Follow in the footsteps of famed artist Winslow Homer as you stroll along one of Portland’s most scenic coastline walking paths.
Stroll along the Cliff Walk to experience Portland at its most picturesque. Take the 4.3-mile (6.9-kilometer) loop along sandy beaches, rocky cliffs and a collection of beautiful seaside homes. The Cliff Walk is located in Fort Williams Park, a stunning area that offers quintessentially Maine views at every turn.
Begin the Cliff Walk by parking at either Ferry Beach or Scarborough Beach, both of which bookend the actual trail. From the beaches, locate the stone trailhead and follow it along the coastline.
Winslow Homer, the celebrated landscape artist, lived and painted in the village of Prout’s Neck. Those familiar with his work will recognize many of the vistas along the walk from his paintings. Pass by the wood-shingled studio where he did some of his most celebrated work.
As you walk, enjoy beautiful views across the water. On a clear day, spot Ram Island Ledge Light and the islands of Casco Bay. Admire Portland Head Light, the oldest lighthouse in Maine. The classic red and white lighthouse lording over the coastline makes for a great photo opportunity.
Stop for an al fresco meal at one of the numerous grills and picnic sites located along the trail. Within Fort Williams Park, take advantage of the playing fields and tennis courts.
Trek along the Cliff Walk daily between sunrise and sunset. There is no admission fee but there is a seasonal parking fee. Don’t let Maine’s famously snowy winters stop you; many people cross-country ski or snowshoe along the trail in colder months.
Although the Cliff Walk feels like it’s in the middle of nowhere, it’s actually located in convenient proximity to Maine’s largest city. In less than 15 minutes, drive to Old Portland, which boasts quaint cobblestone streets and a variety of restaurants and shops.
Set aside at least an hour to fully appreciate the Cliff Walk. With the waves crashing below you and seagulls cawing above, it’s easy to understand why its vistas inspired world-renowned painters like Winslow Homer.