What to Do on July 4th in Portland, Maine

Narrow Gauge Museum & Waterfront Train Ride on Casco Bay

If you think that you have been to all the tourist attractions in Portland, the Narrow Gauge Museum might make you change your mind. You’ll get to see several historic rail cars and much more when you make a trip to this museum. Whether you’re a railfan, history buff, or just looking for something fun to do on 4th July, you will find a trip to Maine Narrow Gauge Railway Co. & Museum to be quite a delightful experience. You will feel as if you’re taking a journey through time when you step aboard and travel in one of the historic coaches. You will also learn a great deal about the history of Narrow Gauge Railways. Some of the historic equipment you’ll get to see include, Rangeley which was built in 1901 for Rangeley Lakes and Sandy River Railroad, and is America’s only 24-inch gauge Parlor; SR&RL Combine coach 14; and the Bridgton & Saco River RR Coach 16 which was built in 1882 and is among the oldest equipment in the railway. The museum is open during regular hours from 9:30 am to 4:00 pm

During the evening, you can catch the waterfront train ride on Casco Bay. Train rides run from Ocean Gateway to Eastern Promenade, and the drop off point is at Cutter Street. The ride operates from 4:30 pm to 7:00 pm and usually costs $5. There are two advantages to the waterfront train ride. The first is that you get to experience a fantastic view of Casco Bay. The second is that you get to experience the fireworks on Eastern Promenade.

Boat Cruise along Casco Bay

Whether you only have hours or an entire day, the best way to experience Casco Bay in its entirety is on the deck of a ferry. Although you can still catch a glimpse of Casco Bay by taking the waterfront train ride, it isn’t as in-depth an experience as that of a cruise ship. There are various cruise companies that operate along Casco Bay. One of the most popular Fourth of July cruises is the one offered by Casco Bay Lines. The annual event falls under the cruise company’s “special event” cruises and is usually presented by DJ Haunt. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Casco Bay Line and other cruising companies have halted the sale of cruise tickets.

Old Port Holiday Historic Walking Tour

Old Port’s Historic Walking tour is an exciting two-hour activity that provides a historical adventure for families and friends. In this walking tour, you get to explore the rich history of Old Port and places of interest since 1632. Did you know that the 1866 Great Fire of Portland occurred on 4th July? The celebration in 1886 was the first independence day celebrated since the end of the American Civil War. The Great fire originated from a boathouse and spread in a way that had never been experienced in an American city. It was the most dreadful fire in America before the 1871 fire of Chicago. The tour addresses how the fire occurred, how it spread, as well as how the citizens of Portland have triumphed time and again. You also get to experience Portland’s beautiful monuments, historical landmarks, and architecture and learn how prohibition began in the Old Port, including the famous Rum riot of 1855 and other significant events that have taken place in Portland since 1632. The walking tours also discuss some of the best restaurants in Old Port and the best places to sample local craft beer.