While Acadia National Park is not the biggest national park going around, it still incorporates some 50,000 spectacular acres.
Stretching along 60 miles of Maine’s breathtaking Atlantic Coastline, it features 78 miles of scenic and carriage roads, as well as over 150 miles of hiking trails. Much of which will take you to stunning landscapes like the Isle au Haut, Schoodic Peninsula and Mount Desert Island, where most of the park is situated.
Comprised of dense forest, pristine, craggy beaches and soaring glacier topped granite peaks, like Cadillac Mountain – which is the highest point on the east coast of America – the park is a haven for those who love to explore the great outdoors.
With plenty of accommodation options in and around the park, and a plethora of recreational activities to partake in, it’s no wonder that Acadia is one of the top ten national parks in the USA. Receiving well over 3.5 million visitors every single year.
From boating and fishing, to birdwatching and leaf peeping, there are plenty of activities for the visitor to enjoy at Acadia National Park.
Here is some more information about what they can do there.
Boating at Acadia National Park
With over 20 lakes and ponds in the park, not to mention the Atlantic Ocean, you can launch pretty much any kind of water craft you want.
Whether you love to kayak, canoe or SUP, or engage in motor boat activities like water skiing and jet skiing there are plenty of opportunities for you to do just that.
Plenty of local companies provide guided tours and lessons for those who are relatively new to the pastimes.
Swimming at Acadia National Park
If you are into swimming you will love the opportunities for an invigorating dip that the park provides.
You’ll find lifeguarded swimming beaches at Sand Beach and Echo Lake, while there are plenty of other lakes you can swim in at your own risk. As well, of course, as down by the ocean too.
Fishing at Acadia National Park
With both freshwater and ocean fishing available, angling is a very popular activity at the park, attracting people from all over Maine and the surrounding states to come here to cast a line.
Throughout the ponds and lakes at the park you will find several species of freshwater game fish including landlocked salmon, trout and both large and smallmouth bass. To catch them, you will need to have a State of Maine fishing license though.
Such a license is not required for ocean fishing, however. So if you come here for that, you should be able to snare plenty of bluefish, mackerel and striped bass.
Hiking at Acadia National Park
Taking the form of summit hikes, coastal hikes and land and forest hikes, the opportunities to explore Acadia National Park on foot are almost endless.
With more than 150 miles of trails meandering through the park there are many trails you can embark upon. Here are just a few of them.
- trail 1 – Hike Great Head Trail. Length: 1.7 miles Degree of Difficulty: easy
- trail 2 – Hike Hadlock Ponds Loop. Length: 4.1 miles Degree of Difficulty: moderate
- trail 3 – Hike St. Sauveur and Acadia Mountain Loop. Length: 3.9 miles Degree of Difficulty: challenging
Leaf Peeping at Acadia National Park
We all know fall in New England is legendary, but did you know it is pretty spectacular in Maine too?
During the autumn months, the colors of the park’s foliage are quite incredible. There is no one particular spot you should head too. So you can just explore Acadia at your leisure.
Be sure to take your camera with you, as you will want to take lots of photos of what you see.
Winter at Acadia National Park
During the winter the park comes into its own, with a wide range of snow-related activities.
This includes the likes of skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, winter hiking and ice fishing. All of which provide an extra dimension on how to enjoy your time in the park.
Birding at Acadia National Park
With more than 300 species calling the park home, Acadia is a haven for those who enjoy birdwatching.
Annually, HawkWatch takes place on top of Cadillac Mountain. However, other species you can see include songbirds and woodpeckers, eagles, hawks, owls, gulls, terns, herons and mergansers.
Nature & Wildlife
Throughout the four seasons, the park is home to a wide range of wildlife. This includes many different species of amphibians, reptiles and marine invertebrates.
Some of the animals you may well encounter include black bears, bald eagles, moose, otters and turtles. So be sure to keep your eyes peeled!
Pets at Acadia National Park
Acadia National Park prides itself on being a very pet-friendly public recreational space.
However, some restrictions still apply, so it is a good idea to contact the park’s main office to clarify what they are.
Camping at Acadia National Park
Camping is a wonderful way to really immerse yourself in the Acadia National Park experience.
Overall, there are four campgrounds in Acadia National Park. This includes Seawall (near Southwest Harbor), Schoodic Woods (Winter Harbor) and Blackwoods (near Bar Harbor) – all of which are front country camps that offer a range of nearby services.
The other is Duck Harbor, which is situated on Isle Au Haut and offers primitive sites.
Compared to other national parks, Acadia is quite small and its ecosystem and environment is very fragile. As a result there is no overnight parking, backcountry camping or any form of ‘out of bounds’ camping allowed here, and all campsite reservations must be made in advance.
If you can’t get into one of these four campgrounds, you’ll find plenty of accommodations in the nearby towns. Another option is camping at nearby Lamoine State Park
Acadia National Park
20 McFarland Hill Drive
Bar Harbor ME 04609-0177
Here is a short YouTube video showcasing the beauty of Acadia National Park:
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