I would really rather feel bad in Maine than feel good anywhere else.E.B. White
About the Park
Acadia is the crown jewel of the Northeastern Atlantic coastline and is the only National Park located in the Northeast. There is a natural beauty with the rocky shorelines and crashing waves, history with the old carriage roads, and incredible activities like best hiking trails and biking on the carriage roads. So it is not surprising that this park is always in the top 10 visited parks each year and is one of our favorites.
Check out the view from the top of Cadillac Mountain!
Live it up!
Best Things to do in the Park
- Eat the yummy popovers at Jordon Pond House (our fav). They are served with strawberry jam and butter
- Go for a morning run, walk, or bike ride on an Old Carriage Road
- Drive the 27 mile scenic Park Loop Road that connects the best spots
- See Thunder Hole and watch the waves and rocks create a thunderous sound
- Take a picture of the iconic Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse
- Hike to the top of Cadillac Mountain and watch a sunrise
We have visited Acadia National Park twice. On this occasion, Bev captured this lovely moment between a grandmother and granddaughter, her mom, and our daughter, Ashley. Little did we know that a couple of years later, our daughter would marry a wonderful man from a nearby town of Cape Elizabeth, Thomas.
Size of Park
49,000 acres (fifth smallest park)
The park is named after a region in Greece that looks like the park land of Acadia.
Acadia National Park is one of the most beloved national parks in the country. Every year, millions of tourists flock here to escape into nature. It is the first National Park that was established east of the Mississippi River.
Sprawled across almost 50,000 acres of land, it has a special gift that was donated by John D. Rockefeller, the carriage roads and rock bridges. His investment was a gift to us, all and it is one of the most wonderful parts of the park.
Most of the landscape in Acadia National Park consists of Maine’s world-famous coastline with secluded coves, tree-topped peaks, rocky shores, and half of Mount Desert Island. The peak on Mount Desert Island is one of the first places in the nation to see the sunrise every day.
Acadia Best Hiking Trails
There are more than 150 miles of hiking trails in Acadia National Park. Whether you want to hike in the middle of forest trees, explore mountain peaks, or walk along rocky coastlines, this park has it all. Some of the hikes will also fall into all three categories as you will get to view lush forests, cliff tops, and lakes.
Beehive Loop Trail
The Beehive Loop Trail is a popular hiking trail located in Acadia National Park in Maine, United States. It is a steep and challenging trail that climbs 520 feet to the summit of the Beehive, a distinctive granite peak that offers stunning views of the park’s coastline and surrounding mountains. The trail is only 0.8 miles long but involves scrambling over exposed ledges, climbing iron rungs, and using metal ladders. It is considered a strenuous hike and is not recommended for those with a fear of heights or inexperienced hikers. However, for those who are up to the challenge, the Beehive Loop Trail is a thrilling and rewarding adventure that offers spectacular views of Acadia National Park.
Cadillac Mountain Trail
This is a 7.4-mile roundtrip hike that offers stunning views of the park and the Atlantic Ocean. The trailhead is located at the north end of Cadillac Summit Road, and the hike to the summit is considered moderate in difficulty.
The trail passes through dense forests of spruce and fir trees and features several switchbacks and rocky terrain. Hikers will also encounter a series of wooden staircases that make the ascent more manageable. As hikers near the summit, they will encounter granite steps that provide a final ascent to the top.
Once at the summit, hikers can take in panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and the Atlantic Ocean. On a clear day, it is possible to see as far as 100 miles. The summit also offers a visitor center, restrooms, and a gift shop.
Precipice Loop Trail
This trail is 1.8 miles roundtrip and climbs 1,000 feet to the summit of Champlain Mountain. It is known for its dramatic cliffs, narrow ledges, and iron rungs that offer a thrilling and exciting hiking experience.
The trailhead is located at the Precipice Parking Lot and begins with a steep ascent up a set of stone steps. From there, the trail becomes steeper and more challenging, featuring iron rungs and ladders that hikers can use to climb up the rocky terrain. The trail also offers spectacular views of the coast and surrounding mountains.
The Precipice Trail is considered a strenuous and dangerous hike, and it is not recommended for inexperienced hikers or those who are afraid of heights. The trail is closed during the spring and summer months due to nesting peregrine falcons, and hikers are advised to check the trail status before embarking on their hike.
Jordan Pond Trail
The Jordan Pond Trail is 3.4 miles roundtrip and offers scenic views of the park’s famous Jordan Pond, as well as the surrounding mountains.
The trailhead is located at the Jordan Pond House, which is a historic restaurant and gift shop that has been in operation since the late 1800s. The trail begins by circling the pond counterclockwise and offers several scenic overlooks and opportunities to take in the views. The trail is relatively flat and easy, making it suitable for hikers of all skill levels.
In addition to the trail, visitors can also take a leisurely stroll on the Jordan Pond Path, which is a level, gravel path that runs along the eastern side of the pond. The path is 3.2 miles roundtrip and offers views of the Bubbles, a distinctive set of two mountains that rise up from the shoreline.
Gorham Mountain Trail
This trail is 3.2 miles roundtrip and offers stunning views of the coast and surrounding mountains.
The trailhead is located at the Gorham Mountain Parking Lot, and the trail begins with a moderate ascent up the mountain. The trail is well-maintained and features several scenic overlooks that offer opportunities to take in the views. Hikers will also encounter rocky terrain and a set of wooden staircases that make the ascent more manageable.
At the summit of Gorham Mountain, hikers can take in panoramic views of the coast, the park’s famous Sand Beach, and the surrounding mountains. On clear days, it is possible to see as far as 20 miles out to sea.
The Gorham Mountain Trail is considered a moderate hike, and it is suitable for hikers of all skill levels.
Camping in Acadia
Acadia National Park offers several camping options for visitors who want to experience the park’s natural beauty and outdoor recreation. There are two main campgrounds within the park: Blackwoods Campground and Seawall Campground.
Blackwoods Campground is located near the park’s main visitor center and offers 306 campsites, including 5 group sites. The campground is open from May to October and offers amenities such as restrooms, running water, and fire grates. Reservations are recommended and can be made up to 6 months in advance.
Seawall Campground is located on the western side of the park and offers 214 campsites, including 4 group sites. The campground is open from May to October and offers amenities such as restrooms, running water, and fire grates. Reservations are recommended and can be made up to 6 months in advance.
In addition to the park campgrounds, there are several private campgrounds located outside the park that offer camping options for visitors. These campgrounds offer amenities such as showers, laundry facilities, and hookups for RVs.
Camping in Acadia National Park is a great way to experience the park’s natural beauty and outdoor recreation opportunities.
Acadia National Park offers several stunning viewpoints that provide visitors with panoramic views of the park’s natural beauty. Some of the best viewpoints in the park include:
- Cadillac Mountain: At 1,530 feet, Cadillac Mountain is the highest point in the park and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains, forests, and ocean. Visitors can drive to the summit or hike to the top to take in the views.
- Jordan Pond: Jordan Pond is a glacier-formed lake that is surrounded by mountains and offers some of the park’s most iconic views. Visitors can take a leisurely stroll on the Jordan Pond Path or hike the nearby Jordan Pond Trail to take in the views.
- Otter Cliff: Otter Cliff is a popular spot for rock climbing and also offers stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and the surrounding coastline. Visitors can access the viewpoint by hiking the Ocean Path or by parking in the nearby lot and walking to the cliff.
- Park Loop Road: The Park Loop Road is a 27-mile scenic drive that offers several viewpoints of the park’s natural beauty, including Sand Beach, Thunder Hole, and the Precipice.
- Bubble Rock: Bubble Rock is a large boulder that is perched precariously on the edge of South Bubble Mountain. The rock offers stunning views of Jordan Pond and the surrounding mountains and can be accessed by hiking the Bubble Rock Trail.
Overall, Acadia National Park offers several stunning viewpoints that provide visitors with unforgettable views of the park’s natural beauty. Whether visitors choose to hike to the top of Cadillac Mountain or take a leisurely stroll around Jordan Pond, they are sure to be amazed by the stunning views in this beautiful park.
Getting to the Park
You can fly directly from Boston’s Logan Airport and land at the Hancock County Airport, only 10 miles from Acadia National Park. If you are driving, it is about a 3-hr drive from Portland, Maine. Bar Harbour, Maine, is the best place to make your base for exploring this beautiful park.
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