Greenville, ME
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The ULTIMATE Guide to Visiting Greenville Maine

Greenville Maine is the gateway to the North Maine Woods, but this is definitely not a town one simply passes through.

As the southern anchor town of Moosehead Lake, the things to do in Greenville span four seasons, water, land, and the skies above. The lake even holds some secrets under its pristine and chilly waters.

Greenville offers the “just right” aspect of visiting Maine outdoors. It’s not as crowded as Sebago Lake, but it’s not as remote as the Fish River Chain of Lakes.

You have Mount Kineo and its fabled landscape nearby, quaint and luxury accommodations to choose from, and lakeside night skies with wayward moose roaming about as you cook over a fire. Also, it’s a great stepping stone into the wilderness of the Pine Tree State.

Allagash Wilderness Waterway -Greenville
Allagash Wilderness Waterway | photo via mainelylandscapes

Outdoor Things to Do in Greenville Maine

Outdoor things to do in Greenville accommodate all skill levels and activities. You can summit a mountain or board a steamship. It’s also an ideal four-season destination with adventures in all directions.

Seaplane Tours

No need to drive to a faraway airport because Jack’s Air Service seaplanes take off right from the water near the heart of town. You can fly around the lake or go all the way to Mt. Katahdin for views only the loons usually get to see.

Steamboat Tours

The steamboat era of Moosehead Lake peaked in the 1800s, but you can still ride that famed water trail around the lake with Katahdin Cruises.

You’ll ride on the steamboat Katahdin, but you can call her Kate. Short tours are available, as well as day-long cruises to explore the vastness of the lake, mountains, and islands.

Katahdin Cruises-Moosehead Lake
Katahdin Cruises | photo via leeday22


If you can paddle it, you can rent it in Greenville. Kayaks, SUPs, canoes, and tandem rides are offered at the shore. With 117 square miles of shoreline, islands, mountains, and beaches, you’ll be able to explore on your own schedule.

TRAVEL TIP: Check with your hotel to see if it offers free rentals to save some money.

Boat Rentals

Take off from Greenville’s newly expanded boat dock on a pontoon or fishing boat. You can steer yourself or let a guide take over. We highly recommend taking a boat tour to see the cliffs of Mount Kineo.

TRAVEL TIP: There’s a place called Pebble Beach that’s easily accessible by boat on the cove east of Mount Kineo. This is a popular spot for pontoon boats to park and enjoy the secluded spot.

Shirley Bog-Greenville-deannawrubleski
Shirley Bog | photo via deannawrubleski


Between Greenville and neighboring Greenville Junction are two beaches to enjoy. One is at Greenville Junction Wharf, where there’s an updated playground right next to the beach. The other is Red Cross Beach, tucked away behind the woods of Greenville.

TRAVEL TIP: Lily Bay State Park is just 10 miles away and also has a swimming beach.


Moosehead Lake is the biggest lake in the state and offers four-season fishing opportunities. You can rent your own boat or take a fishing charter. Ice fishing is the premiere winter lake activity.

Plus, more lakes and ponds surround the Moosehead area, offering an expanded reach for your fishing pole.


Take a hike up Big Moose Mountain at Little Moose Public Reserved Land. At least half a dozen lakes or ponds greet hikers of all experience levels. You’ll get amazing views of the area, with trails from 1.5 miles long to nearly 7 miles long.

Moosehead Outdoor Alliance-Greenville-Mountain Biking
Moosehead Outdoor Alliance | photo via mooseheadoutdooralliance

ATV & Snowmobiles

Hook up with the crew at Moosehead ATV Riders to get access to the trails that transition from ATVs to snowmobile trails seasonally. You can rent your own ATV or take a guided tour with experts who know this land the best.


The unobstructed views and dark skies around Greenville Maine make it a perfect place to enjoy celestial shows, whether you choose to be on a boat, on a moonlit trail, or at your campsite. Check the Space Weather Forecast to see if your trip overlaps with the Northern Lights.

Dog Sledding

Take a private dog sledding tour with Lone Wolf Guiding Services in the same place where the Wilderness Sled Dog Race happens annually. You can just go along for the ride or help with the dogs during this unique adventure.

Fiddleheads | photo via

Berry & Fiddlehead Picking

Enjoy nature’s bounty during the lush months as trails are lined with Maine’s famous wild blueberries, strawberries, and raspberries. The Maine vegetable delicacy is fiddleheads, and you simply must try these at least once.

Moose Safaris

The Maine Highlands region has three moose for every person, so you’re certain to cross paths with one of these behemoths. Guided tours will take you to the most likely spots to see moose in their natural habitat while sharing fun facts and lifestyle lessons about moose.

TRAVEL TIP: If you want to blend two activities, rent a kayak and explore Shirley Bog, just a few miles south of Greenville. This is one of the hottest moose sighting spots in the region.

Mountain Biking

Greenville is poised to become the pinnacle mountain biking destination of Maine, with a massive free-to-ride mountain bike trails project underway. A total of 25 miles of trails will be available through the Moosehead Outdoor Alliance. Trails are being designed for everyone — from beginners to experts.

Indoor Things to Do in Greenville Maine

You don’t even have to leave Greenville to see some of the best museums in the Moosehead area. And, there are some good shopping opportunities in the town.

Greenville, ME
Greenville | photo via blaine.chadwick.1

Moosehead Cultural Heritage Center

Starting your trip here will help you appreciate the places you’re about to explore that much more. From the Indigenous people of this land to the adventurer Henry David Thoreau and the tourism industry, the artifacts and memorabilia celebrate the heritage of this area.

The full list of museums to explore includes:

  • The Moosehead Outdoor Heritage & Lumbermen’s Museums
  • The Eveleth-Crafts-Sheridan Historical House
  • The Moosehead Cultural Heritage Center
  • The Moosehead Aviation Museum & B-52 Crash Permanent Exhibition
  • Moosehead’s Native American History

Moosehead Marine Museum

Additionally, you can visit the Moosehead Marine Museum where the Kate cruises launch. The museum was refurbished during the winter of 2023, so you’ll find a new experience with expanded exhibits. Don’t forget to ask questions about the sunken steamers of Moosehead Lake.

TRAVEL TIP: The museum docents also hold regularly scheduled events, like historic cemetery tours.

Downtown Greenville Shopping

Explore the unique shops of Greenville’s town center for Maine-made products, unique gems and minerals, and souvenirs — with plenty of Moose coffee mugs to go around. Northwoods Outfitters has all the accessories and clothing you’ll need for the next adventure.

Big Squaw Mountain-Greenville-Winter-Ski
Big Squaw Mountain | photo via mrsrafuse

Additional Attractions Near Greenville Maine

Moosehead Lake is so massive that you’ll have plenty of lakeside towns to explore. Greenville is the only town on the lake, but the villages of Beaver Cove, Kokadjo, Lily Bay, Rockwood, and Shirley round out the options.

Big Squaw Mountain

Skiing in Maine with a view of Moosehead Lake is a winter dream since 1963. The trails haven’t changed much since then, but the new chairlifts take you from beginner to advanced trails. Cross-country skiing trails are also available.

B-52 Crash Site

Just 14 miles from Greenville Maine — buried deep in the woods — are the remains of a B-52 that crashed in 1963 during a training mission. Nine souls were on board — only two survived.

A memorial stands at the trailhead to the crash site. It’s open to the public, paying tribute to the men who risked their lives for America.

Gulf Hagas

Known as the “Grand Canyon of Maine,” this brutal trail is worth the effort if you’re capable because it goes by four named waterfalls and plenty of other rapids. The trail is tough but often traveled since it intersects with the Appalachian Trail. The trailhead is just 16 miles from Greenville.

The North Woods

If you’re using the Gateway to the North Woods to go to the North Woods, here are some options:

  • Baxter State Park and Mt. Katahdin — 65 miles
  • Katahdin Woods & Waters National Monument — 106 miles
  • Allagash Wilderness Waterway — 106 miles
Slate Restaurant-Greenville
Slate Restaurant | photo via freddyrayes

Restaurants in Greenville Maine

From to-go grub to gourmet meals that offer stunning lake and mountain views, there’s something for every palette in Greenville.

Kelly’s Landing

Drink in the sunrise views while you drink your morning coffee with a heaping portion of breakfast. Stop by for some snacks between activities, or dig into the big dinner meals — like the seafood casserole.

Lakeside seating is available in summer with fireside cozy spots for winter meals among snow-capped mountain views.


You’ll be looking for a red building of garages, but don’t judge Woody’s by its cover. On the inside, the high-beam ceilings and rustic liveliness will have you dancing in no time. Just be sure to eat that steak bomb before it gets cold, and enjoy the live music available throughout the week.

The Farm at Moosehead

The farm has all the produce that’s in season, but it’s so much more than that. The wood-fired pizza and chicken wings are made to order and ready for takeout, creating a unique experience. You’ll be lured by the smell of famous baby back ribs. Plus, the dessert is homemade, and full cakes can be made to order.

Slate Restaurant

You’ll have to tell us which is more exquisite — the meals at this Relais & Châteaux member restaurant or the sunset views over the mountains. The gourmet food is farm-to-table, and the fresh ingredients come from the greenhouse on-site. Look for events like tequila tastings and live music.

The Greenville Inn-Moosehead Lake-
The Greenville Inn | photo via glassmanjulie

Greenville Maine Hotels & Other Lodging

The best places to stay in Greenville are around every corner. There isn’t a bad view in town.

Greenville Inn at Moosehead Lake

Stay in a luxury bed & breakfast to live like a lumber tycoon at the Greenville Inn at Moosehead Lake. This 1890s home has been customized and expanded to include mansion rooms, family suites, and cottages. It’s perfect for a romantic getaway or family gathering.

Enjoy the finest touches, like Tiffany lighting and original stained-glass windows, now with a fine dining experience available by reservation.

TRAVEL TIP: Greenville Inn is also reportedly home to the ghost of a friendly, beautiful woman who occasionally talks to guests when she’s not staring out at the lake.

The Lodge at Moosehead Lake

Elevate your stay with sweeping views of Moosehead Lake while relaxing in rustic sophistication with a fireplace in every room. The carriage house suites offer private decks and sitting areas.

Breakfast is free daily, and adventure packages are offered with bundled discounts. Enjoy a prix fixe menu at 368 Maine before heading back to your triple-sheeted bed for the night.

Private Island Home

You’ll need a motorboat to take a quick ride to this retreat on your own island. You’ll have an outdoor shower, a private beach, and a yard that wraps around the charming cabin. The only noisy neighbors upstairs will be the birds, where you can see eagles, loons, or geese seasonally.

Little Moose Public Land

The backcountry campsites on this public land near Greenville Maine are free and available first-come, first-served. Get a campfire permit if that’s in your plans. Each site comes with a pit toilet, table, and fire ring.

McIver’s Lakeshore Cottages

These quaint cottages are right on the shoreline with easy access to a boat ramp and the center of town. Going into the third generation of McIver’s, these cottages are a true reflection of a love story for better or for worse — and for the love of the lake. Free kayak rentals are waiting for you.

Greenville, ME
Greenville | photo via mafamillerigole

More to Know About Greenville Maine

Greenville started as a logging town, with the lake providing a perfect passage for timber out of the North Woods. This was the first economic boost of the region, followed by a demand for tourism as the “Rusticators” sought summer refuge.

In 1858, Henry David Thoreau came through this region, and he was awe-struck:

“It was not till we were within a mile or two of its south end that we got our first view of it (Moosehead Lake), —a suitably wild-looking sheet of water, sprinkled with small, low islands, which were covered with shaggy spruce and other wild wood, —seen over the infant port of Greenville with mountains on each side and far in the north, and a steamer’s smoke-pipe rising above a roof.”

That infant port is now an aged proverb of Maine’s history, and paved roads lead to and from its immaculate shores.

Growing With Moosehead Lake Tourism

Greenville and the Moosehead area are going through an evolution as the tourist crowds grow each season. Calculated decisions are being made to keep this lake as one of “America’s Crowned Jewels” while allowing more development that blends in with the beautiful scenery.

Greenville Maine Weather

Winter guests will enjoy an average of 8 feet of snow, laying the perfect white carpet for outdoor fun. Moosehead Lake is usually frozen over by mid-January, with ice out in mid-May. It’s cold enough that the massive lake usually freezes over and gets thick enough for snowmobiling.

Summers will have an average high in the mid-70s, but the nights will usually be chilly enough for a sweatshirt. While this is in the Maine mountains, the elevation of Greenville is just under 1,100 feet above sea level, leaving no concerns for altitude sickness unless you’re going to Mt. Katahdin.

Baxter State Park-Piscataquis County
Baxter State Park | photo via

FAQs About Greenville Maine

Why is it called Moosehead Lake?

If you look at the outline of Moosehead Lake, it is shaped like the profile of a moose with impressive antlers.

When is the best time of year to see a moose in Greenville Maine?

You have the potential to see moose year-round in Greenville Maine, but they are most active from April through June.

While you can go on a moose safari, there’s also a not-so-secret local spot by the DOT salt shed in Shirley, just 3 miles south of Greenville. People line up their cars at dawn and dusk to spot moose in the clearing.

What is the toughest hiking trail near Moosehead Lake?

The most extreme hikers will tackle the Moosehead Pinnacle Pursuit by summiting all six mountains in the region. The toughest of the bunch is White Cap Mountain on the Appalachian Trail in Maine’s 100 Mile Wilderness.

Can I get to Mount Kineo from Greenville Maine?

The ferry shuttle to Mount Kineo leaves from Rockwood, about 20 miles from Greenville Maine. You can take your own boat or charter a boat to Mt. Kineo from Greenville.

How deep is Moosehead Lake?

The deepest part of Moosehead Lake is 246 feet. The lake is also 40 miles long by 10 miles wide, so it will have more chop and white caps than smaller lakes. Always check the weather conditions before planning a day on the lake.

Discover All That Greenville Maine Has to Offer

Whether you’re creating a checklist of things to do in Greenville Maine or planning a trip that’s nothing but relaxing, it’s all right here, waiting on the Greenville dock. We’d love to see your moose photos after your visit!

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