Ogunquit, Maine for Ogunquit Virgins — A Beginner's Guide
Planning your inaugural Gaycation, eh? First of all—rest assured you've come to the right place, so cheers to you! Ogunquit, Maine is undoubtedly one of the greatest destinations you could pick, as far as gay vacations go. Think Fire Island without the nonstop circuit parties, or Provincetown without the... well, Great White Sharks. Whether you're in the mood to lay in the sand and bask under the warm, summer sun, eat yourself into a lobster-induced food coma, or dance the night away in a gay club dreamscape, Ogunquit's got you covered.
Let this post serve as your first step in constructing the perfect Gaycation, from top to bottom—or bottom to top, up to you—and feel free to peruse our recommendations and pro-tips below. You'll be finalizing your #flawless itinerary in no time!
Alright, what's the deal with Ogunquit?
Ogunquit (which, fun fact, translates directly to "beautiful place by the sea") is an internationally-recognized LGBTQ travel destination located in Southern Maine. Though it's easily accessible from all parts of the globe via the nearby Portland International Airport, traveling to Ogunquit is especially easy if you're driving from a nearby city, like Boston, Albany, or even New York! In fact, for most, the drive to Ogunquit is much shorter than its Provincetown sister. Bursting at the seams with gay & lesbian resorts and exciting nightlife, Ogunquit is truly a mecca for all those under the LGBTQ rainbow. Take just a short stroll down our main roads and you'll be immersed in a lively, energetic showcase of gay-operated and owned business, restaurants, bars, and accommodations. There's always something to do or see in our beautiful little town—in fact, USA Today recognized Ogunquit as America's Best Coastal Small Town. Clearly, we're not alone in thinking our town is a must-see.
Where to stay
Good news: Ogunquit is just about as walkable as it gets, so no matter where you stay there will be no shortage of things to see and do, even on foot. If you're flying in and want to check out some of the surrounding towns and cities, we'd recommend renting a car. Otherwise, snagging a taxi to/from the airport and walking is definitely the way to go. Keeping that in mind, we've got a few recommendations below for the best gay-friendly, centrally-located accommodations your money can buy.
The Beachmere Inn (Best for a Gay Solo Splurge) — Solo travelers, rejoice! This is our top choice for a stunning waterfront splurge and the perfect place to meet and mingle with other single gays. Wake up, grab your complimentary breakfast, then lounge with a drink or two on the luxurious grounds. After laying in the sun at the Inn's private beach, you can check out the on-site restaurant or wander into town for a night of debauchery. With tasteful, updated rooms & suites and amenities galore, The Beachmere Inn is the perfect escape when you need a break from it all.
2 Village Square Inn (Best for a Romantic Couple's Getaway) — If B&B's are more your speed, look no further! This incredibly gay-friendly inn boasts everything you could ask for: a saltwater oceanview pool, hot tub, spa, couple's massages, and complimentary breakfast. Just a short walk from beautiful Ogunquit Beach, the quaint and recently updated 2 Village Square Inn should be #1 on your list for a cozy, romantic getaway with the person you love.
The Sparhawk Oceanfront Resort (Best for Beachfront Luxury) — If your definition of "vacation" is synonymous with sipping your morning coffee or Bloody Mary on your very own private, oceanfront balcony, this one is for you. With rooms ranging from single bed retreats to apartment-style, multi-bed palaces, The Sparhawk can accommodate everything from a solo adventure to a group getaway with all your fave gays. Plus, with one of America's greatest beaches just downstairs, you won't have to trek very far for some post-mimosa R&R.
What to do when the sunburn (or happy hour craving) hits
We love our beaches (with 3 miles of soft white sand, how could you not?) but we assure you there's plenty to do if you find yourself waterlogged, sunburnt, hungry, thirsty or all of the above. Ogunquit has some seriously good eats, treats, and bars, and if you need a little pointing-in-the-right-
If dancing till the world ends is on your Ogunquit wishlist, we're here to grant that. After all, the sun always sets, and when that happens you'll discover a whole new side of our town. At Mainestreet, the largest gay club in Northern New England, there's always something festive on the calendar: from tea dances to karaoke, dueling drag queens and guest DJ's, your night is bound to be one to remember. Get hot, bothered and sweaty on either of the two massive dance floors or grab some air and a cocktail on one of the outdoor decks. If night clubs aren't exactly your cup of tea, never fear—head to The Front Porch, Ogunquit's world-famous piano bar and an award-winning restaurant. You can check out their astounding roster of talent here, but no matter when you stop in for some tunes, drinks or food, we can promise you that you'll be treated like family, no matter who you are. Pro-tip: start your evening at The Front Porch, and end it at Mainestreet. We might be biased, but in our humble opinion, it's the perfect Gaycation evening itinerary.
In between beach outings or before a boisterous evening, you'll have ample time to discover the mouth-watering spots that make Ogunquit one of the most popular foodie destinations in New England.
Foot Bridge Lobster (A Lobster Roll Lover's Dream Come True) — The only thing more common in our town than speedos and drag queens is the abundance of fresh, local-caught lobster. If you're on the hunt for the best Maine lobster roll you can devour, Foot Bridge will make your tastebuds sing ABBA's greatest hits on repeat. You'll be inundated with local businesses claiming to have the best lobster roll in town, but we'd point you here for good reason. Cheaper than most places in Ogunquit and full of no-frills, friendly charm, Foot Bridge is the true Ogunquit experience. Pro-tip: if your lobster craving comes early, try the lobster breakfast sandwich. You'll thank us later.
La Pizzeria (The Perfect Quick Lunch or Dinner) — For obvious reasons, it's definitely not the best idea to head out for a night on the town on an empty stomach—especially if you'll be sampling Mainestreet cocktails all night long. Solution: La Pizzeria's famous pizza. Seriously, people travel from all over for a slice of the carb-o-licious slices they're serving up, and we promise you that one piece won't ruin your summer body. Get there early since they get packed quickly, though they also offer outdoor seating which makes for a lovely people-watching session. Oh, and might we recommend the lobster pizza? If you're sensing a lobster theme here, you're getting the hint.
La Orilla (Casual, Al Fresco Dining at its Most Romantic) — When you and your travel partner are in the mood for a special evening and some equally special food, check out the gorgeous back patio at La Orilla Tapas + Cocktails. Truth be told, you really can't go wrong here. When the menu includes hand-pulled mozzarella, Maine seafood paella and the greatest charcuterie board you'll likely ever have (that's only three of many items...) you can order in confidence and enjoy a sunset meal with your special someone. That's a vacation, folks!
Sweet Pea's (Creamy, Dreamy Ice Cream Heaven) — No Gaycation is complete without a post-dinner visit at this Ogunquit classic, serving up locally-churned ice cream and seriously good vibes. Plentiful outdoor seating makes this our go-to dessert pick, and you're bound to discover your new favorite flavor with their seasonal roster of scoops. Let's all agree that nothing screams Vacation in Maine like ice cream dripping down a handmade cone on a warm, summer evening.
A summer Gaycation in Ogunquit, Maine—what could be better?