The tide rises, the tide falls,
The twilight darkens, the curlew calls;
Along the sea-sands damp and brown
The traveller hastens toward the town,
And the tide rises, the tide falls.

Darkness settles on roofs and walls,
But the sea, the sea in the darkness calls;
The little waves, with their soft, white hands,
Efface the footprints in the sands,
And the tide rises, the tide falls.

The morning breaks; the steeds in their stalls
Stamp and neigh, as the hostler calls;
The day returns, but nevermore
Returns the traveller to the shore,
And the tide rises, the tide falls.
—Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Tide Rises, the Tide Falls , 1879

After visiting Rhode Island, Cape Cod, Plymouth, and Boston, we make our way North to visit the beautiful coastline of Maine, checking out Portland, before going to Acadia National Park. After that, we make our way inland to the White Mountains of New Hampshire and finally we go see the green pastures of Vermont and Lake Champlain.

Portland, Maine

We take the Amtrak train from Boston to Portland, Maine. Every time I take a train, I realize that I’ve missed it! It’s always a great way to travel. Portland is a quaint little port town, which is also the biggest town in Maine with a population of around 68,000.

The area was called Machigonne (“Great Neck”) by the Native Americans. Portland’s name comes from an island on the English channel. And Portland, Oregon is named after it.

There are lots of cobblestone streets and beautiful buildings. It’s also the birthplace of the poet Longfellow. And also the film director John Ford, amongst many others.

For a small town, it is really vibrant and filled with Arts, Culture and lots of great places to eat. We really enjoy our stay there.

Bath, Maine

On our road trip up the coast of Maine, we make a stop in Bath, to visit the Maine Marine Museum. It’s a very large and interesting museum about the big role Maine played in the maritime world over the centuries. This site used to be a shipyard, where they would build boats that would go up and down the coast to carry coal from North Carolina, and other commercial purposes. The museum has an incredible collection of boats, documents and interesting history. We learned there that at some point a law was passed that prevented shipyard owners from feeding lobster every single day of the week to their workers, they could only serve it a certain number of days, because workers were fed up eating that!

Lobster Shack

We make a quick little lunch stop to taste one of the things that Maine is most famous for, a lobster! The lobster is very tasty, and incredibly cheap compared to anywhere else. It’s served directly by the fishermen.

Acadia National Park

After Bath, we make our way to the Acadia National Park, which is partly located on Mount Desert Island. It’s the largest island off the coast of Maine. There are multiple towns and harbors on the island, as well as the national park. The area is really gorgeous. We end up staying in Bar Harbor which is probably the most touristic area, but it still has some charm. We stay in a really nice Bed and Breakfast, the Sand Bar Cottage Inn (highly recommended) which was built in 1887. The owner is incredibly welcoming and they serve a killer breakfast (best breakfast I’ve had in a hotel in the US!).

We get up early to walk around the top of the park, on Cadillac Mountain, and to do various hikes on the coast line.

The White Mountains, New Hampshire

After Maine, we make our way to New Hampshire, and visit the North of state which is a very rural area called the White Mountains. They cover about a quarter of the state and are the most rugged mountains of New England. The Appalachian Trail crosses the mountains. There is also Mount Washington, which we visit, which is one of the windiest places on earth. It currently holds the record of the strongest wind ever recorded by a human. Even though the mountain’s altitude is “only” 1916 meters (6288 feet), it’s on a storm path, and the air gets compressed over its ridges. So on April 12, 1934, a wind of 372 km/h (231mph) was recorded there. The day we arrived there was hurricane force winds at the top, so we waited the next morning, and it was actually very nice and clear so we definitely lucked out!

While driving around we saw a bear on the side of the road! I managed to get a really nice picture.

All the hostels, motels, hotels were fully booked so we checked out a local campground and ended up sleeping in the car (the seats could recline completely so it wasn’t too bad). We also found a cafe that was definitely very very hipster! Really unexpected in rural New Hampshire.

The area used to be French so there are a lot of signs with very “interesting” translations.

After Mount Washington we continue to make our way through the White Mountains, and also see some really nice old covered bridges like the Jackson Covered bridge, built in 1976, also called the Honeymoon bridge!

Montpelier, Vermont

We continue the roadtrip, and make a stop for lunch in Montpelier, Vermont. As I was born in Montpellier, France, I had a personal interest to stop in the capital town of Vermont. We did not see Bernie Sanders, but instead saw a really nice little town with lots of historical buildings. It only has a population of 8074 making it the smallest state capital in the US!

Burlington, Vermont

We arrive in the area of Burlington, the biggest town in Vermont, with a population of around 44,000. The area is so green, filled with small farms. Burlington is also on Lake Champlain, a large lake between the state of Vermont and New York. We stay in a quaint little farm near the Shelburne Farms, which we will visit later.

We sample a lot of local products, cheese, produce and meats. We have multiple delicious food feasts cooked by Bakulia. Vermont is definitely a great place for fresh food!

We visit the town of Burlington, check out the sailing club, and walk around the nice little downtown area, and admire the views of the lake.

Sherlburne Farms, Vermont

We visit Shelburne Farms, which has a very interesting history. It was built from money of William Henry Vanderbuilt, the richest american at the time. It was meant to be a model farm. It has since been turned into a non-profit, and open to the public. The buildings are quite beautiful and look more like a castle than a farm. We enjoy walking around the fields, and meeting the local residents.

Lake Champlain & exist to Québec

We check out a local beach on Lake Champlain, to have a little evening picnic, and to enjoy the warm water. We watch a gorgeous sunset for our last day in New England, overlooking the Adirondack mountains in the state of New York.

The following day, we take a ferry to cross the lake, to catch a bus. But the bus is 6 hours late so we decide to catch a ride to the border of Canada. We end up crossing the border on foot! The border control officer is quite surprised to see a pregnant lady and a man crossing in the middle of nowhere.

We end up having to wait a bit as no one is picking up hitchhikers, and there are no Uber cars in the area. We end up calling a local taxi to go to Montreal. This old couple from Greece showed up in a van that was half broken. The driver was more than 80 years old, and his wife was guiding him on the road. Quite the adventure but we made it in once piece!

This concludes our report from this road trip in New England. Thanks for reading if you’ve made it here!

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