This Famous Signpost In Maine Claims To Offer Secret Portals To Countries All Over The World (Or Does It?)

Just outside of Lynchville in western Maine, there’s a signpost that might make you think you took a wrong turn and ended up on a globetrotting adventure. 

This isn’t your everyday road marker pointing to Paris, Naples, Denmark, Mexico and even China. 

Nope, you’re still in Maine, and this signpost is throwing out distances to places that share a name but are worlds apart in every other way.

A Global Hat Tip from Maine

This peculiar signpost doesn’t mean Maine has secret portals to international destinations (though how cool would that be?). 

It’s actually a nod to Maine’s own towns that were named during a time when the locals wanted to show a little love to the idea of global independence. 

For example, Denmark, Maine, got its name not because of a craving for Danish pastries but as a nod to a historical event across the ocean. 

And no, China, Maine, isn’t packed with billions of people — it’s a cozy little spot that couldn’t be more different from its namesake.

Small Towns, Big Stories

The towns these signs point to might not share their namesakes’ grandeur, but they’re not lacking in personality. 

Take Poland, Maine — not the country, but the birthplace of that bottled water you’re probably drinking. 

Or South Paris, Maine, which hasn’t seen a single Eiffel Tower but is known for cranking out Flexible Flyer sleds. 

Each of these places adds a piece to the puzzle that is Maine’s quirky charm.

The Tale Behind the Sign

The World Traveler Signpost, as folks have come to call it, wasn’t always a selfie hotspot. Back in the 1930s, it was put up to get travelers pumped about exploring Maine.

It starred in old-school postcards and became a symbol of Maine’s unique flavor. 

The signpost we see today, beefed up and fortified with steel instead of the white wood it was originally made from, to keep those pesky souvenir hunters at bay, still stands tall as a salute to Maine’s blend of homegrown pride and worldly curiosity. 

But hey, maybe it’s time to add a few more towns to the roster. Moscow, Belfast, and Vienna, Maine, are probably feeling a bit left out.

Finding The Signpost (And Two Others)

You’ll spot the sign where Valley Road (Route 35) meets Crooked River Causeway (Route 5), sitting on the northeast side of Route 35.

It’s right on the edge of Waterford, nestled in Albany Township.

There are also two other similar signposts in Maine, one located in Kittery and the other in South China.

Why The World Traveler Signpost is a Must-See

This signpost isn’t just a place to snap a funny photo; it’s a deep dive into what makes Maine, well, Maine. 

It’s a celebration of independence, a global high-five, and a tribute to local legends, all rolled into one. 

You’ll find it at the crossroads of Route 35 and Route 5, standing as a reminder of Maine’s rich narrative. 

So, if you’re on the hunt for a spot that’s off the beaten path but smack dab in the middle of Maine’s heart, make sure to swing by. 

It’s a little piece of the world, right here in the Pine Tree State.