Boothbay Harbor is a classic example of a New England maritime village. Most popular during the summer, Boothbay Harbor's rocky coast and harbor has the biggest fleet of excursion boats in Maine. These Boothbay Harbor boats bring opportunities to see islands, lighthouses, a variety of marine life including whales and seals and to enjoy some great deep-sea fishing. Boothbay Harbor is also full of antique shops, art galleries, boutiques, and gift shops, all within a peasant walk of each other.
Every April, Boothbay Harbor's Fisherman's Festival involves the Blessing of the Fleet Memorial Service and a boat parade on Sunday as well as three days of fun including a codfish relay, an old-fashioned fish fry, trap hauling, lobster crate races, and much more. In June, the Windjammer Days Festival in Boothbay Harbor brings fully-rigged windjammers into the harbor and two days of celebrations with pancake breakfasts, an arts and crafts fair, an antique boat parade, waterfront concerts, and fireworks.
Boothbay Harbor has a humid continental climate with large seasonal temperature differences. Summers are warm and can be hot, and winters can be severely cold. Snowfall can be heavy between October and May, with up to 20 inches falling in January. Rains come with summer thunderstorms and the rare tropical storm. Temperatures in Boothbay Harbor range from an average high of 26°C (78.6°F) in July to an average low of -11°C (12°F) in January.
Captain Fish's Waterfront Inn in Boothbay Harbor offers a variety of boat trips and cruises. Special discounts apply for guests of the Boothbay Harbor Hotel. Guests at the Waterfront Inn can enjoy the sunset from the water's edge. A walk across the footbridge leads you into Boothbay Harbor with its many shops and restaurants.
Cap'n Fish's Boothbay Harbor cruises offer a great range of seaborne adventures. This family-held business has been operating in Boothbay Harbor for three generations, but their ships are modern and fast. Cap'n Fish's Whale Watch ships have the latest tracking equipment, and the captains are experienced in sighting whales.
The Cap'n Fish ships are staffed with experts on whales, marine life, and seabirds. The ship's galley is well-stocked, and they have a full liquor license. The 360-degree decks offer great whale viewing, and there are comfortable padded seats. From the end of May through early October in 2011, the prices were $48 for adults, $32 for kids from 11 to 16, $25 for kids age six through ten, and $13 for kids under six.
Cap'n Fish runs 1-1/4 hour boat trips that show guests how lobsters are trapped and collected in Boothbay Harbor and give background on the lobster industry in Maine. Trips run from mid-June through late October and cost $19 for adults and $10 for children.
The Puffin Nature Cruises conducted by Cap'n Fish ships take passengers to see the re-established Puffin Colony at Eastern Egg Rock about 13 nautical miles from Boothbay Harbor. In the 1980s, the National Audubon Society was instrumental in creating this nesting colony for these small, webbed-feet seabirds with oversized beaks. They had almost become extinct along the coast of New England by the 1880s. Between Boothbay Harbor and Easter Egg Rock, passengers will travel deep waters and see amazing wildlife, both land and marine. Operating from June through late August, the Puffin Cruises are $29 for adults and $15 for children.
Boothbay Harbor is proud of the Boothbay Railway Village, a cultural and historical museum that tells the story of railroads, antique automobiles, and small town life from 1850 to 1950. The museum is made up of many historically significant buildings that contain artifacts and displays about rural Maine. The Village Green is the heart of this Boothbay Harbor museum, and its 13 buildings range from railroad stations to an octagonal crossing shanty from Portland. Exhibits include antique autos, the railroad (with more than a kilometer or .75 miles of two-foot gauge track and three steam locomotives), and a model railroad.
Many businesses in Boothbay Harbor offer a variety of cruises. There are also full- and half-day deep-sea fishing trips where the catch includes cod, tuna, mackerel, striped bass, and haddock. These include: