Friday, May 12, 2017

Our early-spring seaside getaway

(Warning:  many, many pictures await!)

A winter getaway had been on our agenda for months.  We just couldn't seem to find time for it, however.  And we weren't really sure where we wanted to go.  A great package at the York Harbor Inn helped us decide and also served to help us choose a time frame to get away, since the price was good until the end of March.   It was a wonderful package deal -- a fabulous price on the room (and we actually ended up with a free upgrade to a nicer room, too!), plus it included a voucher for a free meal.  The breakfast is included in the price anyway, so we would use our meal voucher for supper on one of the nights.

It was pouring rain as we headed for the seacoast, but it really couldn't dampen our spirits.  It was still raining when we arrived in Kittery, where we had planned to eat lunch.  We had already decided that the Weathervane Seafood Restaurant would be our choice for lunch.  After a nice seafood meal, we headed across the street to browse at Kittery Trading Post until it was time to check in at the inn.  (It was still pouring rain and we were literally streaming with water as we left the car.)  We especially enjoyed looking at the camping gear and the nifty home decor.

Thankfully, the rain had slackened a bit by the time we arrived at the inn.  Thanks to our free upgrade, we found that we would be in the building below, the Yorkshire House.  I failed to get a photo, so the one below, taken in a much nicer season, is from the website.
Photo from York Harbor
This amazing building was built in 1743!  It's astounding how they've been able to update the rooms to today's standards and yet the cozy feel remains.

View from our room -- we often came and went by those stone steps
Since the rain had slacked off quite a bit, Mr. T was eager to get out and do some exploring.  He did just that while I got our things settled in the room.
The Cliff Path is accessed via a park right across from the Inn

 He came back to the room since the rain had lessened even more and he thought I might like to venture out for a walk as well.  Good thing I was wearing a slicker, because the rain intensified while we were out.  Cool and rainy as it was, it was still a blessing to enjoy the sight and sound of the sea.

We relaxed for the rest of the afternoon and, since we planned to use our meal voucher for the following night's supper, we eventually went in search of a place to eat.  I had done a little research online, but all of the likely places were closed because of it being the off season.  We finally ended up stopping at Wild Willy’s Burgers because we were both quite hungry.  Once we figured out the ordering system, with the help of a friendly fellow customer, we chose simple burgers and hand-cut fries.  Delicious!  The murals on the walls in the main eating area were unusual and very nice.  We saw the one just below from where we sat.  Mr. T had to duck into adjoining booths to get pictures of the others.
Isn't this beautiful?  Loved this scene.
Depiction of a cloudy sky on the ceiling
The light detracts a little but not too much.  Notice the soaring eagle at the top left.
Snowy mountain range above the forest scene
After a good night's rest, we found that the rain had more or less stopped, though it was still cloudy.  We headed to the dining room for a bountiful breakfast, way more than the typical continental breakfast.  All sorts of homemade pastries and muffins, plus homemade granola and lots of other cereal and bread options; yogurt; hard-boiled eggs; many elegant options for fresh fruit; juices, coffee, tea ... probably more that I've forgotten about.
Cranberry cinnamon roll, and coffeecake
Partial view of the dining room
View from our table
After breakfast and our quiet times, we headed out for a walk. The Inn provides information on various walking tours and routes.  We chose one called "Quiet streets and Nubble Light" or something similar.  It was a nice long walk that took us through quiet and interesting neighborhoods and ended with a view of Nubble Light in the distance before wending our way back to the Inn.
There was a view of the sea between this house and carriage house, but the overcast sky rendered it nearly invisible.
We thought this whale weathervane very interesting
Wow again!
This door in the wall around a mansion fascinated us.  That's not a window in the door.  It's a mirror! 
 We met up with a dear cousin of mine for lunch and she took us to a favorite lunch place of hers, Beach Pea Baking Company.  It proved to be a great choice.  Mr. T and I both enjoyed the Turkey Sandwich: roasted turkey breast, cheddar, avocado, poached red onion, and tomato, with chipotle mayo on baguette.  Cousin Betty enjoyed a salad -- think it was the roasted vegetable one.  It looked really good, but it's hard to imagine anything tasting better than those sandwiches!

After lunch we went for a nice long walk in Betty's neighborhood in Kittery.  Then we returned to the inn and relaxed until time for supper.  The main dining room wasn't open for dinner at this season,  so we ate at the Ship’s Cellar Pub in the lower level of the Inn.  It really does look like one is in a ship's dining room on an old ship.  The woodwork is amazing.  We were not in the area pictured below, but were in a side area which was also nifty.  There are two fireplaces in the Ship's Cellar Pub.
Photo from York Harbor
With our meal voucher (which also included tax and tip!) we enjoyed an absolutely fabulous meal, unlike anything we have ever been able to afford in a restaurant.  We both had chowder to start, then for entrees we picked seafood also.  Mr. T had baked stuffed haddock, and I had a seafood pie which included haddock, shrimp, and scallops.  It came in its own baking dish and had a crumb topping -- no crust of any kind.  (Just in case someone is picturing an actual pie.  Seafood pie is traditionally made just as I've described.)  We would  ordinarily never order dessert after a rich meal like this one, but it was included, so ...
The windows in the area where we were seated look just like portholes.
The Atlantic Ocean is across the street just on the other side of that fence.
The baked stuffed haddock that Mr. T ordered.  We both had mashed potatoes and roasted asparagus for the sides.
It included dessert!  He had flourless chocolate cake with whipped cream and a dish of vanilla ice cream alongside.
I chose a sort of blueberry lime mousse.  Absolutely amazing.
 After another restful night we again enjoyed breakfast in the dining room

and another walk before heading out.  On the way home we walked for a bit on the Long Sands beach and we also stopped to visit Nubble Light.
Long Sands
Nubble Light
Hope you've enjoyed seeing a bit of our seaside getaway.  It was a wonderfully refreshing time!


  1. It's gorgeous in ☔️rain and gray so I can imagine how charming in sunshine and flowers. What a great package deal with meal vouchers you enjoyed. Sounds as if this was a food getaway! 🙂 I would enjoy that!

    1. It was a terrific deal and one we would take advantage of if offered again. Breakfast is included in any case, but the meal voucher made it an incredible deal.

      I guess it sort of was a food getaway. But lots of walking, too!

  2. It looks like a great trip in spite of the rain. I need to get up that way one day. That is an area I have never visited and I really want to.

    1. Oh, Sandy, I hope that you can visit this area someday. If you do, let me know and we will plan to meet up somewhere.

  3. Can I go next time??This looks like my idea of a weekend in New England.

    1. Oh, you certainly can, Arlene! Get Marvin to bring you to New England in early spring. It's not a pretty season here, but the ocean is beautiful regardless. I would not go near York, Maine in the summertime. Too many tourists around!


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