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View of the boats on North Haven Island of the Maine Island Trail

View of the boats on North Haven Island of the Maine Island Trail

View from North Haven Island

View from North Haven Island

North Haven Island

North Haven Island

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Paddling In Maine

Maine is defined by water. For paddlers, that’s a great thing.

Inland, you can meander across short flatwater stretches or push your horizons on multi-day canoe or kayak adventures in areas such as the Allagash Wilderness Waterway. For pure thrills, they have the state’s big three rivers – the DeadKennebec and Penobscot – for whitewater canoeing, kayaking and rafting. A few brave souls even try some sections of the big water on stand-up paddleboards.

Maine’s saltwater offer paddlers the same variety. Tidal rivers wind through fascinating stretches of shore land, much of it protected by refuges. More than 3,500 miles of coast runs from sand beaches in the south to the rocky bold coast Down East. All this provides plenty of opportunity for paddlers. One favorite destination? The Maine Island Trail, a 375-mile water route that links more than 200 islands up the coast.         

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Get inspired at the Maine Quarterly

  • The Thoreau-Wabanaki Trail

  • Free travel guidebook

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