Maine

10 Scenic Oceanfront Campgrounds in Maine

best oceanfront campgrounds in maine
Duck Harbor. Photo: Cheri Alguire / Shutterstock

Known for tasty lobster and an impressive rocky coastline, Maine is all about the ocean – and the best way to see it is by staying in a coastal campground.

Did you know that Maine is home to around 3,500 miles of coastline? That’s longer than the distance from Orlando, Florida to Seattle, Washington. It’s not that Maine is so massive – it’s because the coastline winds along the state in twisting, convoluted shapes, creating thousands of bays and coves along the way.

Maine’s coast boasts beautiful sunrises, wildlife viewing, and plenty of areas to stargaze without another human in sight. Check out the oceanfront campgrounds in Maine below if you’re anxious to spend time on the coast and take in some of Maine’s gorgeous scenery.

Related Read: 11 Amazing Maine Swimming Holes & Swimming Beaches

1. Cobscook Bay State Park

Cobscook Bay State Park
Cobscook Bay State Park. Photo: Alla Goferman / Shutterstock

Why you should camp here: See the highest tides in the US from these rocky shores.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer
  • Campsite type: Tent, car camping, RV
  • RV hookups: No

Named after the Algonquin Native American word for “boiling tides”, Cobscook Bay State Park’s majestic scenery cannot be beat. It covers 888 acres of coastline and is the best basecamp for your eastern Maine adventures. It’s just a quick drive across the border into New Brunswick if you want to check out the hikes around Saint Stephen or Oak Bay.

The park is an excellent spot to see seabirds as well as marine life like seals. If you’re a birder, you’ll be in heaven if you wake up early and walk around with your binoculars. And if you want to see other animals, you won’t have to go far. You’ll be near Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge, where you have a good chance of spotting moose,

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Related read: Guide to Lincolnville, Maine: Things to Do, Where to Eat & Stay

2. Primitive Camping on Marshall Island

Why you should camp here: When you won’t stand for more than two neighbors.

  • Reservations accepted: No
  • Best season: Summer
  • Campsite type: Tent
  • RV hookups: No

To get to this primitive and secluded campsite, you’ll need to own or charter a boat/kayak. The entirety of Marshall Island is the Ed Woodsum Preserve, covering 985 acres of undeveloped land. If you want seclusion, this is the oceanfront campground in Maine for you as there are only three available campsites.

Because of that inherent isolation, you’ll need to bring everything for your camping stay or unless you want to return to the mainland to gather supplies. Cell service can be spotty, so take every precaution necessary to enjoy your trip – and download a book for your e-reader in advance.

3. Hermit Island Campground

hermit island oceanfront camping
Photo: Shutterstock

Why you should camp here: Why camp on a public beach when you could have a private beach?

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer
  • Campsite type: Tent, car camping, small pop-up campers, cabins
  • RV hookups: No

Who needs one beach when you can have eight? That’s right: Hermit Island Campground is home to eight beaches within walking distance. If you find one too crowded, just head to another. The campground has your typical sandy beaches, so you can lather up on the sunscreen and sunbathe all day. But it also has rocky cliffs and tidal pools to explore the abundant sea life.

It’s old-school around here as reservations are only made by mail or on the phone. Check their site for the latest information and instructions.

4. Wolfe’s Neck Campground

Why you should camp here: A cool spot where farming, eating, and relaxing all intersect.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer, fall
  • Campsite type: Tent, RV, car camping, cabins
  • RV hookups: Yes

Wolfe’s Neck Center for Agriculture and the Environment has something for everyone in your family. Maybe you’ve got a grumpy father-in-law constantly reminiscing about days of hard work? He’ll love the private farm tour and the milking parlor viewing. If you have a three-year old whose favorite thing to do is catch the slimiest animals in the wild (or is that just me?), make sure to take the salamander meander through the woods. The staff at Wolf’s Neck even has a hike you can do with goats. There’s never a dull moment around this place.

This is also one of the best oceanfront campgrounds in Maine if only some of the travelers in your group are campers. The rest can stay in a rustic cabin or opt for a luxury glamping experience with safari tents and real beds.

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Related Read: 12 Charming Yurt Rentals in Maine

5. Seawall Campground

oceanfront campground in maine Seawall
Photo: Earl D. Walker / Shutterstock

Why you should camp here: Seclusion, but close proximity to a national park.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer, fall
  • Campsite type: Tent, RV, car camping
  • RV hookups: No

If you’re looking for the ideal basecamp for all your adventures through Acadia National Park, then look no further than Seawall. Aptly named, it’s also only steps to the tidal pools where you can spend hours looking at the sea life along the rocky coastline. It’d about 18 miles from Bar Harbor, so it’s easy to spend all day in the park and return to your oceanfront campground for an evening of s’mores under the stars.

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6. Bar Harbor Oceanside KOA

 

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Why you should camp here: The only sunset-view campground on the west side of Mount Desert Island.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer, fall
  • Campsite type: Tent, RV, car camping
  • RV hookups: Yes

KOA campgrounds are known for their kid-friendly and welcoming attitudes, and this KOA oceanfront campground in Maine is no different. One of the best things about this place is that once you park your car at your campsite, you don’t have to drive again until you leave the island. It’s in Bar Harbor so you’ll have a world of adventures and things to do (as well as fantastic places to eat) just minutes away.

A free island shuttle will take you to Acadia National Park trailheads and attractions or further into Bar Harbor. For amazing sunrise views, head up Cadillac Mountain while you’re in the park.

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7. Duck Harbor Campground

oceanfront campgrounds in maine
Duck Harbor. Photo: Cheri Alguire / Shutterstock

Why you should camp here: An oceanview campground in Acadia National Park inaccessible to cars.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Summer
  • Campsite type: Tent, lean-to
  • RV hookups: No

Reservations at Duck Harbor Campground are some of the most coveted ones in Maine, and for good reason. The views from the oceanfront campsites are unparalleled. On the rugged Isle au Haut, the campground houses only five lean-to shelters, so you’ll never feel like you’re surrounded by tourists.

Unlike some other more primitive campsites, this one has a composting toilet, picnic tables, and a hand pump for water. It’s the perfect spot for a private fireside hangout session with your group to open a few beers and celebrate successfully avoiding the crowds elsewhere in Acadia National Park. But make sure to wrap up your social gathering early: quiet hours start at 10 p.m.

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8. Libby’s Oceanside Campground

 

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Why you should camp here: RV and tent camping on basically a private island.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Spring, summer, fall
  • Campsite type: RV and pop-up only
  • RV hookups: Yes

Every single one of the campsites at Libby’s Oceanside Campground has an ocean view. Every. Single. One. Most are waterfront. Campsites are small and placed close together, so don’t expect much privacy. But you do get hookups for TVs and free Wi-Fi, plus amazing access to the ocean. And the location will make up for your lack of seclusion. Go photograph Nubble Light, walk to Long Sands Beach, or grab dinner in the town of York Beach.

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9. Megunticook Campground

Why you should camp here: Tranquil camping location just north of Boston.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Spring, summer, fall
  • Campsite type: Tent, RV, car camping, cabins
  • RV hookups: Yes

Megunticook Campground is on Penobscot Bay, a popular location for windjammers and sailors alike. Playful porpoises make a weekly visit to the area, so be on the lookout.

If you can time it right, come for Maine’s Lobster Festival, held in Rockland, to reap all the benefits of what Maine is most famous for. If you miss the festival (which usually takes place in early August), head over to Graffam Bros Seafood Market to snag some for dinner back at camp. Rockport is only about an hour north of Boston, so it’s a great escape if you want a classic seaside village escape for the weekend.

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10. Sagadahoc Bay Campground

 

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Why you should camp here: The best views of any oceanfront campground in Maine.

  • Reservations accepted: Yes
  • Best season: Spring, summer, fall
  • Campsite type: Tent, RV, car camping, cottages
  • RV hookups: Yes

Sagadahoc Bay Campground is fun for the whole family (including Fido, as pets are allowed.) What really sets this campground apart from others is what happens every day: low tide. During low tide hours (usually early in the morning, but be sure to check the tide schedules), you can explore the bay on foot even though it’s completely underwater at high tide. It’s why the owner, Pat Kosalka, helps campers go clamming to find dinner for later that day back at their campsites.

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