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Casco Bay, Portland

(4.7/5 based on 170+ reviews on the web)
Casco Bay is an inlet of the Gulf of Maine on the southern coast of Maine, New England, United States. Its easternmost approach is Cape Small and its westernmost approach is Two Lights in Cape Elizabeth. The city of Portland sits along its southern edge and the Port of Portland lies within.European discoveryThere are two theories on the origin of the name "Casco Bay". Aucocisco is the Abenaki name for the bay, which means 'place of herons' (sometimes translated as 'muddy'). The Portuguese explorer Estêvão Gomes, mapped the Maine coast in 1525 and named the bay "Bahía de Cascos" (Bay of Helmets, based on the shape of the bay).The first settlement in Casco Bay was that of Capt. Christopher Levett, an English explorer, who built a house on House Island in 1623-24. The settlement failed. The first permanent settlement of the bay was named Casco; despite changing names throughout history, that settlement remains the largest city in the Casco Bay region, now called the city of Portland, MaineIt was first reported in 1700 by Colonel Wolfgang William Römer, an English military engineer, that there were "as many islands as there are days in the year". The United States Coastal Pilot lists 136 islands, leading to the bay's islands being called that Calendar Islands based on the popular myth there are 365 of them. Later, Robert M. York, the former Maine state historian said there are "little more than two hundred islands".
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • On 9/21 our cruise ship docked at Casco Bay. Before we even left the ship I was impressed by the old wood wharf remains. As I started to take photos, I noticed a large birds nest hidden in the midst. ...  more »
  • To me, a harbor or beach with only views of the ocean and water can be boring. However, Casco Bay, with a whole bunch of islands makes for not only a great view with something interesting to look at, ...  more »
  • A very scenic bay with beautiful boats and sunsets. Take a boat tour if time allows. It is interesting the way fog will blanket this bay. Makes for an eerie boat ride.