The Damariscotta region is home to the Pemaquid Point Light in Bristol; famous for the dramatic streaked granite cliffs that surround it. Pemaquid Point Light became the first lighthouse to ever appear on American currency when in 2003 its image appeared on the official Maine quarter.
The Damariscotta River is a boating and fishing hotspot, and has a thriving aqua‐culture industry that produces Pemaquid oysters and the sweet local mussels popular in area restaurants. Although fresh seafood reigns supreme in the Damariscotta region, it is home to one of Maine's popular, classic diners; Moody's on Route 1 in Waldoboro. Another landmark restaurant is Morse's Kraut House where, as the name suggests, sauerkraut has been made since 1918 and now includes the Euro deli and café, famous for its excellent German fare.
Each fall, you have a chance to see daring people in pumpkin-boats float down the Damariscotta River. The Damariscotta Pumpkinfest celebrates the gourd with painted pumpkins, a pie-eating contest, and the quirky pumpkin regatta, with huge pumpkins hollowed out, and floated or motored down the river.
Downtown Damariscotta is reminiscent of hometown main streets of old, but refreshingly up-to-date with interesting shops, restaurants, a community theater and home to the first Reny's Department Store which opened in 1949. Since then, Reny's has become a Maine institution with a total of 14 stores throughout the state.
This region is well known for its oysters and the huge oyster shell heaps along the river banks are proof that Native Americans were enjoying them over 2,000 years ago. Now on the Register of Historic Places, the shell heaps or "middens" were once more than thirty feet deep and considered the largest in the world. The middens are part of the Great Salt Bay Preserve Heritage Trail, perfect for picnics and trail walks.