The Maine Coastal Islands Visitor Center and Headquarters in Rockland is currently closed in the interest of public health & safety. Check the status of the refuge trails and visitor center here: CLICK FOR UPDATES

Because most seabirds only come to land to nest, the nesting season, May-July, is the best time to see seabirds in Maine. Landing is not permitted on most islands. The one exception is Machias Seal Island, off Cutler.


Check out nesting birds right from your home from webcams on Seal Island.  See puffins and guillemots in their burrows throughout the nesting season. Check out the puffin loafing ledge and the exterior view of the puffin burrow for other seabird activity.

Tour Boats

There are many reputable tour boat operators on the Maine Coast, both large and small, that visit seabird nesting islands. Some have naturalists on board, some try to find whales and seals, some make it a point to pass by lighthouses. All are dependent on the variable weather of the Maine Coast! We encourage you to visit their websites and speak with the captains to find the right boat tour for you.

Tour Boat Operators

Down East Area

(e.g., Petit Manan NWR and Machias Seal Island)

Midcoast Area

(e.g., Matinicus Rock NWR, Franklin Island NWR, Seal Island NWR, Eastern Egg Rock)