly embraces its natural beauty, offering a plethora of outdoor activities to enjoy. One such gem is the Mt Apatite Park trail, a perfect destination for families seeking adventure amidst breathtaking scenery.
What sets this trail apart is its accessibility to individuals of all fitness levels. As I embarked on the climb, I was delighted to find that it accommodates everyone, including the little ones. The trail winds its way through captivating landscapes, allowing us to immerse ourselves in nature’s wonders.
As we traversed the path, we encounter enchanting ponds teeming with life. Frogs and turtles gracefully swim in the shimmering waters, offering a glimpse into the ecosystem that thrives here. Along the way, we stumble upon an assortment of rocks and minerals, sparking curiosity and igniting our sense of discovery.
A leisurely afternoon spent exploring the Mt Apatite Park trail becomes a treasured family experience. We revel in each other’s company, surrounded by the tranquility of nature and the stunning vistas that unfold before us.
It’s crucial to come prepared for this adventure. Appropriate clothing ensures comfort and safety throughout the journey, while bringing along ample food and water ensures we stay energized and hydrated. Thankfully, there are numerous picturesque spots along the trail that beckon us to pause for a picnic. We find ourselves basking in the panoramic views of Auburn, savoring the moments of respite amidst the splendor of nature.
7. Play mini-golf at Tabers Golf
If you’re seeking a leisurely and enjoyable golfing experience, I highly recommend giving Tabers Golf a try, regardless of your previous experience with the game. Nestled amidst the captivating scenery of Auburn Lake and its surroundings, this course promises a delightful time for all.
What sets Tabers Golf apart is its simplicity and entertainment value. The course offers a compact layout, sparing you the need for extensive walking commonly associated with traditional golf courses. As you make your way through the course, you’ll be treated to picturesque views of Auburn Lake and the idyllic landscape that envelops it.
The course itself is impeccably maintained, ensuring a smooth and satisfying golfing experience. The equipment provided is also of excellent quality, further enhancing your enjoyment of the game.
After a fulfilling round of golf, take a moment to indulge in some delectable treats at the burger stand. Whether you’re craving a satisfying meal or a refreshing ice cream, the options are sure to satisfy your taste buds. Moreover, the staff at Tabers Golf are renowned for their warm hospitality and helpfulness, making your visit all the more pleasant.
8. Get some gifts from Orphan Annie’s
A visit to Orphan Annie’s store is an absolute delight for antique enthusiasts and shoppers alike. As soon as you step inside, you’ll find yourself immersed in a world of treasures, ranging from clothing and jewelry to lamps, glasses, and an array of captivating antiques.
One of the remarkable aspects of Orphan Annie’s is the meticulous organization of the items, making it effortless to locate exactly what you’re seeking. The store truly caters to diverse tastes and preferences, ensuring there’s something to captivate every visitor.
Take your time to explore the store, allowing yourself to be enchanted by the carefully curated collection. Whether you’re in search of a unique souvenir to commemorate your time in Auburn or a special gift for a loved one, you’re bound to find the perfect item amidst the vast selection.
The owner of Orphan Annie’s boasts an impressive 40-year journey of collecting antiques, making him an expert in his field. His passion and expertise shine through as he graciously offers insights and answers any questions you may have about the collection. Don’t hesitate to engage in a delightful conversation that will further enhance your experience.
9. Go golfing at the Fox Ridge Golf Club
For golf enthusiasts seeking a more challenging experience, Fox Ridge Golf Club is the ideal destination. As you arrive, you’ll be greeted by a course that offers a taste of the real thing, allowing you to test your golfing skills to the fullest.
The course at Fox Ridge presents a mix of holes, each with its own unique characteristics. Some holes are designed to be more forgiving, catering to players of all levels, while others present formidable challenges that will truly put your abilities to the test. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer or a beginner looking to improve, Fox Ridge offers a delightful balance of enjoyment and skill-building opportunities.
Throughout your visit, you’ll be met with friendly and helpful staff who are dedicated to ensuring your golfing experience is exceptional. From providing guidance and assistance to sharing local knowledge, they are readily available to enhance your time on the course.
After a satisfying game, take a moment to unwind and relish in the atmosphere at the dining area. Recharge with a delightful meal and savor the camaraderie of fellow golfers who share your passion for the sport.
Additionally, don’t forget to explore the shop, which offers a selection of golfing essentials and souvenirs. Whether you’re in need of new equipment or simply want to take home a memento of your time at Fox Ridge, the shop provides a convenient and comprehensive selection.
10. Get some jewelry from Republic Jewelry & Collectibles
Republic Jewelry & Collectibles is a haven for ladies seeking an immersive and indulgent shopping experience. Nestled within its doors is a vast collection of exquisite jewelry and collectible items that will captivate visitors of all ages.
Entering into Republic Jewelry & Collectibles, you’ll be immediately drawn to the dazzling array of jewelry adorning the displays. From delicate necklaces to elegant bracelets, and from sparkling rings to intricately designed earrings, the selection is bound to entice even the most discerning tastes. With a wide range of styles, materials, and designs available, there is something to suit every individual preference.
What sets Republic Jewelry & Collectibles apart is their commitment to offering unique pieces at great prices. Each item in their collection exudes craftsmanship and attention to detail, ensuring that you acquire a one-of-a-kind treasure that reflects your personal style. From classic and timeless pieces to contemporary and trendsetting designs, you’ll find an extensive range to choose from.
Their skilled design team is dedicated to bringing your vision to life, crafting a piece that is as unique as the person who wears it. With their expertise and guidance, you can be confident in creating a truly special and meaningful item that will be cherished for a lifetime.
Throughout your shopping experience, the knowledgeable staff at Republic Jewelry & Collectibles are there to offer their expertise and honest opinions. They understand the significance of choosing the perfect piece of jewelry, and they are committed to assisting you in finding the one that best complements your style and personality.
11. Take the kids to Family Time Dine & Play
At Family Time Dine & Play, the owners have created a haven of family entertainment with over 11 years of expertise in the field. This delightful destination ensures that both adults and kids can immerse themselves in a memorable and exciting experience.
As you step into Family Time Dine & Play, you’ll be greeted by a myriad of options to engage and entertain. The arcade games beckon with their flashing lights and captivating challenges, offering a thrilling experience for gamers of all ages. Whether you’re a fan of classic pinball machines or seeking the latest interactive adventures, the extensive selection of games guarantees hours of enjoyment.
For those seeking a heart-pounding and adrenaline-fueled activity, the laser tag arena awaits. Gear up and embark on an exhilarating battle, strategizing with friends and family as you navigate the immersive environment. The glowing neon lights and intense competition create an unforgettable experience that will leave you exhilarated and craving more.
The excitement doesn’t stop there. Family Time Dine & Play features an array of inflatable slides, a three-story crazy maze, a jungle gym, and a bouncy house that will transport kids into a world of boundless fun and exploration. From climbing and sliding to bouncing and navigating obstacle courses, children can unleash their imagination and let their energy soar in a safe and engaging environment.
While the kids revel in their adventures, parents can relax and unwind, knowing that their little ones are having a blast. Family Time Dine & Play provides a space for children to socialize, make new friends, and create cherished memories that will last a lifetime.
12. Visit the Museum L-A
Museum L-A, located near Auburn in Lewiston, offers a captivating journey through the intertwined history of these “twin cities.” This museum is a treasure trove of exhibits, showcasing the economic heritage that shaped the region, including the mill industry, brickyard industry, and the art of shoemaking. It serves as a bridge between past and present, connecting current generations with the stories and achievements of their predecessors.
Step inside and immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of the area’s history. The exhibits vividly portray the bustling economy that once thrived here, offering a glimpse into the lives of the hardworking individuals who played a vital role in shaping the community. From the rhythmic hum of the mills to the craftsmanship of the brickyard and the skillful artistry of shoemakers, Museum L-A captures the essence of the region’s industrial past.
Guiding you through this captivating journey is a knowledgeable and passionate local guide who was born and raised in Lewiston. Their deep understanding of the exhibits and the area’s history adds an extra layer of authenticity and insight to your visit. Feel free to ask questions and engage in conversation, as their expertise will enhance your understanding and appreciation of the museum’s offerings.
Housed within the walls of a historic mill building, which once hummed with activity as it produced the renowned Bates Bedspreads, Museum L-A carries a palpable sense of heritage. The carefully preserved structure serves as a tangible link to the past, transporting visitors back in time and providing a unique backdrop for the exhibits.
13. Marvel at the Basilica Saints Peter and Paul
The Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul stands as a magnificent structure, reminiscent of the grandeur of the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. Its awe-inspiring presence graces the skyline of the area, visible from afar, drawing visitors near and inviting them to experience its beauty.
You’ll be greeted by a sanctuary adorned with exquisite paintings and stained glass that illuminates the space with a kaleidoscope of colors. The craftsmanship and artistry evident in every detail are a testament to the dedication and talent of those who created this sacred place.
The Basilica warmly welcomes all who enter its doors, embracing people from all walks of life. Whether you visit for a concert, attend a mass, or simply come to appreciate its magnificence, you will find solace and inspiration within its hallowed halls.
The church not only stands as a place of worship but also serves as a cultural and community hub, hosting various events that enrich the lives of its visitors. From the captivating melodies of musical performances to the serenity of prayerful gatherings, the Basilica offers a diverse range of experiences for all to enjoy.
14. Walk through Veteran’s Park
Just a stone’s throw away from the river, Veterans Park in Auburn stands as a solemn tribute to the brave men and women who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Nestled amidst nature’s beauty, this park offers a serene and peaceful setting for contemplation and remembrance.
As you wander through the park, the mesmerizing sight and sound of a nearby waterfall captivate your senses, adding to the tranquility of the surroundings. The park’s design and layout reflect the profound respect and gratitude we hold for our veterans.
Throughout the park, you will discover several commemorative plaques that bear the names of those who valiantly served our nation. These heartfelt tributes ensure that their memory lives on, etched into the very fabric of the park.
Even the benches scattered throughout the park bear the names of individuals who dedicated themselves to protecting our freedom. Sitting upon these benches, you can reflect on the sacrifices made by these brave souls, taking a moment to honor their unwavering commitment and courage.
15. Shop at the Auburn Mall
The Auburn Mall may not be the largest shopping destination, but it certainly offers a delightful experience for the whole family. From shopping to entertainment, there’s something for everyone to enjoy, making it a perfect destination for a few hours of fun.
From trendy fashion boutiques to popular brand outlets, there is a wide variety of options to explore. I find myself immersed in the latest fashion trends, browsing through racks of stylish clothing and accessories.
It’s the perfect time to refuel and indulge in a delicious meal. With a diverse selection of cuisines to choose from, I am spoilt for choice
Beyond the shops and delectable dining options, the Auburn Mall also offers engaging activities for the whole family. From arcade games to interactive play areas, there’s no shortage of entertainment. The kids are excited to explore the play zone, while I enjoyed a friendly competition with friends at the arcade. Laughter fills the air as we immerse ourselves in the joyous atmosphere.