An exemplary urban transportation corridor, the 5.7-mile South Portland Parkway (2.1 miles of which are rail-trail) makes an excellent starting point for a bike tour of Portland. The trailhead at Bug Light Park offers easy access and plenty of free parking, and it connects to Portland's extensive network of walking and bicycling trails.
Small bollards and yellow street signs mark the route and indicate the distance to other parts of town. The pathwayalso known as the South Portland Greenbeltlinks residential areas, schools (both elementary and collegiate), marinas, parks, rec centers, assisted-living facilities and retail hubs. The Pathway also forms the northern end of Maine's Eastern Trail Scarborough Saco
segment and Kennebunk Biddeford
Named for the watchful lighthouse at the tip of the breakwater, Bug Light Park was once home to the Portland Shipyard, which produced hundreds of Liberty Ships, the workhorses of the US Navy during World War II. The park opened in 1989, thanks to public contributions and support from the South PortlandCape Elizabeth Rotary Club. Here, you can watch for passing sailboats, tankers off-loading oil bound for Montreal and arriving ferries from New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.
Marking the end of the rail-trail portion is the Casco Bay Bridge, which curls across the Fore River, connecting the neighborhoods of South Portland with downtown's sophisticated shops and eateries. A walkway spans the bridge, affording views of the bay and city skyline.
To reach Bug Light Park from Portland, take Interstate 295 to Exit 6A and follow State Route 77 across the Casco Bay Bridge. Continue straight (don't follow Route 77) on Broadway to the T-junction, turn left on Breakwater Drive, then right on Madison Street. Follow signs for the lighthouse to the parking lot.