The town of Old Orchard Beach is a renowned Maine getaway, mixing the best of the new and old. It’s also known as OOB and is located in Maine, United States.
Old Orchard Beach is among Maine’s remaining oceanfront amusement parks, complete with an old-fashioned carousel, fair food, rides, and a pier. Beachgoers love Old Orchard Beach because of its captivating sandy shores. It’s the most visited beach in Maine by families. Kids visiting OOB enjoy splashing in the strong waves, swimming in the surf, or creating sandcastles.
If you want to enjoy livelier beach activities, you will easily access games, drinks, and great food by settling close to the Pier. Most OOB visitors gather close to the Pier; you can head to the end of the beach and enjoy a more peaceful and quieter day in summer. If you pack light, you can rent affordable beach gear from many local outlets.
While visiting Old Orchard Beach, Maine, you can go fishing, biking, shopping, or visit the entertainment spots and attraction sites.
How to get to Old Orchard Beach, Maine?
Located right next to Portland, Maine, Old Orchard Beach is a location easy to get to. Let’s explore the different ways you will be able to travel to OOB.
Getting to Old Orchard Beach by Plane
As Portland, ME is incredibly close to Old Orchard Beach, your best bet is to find a flight into Portland International Jetport. Although, it’s not the biggest airport in the U.S. you should have no trouble finding some insanely cheap flights to Portland. Once you land, you may rent a car directly at the airport and be on your way to a great vacation.
Getting to Old Orchard Beach by Car
You can find Old Orchard Beach south of both I-95 and US-1. This means it’s extremely easy to reach the town. Being next to two big roads like that gives easy accessibility and you should expect no problems getting there by car.
Getting to Old Orchard Beach by Bus
You can find a bus to Old Orchard Beach from Saco. This means taking the Blue-White line, which runs from Saco to OOB daily. You may find more info on the bus provider’s official website. In case you are flying into the area, they operate lines from Portland to Saco, which you will have to take first.
The top things to do in Old Orchard Beach, Maine
Getting there is one thing, but to fully enjoy a vacation in OOB, you must know what to do and what to see in the area. Let’s explore all the best things you can do in Old Orchard Beach for an epic experience.
1. Daytrip to Portland Old Port Area
Portland is a quaint, artsy, and electric seaside town near Old Orchard Beach, ideal for family visits. It’s a historic district that’s located by the waterfront. Portland features several attractions, shops, and restaurants that appeal to both adults and kids.
Portland’s shopping scene is fun, with several stores and shops to visit; you’ll come across local chains like the Black Dog, Cabot Cheese, Mexicali Blues, Cool as a Mouse, Life is Good, and The Salt Cellar in Portland. Additionally, many shops sell accessories, clothing, spices, handbags, and poetry, making your shopping experience interesting and enjoyable.
You can visit Portland’s standout areas, including Fore Street that’s along the waterfront, its liberal food culture, Congress Street, City Hall, Museum of Art, and the Old Port waterfront.
The food is always amazing in Portland, Maine
There are several restaurants in the tiny Old Orchard Beach seaside town, and most of the popular ones are located in Portland. Some of these restaurants include DuckFat, Paciarino Italian restaurant, and Piccolo.
If you love pizza, there are some excellent pizza spots in Portland, including Otto, Slab, and the Flatbread Company. The three pizza joints are fabulous but different; hence it’s good to look them up online before deciding where you will have your pizza.
Portland has several seafood restaurants that serve lobster rolls; the HighRoller Lobster is among Portland’s most popular seafood restaurants. It’s a casual restaurant where you walk in, place your order at the counter and take a seat, and enjoy your meal!
Other popular restaurants in Portland include Central Provisions and Eventide, both offering excellent meals at affordable prices.
From shopping to visiting attractions to eating, your daytime trip to Portland can never be boring!
2. Visit Funtown Splashtown USA
Funtown Splashtown Park is located in Saco, Maine, United States. It has 2 pools and various water slides, making it an ideal fun location for kids who enjoy water activities. Funtown Splashtown has a total of twenty-five amusement park rides. If you’re less daring, you can enjoy the Astrosphere, Grand Prix Racers, Bumper Cars, Wild Mouse roller coaster, or the Thunderbolt.
3. Enjoy the Old Orchard Beach Pier
The Pier was opened in July 1898, and it offers different entertainment options like concerts, dancing, lectures, and relaxing. However, as the years went by, the original Pier was destroyed slowly by the storms. The Pier that exists today was first opened in 1980, and it boasts of several shops and restaurants. The Golzbein family owns the Pier, and it’s the perfect spot for fun family vacations, great food, and entertainment.
The Old Orchard Beach Pier features several seafood restaurants and dives, with breathtaking ocean views and mouthwatering food and drinks. The Pier is a hotspot during the night; it has live DJs playing different music and offers karaoke and comedy. Young revelers will enjoy one of the most enjoyable bar scenes in Maine, with drink specials, dance parties, and lively parties at Pier.
During summer, the Pier hosts fireworks every Thursday. It also has surf and swimsuit boutiques, tattoo and henna parlors, Maine craft shop, and t-shirt shops.
4. Visit the Cascade Falls Trails
The Cascade Falls Trails in Old Orchard Beach has been in existence since the 1800s; it’s famous for hiking, viewing the falls, fishing, and picnicking. Upon leaving the parking lot, the trail starts right next to the kiosk. It’s a moderately sloping trail with a stone dust surface, making it easily accessible to children, or the elderly.
If you enjoy nature, you will encounter various ferns, mosses, and wildflowers on this trail during summer. Of course, at the end of the trail, you will be treated to the amazing views of Cascade Falls. This park is wonderful for hiking in the summer. The trails are very well maintained and clearly marked.
5. Go Camping
There are over 4,000 RV campgrounds and campsites in Old Orchard Beach, offering everything from basic tent sites to complete service RVs hookups. The campsites range the affordable to more expensive ones that offer entertainment and recreation facilities, playgrounds, boating, mini golfs, and pools. Most of the Old Orchard Beach Maine campgrounds provide shuttle services to the beach.
6. Visit Ocean Park Temple, Maine
The Ocean Park Temple, Maine is located on Temple Square in Old Orchard Beach. Temple Square is a historical name and geographical center for Porter Hall, Jordan Hall, Bell Tower, and The Temple stand.
These buildings date back to the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, and they remain unaltered, except for minimal changes to aid accessibility. The Ocean Park Temple was included in the National Register of Historic Places in 1975. Additionally, it’s the only octagonal-shaped religious building in Maine still in use.
7. Eat at Tami Lynn’s Place
Tami Lynn’s Place is a locally owned restaurant that was first opened in Old Orchard Beach in 2012. The restaurant prides itself as a “destination spot” for its customers, whether the locals, first-timers, or summertime visitors to Old Orchard Beach.
You can visit the restaurant and enjoy dinner, breakfast, or lunch from a menu that features various classic dishes. Tami Lynn’s Place has a friendly and upbeat atmosphere that makes all guests feel at home. Check out the menu here.
8. Visit The Pirates Patio and Gallery
The Pirates Patio and Gallery is an exceptional dining establishment located in Maine, Old Orchard Beach. It’s one of the Old Orchard’s Beach hidden treasures, and it was once referred to as the “Widow Maker.”
The Pirates Patio and Gallery is a local spot for great food and spirits. You can watch your favorite games on the television or enjoy your meals with friends or family either on the outdoor patio next to the beach or indoors. It’s open from 11.00 am to 11.00 pm daily.
9. Try your hand at Fishing
A great way to spend your time when visiting Old Orchard Beach is to go fishing. You can choose to go fishing by boat; many boat companies charter fishing tours, lobster tours, or rafting tours. Expert and beginner anglers will enjoy chartered fishing trips from Camp Ellis or Pine Point with experienced captains, who always ensure that all fishing excursions are unforgettable!
You could catch different fish like mackerel, bluefish, or striped bass since the Saco River is their habitat.
Some boat companies offer kid-friendly tours that are inclusive of viewing sea creatures such as starfish and crabs. Going for a lobster boat tour is an enjoyable way to experience a lobsterman’s life by watching him pull traps and learn about Maine lobsters.
10. Kayak through the marsh
If you love adventure, there are many kayak and canoe rentals and tours that explore the nearby Scarborough salt marsh and Saco River, where you may encounter some interesting wildlife sightings.
Bird watchers enjoy the Scarborough Marsh, an extensive habitat for a wide array of bird and aquatic Maine species. Renting kayaks for a paddle along the Saco River is one of the more popular activities along this section of Maine’s coastline.
11. Adrenaline at Palace Playland
Kids enjoy visiting Palace Playland, an amusement park with over twenty-five attractions and rides. This place offers a huge arcade room, Kiddieland rides, and a classic carousel for younger children. The famous Sun Wheel raises you above the strip for breathtaking views of the town, the Pier, and the beach.
The Galaxi Coaster at Palace Playland is among the best roller coasters in Maine. Additionally, Palace Playland offers delicious park food like the famous Pier fries, pizza, and fried dough. There are gift shops, midway games, and there’s free admission to palace Playland visitors; you pay for the games and rides of your choice.
12. Jungle Adventure 3D Mini Golf
Another fun things to do in Old Orchard Beach for families is the Jungle Adventure 3D Mini Golf. The owner decides to put a spin on the traditional mini-golf experience. Instead of being in the open, you are contained in a building, with flashing neon lights and new kinds of challenges. The kids will absolutely love the feel and trendiness of this mini-golf course.
13. Attend Events
Even though Old Orchard Beach is a beachside community, there’s a lot of fun going on all year round. If you are in Old Orchard Beach during the Christmas season, you can attend the Christmas by the Sea annual celebration, including delicious food, entertainment, horse-drawn wagon rides, and tree-lighting. Santa & Mrs. Claus also join in the Christmas celebrations to make them more enjoyable.
The Lobster Dip celebration is held on New Year’s Day; it’s a tradition that has been in existence for over twenty years and benefits the Special Maine Olympics. Over three hundred participants in the Lobster Dip celebration jump into the freezing water, and you can also participate if you’re brave enough.
You can enjoy outdoor events like the Memorial Day Parade, weekly fireworks, Beach Olympics, Pier’s Beerfest, the sand sculpture family contest, and several memorial road races during summer. A Vintage Car Parade and a traditional Auto Show occur in September along the Old Orchid’s Maine Street Strip.
14. Family afternoon at the Monkey Trunks
Monkey Trunks was opened in early 2008 and it’s an ideal location for both adults and children; it’s a unique playground since it’s raised up to sixty-five feet above the ground. Monkey Trunks is an ideal state location and kid-friendly.
Several accommodation options offer serene environments for visitors to get their rest available in Old Orchard Beach. Most of these facilities are located on or close to the beach, giving you breathtaking views, helping you relax. Beautiful, traditional bed & breakfast places provide a personal and relaxing stay, where families and couples can bond as they enjoy home-cooked meals and view the gorgeous sunsets from the porch.
16. Try Raptor Falls Mini Golf & Ice Cream
Raptor Falls opened its doors in 2019, and it’s a dream-come-true for the owners, Cliff and Bree Gajkowski, whose aim is to offer unforgettable family adventures to their visitors.
Raptor Falls Mini Golf & Ice Cream provides a fun experience for families; it combines a modern mini golf course and animatronic dinosaurs. If you’re looking for a fun-filled and enjoyable day out while in Old Orchard Beach, head out to Raptor Falls, and you won’t be disappointed! Raptor Falls has a fun-filled, safe, lively atmosphere and enjoyable, locally manufactured ice cream from Shaker Pond.
17. Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf
The Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf course is a popular attraction for families and adults looking to have a fun day out with a little adventure! When the weather is nice, the kids will love to take a break from the water parks and try out Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf.
Where to stay at Old Orchard Beach?
You are now set for an awesome time in Old Orchard Beach, Maine. With so many things to do we are sure you will be tired each night. Let’s dive into some hotel recommendations for staying at OOB.
Enjoy the waves at Sea View Inn
Close to the beach? Check! Nice views? Check! Affordable? Check! The Sea View Inn is our number one recommendation when it comes to staying at Old Orchard Beach. It’s a very simple place to stay, but you will have great views and be right on the beach. Also, there’s a pool, so you don’t even have to leave the hotel for swimming.
Alouette Sunrise Suites
An affordable resort is the Alouette Sunrise Suites. It has nice rooms, all fully equipped. There is an indoor pool and an outdoor pool available. It’s also very close to the beach so you will have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the water.
Hidden Pond Resort & Tree Spa
Although it’s not directly in Old Orchard Beach, we just had to include the Hidden Pond Resort. It’s one of the more unique accommodations you can choose in the area. This isolated, rustic-chic retreat is housed in a collection of rustic structures.
Beautiful 2-bedroom cottages include living rooms, kitchens, and gas fireplaces. There are also screened-in porches on several of the cottages. They all have washers and dryers, as well as flat-screen TVs. There is a 24-hour room service option.
Coastal Maine is Amazing!
In conclusion, Old Orchard Beach is centrally located on the Maine Coast, and it’s close to beaches and other seaside towns and Portland’s city atmosphere. There are several lighthouses including Goat Island Lighthouse, Portland Headlight, and Two Lights. It’s also close to malls, state parks, and movie theaters. For golf lovers, there are more than ten 18-hole golf courses in Old Orchard Beach.
Whatever you choose to do while in Old Orchard Beach, you will never run out of options!