New England Christmas Holiday Season Travel Tips
One of our readers, Stacy, would like to visit New England in December. Here is what she wrote:
We want to do a short trip from Thursday-Monday from Atlanta Georgia in December. We have never been to New England and want to see as much as possible. Any ideas where to start? Where to fly into, rent a car, and possibly stay different locations each night?
Thanks for the question, Stacy! We could write a book on what to see and do in New England during December, but for bandwidth purposes, here are some suggestions that I think you'll love:
Fly into Portland International Jetport in Portland, Maine, rent a car there, and drive 45 minutes south to Kennebunkport, Maine, where the spirit of Christmas saturates this beautiful small coastal town the first and second weekends of December. Amazing light displays, horse drawn sleigh rides, caroling, holiday musical entertainment, arts and craft shows, and historic trolley rides are just a few of the events that will get you into the holiday spirit. We strongly recommend logging onto the Christmas Prelude web site for exact dates and times of events to correlate with the days you plan to visit New England. By the way, HGTV voted the Christmas Prelude the #2 Christmas town in America!
For lodging, we like staying at the Rhumb Line Inn Resort and for dining, we recommend Alisson's Restaurant , H.B. Provisions and Federal Jack's, as well as the The Maine Diner in nearby Wells. For more lodging options, long onto our Kennebunkport Hotels Page.
While staying in Kennebunkport, you might want to drive about a half hour south to York Beach Maine, where famous Nubble Lighthouse is all dressed up in holiday lights. It's a spectacular scene at one of New England's most beautiful lighthouses. When in York,, be sure to check out the Festival of Lights Parade scheduled for Sat., Dec. 1. This wonderful event includes a lighting of the village festivals of gingerbread houses and trees, a Christmas tea, student art exhibit, arts and crafts, and a holiday sing-a-long. We recommend logging onto the York Parks and Recreation Department Web Site for updates.
We also recommend visiting two lovely small cities, the previously mentioned Portland, as well as Portsmouth, N.H. Both cities are historic, filled with charm, as well as wonderful locally-owned shops and restaurants. Portland and Portsmouth do have big city amenities, but strolling through these two costal gems also brings about a small town feeling. We regard Portland and Portsmouth as two of the best small cities in New England.
Freeport, Maine (20 minutes north of Portland), is also a "destination," especially during the holiday season. This once sleepy town has transformed into a bustling attractive downtown with an impressive variety of outlet stores -- anchored by the spectacular flagship L.L. Bean. store. It's really a great place to do your holiday shopping.
Hope this helps! Readers, if you have any more suggestions for Stacy's visit to New England, please comment below. Thanks!
We recommend reading the following articles to help with your southern Maine trip planning:
York Beach, Maine