Called the “Jewel by the Sea” by its celebrated native, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow , Greater Portland combines the best of all worlds – the variety of a big city and the beauty and quality of life in Maine. Located near lakes and mountains, on the shores of Casco Bay, Portland boasts innumerable fine restaurants, shops, and cultural institutions. The pace of Portland is a comfortable one. There are no wild dashes for commuter trains, no miles of frustrating traffic jams. Instead, there are rolling hills, picturesque villages and stretches of sandy beaches within fifteen minutes of the city center. Casco Bay, 20 miles long and 12 miles wide, is streaked with numerous long, thin peninsulas, and 136 islands.
The Portland area provides many high-quality, affordable living opportunities, as well as excellent school systems and the safety of one of the lowest violent crime rates in the United States. Accessibility, excellence, and affordability are key words in describing the cultural experiences available in the area. The nationally acclaimed Portland Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor Robert A. Moody, performs in the historical Merrill Auditorium. The Portland Museum of Art, designed by the architectural firm of I.M. Pei, recently acquired the collection of Joan Whitney Payson, including works by Picasso, Whistler, Wyeth, and Chagall. The Cumberland County Civic Center provides a forum for concerts, ice shows, circuses, and semi-professional hockey. Hadlock Field is home to the popular Portland Sea Dogs AA League baseball team .
Above all, however, it is the healthy and invigorating outdoor experiences that define the Portland way of life. World-class hiking, sailing, skiing, and beaches, to name but a few, make this an attractive area in which to live and work. Combined with a Greater Portland area population of over 200,000 hardworking and friendly people, the Maine slogan “The Way Life Should Be” suggests that life in Portland will be a pleasant and enduring experience.
Portland's attractions include gourmet restaurants, historic buildings, a picturesque waterfront, art galleries, museums, boutiques, microbreweries and coffee shops. Now, they've combined to land the city on Frommer's list of the top 12 world travel destinations for 2007, along with the likes of Zurich, Tokyo and the Caribbean's Virgin Gorda. - USA TODAY
In the last decade, Portland has undergone a controlled fermentation for culinary ideas — combining young chefs in a hard climate with few rules, no European tradition to answer to, and relatively low economic pressure — and has become one of the best places to eat in the Northeast. - The New York Times