Portland, Maine (July 7th 2019)

Portland, Maine (July 7th 2019)

Portland is big 179km2 and it is the biggest city in Maine. Its population is 67 067 people which is over a one third of all people living in Maine!

Portland is about 2,5hours of drive from Scituate and its Old Port district has beautiful architecture from 19th century. And so, one Saturday evening me and Nikola decided to come here for a day trip.  

Portland is big 179km2 and it is the biggest city in Maine. Its population is 67 067 people which is over a one third of all people living in Maine!

Portland is about 2,5hours of drive from Scituate and its Old Port district has beautiful architecture from 19th century. And so, one Saturday evening me and Nikola decided to come here for a day trip.  

It was Sunday July 7th , 7am and as I opened my eyes I read a text message from Nikola saying that she needs more sleep and if we can leave at 10am instead of 8am. I told her absolutely no and with one hour delay with a Starbucks in our hands we were already on our never ending way on a highway to New Hampshire and then to Maine.  

I am sure for 100% that there had to be one smart guy who once said: passing a state boards isn´t just so easy. Of course it is not. You will need wither E-ZPass, a small box on your front window which is like an electronic payment of the toll or you pay by cash (and sometimes you don´t pass these toll zones at all). My car didn´t have any box and we also forgot about tolls. And so at the first borders I accidentally went to a line with E-ZPass and I just drove through the toll zone. Learnt from my mistake and stressed out that as soon as I leave Massachusetts things go wrong and thinking about my potential ticket, on the next toll zone I went to the correct line and paid the toll. And at the end we were out of cash and on our way home I didn´t have those stupid $3 for paying the toll so I politely asked the lady if that will be a big problem. She said no and luckily she let us go. Seriously, they don´t accept credit cards there so prepare some cash! And my question was: why they don´t put an ATM somewhere around then? Probably they don´t care about that toll that much…      

Nevermind, show must go on! We came to Portland at lunchtime and after we finally found a cheap parking (seriously they think I will pay $10 per hour??) we went for a walk around this magical city. Our friend Natalia was here two days ago. This is what she said about Portland: it is a small, ugly city and it really doesn´t worth to come here for two days. Well, our impressions were different. We considered Portland as a small, beautiful port city with amazing brick houses. Why there are brick houses? Because there was a great fire during the Independence Day celebrations in 1866 when the whole city burnt down and they had to rebuild it over again! Maybe at the end Americans know how to party!    

We took an ice cream (have I ever mentioned that I don´t like ice cream?) and went to The Arts district where we were looking for a street art. We didn´t find anything. We were confused that there was nothing and came up to a conclusion that a map of Portland might be useful. We went to the Portland Museum of Art where we were asking for a map. The nice lady at the ticket selling showed us all the must-see places in Portland, gave us a tip for Italian restaurant where we went for a dinner and convinced us to visit this museum. On the one side Nikola nor me are not fans of the art, but since we are well-behaved, we didn´t say no. We told her that we were under 21 and we got free tickets (okay, Nikola was 20, so only I will die in hell). After an hour we left the museum, very happy when suddenly Nikola said: “I feel like a cultural barbarian.” Yes, the museum was better than we expected!   

We walked through the Art district, Old Port district we have already seen as well, what to do next? We went to the souvenirs shops but there wasn´t anything we liked. And I was disappointed because I couldn´t find any postcards to send to my family and friends (I am so sorry!).

Another thing we did today was a 2hours long cruise on a ship! Straight after we came to Portland we booked tickets for a cruise around local islands and lighthouses and it was amazing. And as a bonus we saw sea lions!   

At the end of the day we got lost (yes, that is possible in this small town as well), had a homemade pizza in Pizzeria Flatbread (pizza was delicious but we didn´t understand why they didn´t give us a private table but sat us next to a family with three kids and mom who was breastfeeding – and all of this after 30minutes of waiting!). That pizza was great. But if you ever come here, ask for a table for two people… And that was the end of the day. We just went back to car for our never ending drive back home.

Why never ending? Because we got stuck in the traffic jam. But that was okay. Lula drove 530km in one day for the first time in her life she spent another great day with Nikola and saw sea lions. What else can you wish for? Well, I´d like to have a coffee… And how about you?   

Budget (for two persons):

Gas:   22 EUR

Food: 28 EUR

TOGETHER: 50 EUR