Appledore Island: 10 Facts You Should Know About This Legendary Speck of Land

Appledore Island

Appledore Island is a small, beautiful island in the United States. It is near the coasts of New Hampshire and Maine. This island is home to a rich history, diverse wildlife, and stunning natural beauty. Here are ten facts and figures that you should know about Appledore Island:

The Location of Appledore Island

Appledore Island is in the Gulf of Maine and is part of the Isles of Shoals, a group of nine small islands. The Isles of Shoals have a rich and storied history, dating back to the 1600s when the first European settlers arrived. The islands were once thriving fishing and shipbuilding centers and popular summer resort destinations. Celia Thaxter, a poet, started a famous artists’ colony on Appledore Island at the end of the 19th century. This colony attracted writers and artists from all over the world.

Today, the Isles of Shoals are protected by the Maine Coastal Islands National Wildlife Refuge and are considered one of the best places for birdwatching in the Gulf of Maine. The islands are also home to the Shoals Marine Laboratory, a collaboration between Cornell University and the University of New Hampshire, which conducts research on the island’s unique ecosystem.

The Size of Appledore Island

The island is relatively small, measuring only 11 acres in size. Despite its small size, Appledore Island boasts a diverse array of geographic features that make it a unique and fascinating place to visit.

The island is characterized by rolling hills, dense forests, and clear, turquoise waters. The hills provide stunning views of the surrounding ocean and mainland, and the dense forests offer a peaceful refuge for wildlife and visitors alike. The clear waters surrounding the island are home to a variety of marine life, including harbor seals and seabirds, making it a popular destination for birdwatching and wildlife watching.

History of Appledore Island

Appledore Island has a rich and storied history dating back to the 1600s when the first European settlers arrived in the Gulf of Maine. The island was once a thriving fishing and shipbuilding center and was also a popular summer resort destination in the late 19th century.

One of the most important events in the history of Appledore Island was the establishment of a famous artists’ colony by the poet Celia Thaxter in the late 19th century. Thaxter invited writers and artists from around the world to visit the island, and the colony quickly became a hub of cultural activity and creativity. Many famous writers and artists, including Childe Hassam, Winslow Homer, and Edna St. Vincent Millay, visited the island and were inspired by its natural beauty and rich history.

Another significant event in the history of Appledore Island was the establishment of the Shoals Marine Laboratory in the mid-20th century. The laboratory, a collaboration between Cornell University and the University of New Hampshire, conducts research on the unique ecosystem of the Isles of Shoals, including Appledore Island. Today, the laboratory is a major center for scientific research and is open to visitors for tours and educational programs.

Finally, Appledore Island is also notable for its association with the historic Portsmouth Harbor Lighthouse, which is located on the nearby mainland. The lighthouse was first built in 1771 and was one of the first lighthouses in the country. Today, the lighthouse is a popular tourist attraction and is open to visitors during the summer months.

How to Get to Appledore Island

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There are several ways to get to the island, depending on your preferences and schedule.

The most common way to get to Appledore Island is by boat. Several companies offer ferry services to the island, departing from Portsmouth, New Hampshire or Rye, New Hampshire. These ferries typically operate seasonally, from spring through fall, and offer a variety of trip options, including day trips and overnight camping trips.

See Isles of Shoals Steamship Company for tour information

Finally, some visitors choose to reach Appledore Island by helicopter or seaplane. These options provide a unique and exciting way to reach the island, and offer stunning views of the surrounding Gulf of Maine and coastline. However, they are typically more expensive and may only be available during certain times of the year.

Where Can I Stay on Appledore Island

If you’re looking to spend some time on Appledore Island, there are several accommodation options to choose from.

The most popular option for overnight stays is camping. The island has several designated camping areas, and visitors can bring their own camping gear or rent gear from the ferry companies that serve the island. Camping is a great way to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of the island and to enjoy the peace and quiet of a remote location.

For those looking for a more comfortable stay, there are several historic cottages and buildings on the island that are available for rent. These cottages, many of which date back to the 19th century, are charming and rustic, and provide a unique and authentic experience for visitors. Some of the cottages have modern amenities such as electricity and running water, while others are more primitive and offer a truly rustic experience.

Finally, for those who prefer a more luxurious stay, there is a historic inn on the nearby mainland that offers stunning views of the island and the surrounding Gulf of Maine. The inn is located in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and provides easy access to Appledore Island and the other Isles of Shoals.

FAQs of Appledore Island

Can you drive to Appledore Island?

No, Appledore Island can only be reached by boat

Is Appledore Island open year-round?

No, the island is only accessible during the summer months.

Are there any restaurants or stores on the island?

No, there are no restaurants or stores on the island. Visitors are encouraged to bring their food and supplies.

Live Webcam: Appledore Island Live

Final Thoughts on Appledore Island

Appledore Island offers a wealth of opportunities for adventure and exploration. It’s a significant and unique travel consideration. With its breathtaking natural beauty, rich history, and diverse wildlife, there is truly something for everyone on this small, idyllic island. Appledore Island is the perfect destination whether you’re a nature lover, a history buff, or simply looking for a peaceful escape. With its clear turquoise waters, rolling hills, and dense forests, it’s no wonder that Appledore Island is considered one of the best places to see in the Gulf of Maine. So if you’re looking for a unique and unforgettable experience, add Appledore Island to your must-visit list.

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Michael Hardy

Michael is the founder of Thumbwind Publications and a freelance writer. His projects include; AITrueReview, which strives to improve the quality of articles and writing using AI tools, and FloridaMarkers which experiments in Programmatic SEO

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