An Educational Resource

Landmarks offers a variety of programs and resources that bring architecture and local history to life for children and adults through experiential learning. We feature regularly scheduled walking tours and tours of the Portland Observatory Museum. We also offer lesson plans for teachers, student activities, and are linked with the Maine Memory Network for online research.

Experience Portland


U.S. Custom House

Landmarks exclusively offers tours of this magnificent 1871 federally owned building that has been closed to the public except by special arrangement since 2001. Tours are given on Wednesdays at 10:30 a.m. and another at 11:30 a.m. from early July through mid-October. 

Take a Tour →

Homes of Portland's Golden Age

Homes of Portland’s Golden Age (HOPGA) Walking Tour—Guided walking tours of the stately homes on High, Spring, State and Pleasant Streets showcases Portland’s early prosperity through its architecture. Tours are Fridays from 11:00 am—12:30 pm from late July through early October.

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Portland Observatory

Since 1807, the Portland Observatory has offered spectacular views of Portland's busy harbor and served as a beloved symbol of the city's rich maritime heritage. As stewards of the Observatory, Landmarks is pleased to offer daily tours and educational programs from May to October.

Visit the Tower →

Tools for Teachers

Self-guided walking tours

Download these free walking tours to explore Portland and learn about our city's historic architecture. 

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Architecture Defined

Use our Architecture Defined page to learn about common architectural styles that can be found in the greater Portland area.

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Educational Publications

The City is a Classroom

The City is a Classroom is an educational workbook written to meet the 3rd grade curriculum, but has proven popular with children through adults.

This 3rd edition, revised in 2013, and generously funded by the Leonard C. and Mildred F. Ferguson Foundation and the CPB Foundation, includes an expanded local history time line and was a collaborative project with numerous historic sites in Portland.

Click here to purchase the workbook or contact us to learn more about using this resource in your third grade classroom.

The Portland Observatory: An Activity Book

With the Portland Observatory Activity Book, you will learn about the famous tower, the man who built it, how and why it was used, and how important it is today as a national historic landmark. Explore this maritime signal tower with page after page of fun, hands-on activities.

Click here to purchase the activity book.



Stay Tuned...

The next installment in our series of educational publications will be a family friendly walking guide of Portland's Old Port & Congress Street Historic District.