Mostly known for its nautical traditions, breathtaking coastline, and fresh seafood, Maine has a lot to offer its travelers. But there are several hidden secrets to uncover when visiting and one of the most unique things to do in Maine is to see the mighty puffin. But these rare birds are sometimes hard to spot so use our guide below on where to see puffins in Maine.
First, …what is a Puffin?
Typically found in places like Norway and Iceland, Puffins are one of Maine’s most threatened species. With their big colorful beaks and their penguin-like appearance, sighting a puffin is a rare treat in Maine. From April through August puffins migrate ashore to raise their young until they are fully grown, which is usually mid-August. Then the puffins leave their nesting island and fly out to sea for the winter.
Where to see puffins in Maine
One of the best places to spot these colorful birds is right here in Midcoast Maine at Easter Egg Rock. As the site where the first puffins were reintroduced to Maine, Easter Egg Rock is part of the Project Puffin and one of the best places to see puffins in Maine. The rock is only 7 acres in size, making it hard for the puffins to “hide” from visitors. Again, the best time to see puffins in Maine is between April and August when they lay their eggs and raise their young.
Puffin cruise in Maine
One of the best ways to see the puffins in their natural habitat is with a puffin cruise in Maine. Easter Egg Rock rests only 6 miles from shore, making it an ideal location for viewing the puffins up close on a puffin cruise.
There are a few charter companies nearby that offer puffin cruises:
Hardy Boat Cruises
Another great option for viewing puffins in Maine is with Hardy Boat Cruises, near Bristol, Maine. Guided by an Audubon naturalist, you are guaranteed to learn more about the puffin bird than you ever thought you would. A portion of ticket sales goes toward the Puffin Project.
Cap’n Fish’s Audubon Puffin & Scenic Cruises
Operating out of Boothbay Harbor, just 20 minutes south of Newcastle, Maine, Cap’N Fish’s Puffin Cruises are the most popular in the area. The cruise is led by a certified marine biologist, who provides educational facts about the puffin bird.
Rest and relax at Newcastle Inn
Stay at Newcastle Inn for convenient access to all the best things to do in Midcoast Maine. Take a puffin cruise in Maine and book a stay at our cozy inn nestled along the Damariscotta River. At Newcastle Inn, every room provides comfort, coastal charm, luxurious amenities, and beautiful views. With our friendly staff and a warm complimentary breakfast, feel instantly welcomed at our cozy inn. There is truly no better place to stay when visiting Midcoast Maine.