Portland is an incredible city. Located on the southern coast of Maine, it’s just the right size, easy to navigate on foot, and filled with arts and culture and minutes from beaches, lakes, and forests.
What's not to love? Besides its coastal setting with access to colorful islands, oceanfront bike and foot trails, it is a "foodie's" delight, offering everything from seafood (of course) to vegetarian fare to international cuisine. The weekly Portland Farmers Market provides locally grown vegetables, meats, dairy and a range of food. Its commitment to arts and culture makes Portland an East Coast nexus where artists, musicians and small business start-ups thrive. During Portland's monthly legendary First Friday Art Walk, the galleries celebrate artists accompanied by street vendors, musicians, performers and more -- a mini Mardi Gras 12 times a year!
One of Portland's greatest assets is its size -- large enough to host a diverse blend of nationalities, this endlessly interesting city is also small enough to retain a strong sense of community. Here, committed creative thinkers and entrepreneurs have developed niche markets and micro-cultures centered around socially responsible businesses, research and technology, agriculture, creative innovation, design, fashion, and more. And MECA is located right in the heart of it; in fact we were instrumental in the resurgence of downtown.
Wander down the street during a First Friday Art Walk in summer, admiring our historic 19th century buildings. Visit our world-class Portland Museum of Art (open for free every FFAW), pick up a slice of Otto's cranberry and goat cheese pizza, or grab a cup of handcrafted locally roasted Joe at Coffee By Design or The Speckled Axe as you stroll and enjoy listening to some urban folkies. Perhaps there is a performance in Congress Square, the fire jugglers are out down in the Old Port, or there happens to be a bicycle parade. Or hop on a ferry and take a refreshing cruise around Casco Bay.
People are drawn to Portland from all over the world and choose to visit and/or live here because of its unique blend of dynamic communities; easy access to Maine's bounty of coastline, forests, and mountains; and fertile creative scene. Its beauty energizes the body and inspires the spirit and its stimulating culture means you don’t need to go anywhere else. No wonder our official city motto is "Yes. Life's good here."
“Coolest Small Cities in America”GQ
“16 Best Places to Live in the U.S.”Outside Live Bravely - 2014
“of America's Dozen Distinctive Destinations”PreservationNation - 2003
“America's Foodiest Small Town”Bon Appetit - 2009
“Top 10 Cities in New England”GoLocal
“Historic Places”National Geographic - 2008
“Great Places: Streets”American Planning Association - 2008
“Top 10 Coziest Cities in America”Honeywell - 2015
“14 Places You Should Plan to Visit”Business Insider - 2014
“America's Best Small Cities on the Rise”SmarterTravel.com - 2014
“#1 Rate of Revenue Growth Among Women-Owned Businesses in ME.”MaineBiz - 2017
“Rankings of Small Business Vitality”BizJournals - 2013
“Top 10 Cities for Women Entrepreneurs”Inc Magazine - 2015
“Top Medium Cities for Doing Business in America”Inc Magazine - 2004
“14 Best Startup Cities in America”Popular Mechanics - 2014
“America's Hippest Most Hipster Neighborhoods”Forbes - 2012
“Top 10 Destinations for Gay Travelers”NerdWallet - 2013
“So You're a Little Weird - The 20 Quirkiest Cities in America”Travel and Leisure - 2015
“America's Best Cities for Your Professionals”Forbes - 2012
“Top Healthiest Cities for Women”Women's Health - 2012
“Top Healthiest Places for Women”Self - 2009
“Top Green City”OrganicLife - 2010
“Best City in America for the Young at Heart”Kiplinger's - 2012
“Greenest Cities in the United States”Travel and Leisure - 2012
“America's Best Farmers' Markets”Travel and Leisure - 2010
“World's 30 Friendliest Cities”Travel and Leisure - 2015
“The Nation's Happiest Cities”Green Living - 2014
“Most Attractive People in America”Travel and Leisure - 2013
“America's Best Cities for Pizza”Travel and Leisure - 2013
“Metro Areas with the Most Eateries per Capita”Huffington Post - 2013
“Greatest Destination Food Towns in America”HuffPost Travel - 2014
“Toughest Towns in America, "These Cities Can Handle a Snowstorm"”Bustle - 2014
“Underrated American Cities”CNT Traveler - 2014