Travel Destinations

Yachts Cruising the Northeast - From New York to Maine

|
July 2016
|
By
Ellen
Honey

NEW YORK CITY bagels, New England clam bake, Boston cream pies, Maine lobster rolls, maple syrup, johnnycakes, baked beans, seafood chowder, coffee milk, whoopie pies and blueberry everything who needs more reasons to spend time in the Northeast?Aside from the amazing cuisine and the obvious historical significance, there are many more incentives to visit. The diversity of culture and terrain, the changing seasons, the world's most dynamic cities surrounded by small villages striking in their simplicity all invite deeper exploration.Yachts escaping the southern heat, port-hop during the summer months between popular tourist spots and secluded anchorages along the coastline. From New York City to Bar Harbor, enjoy shopping, dining, sightseeing and breezy nights along the way.We put together an itinerary of destinations, with many top-notch marinas and facilities that can accommodate large yachts (more than 80 feet). Enjoy cruising the Northeast this summer!

New York, N.Y.

The pages of a thesaurus would be worn ragged finding enough adjectives to describe New York City. It's anything and everything and no specific thing. Any description will be passé by the next day in this dynamic environment, especially when it comes to restaurants. The variation in dining is staggering, and over the last few years the restaurant scene has undergone a seismic shift as Old World giants give way to more accessible food in casual atmospheres.Dockage is available in Manhattan at MarineMax at Chelsea Pier for vessels up to 320 feet (18-foot dock depth) or North Cove Marina, offering eight megayacht berths for vessels up to 175 feet (18-foot dock depth). Across the Hudson River in Jersey City is Liberty Landing Marina, accommodating vessels up to 200 feet (12-foot dock depth), and Newport Yacht Club and Marina which offers 12 berths for vessels up to 180 feet (10-foot dock depth).

The Hamptons Sag Harbor, N.Y.

Within easy access from the cacophony of Manhattan are the world-class beaches, seaside restaurants and upscale atmosphere of Long Island's Hamptons. En route, Brewer Capri Marina (can accommodate up to 150 feet) offers a great stop-over in beautiful Port Washington on the Long Island Sound. Farther east, Hamptons villages such as Sag Harbor, Southampton, and East Hampton offer not only favorite seaside resorts but some of the most luxurious and expensive real estate properties in the nation.A historic whaling town, Sag Harbor prides itself on being unHamptons. The Sag Harbor Whaling & Historical Museum promotes the area's rich culture. Foster Beach on Noyack Bay is a great place to unwind after a long day of fishing, clamming, or paddle-boarding in the harbor. Dockage is available at Sag Harbor Yacht Club for vessels up to 200 feet (12-foot dock depth), which is walking distance to town. There is an abundance of restaurants nearby, including the American Hotel, the Corner Bar, Dockside Bar & Grill, Nello Summertimes, and Cittanuova.

Newport, R.I.

The site of world-class festivals music, seafood, tennis, polo and more. Steven Sullivan, a retired mega yacht captain and the manager of Newport Marina on Lee's Wharf, says docking in the city is a bargain given how much there is to see and do. Visit Cliff Walk, the 3.5-mile path that traces the edge of the sea, the famous mansions of the Gilded Age, and the storied Tennis Hall of Fame. Explore the Coastal Wine Trail, or visit Rhode Island's only operating rum distillery before dining on dishes made from ingredients from local farmers, foragers and fishermen at such places as Midtown Oyster Bar, Brick Alley Pub & Restaurant, Tallulah on Thames, and Pasta Beach.Dockage is available right in the heart of town at either Newport Marina accommodating vessels up to 140 feet (9-foot dock depth) or Newport Yachting Center for vessels up to 180 feet (22-foot dock depth).

Nantucket, Mass.

Nantucket is noted for its dune-backed beaches and stunning shingled buildings. Steepled churches, designer boutiques and phenomenal eateries line the cobblestone streets and old wharves. Visiting yachts have many restaurant options, such as CRU and Slip 14.The centrally located Nantucket Boat Basin can handle boats up to 300 feet (12-foot dock depth). Grab a bicycle to explore the island or catch a cab to visit Cisco Brewers, Triple Eight Distillery and Nantucket Vineyard. Rent a 4x4 SUV for an off-road adventure along the 16 miles of sand roads and beach at Coskata Coatue Wildlife Refuge. En route to Provincetown, stop in Hyannis, Mass. at Hyannis Marina which can handle yachts up to 200 feet and is located within walking distance to town.

Provincetown, Mass.

Located on the outermost tip of Cape Cod, Provincetown is a vibrant oceanfront community with walkable dunes and a thriving arts scene. Many stores offer exquisite, locally hand-crafted merchandise and unique finds acquired during winter buying trips. Stop for coffee and a homemade treat at the Wild Puppy, an award-winning European style espresso cafe, then head for the museum commemorating the pirate ship Whydah, which wrecked off the coast in 1717 with the riches from 50 plundered ships.In the center of town is Provincetown Marina, now open under new ownership, offering 60 slips for vessels up to 300 feet (15-foot dock depth), along with Long Point Marina accommodating vessels up to 140 feet.

Boston, Mass.

Founded in 1630, Boston is a fascinating city where the historic and the futuristic are in ongoing conversations. Skyscrapers meet cobblestone streets, and the historic Freedom Trail passes trendy hotspots. The dining scene is equally eclectic, with ethnic eateries and traditional New England fare in abundance. Each neighborhood has its own unique character. Back Bay's ornate Victorian townhouses are a short distance from the college vibe of Cambridge and the narrow 17th-century North End streets, where red checkered tablecloths magically appear for Sunday sidewalk suppers.Constitution Marina on the Charles River accepts vessels up to 150 feet (20-foot dock depth), along with Charlestown Marina, handling yachts up to 500 feet (15-foot dock depth). Another option is Boston Yacht Haven, located in Boston's historic North End, which has dockage available for vessels up to 225 feet (25-foot dock depth).

Portland, Maine

Boasting more coastline than California, Maine deserves several stops over an extended period. The classic seacoast town of Portland has a cosmopolitan edge with museums, galleries, and the charming Old Port district. Historic buildings have been revitalized into boutiques, brewpubs and restaurants. Portland was recently voted America's Foodiest Small Town by Bon Appetit magazine. Try Boone's Fish House & Oyster Room, Liquid Riot Bottling Company, or David's Opus Ten. Dockage is available at DiMillo's Old Port Marina offering fuel and accommodating vessels up to 250 feet (25-foot dock depth).

Boothbay Harbor, Maine

With its stunning rocky coastline and quaint seaside village, Boothbay Harbor characterizes Maine's mid-coast. An abundance of mom-and-pop style stores and restaurants preserve the destination's small town charm. Discover excellent clam chowder, lobster stew, ice cream, chocolate oose (yes, moose) and salt water taffy. Some of the best can be found at the Lobster Dock.Hop on a harbor tour to explore nearby islands and have close encounters with puffins, seals and whales, or take to the water by kayak. The Maine State Aquarium and Boothbay Railway Village are both crowd pleasers.Located on the quiet side of the harbor within walking distance of downtown, Hodgdon Marina provides 750 linear feet of space on their new pier, (8 to 18-foot dock depth). Their service yard can haul boats up to 170 feet.

Mt. Desert Island, Maine

The mountains truly do meet the sea at Mt. Desert Island (MDI), one of the most spectacular settings on the entire East Coast. It's best known for Acadia National Park, the second most-visited national park in the U.S., with a landscape marked by woodlands, rocky beaches and glacierscoured granite peaks. Bar Harbor is the center of activity for visitors with its myriad shops and taverns. Check out Cabbage Island Clambakes, Bet's Famous Fish Fry, and Dunton's Doghouse.Dockage is available at Harborside Hotel, Spa and Marina for vessels up to 165 feet (9-foot dock depth). Northeast Harbor is a quiet enclave of the rich and famous and home to Northeast Harbor Marina (12-foot dock depth). Southwest Harbor, a town on the quiet side of the island, has maintained its maritime heritage and is home to Dysart's Great Harbor Marina, with slips for vessels up to 180 feet (15-foot dock depth). mlService Centers for Large Yachts

  • Hodgdon Yacht Services, Boothbay Harbor, Maine -New England's largest full service marine company offering maintenance, repair & refit for super yachts.
  • Journey's End Marina, Rockland, Maine - This full-service facility can accommodate yachts up to 275 feet (16-foot dock depth) and can facilitate service on systems for large yachts.
Related Articles
Camden, Maine
|

True boaters say the real Maine coast doesn’t start until you reach Penobscot Bay. This is “Down East” from Kennebunkport and Portland. The dramatic stretch of coastline from Camden to Mount Desert Island sparkles with granite shores, dotted with archipelagos of pine-tree covered islands and mountains cascading into the sea. This region offers some of the best cruising ground in the world.

Camden is a magical little seaside town in the heart of Maine’s mid-coast. It’s historic but hip. “Where the Mountains Meet the Sea” is their moniker, as Camden Hills and 780-foot Mount Battie stretch down toward the bustling waterfront where this 1769 New England village sits, creating a postcard scene.

Camden is super foot-traffic friendly, starting at Harbor Park and the beautiful brick Public Library that graces the top of the bay by the Town Docks. Enjoy a picnic on the sprawling park lawn; there’s often a craft festival or free concert at the outdoor amphitheater. From the waterfront, stroll the quaint sidewalks leading to cafés, boutiques, craft stores and art galleries, pubs, and surprisingly trendy restaurants.

You can hike, bike or drive the toll road up Mount Battie in Camden Hill State Park, which encompasses 5,500 acres and 30 miles of trails. Your reward is spectacular panoramic views of the harbor and Penobscot Bay below.

Eaton Point, at the eastern entrance to the harbor, is home to a new Lyman-Morse yacht facility. Camden remains a working harbor with lobster fishermen, boat builders, ferries and tall-masted schooners taking folks out for scenic sails.

Camden hosts festivals throughout the summer season of jazz, film and its trademark Windjammers. In winter, the U.S. National Tobogganing Champion-ships are held at Camden’s namesake Snow Bowl – our country’s only ski area with views of the Atlantic.

Camden is an ideal boater’s gateway with all the services and shops you need in walking distance from the waterfront. Excursions from this protected harbor are countless and legendary. A quick cruise brings you to quiet Lasell Island for a sunset anchorage. Farther on you reach Maine’s Maritime Academy home in beautiful Castine, and the rustic islands of North Haven, Vinalhaven and Deer Isle. Ultimately you can cruise north and east through beautiful Merchants Row, or the more protected Eggemoggin Reach, to Mount Desert Island, home to famed Acadia National Park, Northeast, Southwest and Bar Harbors.

WHERE TO DOCK

Camden Public Landing
Town Docks
207-691-4314

Contact the harbormaster for overnight slips, limited but in town, and moorings throughout the harbor.

Lyman-Morse at
Wayfarer Marine
207-236-7108

Across the harbor on Camden’s east shores, this revamped marina is a half-mile walk to town, with new docks and a marina facility, home of Lyman-Morse Boatyard and 30 slips plus moorings.

WHERE TO DINE

40 Paper
207-230-0111

Relish artful cuisine locally sourced from farmers, fishermen and “foragers.” In an historic wool mill in downtown Camden, it’s comfy but chic. Savor octopus, lamb, mussels, salmon and more with fresh produce and creative sides. Save room for dessert made from scratch.

Peter Otts on the Water
207-236-4032

Get your chowder and Maine lobster fix from Chef Peter. This classic setting overlooking the harbor is a Camden staple you “ott” not miss. Open for lunch or dinner.

Franny’s Bistro
207-230-8199

With a neighborhood feel, Franny’s serves up lobster fritters, crab cakes, shrimp dumplings and land-lubber faves, too. A fun menu in a cozy setting.

Bagel Café
207-236–2661

For fresh-brewed morning coffee and daily “boiled then baked” bagels or breakfast sammies served all day.

Read More
Jamestown, Rhode Island
|

Located on Conanicut Island, Gould Island and Dutch Island, Jamestown welcomes boaters to Narragansett Bay.  Its southernmost point is on Gould Island and marked by Beavertail Lighthouse and State Park. The northernmost point is marked by Conanicut Island Lighthouse.  While Conanicut Island is the second largest island on Narragansett Bay, it is near the western mainland in Kingston, and Newport lies to the east on Aquidneck Island.  Hop on the Jamestown Newport Ferry to get the lay of the land and sea.

Jamestown was settled early in colonial history and was named for James, Duke of York, who became King James II in 1685.  By 1710, many of Jamestown’s current roads were already in place and a lot of its early architecture is well preserved. Soak up some local history at the Jamestown Fire Memorial Museum, Beavertail Lighthouse Museum and Park, Jamestown Windmill, Watson Farm, Conanicut Island Sanctuary, Fort Wetherill State Park, and the Jamestown Settlement museum.

The main town, shops and restaurants are located on the eastern shore of Conanicut Island.  But even from the western side, Dutch Harbor and other attractions are easily accessed with a one-mile walk.

WHERE TO DOCK

Conanicut Marina
401-423-5820

This full-service marina has a ships store/chandlery, gift shop, extensive dockage and a large mooring field.  It’s located in the heart of town overlooking Newport and the Pell Bridge, but bring your fishing poles for the kids.

Dutch Harbor Boat Yard
401-423-0630

Located on the west passage of Narragansett Bay, this small, local marina has good moorings, launch service and facilities.  At times, the harbor can be rolly from a SW wind up the West Passage.  The holding ground is excellent for anchoring, but the dinghy dock is by seasonal permit only.

Safe Harbor Jamestown Boatyard
401-423-0600

Jamestown Boatyard is renowned for excellent workmanship on all types of boats.  It also has a large mooring field and is in a beautiful location on the East Passage.

WHERE TO DINE

Slice of Heaven
401-423-9866

This family-owned café and bakery with an outdoor patio is an ideal spot for breakfast and lunch, especially if you’re looking for tasty gluten-free and vegetarian options.

J22 Tap & Table
401-423-3709

This lively, year-round restaurant specializes in classic American cuisine and local seafood dishes such as New England clam chowder, lobster tail and seared yellowfin tuna while accommodating meat eaters with wings, burgers and steak tacos.

Village Hearth Bakery & Café
401-423-9282

Take a seat inside this rustic eatery or outside on the patio to enjoy wood-fired bread, pizzas and pastries with a cool beer or wine.  To start your day with a smile, order a cup of the eco-friendly coffee.

Bay Voyage Restaurant
401-560-7979

Inside the Wyndham Bay Voyage Inn, this casual dining establishment presents a seasonal menu of American cuisine standards and seafood with fresh ingredients and a stellar view of Narragansett Bay.

Read More
Chesapeake Bay Calendar of Events
|

Summer is here, and it’s time to soak up the sun, visit bustling beaches, learn about boating history and relish the small-town charm around the Chesapeake Bay. Read on for hidden gems and tried-and-true events along the Bay, all the way from Havre de Grace to Cape Charles. Whether you’re a fan of watersports, arts and crafts, street festivals, or coastal cuisine, you’ll find something worth docking for a while.

July

Yorktown Market Days, Fun in the Sun Market

Yorktown, VA

July 16 - Fun in the Sun Market;

August 6 - National Farmers Market Week

Experience a coastal Hampton Roads market on the York River. Check out local produce, meats, seafood, gourmet dog treats, art and more every Saturday this summer, and stop by one of the dates above for a themed, family-friendly extended market.

Where to Dock: Riverwalk Landing

Spirit of America

Havre de Grace, MD

July 2

Enjoy this beautiful town through a mid-century Americana lens at the Independence Day festival. You won’t want to miss the Patriotic Pooch contest, 50s throwback entertainers and best of all, derby races on Pennington Avenue.

Where to Dock: Tidewater Marina

Sea Glass & Beach Crafts Market at Annmarie

Solomons, MD

July 2

Kick off the holiday weekend at the Annmarie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center’s annual beach-themed market. Browse all things crafty and sea glass at over 50 booths!

Where to Dock: Solomons Harbor Marina

Kent County Waterman’s Day

Rock Hall, MD

July 3

For the first time since 2019, stop by and celebrate watermen who dedicate their lives to working on the Chesapeake! Enjoy a day of family fun, including anchor tosses and a raffle, culminating in the infamous boat docking.

Where to Dock: Haven Harbor Marina Resorts

Tuckahoe Steam & Gas Association’s 49th Annual Show

Easton, MD

July 7-10

Calling all car, truck and train enthusiasts! This multi-day show will be packed with steam and gas engines; antique tractors, trucks and cars; live steam train models; and even a horse pull.

Where to Dock: Easton Point Marina

Chesapeake Stand Up Challenge

Annapolis, MD

July 9 

Sponsored by the Eastport Yacht Club, this open water race has something for all levels. Experienced paddlers can fight it out in the seven-mile Challenge, and recreational paddlers will enjoy the 3.5-mile Challenge or one-mile Just for Fun race.

Where to Dock: Eastport Yacht Center

Plein Air Easton Art Festival

Easton, MD

July 17-24

Plein air painters express their craft from life instead of the studio, so you’ll see artists from across the country painting all around town. Also attend lectures and workshops, and buy art and other goods downtown all week. 

Where to Dock: Easton Point Marina

14th Annual Hampton Heat

Hampton, VA

July 23

Dock at the transient slips in downtown Hampton, then join the landlubbers at Langley Speedway, one of NASCAR’s best weekly tracks, for the annual Hampton Heat races.

Where to Dock: Bluewater Yachting Center

Southern Maryland Boat Club Bash on the Bay

Leonardtown, MD

July 29-31

Since the Calvert Marine Museum opened an exhibit on the golden era of powerboat racing in 2013, this vintage boat club has put on several races a year. Make your way to the historic Leonardtown Wharf to see vintage powerboats in action.

Where to Dock: Combs Creek Marina

2022 Snakehead Summer Slam

July 30

Annapolis, MD

Things are sure to heat up at the fourth of five tournaments in the 2022 Snakehead Championship Series at Anglers Sport Center. Anglers in kayak/shoreline and boating divisions will be up for all kinds of prizes, including one from the Coastal Conservation Association Maryland’s Great Chesapeake Invasive Count.

Where to Dock: Podickory Point Marina

Annapolis Yacht Club Two Bridge Fiasco Race

Annapolis, MD

July 31

Cruise to the southern Chesapeake to witness this pursuit style race starting between the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Severn River Bridge. Look out for all types of boats in the competition, and even a foiler or two if you’re lucky.

Where to Dock: Annapolis Yacht Club

August

Annual Chesapeake Bay Balloon Festival

Cordova, MD

August 5-7

Embrace the Eastern Shore summer lifestyle at this family-friendly festival. Feel the adrenaline rush of hot air balloon rides and keep the thrill going on the mechanical bull and bouncy house on land.

Where to Dock: Easton Point Marina

A Day of Celebration & Remembrance of Harriet Tubman

Cambridge, MD

August 6 

Celebrate Harriet Tubman’s life, bicentennial and antislavery activism on the Underground Railroad just miles from where she lived as a child. Join the commemorative parade through the streets of Cambridge and enjoy local vendors and entertainment at the festival.

Where to Dock: Cambridge Yacht Basin

Pirates & Wenches Weekend

Rock Hall, MD

August 12-14

Presented by Main Street Rock Hall, you can dock at a local bayfront marina ready for an immersive, family-friendly weekend. The whole family will love the marketplace on Main Street, pirate and mermaid performers, and costume contests, and there will be no shortage of grub and grog.

Where to Dock: Haven Harbor Marina Resorts

Solomons Dragon Boat Festival 2022

Solomons Island

August 13

Cruise to scenic Solomons Island to watch 30 dragon boat teams compete for glory on the Patuxent River and explore the local vendor village. Arrive the week before and you might catch a Dotting of the Eye Ceremony or even a flash mob.

Where to dock: Solomons Harbor Marina

Leo Wardrup Memorial Cape Charles Cup Regatta

Cape Charles, VA

August 20-21

Make your way to Virginia’s Eastern Shore for two days of racing on the Chesapeake. While you’re there, lounge on the Cape Charles town beach, stroll around the retail district and check out Victorian homes in the historic district.

Where to Dock: Cape Charles Yacht Center & Marine Services

7th Annual Coastal Craft Beer Festival

Virginia Beach, VA

August 27

Spend your Saturday at the waterfront Neptune’s Park, tasting your way through 60+ beers, ciders and seltzers from 30 breweries. Learn about all Virginia breweries have to offer or branch out with some regional or national craft brews.

Where to Dock: Rudee's Inlet Station Marina

September

The Waterfront Festival

Havre de Grace, MD

September 9-10

Cruise to the northern Bay to round out your summer with this annual festival, kicking off with a lighted boat parade. Enjoy fun for the whole family with fresh crab and seafood, beer gardens, live music, hot air balloons and a youth fishing derby!

Where to Dock: Tidewater Marina

2nd Annual Portsmouth Paddle Battle

Portsmouth, VA

September 10 

Whether you kayak or paddleboard as a novice or a pro, or enjoy waterfront live music, food and drink, there’s a place for you in the Paddle Battle on the Elizabeth River. Proceeds will support the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Museum and Lightship Portsmouth Museum.

Where to Dock: Tidewater Yacht Marina

TrawlerFest Baltimore

Baltimore, MD

September 27-October 1

Close out your summer season with Passagemaker’s annual boat show held at Harbor East Marina in the heart of downtown Baltimore. The show hosts impression in-water selections of new and pre-owned long-rang cruisers, coastal cruisers and of course, tons of trawlers. Free seminars and educational demonstrations are held throughout the weekend.

Where to Dock: Harbor East Marina

Read More

Want to Stay In the Loop?

Stay up to date with the latest articles, news and all things boating with a FREE subscription to Marinalife Magazine!

Thanks for subscribing!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.