Getting There:

Chart: Portland Harbor

Chart: Portland Harbor

Charts: NOAA 13292, 13290

As Portland Harbor is a major shipping port, the channels are well marked. The harbor itself is dredged to a depth of 35’, so even the largest yachts will have no trouble here.

The harbor is best approached by first finding the offshore mark of the Portland Lighted Horn Buoy (PLHB) “P”. Arriving at PLHB from either the southwest or northeast, look northwest and head for the white tower of Portland Head Light, which is a prominent 101’ spire on the western shore about 7 miles away. Keeping it to port, continue to look northwest and head for Spring Point Ledge Light, whose white sector will keep you in the main channel and whose red sectors will let you know when you are outside the broad main channel. Once past Spring Point, you are in Portland Harbor.

Dockage, Moorings & Service

  • DiMillo’s Old Port Marina (207) 773-7632: The only major marina offering transient dockage in downtown Portland. Deep-water access for boats up to 250’. Fuel dock, electric, water, WiFi, pump out. Home to a popular restaurant.
  • Maine Yacht Center (207) 842-9000: Located north of downtown Portland. Full-service facility with dockage for boats up to 150’. WiFi, pump out, electric, water, gas and diesel.
  • More marinas are located in nearby South Portland. Click here for a full listing.


You may be able to find a spot to anchor outside the mooring field west of the Centerboard Yacht Club in South Portland. Beyond the Casco Bay Bridge, there are numerous well-protected spots with good holding ground to drop the hook inside the Fore River, as long as you stay outside the channel.


Launch Ramps

The Eastern Prom launch ramp offers ready access to the harbor and plenty of parking.Photo, Tom Richardson

The Eastern Prom launch ramp offers ready access to the harbor and plenty of parking. Photo, Tom Richardson

  • A large launch facility with ample parking is located on Portland’s Eastern Prom. This ramp has long tie-up floats and all-tide access to the inner harbor. $5 fee for residents; $10 for non-residents.
  • Another excellent municipal launch is located at Bug Light Park on Spring Point in South Portland. This ramp affords quick access to Portland Harbor and the ocean. Fee is $5 for Maine residents; $6 for non-residents. Overnight parking available with permission of attendant.

Things to See & Do

  • Portland Museum of Art (207) 775-6148: More than 17,000 fine and decorative works of art dating from the 18th century to the present.
  • Portland Lighthouse Tours (207) 774-0808: Take a narrated 90-minute scenic cruise through the busy harbor and innermost islands to see lighthouses, forts, lobster boats, seals and seabirds.
  • Portland Observatory (207) 774-5561: Built in the 1800s, this observatory was used to monitor the routes of ships as far as 30 miles away. Today, visitors can tour a museum focusing on the history of the watch tower and get a stunning bird’s-eye view of Portland and the harbor.

Where to Eat

  • DiMillo’s On the Water (207) 772-2216: Famous floating restaurant with spectacular views of Portland Harbor. Outside decks and dockage for customers.
  • Portland Lobster Company (207) 775-2112: Lobster, steamers, fish and chips.
  • Twenty Milk Street (800) 727-3436: Upscale dining at the Portland Regency Hotel.
  • J’s Oyster (207) 772-4828: Superb oysters in a funky, busy waterside bar.
  • Sapporo (207) 772-1233: Sushi and sashimi near the harbor.

Where to Stay:

Getting Around:

General Information:


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