Owls Head State Park features a lighthouse overlooking West Penobscot Bay to the north, Vinalhaven Island to the east, and Matinicus Island and the Atlantic to the south. The original lighthouse tower on that spot was built almost 200 years ago.
You’ll find the park in a quiet, out-of-the-way setting in Owls Head, yet only just over an hour from Augusta, and just over 10 minutes from the bustling port of Rockland.
This 13-acre Maine state park is dedicated to watching wildlife, enjoying a picnic, and ambling down to the beach area. It’s open year round and there is no admission fee. The park’s accessibility is rated as good with the picnic area being generally accessible for people using wheelchairs.
Activities at Owls Head State Park
Although there are limited activities at Owls Head State Park, the views and lighthouse make it an interesting and relaxing destination. The lighthouse and associated structures are owned and kept by the U.S. Coast Guard, making this setting a uniquely cooperative place to visit. There are two beach areas devoted to scenic viewing.
You’ll find picnic tables plus spots to spread out a blanket on a sunny afternoon. Bring your binoculars as there are birds and wildlife in the area. After all, the lighthouse sits at 100-foot elevation meaning a vigilant watcher is likely to be rewarded.
Boating at Owls Head State Park
This a better place for watching boats than it is for launching one into the ocean. There is an all-tide seasonal public ramp in Rockland Harbor, about 10 minutes away and right by Landings Marina. You’re required to follow Maine Boating Laws.
If you prefer to charter a boat, you’ll find those for fishing, sailing, or exploring the coast right in the Rockland area.
Swimming at Owls Head State Park
Although there aren’t any designated swimming spots at the park, South End Beach in Rockland is only 10 minutes away. There’s a set of stairs down to a short stretch of sand overlooking the busy harbor. Or you can drive north about ½-hour to Laite Beach in Camden or the beach in Lincolnville.
The marvelous stretches of public beach at Reid State Park and Popham Beach State Park are an hour and a half south.
Hiking at Owls Head State Park
There are walking and hiking options here and quite nearby, each providing you with varied vistas.
- The trail within the park is an easy network that’s almost ½-mile. It weaves around the promontory down to the rocky beach where you can enjoy scenery and a picnic. Pets are not permitted on this trail.
- Ash Point Preserve is also located within the town of Owls Head. The network of trails is just over a mile and a quarter. It’s used for snowshoeing in the winter. Pets are permitted on this looped system through 34 acres of fields, woods, with its awesome views of Penobscot Bay.
- The Rockland Harbor Trail offers you a town and ocean view walk that’s over three miles in one direction. This wheelchair accessible option welcomes leashed pets as you explore the varied scenes and amenities of the waterfront.
Biking at Owls Head State Park
Biking around here is on the local by-ways or up the road in Camden Hills State Park.
A quick local ride will take you to Owls Head Harbor where there’s a working lobster fleet.
The Camden Hills State Park Network offers you easy and moderate cycling options. This is a busy spot so plan accordingly.
Fishing at Owls Head State Park
There isn’t any fishing here, though there is 10 minutes away in Birch Point State Park. Bring along your surf-casting gear and saltwater license. Hopefully you’ll catch some stripers or even a blue fish.
Birding at Owls Head State Park
The best birding here occurs during migration periods and winter. The latter is the time to observe ducks, especially grebes. The park is on the quiet side, making it a rich area for observing migrating warblers, thrushes, and blackpolls.
If you stay high and have a distance scope, look toward Rockland Harbor to sight several gull varieties, mergansers, common loon, Canada geese, and buffleheads, especially during the winter.
Nature & Wildlife at Owls Head State Park
This wooded, relatively quiet, seaside setting means that wildlife is right nearby, along with wildflowers in season. Bring your binoculars along, especially to view offshore wildlife. That may include seals, dolphin, whales, and harbor porpoises, as all of these reside in the expansive Gulf of Maine region.
On land, you’re likely to see deer or signs of their presence. The same applies for bear, the occasional moose, and smaller wildlife such as fox, weasels, and the abundant red squirrels and chipmunks.
Pets at Owls Head State Park
As noted with the hiking information, pets are not permitted on the trail area.
Camping at Owls Head State Park
There isn’t any camping at this park. You’ll find both public and private camping options in the general locale, including these that are pet-friendly:
Camden Hills State Park has numerous camping sites, including those for groups.
Megunticook by the Sea is a campground 20 minutes north of the park.
You’ll find cabins to rent, plus tent and RV spaces.
Fun Places to Visit Near Owls Head State Park
Here are some places you may be interested in while you’re in the area:
Owls Head Transportation Museum is right down the road. It’s devoted to aircraft, autos, and forms of transportation from the 1940s and earlier. It’s open year round with the exception of some holidays.
The Coastal Children’s Museum is 5 miles away in Rockland. It has spaces dedicated to activities and exhibits that engage kids with things coastal.
Owls Head State Park
186 Lighthouse Rd,
Owls Head, ME 04854
Here is a short YouTube video showcasing several attractions at Owls Head State Park: