Wells is a coastal town in southern Maine that’s known as the state’s “Friendliest Town” and “antique capital.” Wells lies just north of Ogunquit and south of Kennebunk, and includes seven miles of beachfront territory. The town is the third oldest in Maine, with a history that dates back to 1643. Wells developed as a farming community, but the town’s beautiful beaches have made it a proverbial vacation destination in recent years. Now, it’s where visitors can enjoy nature at its best, while also indulging in the perks of a booming tourist town.
Wells Beach is the town’s namesake, but there are other show-stopping beaches along the coast. Crescent Beach is about a half mile south of Wells Beach, and is perfect if you want to explore tide pools. There are plenty of starfish and crabs in the water. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of the seals on Bucklin Rock. Moody beach is on the border between Wells and the next town over. It’s about a mile long, and has numerous access points for kayaks and boats. Wells Harbor is another location where visitors can launch kayaks, canoes or sailboards. Drake’s Island Beach is a beach located on Drake’s Island, a part of Wells. This sandy spot is great for surfing, boarding and swimming because of the perfect waves. Visitors can visit the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge for more nature. The mile-long Carson Trail winds through woods and salt marshes, where you’ll find a pristine natural environment. The Wells Reserve at Laudholm Farm also has untouched woodlands, wetlands and dunes surrounding a seven-mile trail. Once you’re ready for civilization, the town has plenty to offer. There are over 25 antique shops located on Route 1, casting no doubt that Wells is truly an Antique Capital. There are over 80 antique and classic cars on display at the Wells Auto Museum in town. And you’ll find bargains and more at classic Reny’s, located in Wells Shopping Plaza.
Amtrak trains from Wells travel to Portland, Maine and Boston, Massachusetts five times a day. Both cities are less than 2 hours away. Portland is a little over 32 miles northbound from Wells, and Boston is around 78 miles south. Portland is Maine’s largest city, one that highlights the best of its port setting. It’s trendy and hip, successfully making the most of the area’s landscape and architecture. Boston, on the other hand, is a historian’s paradise. There’s a story behind every cornerstone, and it’s a beacon for some of the nation’s best and the brightest. Taking a day trip to an island off the coast is also popular among vacationers to Maine. Devil’s Island is the closest, but there are also Long Island and Chebeague Island near Portland.
Wells is completely decked out with accommodations for tourists. The waterfront resorts provide full-service amenities at all-inclusive rates—perfect for a relaxing vacation. There are bed and breakfast joins for a more modest stay, and various hotels and motels at affordable prices. Seaside cottages and house rentals, many of which offer private beach access, are especially popular among families or groups of friends. Most private vacation homes come with fully equipped kitchens, large communal spaces and multiple bathrooms. Such lodgings can be found along Wells Beach. Wells also has campground facilities that are conveniently located near major roadways and/or beaches. Most campgrounds have a general store for supplies and groceries, and facilities such as swimming pools, playgrounds and recreation rooms.
The Wells Transportation Center is the hub of trips in and out of Wells. Amtrak offers both northbound and southbound trips from the Center. There are five daily trips to Portland in the north, and five southbound to Boston’s North Station, with stops in North Carolina, New Hampshire and Woburn, Massachusetts along the way. The Center can be found by exit 19 of the Maine Turnpike, on Route 109. There are also taxis, limousines, seasonal trolleys, airport shuttles and daily express buses that service tourists in Wells. On-call rental agencies provide their services at the Center if given proper advance notice.
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