July 9, 2013

Coastal Maine & New Hampshire

This post could also be titled 'the time we went on vacation and it rained the entire time' (except of course for our drive home, then it was sunny, sunny, sunny - isn't it funny how that happens).  Adam and I took a 'mini' (Wednesday - Saturday) vacation to coastal Maine and New Hampshire a couple of weeks ago.  In May I spotted a deal on Living Social for a two night stay at the Victorian Inn in Hampton, New Hampshire - which is a town right along the coast of Maine.  The deal included breakfast every morning (obviously - it was a B&B after all), two bottles of wine and a vineyard tour all for a great price!  I jumped on the deal and we booked our stay for late June.  We stayed at the B&B Wednesday and Thursday night and then headed up to Portland, Maine (my first time in Maine) for Friday night.  We came back Saturday and even though the drive home was the  only time it was sunny we still had a blast!

Let's start with our digs!  The Victorian Inn was AWESOME!  I would recommend staying there to anyone who is headed to coastal New Hampshire.  I had never stayed at a B&B before so I was slightly apprehensive about what I may find.  Yes the room was slightly outdated (lots of floral) but the bed was super comfy, we had a private bathroom with a jacuzzi tub, breakfast every morning was delicious and kept us full until well in the afternoon and everyone at the B&B was incredibly kind and friendly.

 Our room at the B&B - hello floral!
Jacuzzi tub!  I could have lived in this thing - it was awesome and HUGE! 
While in Hampton we explored the Boardwalk, went down to the ocean and ate the most delicious seafood!  (I plan on writing an entire post about our vacation eats but for now if you are ever in the area, Petey's Seafood in Rye, NH is a MUST.  The drive along the coast to get to Petey's is also one of a kind - right along the ocean wall and you pass some  insane mansions along the way.)  Each night after dinner we headed down to the Hampton Beach Boardwalk to walk around, get dessert and play at the old school arcade!  We had an absolute blast at the arcade - Adam is a ski ball champ!  There was also a sandcastle competition happening while we were there so we were able to see some insane sand art!
Enjoying some seafood at Petey's!
 If you know anything about Adam you will know why this picture is both ridiculous and hysterical.
Sandcastle competition!
Crazy sandcastle!
'Selfie' with the sandcastle!
The biggest one!
Dominating at ski ball!
 But I kicked butt on the race car game.
Delicious breakfast every morning - clearly I am VERY excited for these pancakes!
For the trip I had this grand expectation of being able to spend an entire day at the beach; the week before our trip the weather had been in the 90s and sunny, but unfortunately mother nature had other plans. The weather while we were in Hampton was about 65 - 70 degrees and rainy, which meant the ocean was about 50 degrees - i.e. COLD! We ended up spending only about 30 minutes total on the beach - I stuck my toes in and feared that they may fall off.  TInstead of beaching it up we decided to go for a hike - more on that later - but the hike ended up being the perfect alternative and lucky for us, it didn't start raining until we returned.
Rocky coastal New Hampshire!
It's really cold!
But I'm going to be happy about it anyway!
Adam in the surf.
Walking up the coast toward the seawall.
Friday morning we left the B&B and headed to Portland, ME, but first we made a stop at the outlets in Kittery, ME.  Kittery is located just across the border from New Hampshire and has some awesome outlets - Le Creuset, Crate & Barrel (I wanted to buy everything in that store), but the best outlet by far was Kittery Trading Post!  KTR is a HUGE outlet that stocks everything you could possibly need for any type of outdoor activity - hiking, biking, kayaking - it not only stocks the actual equipment but also tons of clothes and household goods.  And did I mention the giant stuffed moose!  Now in case you didn't already know, I sort of have a thing for moose (one of my goals in life is to see a moose in the wild - they actually have tours for that) and for some reason I just really like moose.  Maybe it has something to do with my love of Vermont (Vermont = moose) but who knows, either way, I didn't want to leave Maine without a stuffed moose (yes my 26 year old self wanted a stuffed moose).  
Actual stuffed moose at Kittery Trading Post.
Moose & Bear
Me and the moose - and don't forget the mountain lion above my head!
Adam made my dreams come true (I am clearly very easy to please) and bought me a stuffed moose - I named him Howard - Howard the Happy Moose.
Friday we headed up to Portland (but not before a detour to Kennebunkport for lunch) and after checking into our hotel went down to explore the city!  Portland is an incredibly walkable city and is full of great bakeries, restaurants and interesting shops.  We ended up walking around for about 3 - 4 hours before deciding on a local seafood joint for dinner.  After dinner we were stuffed and tired so we headed back to the hotel.  The next day before we left for Freeport, ME we headed back to downtown Portland to walk around a little more, eat breakfast and mayyyybe go back to our new favorite bakery.
These placards are located throughout Portland - I never knew that Maine played such a large role in the 'Freedom Trail'.
Statue of man with lobster!
After we left Portland we headed up to Freeport, Maine for the sole purpose of going to the LL Bean Flagship store (and taking a picture with the large boot).  Freeport is located about 20 minutes north of Portland and is home to another set of fabulous outlets.  I have to admit that I was a little disappointed with the LL Bean outlet (the prices and selection were not as great as I would have imagined) but it was fun walking through the flagship store.  We did however find some GREAT deals at the Corningware and NorthFace outlets.  The whole trip to Freeport would have been worth it to solely get a picture with the giant boot (haha get it).
The giant LL Bean boot!
Me and the boot!
Overall the trip was a blast!  It was great to get away for a while and explore new places with Adam.  Maine is absolutely gorgeous and I would go back in a second!  Our next trip will be to Washington D.C./Baltimore in a couple of weeks - I am headed down there for a conference and then Adam and Elise are meeting me later in the week.  Should be a fun time!

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