Belfast is a small city of around 7,000 people, located in the Waldo County of Maine. It is the county seat and an important tourist attraction, thanks to the many historic districts and antique buildings.
The area was initially inhabited by the Abenake Native Americans, members of the Penobscot tribe. In 1630, it became an area for trading between English people and Native Americans, and later, the land had multiple owners.
It was first officially settled in 1770 and got the name of Belfast after the big city of the same name from Northern Ireland. It was incorporated as a city three years later and today has plenty of interesting things to see:
1. Take a walk along the Belfast Harborwalk
If you want to admire some splendid scenery, boats, beaches, rocks, the ocean, the shipyard and much more, then you should definitely take a walk along the Belfast Harborwalk.
The walkway leads into downtown if you want to do some shopping or have something to eat, but it’s not necessary to go there. You can just have a relaxing walk and admire the sunset.
2. Go to the Belfast City Park
If you really like walking and outdoor activities, you’ll enjoy some time out at the Belfast City Park. It is a beautiful, well-maintained area where you can have a pleasant walk or a nice picnic.
The beach is a bit rocky but it’s still a great place to find sea glass or other hidden treasures on the shore. The kids will love exploring, while the adults can sit down on the grass and have a relaxing afternoon while admiring the water.
3. Shop at the United Farmers Market of Maine
If you’re looking for some quality, delicious local products, this is the place to come. You can get all the needed ingredients to prepare your own meal, or have dinner at the beautiful bay view dining area.
They have a wide selection of organic products – coffee, bread, cheese, oils, lotions, crafts and much more. And of course, there is also plenty of locally harvested lobster at a great price.
The vendors are friendly and polite and will gladly help you find the products you need.
4. Walk Your dog along the Passy Rail Trail
Yet another beautiful walkway in the area, this trail is around 2.2 miles long. The terrain is flat and you can walk, jog, ride a bike or take your dog. This is actually an old railroad bed which follows the course of the river, offering some beautiful views.
Well maintained with parking spots along the way, you can walk the entire trail in an hour or so.
5. Visit the Cuckold Lighthouse (Southport)
Built in 1896, this lighthouse was reconstructed as a historic and educational site of the area. There is an interesting legend about the lighthouse and the locals are very proud of this place, thus keeping it alive for so many years.
You can park here and then admire the lighthouse, the small islands nearby, the houses on the coast and the boats on the water. You also have the option to spend the night at the light keeper’s house, with 5-star amenities. The experience is unique and memorable.
6. Shop at Lupine Cottage
This cute cottage itself is not the actual attraction, rather what’s held inside. This is an artists’ co-op where more than 60 artists and craftspeople of the Maine area display their work.
You will find hundreds of items, from artwork, hats, and mittens to jewelry and houseware – and everything in between. Since they are lovingly crafted by the local artists, you can be sure that you won’t find these items anywhere else.
Overall, it’s a great place to grab some souvenirs to remind you of Belfast and some nice gifts for those back home.
7. Visit the Belfast Historical Society & Museum
This beautiful museum in Belfast contains a wide variety of items related to the history of the city. It is housed in a 200-year-old building with rooms full of various exhibits.
Among them, you will find a restored flag quilt from the Civil War, a renovated barn, an old jail from 1890, an old apothecary, and much more. The people working here are very knowledgeable and will gladly answer your questions related to Belfast’s history.
8. Get some Local Goodies from the Belfast Maine Farmers Market
Like most of the small cities nearby, Belfast has its own farmers market with plenty of fresh, organic products from local vendors. Here you will find meat, cheese, eggs, fruits and vegetables, baked goods, and much more. The prices are really good.
The vendors are warm and welcoming. This is a great spot to meet the locals and have a chat. The place is filled with goodies all year round, so make sure to stop by.
9. Try something new at the Belfast Curling Club
Whether you are a big fan of curling or you just want to try something new, visit this club for an entertaining game. They will provide you with all the necessary equipment and if you need directions, the staff will gladly help.
There is a bar so you can enjoy a drink while playing. when you leave, you can buy a shirt, a sticker or a pin to remind you of your visit. This is a great wholesome activity that can be enjoyed by the entire family.
10. Get your hands dirty at the Good Karma Farm
If you ever wanted to see how life takes place on a farm, this is the perfect location. The owners will take you through all the sections of the farm and show you how they dye, spin, weave or make various yarn items and soap.
They also have plenty of animals that you can feed or just admire, including some alpacas. The yarns made here are high quality and you can buy some for home. Visiting this farm is a unique and interesting experience for people of all ages.
11. Shop for antiques at Ambiance
If you’re passionate about antique items and want to get some special pieces that can’t be found anywhere else, definitely stop by this cute shop; you will find many treasures at acceptable prices.
You will find funky gifts, elegant items, and everything in between. The ambiance is nice and the staff are friendly.
12. Have a coffee at the Northport Landing Gallery & Espresso Bar
If arts and coffee are among your two favorite things, you should definitely call in here. The building itself looks nice, the displayed items are beautiful, and the coffee is great.
Joy, the owner, has a great collection of fine arts, crafts, and other curiosities and makes a cappuccino to die for. There are items for all tastes and budgets, so make sure to stop by for a few minutes.
13. Try Your luck at Tarratine Tribe IORM Bingo Games
If you want to spend a relaxing evening and be in to win some money, head to this place for a game of Bingo. The game is held four times per week and is a great way to get in touch with the locals.
There are delicious home-made meals for you to try while playing the game, and they have very low prices. It is a non-smoking venue just for adults (so make sure to leave the kids home) and they also have free Wi-Fi.
14. Watch a play at the Cold Comfort Theater
If you want to spend an evening watching a good play, head to this theater. Founded in 1971, they are devoted to creating wonderful, unique theatrical pieces.
Here, you could catch a family play, a comedy, a musical, or maybe a thought-provoking drama. They often hold classic plays that stand the test of time, but from time to time newer ones from upcoming artists.
15. Ride on the Back and Forth Boat
This cute little lobster boat takes people “back and forth” from Downtown Belfast to the Young’s Lobster Pound. It’s a fun way to reach your destination, or just enjoy a quick boat ride.
The captain is friendly and knowledgeable about the city and will make sure that the boat ride is safe and comfortable.