Freeport, Maine is a town in Cumberland County located approximately 20 miles from Portland. Freeport was initially a part of North Yarmouth, Maine before it became its own separate entity as of 1789. The town’s name came from the fact that it was “open to the harbor” and “free of ice,” hence, ‘Freeport’.
With a population of 8,000, Freeport is widely known as a popular tourist destination due to its incredible outdoor shopping opportunities. Freeport is also home to Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park, and the Desert of Maine. Located on the shores of Casco Bay, Freeport has 37 miles of tidal coastline including numerous inhabited islands, as well as a mix of rocky shoreline, iconic Maine clam flats, and riverine and estuarine ecosystems. Whether you’re looking to explore L.L. Bean’s famed flagship store, or spend time outdoors hiking a beautiful state park, Freeport offers a little something for everyone.
Visitors can find Freeport directly off of Interstate-295 as well as U.S. Route-1. Additionally, Amtrak's Downeaster train service stops at Freeport station and offers service to Portland as well as Boston’s South Station. The Greater Portland Transit District (METRO) also provides bus service between Brunswick, Maine and Portland, Maine with three stops in Freeport.
Freeport is world-famous for the hundreds of brand-name outlets and local boutiques lining its main street. From Nike, Old Navy, Gap and many others, Freeport’s retail outlets are housed in charming brick buildings, some dating back as far as the 18th century. One of the biggest draws to Freeport are the famous L.L. Bean stores, which were started by Leon Leonwood Bean in 1912. L.L. Bean is open 24-7, making it a convenient stop for tourists to explore all hours of the night. In addition to their stores, L.L. Bean offers activities for both visitors and residents alike, including their Outdoor Discovery Schools, and their Summer Concert Series.
Along with some amazing shopping, Freeport also offers visitors incredible cuisine, four-star lodging and an assortment of enjoyable activities for all ages. Specific popular destinations in Freeport include the Freeport Historical Society, Freeport Shakespeare Festival, Winslow Park & Campground and Wolfe's Neck Farm.
5 Fast Facts About Freeport, Maine:
- Freeport was voted the "Best Weekend of Shopping in New England" by Yankee Magazine Readers multiple years in a row.
- Wolfe's Neck Woods State Park in Freeport, Maine offers over 230 acres of land to explore. Surrounded by the rocky shores of Casco Bay and the Harraseeket River, common visitor attractions include kayaking, and even clamming! Wolfe Neck Park has approximately five miles of paths that wind through its pine tree forests and along the seacoast.
- The Desert of Maine started out as Tuttle Farm, back in 1783. In the late 1800s, rough farming exposed an ancient glacial sand deposit that overtook the farm and now covers over 40 acres of land.
- South Freeport is home to a large working fishermen's harbor, where visitors can dine on fresh steamed lobster and seafood while watching boats travel in and out of the Harraseeket River.
- Colonists used to gather for meetings at Jameson Tavern, an establishment that is still active in Freeport today, to plot their separation from Massachusetts in 1820.