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Portland, Maine

Culture & History

Our most recommended Portland, Maine Culture & History

Portland Maine: Tour in Vintage Fire Engine

1. Portland Maine: Tour in Vintage Fire Engine

Enjoy seeing Portland in an unforgettable way. Hop on board a vintage fire truck with onboard multimedia system, including a large, flat-screen LED TV. Experience Portland in a unique and fun way with this local-led tour aboard a classic fire engine. Explore the city’s peninsula as you drive along the cobble-stoned streets. Enjoy great views of lighthouses, civil war forts, and the historic architecture that make up the wonderful Maine city. Enjoy a 50-minute tour narrated by local guides who love sharing their knowledge of Portland Maine. Get to know the vibrant neighborhoods of this city by the sea from high up on your truck.

Portland: Old Port Culinary Walking Tour

2. Portland: Old Port Culinary Walking Tour

Enjoy this experience that showcases the culinary culture of Portland, Maine comprised of talented food and beverage artisans, from bakers and brewers to confectioners, chefs, and more. Visit the spots the locals enjoy visiting on a daily basis. Join a friendly and engaging tour guide as they take you to several Old Port and neighboring artisanal shops, restaurants, and pubs where you’ll sample a delectable mix of classic Maine, Maine-inspired, up-and-coming, cultural, fancy foods, and beverages. You will have the opportunity to meet and greet culinary artisans along the way, learn what inspires them and how they got their start with a lively narration from your guide. Along the way, your guide will dish about the colorful, social, and culinary history unique to the “Port City” with lots of additional recommendations on how to dine and imbibe. You are sure to leave full of delicious food and local history. This experience actively works with gluten (not celiac), seafood, nut, and vegetarian dietary preferences and sensitivities to the best of our ability. Guests may pick and choose their participation for any further food issues. While tours vary, your foodie experience may include, fresh-picked lobster, from-scratch confections, locally-sourced temaki (raw fish) roll, Maine seafood “chowdah”, iconic Maine craft beer, Maine honeywine, and dark chocolate truffles made with Aroostook County potatoes.

Portland, Maine: 2-Hour Guided History Tour

3. Portland, Maine: 2-Hour Guided History Tour

Meet your local guide, a history lover who will bring the stories and facts from Portland’s past alive throughout the tour. Starting on Commercial Street, walk through the cobble stone streets of the historic Old Port, downtown, and waterfront areas.  Some of the locations that may be featured as part of the tour include the lobster statue, the home of Henry Wadsworth-Longfellow, the Eastern cemetery, the Abyssinian Church, and more. Your tour will finish on a sweet note with a local treat.

Portland: Old Port Seafood Lovers Tour

4. Portland: Old Port Seafood Lovers Tour

Explore Portland’s vibrant working waterfront to view lobster boats often unloading their catch, learn about the historic wharves and their relationship to the sea. Visit a mix of Old Port and waterfront district destinations, and sometimes a locale or two on the fringes, for a progressive lunch. Servings vary from dine-in and to go from restaurants, pubs, markets, and artisanal shops. Learn about the life of lobsters dwelling on the ocean floor and hear about how hardy lobstermen and women haul in their catch year-round, rain, snow, and shine.

Portland, Maine: Hidden Histories Downtown Walking Tour

5. Portland, Maine: Hidden Histories Downtown Walking Tour

Discover Portland's hidden histories on a guided walking tour of the Old Port, downtown, and the working waterfront. Marvel at images of the past and at the colorful storytelling your guide shares with you to make the past come alive. Hear stories only a local knows about the city's sights, streets, and buildings. Explore the Old Port, Portland's major public buildings, and the working waterfront, winding through intimate cobblestone streets along the way. See the city's charming red-brick buildings, its waterfront filled with seafood restaurants and sea views, and more. Learn fascinating anecdotes and facts about Portland, sharing them with friends down the line to show your newly-gained local knowledge. End your tour in a waterfront park, about a 5-minute walk from where you started, surrounded by boutiques, restaurants, and other activity opportunities to continue your own discovery of the city.

Portland, Maine: Black History Guided Walking Tour

6. Portland, Maine: Black History Guided Walking Tour

Wind through the brick sidewalks and cobblestone streets of Portland's Old Port and working waterfront on this guided walking tour. Immerse yourself in the rich story of the Black community in the East End neighborhood. Meet your local guide at the First Parish Church, Portland's oldest church, and begin your journey back in time. Discover the monuments, places of business, and civic institutions where Black Yankees drove the economy and organized for political power. Head to the East End neighborhood to see the homes of Black sailors and stevedores that served as stations on the underground railroad. Admire the churches where Black families worshipped, celebrated, and learned together from the 19-century up to the present day. Learn how Maine's earliest colonial settlements could not have survived without Black insight, skill, and labor. Uncover the story behind the enslaved Black maid who abolished slavery in Maine during the Revolutionary War. Discover the exceptional figures who shaped Portland and the State of Maine over 400 years of Black history. Printed images of the past together with gifted storytelling will bring the past to life. Hear the stories that usually get left out of history tours. A portion of every ticket sale will help fund the restoration of the Abyssinian Meeting House, Maine's oldest and America's third-oldest Black church. End your tour at the Maine Jewish Museum, less than a half-mile from where it began.

Portland, Maine: Women’s History Guided Walking Tour

7. Portland, Maine: Women’s History Guided Walking Tour

Get to know the historic women of Portland on this guided walking tour through the Arts District and West End. Stop at iconic landmarks and hear about the hidden past from a local guide. Learn about Portland's important women and their contribution to the city. Your tour starts where Maine's first women's suffrage meeting was held. Stroll down Congress Street in Portland's Arts District. Visit the places where working-class women earned economic independence and wealthy female philanthropists saved landmarks and founded the city's most cherished museums. In the West End neighborhood, you'll see 19th-century row houses and churches connected to significant woman-led political and social movements. During your tour visit a woman-run underground railroad station and hear of the most daring escape from slavery it supported. Also, enjoy interactive storytelling about the Chinese laundress who won American mother of the year and the enslaved maid who abolished slavery in Maine. Additionally, see the halls and meet the courageous women involved with Maine's multi-generational fight for women's suffrage. Conclude your tour at the headquarters of the movement's final campaign.

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What people are saying about Portland, Maine

Dugan related important and interesting aspects of Portland's history as we walked to landmarks in the city. His anecdotes and occasional "dad" jokes kept us engaged. He's a very knowledgeable guy with a good sense of humor.

This was one of the best tours we've taken. Our guide was so knowledgeable about the city and pointed out interesting facts. We saw so many things that we might not have seen on our own.

100% recomend this tour. Great views of the city with the best tour guide. If you want to see and know the city jump in this tour. ;)

Tour guide was great and very informative. Food was very good at every place we visited. Would recommend this tour.

Dugan was prompt, friendly, informative, funny. Enjoyed!