Old Town is a city of around 7,000 people located in Penobscot County. A part of the city includes Marsh Island, but it extends beyond that.
The area was initially inhabited by Abenaki Indians, followed by French people in the 1680s and then by English pioneers in 1774. The Penobscot Indian village was also called the “Indian Old Town” by the English people, and since this village is included in the large city, it got the name of Old Town.
It was incorporated as a town in 1840 and as a city in 1891. There are plenty of interesting things to do in the city and the nearby area, so let’s take a look at 15 of the best.
1. Visit the Penobscot Nation Museum
Travel back in time and find out more about the history of this nation in this small but interesting museum. Inside, you can admire plenty of items, tools, clothes, and weapons that they were using, as well as full-size canoes.
Entry is free, the staff are nice and friendly, and there are plenty of souvenirs that you can buy.
2. Have a meal at the Governor’s Restaurant & Bakery
Whenever you are in Old Town and feel hungry, feel free to stop by the best-rated restaurant in the city; they have a wide variety of meals as well as fresh pastries.
A customer perfectly described this place in just a few words: “Good Food. Good Service. Great dessert!” Besides that, we might also add good prices. They have plenty of comfort food but recently added some healthier choices to the menu so that everyone is happy.
3. Head out on a Tracewski Fishing Adventure
The owner of this company is none other than Kevin Tracewski, author of the best-selling book “A Fisherman’s Guide to Maine”. He will take you on a trip to some of the best fishing spots in the area.
Whether you are a fishing expert or a total beginner, you will love this experience and Kevin will take care of everything. You will ride in a custom Hyde drift boat and hike through some amazing places in order to get to the fishing spots.
They also do trips to the Acadia National Park and make fishing a really fun adventure.
4. Bowl at the Old Town Bowling Center
Even though this center is old, you can still enjoy a good bowling session. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t bowled before, you will easily get the hang of it and the rules are quite simple.
This is actually a candlepin bowling game, which is a bit different but just as much fun as the classic one. The fees are affordable and they have plenty of drinks and food to choose from. Overall, you can spend a lovely afternoon here with the entire family.
5. Have Dinner at the Woodman’s Bar and Grill
If you get tired and hungry after all the fishing and bowling, stop by this place for a good meal and a cold beer. They make some great burgers and the bar is stocked with plenty of drinks for all tastes.
The service is fast and friendly, the portions are large and the prices are reasonable. The atmosphere is nice and cozy and you’ll enjoy an evening spent here at the Woodman’s Bar and Grill.
6. Visit the Maine Forest and Logging Museum
This is a non-profit organization started in 1960 that aims to bring the forest’s resources and interesting culture to more people. The museum has programs every week and offers school tours.
There are plenty of facilities and objects to admire; they are all here thanks to the work of many volunteers. This museum is basically a recreation of a sawmill community, with full-size buildings and accessories.
There are plenty of scenic views and you can take lots of great pictures. Make sure to come with proper clothes, as there are many dirt road trails waiting to be explored.
7. Admire the universe at the Emera Astronomy Center
A part of The University of Maine, the Center has the largest and most advanced planetarium in Maine and a state-of-the-art observatory. It offers a unique experience for the entire family, whether you are passionate about stars or not.
You will be able to “visit” far away galaxies and explore planets, stars and black holes, and also to learn more about the immense universe that surrounds us.
Featuring different shows and presentations, it’s definitely a place that is worth a visit if you happen to be in the area.
8. Visit the Page Farm and Home Museum
Yet another interesting exhibit that is worth a quick visit, this museum spreads over multiple buildings and rooms filled with all sorts of items. It includes a main barn, a blacksmith shop, a heritage garden and much more.
Its goal is to collect, document, preserve and interpret everything related to farms and farming in the Maine area. Visitors of all ages are welcome to spend a few hours here.
9. Have a beer at the Black Bear Brewery
Walking through so many museums probably got you tired and thirsty, especially if it’s a hot summer’s day. What better way to quench your thirst than with a cold beer?
This is a family-owned microbrewery that produces a wide variety of beers made from high-quality local ingredients. They also make various seasonal products, so there’s always something new to try.
The clients loved the cozy pub atmosphere, the friendly staff, and the great brews. The service is good and they have all you can eat popcorn. It’s the perfect place to spend a great evening with friends or family.
10. Pray at St. Mary’s Catholic Church
This an impressive old church where you can stop by for some photos, a quick prayer, or attend Sunday mass. This church also hosts various theatre plays.
This creates a unique setting for you to immerse into the atmosphere of the play. The actors are great, so if there happens to be a play at St. Mary’s Catholic Church when you are around, definitely go and check it out.
11. Get a unique book from Front Porch Books
This place sells used books and has a lot of interesting books that can’t be found anywhere else. Most of them are in very good condition and beautifully presented for sale.
Prices are reasonable and the owner is very knowledgeable; she will gladly assist you in finding the right books for your tastes and needs. She previously worked in a library and has loved books for as long as she can remember.
12. Take the Stephen King Tour of Maine
This company provides a three-hour tour of the city of Bangor (located nearby) and is based on the work of Stephen King. He is a renowned author of horror books that lives in the area.
If you are a fan of his books, you will definitely love this tour; you will visit some of the places he wrote about or which inspired him in his spooky stories.
You will be able to take some photos of his home in Bangor, and who knows, you might even meet him personally.
13. Visit the Hudson Museum at the University of Maine
As you may notice, Old Town and the nearby cities of Orono and Bangor are full of interesting museums that celebrate the history of the area. Even though this is a small one, it has plenty of interesting exhibits.
There are many hidden gems displayed here, including Native American art and artifacts. You will find moccasins, beads, canoes and other items handmade by the old inhabitants of the area.
14. Have another beer at Marsh Island Brewing
If you really love the local beer and going to the Black Bear Brewery was not enough, feel free to stop by Marsh Island Brewing as well. They have all sorts of amazing brews that are produced right here and come at great prices.
The interior is small but big enough for a few people to enjoy a good beer and some snacks. They also offer growlers and cans to go. The staff are friendly and will make you feel at home.
15. Shop at the Orono Farmer’s Market
If you want to buy fresh, locally made products, as well as support the economy of this area, go and shop at the Orono Famer’s Market. You will find a multitude of products from various vendors.
You can find organic fruits and vegetables, meat and eggs, baked goods, seafood, plants for your garden and much more. It is open during all seasons and the products change accordingly, so even if you have been here before, make sure to stop by again.