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Searsport Shores Camping Resort – Searsport, ME

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (19 votes, average: 3.95 out of 5)
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Searsport Shores Camping Resort had received a good review in a magazine and looking at the website we thought this would be a great place for kids! What a joke! We had just returned from a campground in New Hampshire that had loads of activities for the kids, was neat and tidy and the people were friendly! Then we arrived at Searsport.

This campground bills itself as a family campground on the ocean. First of all, don’t expect a sandy beach it is very rocky. The kids had fun looking for crabs, but it isn’t a good place to swim.

In terms of “activities” for the kids – they had a “walk” to the state park one day – no one else showed up so we went as a family – that was okay – that was the activity for the day! The next night the one activity for the day was a fairy/documentary sort of movie. Not very exciting for two boys.

We had booked for 5 nights and realized that this campground is more of a stopover point or a place for two nights. We asked to get our money back and leave a couple days early. That was not permitted as they are running a “business”. There is a lot this business could do to improve. The sites are $48, 58 or 68 dollars depending on the “ocean view” – they are charging resort prices for absolutely no amenities. I know they are promoting “family” camping, and while I don’t expect my boys to be too highly stimulated, if they are charging that price, they should be offering something for it.

The lawns aren’t cut, the sights are small, with potholes. They don’t give you any information for families to do in the area, not many kids at all there, not a lot around, no pool, etc. It is just very hokey.

If you do go – don’t book – just go – they had at least 50 empty sites on a Saturday night in mid-July and the rest of the week, many, many sites. Don’t make the mistake we did and book for a block – believe me, if you want to stay there will be a site available! We left a day early and lost our money. Our boys were much happier at the next campground.

4 Comments

  1. Family camping vacations are not one size fits all. Different philosophies for different families. Some families actually take separate vacations at the same place. The parents sit back, do their own thing while the kids are occupied with scheduled activities provided by the campground. There are family vacations in which the family finds things to do together and do not depend on others to entertain them. Neither is wrong. It’s simply a choice.
    Family Campgrounds also have different philosophies. Just because your dea of a family vacation is not the same as the campground’s does not make it a poor campground. You need to do your homework and find a good fit for you and your family and if you mess-up such is life.

  2. We couldn’t have had a better time than we did at Searsport Shores last week. We spent 7 days there in less than ideal weather and it was still one of the most enjoyable trips we have had. Owners and staff were exceptional. Friendly, courteous and every so willing to answer questions or help in any way. Hard to imagine anyone bent on having an enjoyable experience not finding it here.
    Here is a letter we sent to the owners and are hoping they will share it with their wonderful staff as well:
    July 29, 2009

    Astrig and Steve :

    Just wanted to thank you for a marvellous stay on site #2. We have arrived safely home in Canada this afternoon with terrific memories of a most enjoyable vacation at Searsport Shores.
    The weather tried to test us, but as far as we’re concerned it was no match in the least.
    Nancy and I have been camping for as long as we can remember, beginning in our youth, and every summer throughout our 27 years of marriage. We have camped in some wonderful spots but we always have said that as much as we enjoyed a particular location, there is too much world out there to see to return to a spot previously visited. For the first time ever, you folks broke the trend. We both confessed early on in the week that “this is a place we could see ourselves coming back to”. Not sure when, but we can see it happening and that is remarkable in itself.
    We never had to wait to use shower or rest room facilities and they were always well kept and clean. Nancy was able to watch some show (that doesn’t grab my fancy), thanks to Steve popping down to the rec area to show us all what we were doing wrong when we tried to tune the TV in on our own.
    Every campground needs rules, but we always resent the places where they seem to feel a need to rub your nose in the “rules” every chance they get as if you are children. We never felt anything even close to that. Just warm smiles and tolerance to our many questions that we are sure you are asked over and over and over.
    Both of you made us feel welcome and that contributed to a fantastic vacation.
    I have a few photo’s that I will be sending by way of a separate email tomorrow.
    Next time, can you crank down the fog machine just a notch or two though ;-)? Never mind, it was worth it to listen to the loon calls, sending us off to sleep most nights, and the water coursing down the stream.
    If anyone is waffling on whether or not to go for the Lobster Bake at the beach, please feel free to send them my email. Not just a fabulous meal (which it was indeed), but also an experience/event. The entire meal was just amazing. A highlight of our stay, for sure.
    Take care, and thanks for the experience. We hope to see you again soon.

    Regards,
    Ron, Nancy and April
    Chatham, ON
    Canada

  3. We stayed at Searsport Shores earlier this summer (June) and had a great time! Prices are in line with other campgrounds in the area.
    Jan… if you did indeed leave your dog alone in a hot camper you should be arrested. People like you shouldn’t be allowed to have pets. Rob from VT.

  4. There are two sides to every story.

    What Jan is not telling you is that there are campground etiquette that everyone follows in order to have a nice time. She’s not telling you that they left their poor dog alone in a camper all day in the sunshine and refused to answer our cell phone call alerting them to the distress of their dog. When confronted the next day, the explanation was that usually they leave the dog tied outside their camper while they go off day tripping and were trying to comply with our policy of no dog left unattended by locking her in the camper for 12 hours…huh? The poor barking dog drove two other campers out of the park and made another feel bad while he listened to the distress.

    The site they occupied was an effort to comply to their wishes of paying as little as possible on a sunny site away from other guests. The kids had no one to play with? The other guests found the entitled attitude of the Birminghams a turn off and chose to keep their distance. They were not looking for a family campground, they were looking for a babysitting service.

    That’s the other side of the story.

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