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Portland Observatory

138 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101-3608
+1 207-774-5561
Website
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Review Highlights
Great views

Worth a visit for the views over the city. Lots of interesting displays detailing the history and... read more

Reviewed 7 October 2017
H3311QZlou
,
Fife, United Kingdom
Great view of Portland

This should be one of your first places to visit in Portland to get a good perspective of the city... read more

Reviewed 30 September 2017
911Traveldude
,
Sanford, North Carolina
Read all 389 reviews
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Overview
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In the 1800s, Captain Moody used this observatory 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.
  • Excellent62%
  • Very good31%
  • Average5%
  • Poor1%
  • Terrible1%
Travellers talk about
“guided tour” (39 reviews)
“worth the climb” (11 reviews)
“munjoy hill” (18 reviews)
LOCATION
138 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101-3608
CONTACT
Website
+1 207-774-5561
Write a Review
JPMiles / Payback Arrow
50
JPMiles / Payback Arrow
Reviews (389)
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All reviews
"guided tour"
in 39 reviews
"worth the climb"
in 11 reviews
"munjoy hill"
in 18 reviews
"interesting history"
in 21 reviews
"ships coming"
in 5 reviews
"great view of the city"
in 6 reviews
"volunteer docents"
in 4 reviews
"great history lesson"
in 6 reviews
"aaa discount"
in 5 reviews
"walk up"
in 5 reviews
"worth the effort"
in 4 reviews
"casco bay"
in 22 reviews
"admission fee"
in 4 reviews
"well worth the visit"
in 5 reviews
"answer questions"
in 4 reviews
"congress street"
in 5 reviews
"cruise ship"
in 6 reviews
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11 - 20 of 373 reviews

Reviewed 7 October 2017

Worth a visit for the views over the city. Lots of interesting displays detailing the history and restoration. We didn't time it well for a tour (but we had done it before years ago), however, the guide stopped to speak to us on his way...More

Thank H3311QZlou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 September 2017

This should be one of your first places to visit in Portland to get a good perspective of the city and surrounding area

Thank 911Traveldude
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 September 2017

It was a cloudy day on our visit so our view was not as great as it could have been. The tower is cool, its all wood and was used to signal ships in the harbor with flags. As you go up there are stops...More

1  Thank anita l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
See more reviews
Reviewed 29 September 2017

This is worth the uphill walk to the observatory AND the 140 steps to the top BUT ist is so worth the effort. The history is amazing and the views are divine. We felt lucky to have the opportunity to see this historic site.

Thank Chicagofamily484
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2017

If you walk from the waterfront area it's a uphill walk, so be prepared. The history of this building and of the man who built it is very interesting. The structure itself is amazing for the time period it was built. I think there were...More

Thank ron c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 September 2017 via mobile

visited today it was awesome. 140 steps but worth every one. When you reach the top the view is magnificent..well worth the climb.$10 adults $8 seniors bring binoculars..the view is beautiful and you can see clearly all the small private Islands Off the coast of...More

Thank Diane S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 September 2017

You have the option of doing a self-guided tour or going with a tour guide. I opted for the tour guide and enjoyed listening to her talk about the city of Portland and how the Observatory came to be. Yes, there are quite a few...More

1  Thank ms90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 September 2017

The last signal tower, this tower played an important role in Portland trade. From its vantage point and it's height, incoming trading ships could be seen from eighteen miles out. Flags were then hung as signals to notify local trade merchants when their expected ships...More

Thank KMHvaca
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 September 2017

Went here while visiting Portland at the suggestion of our guide on a lighthouse boat tour. She told us how they had no mail back then and sailors had no way of letting their loved ones know they were entering the port on a ship....More

Thank Charrie S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 15 September 2017

Hi Charrie! We are so glad that you came to Observatory! And grateful to the tour guide on your light house tour for suggesting the stop! The guided tour is actually included in your admission fee and is no extra cost. I hope we didn't...More

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 September 2017

A friend, my wife, and I were warmly welcomed by Peggy and then provided a guided tour by Dan. The story of Captain Lemuel Moody, the entrepreneurial builder of the observatory, and the success of his business plan (notwithstanding the embargo act of 1807, the...More

1  Thank BuxtonMaineTraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 15 September 2017

Thank you for visiting! We are so glad you had a good time, engaged with the history and that you got to see the ballast! That peek below still is a favorite among staff who have seen it dozens and dozens of times.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Ask a question
Questions & Answers
739jennifere
2 September 2017|
AnswerShow all 3 answers
Response from Tim B | Reviewed this property |
From their website: "Open every day until October 9, 2017 10 am - 4:30 pm"
1
Vote
Joe C
14 August 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from crloganphila | Reviewed this property |
not required for guided we did our own self tour but ended up speaking to a guide and they do know so much interesting information
2
Votes
Hyeonju L
26 July 2017|
AnswerShow all 4 answers
Response from JeannieSM | Reviewed this property |
Yes, the street parking does have a time limit. I can't remember if it was a 2 or 3 hour time limit, but you can probably do the entire Portland Observatory tour (even the one with the tour guide) in about an hour.
2
Votes