Acadia National Park, located on the United States’ East Coast, is the 7th most popular national park in 2019 with around 3.4 million visitors. It became a National Park in 1919 under the name of Lafayette National Park and renamed to Acadia National Park in 1929. The majority of Acadia is located within Mount Desert Island and spans across many nearby islands and Schoodic Penninsula.
On our trip in 2020, the bus service within Acadia National Park was suspended. While the park gets crowded from 10AM to 2 PM, finding parking was fairly easy before 9 AM.
- Dog Friendly
- Good Views
- Picnic Area
- Swimming Area
- Wild Berries
- Wild Flower
Table of Contents
For the latest information, it is highly recommended to visit National Park Services – Acadia website.
The below location is to Hulls Cove Visitors Center, located at:
25 Visitor Center Rd
Bar Harbor, ME 04609
Things To Do
Bass Harbor Light House
Bass Harbor Light House is located on the southwest portion of Mount Desert Island, approximately 30-minute drive from Bar Harbor. It is worth getting here early and camping out for a while to catch the sunset, as traffic picks up getting near sunset making it difficult to find parking.
Otter Point is down the road after Thunder Hole. At this location, I’ve been lucky enough to see an otter climb up on the rocks. Amazingly cute!! Of course, by the time the camera got out of the bag, otter jumped back into the water.
Sand Beach is an extremely popular destination in Acadia. The beachgoers flock to this destination all day long and don’t let up into dinner time.
Star Gazing at Sand Beach
In the evening, Sand Beach brings along star gazers trying to catch the Milky Way as well as organized tours on Wednesday nights that walk you through the night sky. See post Photography – Milky Way from Acadia National Park – from August 2020.
Schoodic Peninsula is a 40-minute drive from Mount Desert Island to another section of Acadia National Park. This area is much less populated and a good place to get away from crowds.
Special formation in the rocky coastline that creates a thunderous roar when the sea moves in. The best time to visit this location is about 2 hours before or after a high tide.
There are many hiking trails within Acadia for all ages and different levels of experience. I recommend checking in at the Acadia Information Center for trail recommendations. Below is a small selection of trail options that I hiked and enjoyed. Out of all of them, my personal favorites so far are South Bubble Rock for the lakeside views and Gorham Mountain Trail for the incredible landscape.
Acadia Mountain is located on the western portion of Mount Desert Island. Would say this is our third favorite mountain to hike after Gorham Mountain and South Bubble Rock. If you do go here, take advantage of the opportunity to stop by Bass Harbor Lighthouse and Southwest Harbor to dine at.
Hike to Beehive Mountain is known for its steep climb to the peak. This trail will award you with incredible views of Gorham Mountain and Sand Beach. If you are afraid of heights, this is one of the trails you may want to reconsider.
Cadillac Mountain is the highest peak within Acadia National Park at an elevation of 1,530 feet. This location is known for being the first place in the United States to see the sunrise on any given day. As such, this peak is accessible to drivers and hikers. It is a popular destination early in the morning as people drive up to the peak to catch the sunrise.
Gilmore Mountain has an elevation of 1,036 feet. Attached below is a 360 view from Gilmore Mountain peak.
Gorham Mountain with an elevation of 525 feet is an easier hike that will reward with some of the most scenic views of Mount Desert Island. No wonder, this is one of the more heavily trafficked trails. From here, one can connect to Beehive, Bowl, Cadillac, and other nearby trails.