The waters off the coast of Maine offer some of the finest cruising ground to be found anywhere in the world. During the summer months, the bays are filled with all kinds of boaters, from small sailboats to large motor yachts, but the most impressive of them all are the historic sailing vessels that make up The Maine Windjammer Fleet.

Years ago, the coastal waters were filled with thousands of working schooners. Some were outfitted as fishing vessels, while others carried granite or lumber as their main cargo. Today, there are only a few of these majestic boats left.

The schooners have been restored and outfitted for the passenger trade. Each year, the owners and captains of these great ships offer us a chance to go back in time and see Maine from the water. Camden, Rockland and Rockport serve as the home ports of The Maine Windjammer Fleet. A trip aboard a windjammer is like no other vacation that you can imagine. They offer 3, 4 and 6 day cruises along the coast.

My first trip with The Maine Windjammer Fleet was aboard The Lewis R. French. I spent a week sailing the waters of Penobscot Bay. The experience was unforgettable. We visited a different island each day. After dropping anchor, we rowed ashore to explore the island. Each one of my fellow passengers pitched in with raising the anchor, hoisting sails or washing dishes after the meals.

I have also spent a week on The Schooner Roseway. The Roseway sails the waters of Maine in the summer months and then heads south for the winter. During the winter months, The Roseway makes her home in The Virgin Islands.

There are close to twenty passenger schooners that sail the waters of Maine, each with its own personality. The captain and crew will do everything possible to make your trip the most memorable experience.