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reflection in the water at cobscook bay state park in maine

Reflection in the water at Cobscook Bay State Park. Photo: The B’s / CC

Cobscook Bay State Park is an 888-acre parcel located on a protected bay in far Downeast Maine, just ½-hour from Eastport, the eastern most city in the U.S. It’s part of the 30,000 acre Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge that was designated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1937.

This Maine state park has numerous features and activities, including geological formations and proximity to the Bay of Fundy. The state park is just over two hours from Bangor, one of Maine’s major cities that’s home to an international airport. You can fly in and start your visit here in a matter of hours.

Nearby Parks

Activities at Cobscook Bay State Park

Cobscook Bay State Park is open year round for day use. There are over 100 camping sites and access to all sorts of outdoor activities from birding and swimming to sea kayaking and sight-seeing.

The setting is equipped for large as well as small groups and promises people of all ages a memorable experience. Although overall accessibility is rated as limited, group areas, parking, bay views, restrooms, and some campsites are accessible.

Like other state parks, you’re welcome to visit for the day, paying the fee when you enter. The day use fee varies from $2 to $6 depending on age and residence, with children under 5 being free. You can even plan a group one-day event at the park’s picnic area by making a reservation in advance.

If you’re ready for a bit of international travel, you can take a ½-drive over to Campobello Island and the southern-most point of the Bay of Fundy. This setting is known for its high tides, reportedly among the highest in the world. The tides’ actions have created geological formations that capture the imagination and an artist’s eye.

Boating at Cobscook Bay State Park

There’s a boat launch for your trailered boat, with a fee of $10, though that can vary based on what you paid to enter. You can also drop your canoe or kayak in the water, then heading out to explore the bay. Most likely you can go paddle boarding too. Be sure to check about the tides and what to expect as they can rise quickly here. That’s just one more way this area is unique!

Swimming at Cobscook Bay State Park

The bay is generally good for swimming. The Shore Trail, also known as Anthony’s Beach Trail, is one place to access the water. You may be able to do so right from your campsite. Bring along some water shoes as parts of the shoreline are rocky.

Hiking at Cobscook Bay State Park

The park has a couple of relatively short trails, both of which are open for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing during the winter. Pets are welcome as you venture out on:

  • Nature Trail: an easy, 1.2-mile trek that winds through woods and then climbs a bit to lookout points near a couple of campsites. You can descend from there to complete a 2-mile outing.
  • Shore Trail: a ¾-mile easy loop that goes through woods and along the shore to the boat launch.
  • Trail to the fire tower: You can take a steep 0.2-mile hike to view this 60-foot steel tower that’s closed to the public.

Biking at Cobscook Bay State Park

Biking is permitted on the trails marked as such. You can extend your ride on nearby side roads and trails you’ll find online, leading you to more vistas for viewing scenery and wildlife.

Fishing at Cobscook Bay State Park

Digging for clams is an option here! Please check in with park staff for guidance on doing so, including any regulations. Although line fishing isn’t listed as an activity, there’s a boat launch, offering you the option to fish for the several types found in the bay.

Please read about the tidal changes in the area, as these are different than those in many coastal regions. Or, hire one of the charter fishing options only a half-hour away in Eastport.

Birding at Cobscook Bay State Park

The park and bay are a special spot for birding as there are over 200 types of birds in the area, including the greatest density of bald eagles in Maine. Some species are year round and others stop on their way through to their nesting destinations. You’re bound to see osprey, hooded mergansers, and ring-necked ducks because of the wetlands.

The wooded areas are frequented by boreal chickadees, and various thrushes, warblers, and woodpeckers. Word has it that the South Lubec Sand Bar is an exceptional spot for birding and is only 16 miles away. You can even visit the nearby West Quoddy Light House that has a seasonal visitor center.

Nature & Wildlife at Cobscook Bay State Park

The marsh and grass in and around the bays and inlets attract fish, seal, and otters. Offshore you may catch a glimpse of whale, though this is more likely if you’re offshore. In the park’s quiet areas, as well as in the wildlife refuge, you may see deer, bear, rabbits, fox, or perhaps a moose. Please respect the wild creatures and their habitat.

Pets at Cobscook Bay State Park

Pets are welcome here as long as they are kept on a 4-foot leash, never left unattended, and have their waste removed.

Camping at Cobscook Bay State Park

The park has 125 campsites that include those for tents, popups, and campers of various sizes, including those over 35 feet. A special feature is that many, though not all, of these sites are by the water. Some can be reserved ahead of time with others being non-reservable.

There are a few ADA accessible sites. Some have Adirondack or picnic shelters. Each has a table and fireplace with firewood being purchased on site. Water spigots, restrooms, and trash/recycling stations are placed throughout the camping area, with showers available near the camping area entrance.

The park has two next-to-the-water group tent-only campsites that are secluded yet near the park’s grassy picnic area. These are planned for groups of 7 or more with one for up to 12 campers and the other for up to 30. The base group fee per night is $50, with an additional fee per person per night.

Regardless of how long you stay, you’ll find something to do, including relaxing and star-gazing.

Park Location

Cobscook Bay State Park
40 South Edmunds Road
Edmunds Township, ME 04628
Phone: 207.726.4412




Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Cobscook Bay State Park: