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Carver's Harbor - Vinalhaven Maine

Vinalhaven Maine

Vinalhaven Maine Photos

Vinalhaven, the largest of the main islands in Penobscot Bay, is located just 12 miles out of Rockland, Maine.

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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan
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    Photo courtesy Matt Gallivan


Find Vinalhaven Maine

Click map image to open a Google Interactive Map for Vinalhaven Maine.

Vinalhaven Google Map


Vinalhaven Maine - A wonderful summer island community in close proximity to Rockland

Vinalhaven MaineLocated about 12 miles off the Maine coast near Rockland, is the beautiful island community of Vinalhaven. While this town only has a year-round population of over 1,300 people, this number swells between 5,000 and 6,000 people during the summer months. It holds the rights to the largest fishing area in Penobscot Bay, and relies on lobster as its main industry. There are also ten major fishing grounds around the island that have been relied on by local fisherman to yield lobster, cod, cusk, haddock, and pollock for centuries. In fact, Vinalhaven is a major seafood supplier to Portland, Boston, and New York in addition to other parts of the world outside of the United States.

Settlers from Massachusetts, led by Thaddeus Carver, first arrived in 1765. Carver purchased 700 acres of property on South Island that later became known as Carver’s Harbor. Other families followed his lead including: Arey, Calderwood, Carver, Coombs, Dyer, Ginn, Greem, Hopkins, Lane, Leadbetter, Norton, Philbrook, Pierce, Robert, Smith, Warren and Vinal. Vinalhaven was incorporated as a town on June 25, 1789.

Years down the road, Vinalhaven became a major granite-quarrying center with its high quality materials in 1826. The town supplied granite for numerous (and famous) structures all over the country, including the Church of St. John the Devine, the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City, the Washington Monument, the Pennsylvania Railroad Station, Philadelphia’s Masonic Temple, as well as other streets, bridges, and dams. Today, the abandoned granite quarries are home to local swimming and sunbathing spots, including Lawson's quarry on North Haven Road and Booth's Quarry on Pequot Road. Pets are not allowed, and supervision for younger people is required since there are no lifeguards.

Vinalhaven MaineToday, Vinalhaven is known for its summer community. Wealthy people from Boston, New York, and Philadelphia all travel here to make this place home. To get here, people must hop aboard the Maine Service Ferry in Rockland (the ride is a little over an hour), or rely on Penobscot Island Air taxi accessed from the Knox County Regional Airport in Owls Head.

Once people arrive, tourists are free to explore the island, taking time for hiking, fishing, canoeing, and sailing. Nature lovers will fully embrace this beautiful setting and are likely to fill the entire day with outdoor adventures. Vinalhaven has two nature preserves, the Lane’s Island Preserve and the Vinalhaven-North Haven Archipelago. Lane’s Island is a 43-acre protected area connected to the island town by a stone causeway while Big Garden, Big White, Sheep, Smith, Brimstone and Little Brimstone are the six islands that comprise the Vinalhaven-North Haven Archipelago.

The town also has lovely parks to enjoy, most of them within walking distance from the ferry dock. Grimes Park is just one location to have a nice picnic with family and friends, observe the ferry activities, and watch the sunset. Armbrust Hill is a perfect place for families with its short trails and on-site Owen Webster memorial playground. Some trails will lead to Trolley Cliff for stunning harbor views and a natural amphitheater. If you are looking for delicious fine dining restaurants, shopping, and art galleries, simply head back into Rockland to complete the day.


Photos by Matt Gallivan. We would like to thank Matt Gallivan for granting us permission to use his images of Vinalhaven. You can view more images of Vinalhaven and Maine by visitng Matt's Flickr page.


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