Experience the serenity and beauty of New England's largest botanical gardens, followed by free time in the shopping paradise of Freeport.
Your day begins with a drive north to the Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, a spectacular natural attraction that opened in 1997. Despite being relatively new, it has become New England's largest botanical gardens with 248 acres devoted to indigenous and exotic flora. Initially, you'll follow a docent around the gardens, who'll point out highlights and answer your answers. Then, following your guided tour, you'll have some time to explore on your own. Perhaps stroll the pathway through the mossy forest, meander around the kitchen garden, and relax in the Lerner Garden of the Five Senses, a sensory experience of wonderful fragrances, graceful fountains and bursts of bright colors. Being environmentally sensitive, the gardens only use organic compost-based fertilizers.
Next, you'll travel to Freeport where you'll enjoy two hours at your leisure. Located on the shores of beautiful Casco Bay, Freeport is home to more than 200 outlet stores, designer shops, eclectic boutiques and plenty of eateries where you can have a quick lunch. It's no wonder Freeport attracts shoppers from around the state as virtually anything you can imagine is available here, including antiques, apparel, crystal, fragrances, jewelry, and luggage. Amongst the shops you'll also find Maine's own renowned brands such as Cole Haan and of course, L.L. Bean. It's easy to be caught up in the excitement of so many extraordinary stores, but Freeport does have other attractions, many of them historic. Jameson Tavern is of particular note because it was here that Maine's early leaders met to pursue the province's eventual independence from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Following your time in Freeport, you'll rejoin your coach at the appointed time and location for the return transfer to the pier in Portland. Those who are not on time will be responsible for making their own way back to the ship, at their own expense.
Please note: This tour includes approximately 90-minutes of easy to moderate walking, plus any additional walking at the guests' discretion during free time. There will be a few steps to negotiate. The tour is available to wheelchair guests who have a collapsible wheelchair, are able to make their own way on and off the coach and have an able-bodied companion to assist them. Those with mobility concerns are cautioned to carefully evaluate their personal level of stamina and ability. Weather appropriate clothing; sun cap; sunglasses; and flat, comfortable walking shoes are recommended.