Sometimes, it feels like Maine is getting more crowded every day.  This is especially true during the summer months, when millions of people visit our state from all over the country.  Actually, because of our international airports and the dozens of cruise ships that visit our coastline each year, they are really coming from all over the world.

Yes, for better or worse, Maine really is an international tourist destination.  There is a reason we're called Vacationland.

If dealing with the flood of tourists is not your thing, you have probably wondered if there was a place where you can get away from everything.  Well, the answer is YES!

If you are looking to get away from everything and everyone, we suggest you head north.

Aroostook County

Even though the area that most Mainers refer to as "The County" does get thousands of visitors each year, there are far fewer of them than in places like Portland or Maine's Mid-Coast.

As the far northern part of the state lacks the amusement parks, boutique shops, high-end restaurants, concert venues, and nightlife, most of the visitors who make the trek to Aroostook County are doing it for a very specific reason.

People frequently visit the area to hunt, snowmobile, camp (REALLY camp, NOT glamp), or ride their motorcycles.  On top of that, the area has a decent-sized downhill ski resort, and is a great place for cross-country skiing.

With much of the county located on a ridge, the area offers visitors majestic views of the county's farms and wilderness.  The drive from Houlton to Presque Isle is truly majestic.

Even though Aroostook County is sparsely populated (there are only XXX), The County is dotted with memorable towns and cities, like Houlton (where you'll get off I-95), Mars Hill, Presque Isle, Easton, Caribou, Limestone, and Madawaska.  Each of these towns has its own personality, and is filled with unique shops and restaurants.

Additionally, it is also very affordable.  Unlike many of the more touristy spots on the state's coast, the restaurants and lodging in Aroostook County are much more affordable.


What's With the Name 'Aroostook'?

Not surprisingly, Aroostook is a Native American word.

The VisitMaine website says:

Aroostook. A Micmac word meaning “beautiful river.” This magnificent river flows through a verdant valley and county – all sharing the same name

As a native of Northern Maine, I would highly recommend a visit to the Crown of Maine. Even if you are not big into outdoor activities, it is a great trip because the lack of distractions will give you and your family (or you and your significant other) a chance to really connect.

Check out this video showing some cool towns and things you can do in The County:

How about you?  Have you ever visited?  What's a place in Maine you think we all need to visit?

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