To stave off COVID Cabin Fever my husband and I have been trying to visit as many outdoor places as possible where it is easy to socially distance. Our latest jaunt involved a road trip to Boothbay Harbor, a picturesque coastal town in the state of Maine. We have friends in the area we wanted to visit, plus we wanted to tour the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens. Of course, eating lots of lobster, crab and clams was also on the list.
We got ourselves a room at Brown’s Wharf Inn, which is a marina, hotel and restaurant right on the harbor. That’s where I met my new friend, who showed on up the railing every time I sat on my balcony. Obviously very used to tourists providing him with snacks.
The hotel, and the town in general, was pretty quiet considering it was the height of tourist season. So it was easy to avoid being close to anyone. Though I really felt bad for the local businesses who I’m sure are feeling the financial effects the pandemic is causing. We did eat out a couple of times at places that had outdoor dining. And I was more than happy to feast on the local cuisine in order to contribute to the economy!
The idea for the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens started back in 1991 with only 7 residents who dreamed of one day having a world class public garden. After years of planning their dream finally came to fruition and the gardens officially opened in 2007. It is now the largest botanical garden in New England, encompassing 295 acres and sees up to 200k visitors a year from all over the world.
Tickets had to be purchased in advance and a time slot reserved to ensure only so many visitors could attend at a time. Masks were required to enter many of the exhibits. They really did a great job of keeping people safe, yet still allowing them to enjoy the beauty of the gardens.
We were very fortunate that the weather was in our favor. It was a stellar day, sunny and a bit on the cooler side. Perfect for a long walk exploring nature.
Naturally, because I was going to a garden, I had to wear something with a flower print on it. So I chose this 1980s button front cutie that had been hanging in the closet for a while, just waiting for the proper moment to take her out for a spin. I love the flowy skirt and it’s 1940s vibe. Added 50s cardigan, bracelet and clip on earrings and a 60s flower brooch. As you can see I’m not a “vintage purist”, preferring to mix eras and new and old, into one outfit. More options that way. I felt the woven jute belt would be a good complement to the macrame on my Yellow Box wedge flip flops. I wear Yellow Box sandals a lot. I find them extremely comfy to walk in. The platform and wedge give nice cushy support to the foot.
There is a lovely walking trail through the woods that runs along the Back River. The views are spectacular.
Along the river a “Fairy Village” has been built. Visitors are encouraged to add to it by gathering nearby branches, driftwood and stones to create their own fairy houses.
Andrew wasn’t happy with just posing in front of one for a photo, he insisted on crawling inside. Boys will be boys, as they say!
Another glorious trail winds through their massive rhododendron garden, which unfortunately is not blooming this time of year.
Nevertheless, the scenery was still breathtaking and the sound of the waterfall was extremely soothing.
There are also many interesting stone sculptures in the gardens. The one above is titled “Mother Earth”. And I loved the stone pillars that were used as planters for succulents.
Another stunning feature is the shaded pergola. Along the edges are benches framed by fragrant roses.
My pictures do not do justice to how amazing these gardens are. There is also a meditation garden, butterfly house and family education center. In normal times they have ongoing classes and camps running. It is truly inspiring that just a small group of dedicated citizens were able to bring such a magical place to life.
Back at the inn after a thoroughly enchanting day, here is the sunset view from our deck following an early evening thunder shower.
Till next time….
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Nancy’s Fashion Style- Fancy Friday
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