One of the most magical places in the Northeast is the Acadia National Park located in Maine. The area has luscious pine trees, gorgeous ocean views, and the most amazing hiking spots. If you are like me, you will want to have an itinerary ready to go so you can make the most of your trip to this spectacular park. This park is so magical, and I can see how with each season of the year it would be a spectacular time to visit.
In this post, I am reviewing a trip from summer, and some of best spots that you should check out in this magnificent place! I would estimate in general, you should plan your trip for about 3 days to see the combination of Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park and really explore the area.
When we visited Acadia National Park, one of the first places that we ventured to was Cadillac Mountain. Luckily, this spot was accessible by car, so we drove up the mountain to enjoy gorgeous vantage points since the mountain itself is home to highest point on the east coast. There are various overlooks that provide amazing nature views that you will definitely want to see of Bar Harbor and the surrounding areas, and that made it easy to pull off and park at the different spots.
If you like lighthouses, you will also want to visit the Bass Harbor Head Light Station. Located on a large rocky cliff, you can see why this spot has been so important for boats over the years. It was originally constructed back in 1858, and had a major impact on Maine’s economy due to the regions reliance on maritime transportation. One thing that you will want to be aware of when driving to this location is that there is a parking lot, but due to the popularity of the lighthouse, you may want to plan accordingly and try to get there at a time when it is not as crowded. When we went, it was around dinner time, and it did not seem to be that busy.
Thunder Hole is another iconic spot that you should check out in the park. This area is just pure fun, and as the name specifies, the water swooshes up in little waves to make a thunder noise! The reason behind this is that in the rocky coast area, there is a little cavern that when the wave collides with it, it makes this unique thunder sound. When we went to this area, we noticed a lot of families checking this out, and I can see how this was a popular spot for them since you are not hiking a far distance to get to the location.
Jordan Pond is a picturesque spot with super clear water, and it was really neat to see all the rocks in the water with their various shapes and colors. The pond itself covers 187 acres, going to depths of 150 feet with a shoreline of about 3.6 miles. For hiking around the pond, I recommend the Jordan Pond loop, and this takes 1-3 hours for about 3.5 miles. As you hike around the pond, you will see The Bubbles, which are two mountains that rise above the pond itself. Glaciers originally formed the pond with the Wisconsin Ice sheet back in the last glacial period. We always like to think of the history of a place when visiting, and how the Earth has been shaped over the years.
The Ocean Path trail was one of my favorite hiking spots in the park, and it truly does give you delightful views of the coastline. It is also not too arduous of a hike, and provided really nice spots for photos as well. One of my favorite memories from this hike was seeing a little porcupine walking across a road. They seemed very happy and content, and I think it is our responsibility as visitors to make sure that we keep the area nice for the wildlife as well, so they feel comfortable in their home.
I do also have a couple of tips as well for your journey to the park. At the time we went, all visitors did need a park entrance pass, and if you wanted to go on the Cadillac Summit Road you also had to register your vehicle. We personally stayed in a hotel in Bar Harbor, but if you are interested, the park does have campground reservations as well. I will leave a link on this post for the National Park Service, so you can check that out for the most up to date park information. I also recommend bringing a little backpack with sunscreen, water, snacks, and a first aid kit. It is always good to be prepared, especially in a remote nature setting.
Let me know in the comments below if you have also visited Acadia National Park, and what you thought of it! Make sure you click that subscribe button and have a wonderful day!