Maine is the northernmost state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It is bordered by New Hampshire to the west, the Atlantic Ocean to the southeast, and the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Quebec to the northeast and northwest respectively. It is known for its jagged, rocky coastline; low, rolling mountains; heavily forested interior, and picturesque waterways; and also its seafood cuisine, especially clams and lobster. There is a humid continental climate throughout the state, even in coastal areas such as its most populous city of Portland. The capital is Augusta.
For thousands of years, indigenous peoples were the only inhabitants of the territory that is now Maine. The first European settlement in the area was by the French in 1604. The first English settlement was the short-lived Popham Colony, established by the Plymouth Company in 1607. A number of English settlements were established along the coast of Maine in the 1620s, although the rugged climate, deprivations, and conflict with the local peoples caused many to fail over the years. As Maine entered the 18th century, only a half dozen European settlements had survived. Loyalist and Patriot forces contended for Maine’s territory during the American Revolution and the War of 1812. At the close of the War of 1812, it was occupied by British forces, but the territory of Maine was returned to the United States as part of a peace treaty that was to include dedicated land on the Michigan peninsula for Native American peoples. Maine was part of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts until 1820, when it voted to secede from Massachusetts to become a separate state.
Maine is the least densely populated U.S. state east of the Mississippi River. It is called the Pine Tree State; about 83% of its land is forested, the most forest cover of any U.S. state. Maine’s Moosehead Lake is the largest lake wholly in New England, as Lake Champlain is located between Vermont, New York and Quebec.
Acadia National Park is located in the state of Maine. It reserves much of Mount Desert Island, and associated smaller islands, off the Atlantic coast. Acadia is the oldest designated national park area east of the Mississippi River.
Maine’s industrial outputs consist chiefly of paper, lumber and wood products, electronic equipment, leather products, food products, textiles, and bio-technology. Naval shipbuilding and construction remain key as well. Tourism and outdoor recreation play a major and increasingly important role in Maine’s economy. The state is a popular destination for sport hunting (particularly deer, moose and bear), sport fishing, snowmobiling, skiing, boating, camping and hiking, among other activities.
One of the top attractions in Maine are Kennebunkport, Bowdoin College Museum of Art, Boothbay Harbor, Victoria Mansion – Portland, Monhegan Island and many more.