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Kayaking Tours of Mount Desert Island

Sands Beach in Acadia National Park

Acadia National Park Bike Trail

Acadia National Park SignSchoodic Point PeninsulaAcadia National Park Pond

Top 10 Things to Do in Acadia National Park


Acadia National Park is one of the premier destinations to visit in the state of Maine. Thousands of visitors flock to Mount Desert Island every year, especially during the summer months, to enjoy all that the Park has to offer - and there is a lot to do! If you plan to stay in the area for a longer period of time, there are many lighthouses, beaches and beautiful, charming Bar Harbor. Kids will love learning about Acadia at the Nature Center or from the park rangers that guided tours. Acadia has so much to offer that it is sure to make any vacation an adventure. Here are some of our top things to do in Acadia National Park:

Hike - What draws thousands of visitors to Acadia each year are the more than 125 miles of historic trails throughout the park. Hiking in Acadia National Park can be as easy and relaxing as flat trails or more challenging and sometimes dangerous heights along the exposed Cliffside. But thrill-seekers will love the view and feeling of accomplishment once they reach the top. If you're looking for adventure, try a steep mountain climb up one of the many hiking trails, like The Beehives.

Drive up Cadillac Mountain - If a hike seems too difficult or time consuming, the next best way to enjoy a great view without the exertion is a drive up Cadillac Mountain. It is Acadia's tallest mountain and the highest point on the Atlantic Coast. From the top you can see spectacular views of Bar Harbor and Frenchman Bay, sunrise and sunset.

Swim at Sand Beach - What this beach lacks in size it certainly makes up for in beauty. With soft white sand surrounded by granite rock walls and an ideal southern exposure with views out to sea, it is a must visit during your time in Acadia. Although the water temperatures are some of the coldest in Maine, even during the summer, visitors enjoy simply relaxing in the sun and taking in the scenery.

Explore Bar Harbor - Although there are so many things to do in Acadia National Park, a trip to Mount Desert Island may be once in a lifetime and visiting Bar Harbor should be high on your list. Bar Harbor is a quaint seaside village with charming shops, delicious seafood restaurants and plenty of activities for visitors to enjoy - from biking and shopping to boating and other water activities. Time your trip to Bar Harbor ideally when cruise ships are not in town.

Bike on a Carriage Road - Acadia National Park is home to over 50 miles of carriage roads, thanks to JD Rockefeller, and some of the best biking in Maine. If you can't travel with your bike, there are plenty of bike shops that will rent to you in Bar Harbor. Visitors can choose to explore the roads on their own or take a cycling tour with a knowledgeable guide.

See the Jordan Pond House - The Jordan Pond House dates back to the late 1800s, a time when teahouses were very popular for accommodating the growing number of summer visitors. The Jordan Pond House is famous for their ibaked popovers, homemade ice cream and fresh lemonade overlooking the beautiful pond.
Drive the 20-mile Park Loop Road - If you are only visiting for a day, the best way to see the sights and scenery the park has to offer is by driving the 20-mile Park Loop Road. See breathtaking views of the ocean, mountains and forests as you wind around the park.

Visit Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse - No trip to Maine is complete without seeing a lighthouse! Bass Harbor Head is located on the southern end of Mount Desert Island along the rocky Maine coastline. It stands 56 feet above water and is open daily to the public year round. Stop in the delightful fishing and boating villages of Southwest and Northeast Harbor along the way.

Participate in a Guided Ranger Tour - A great way to learn more about Acadia National Park is by joining a park ranger for one of the many kinds of guided tours offered each season. Ranger-narrated boat cruises are an excellent way to learn about the life of Maine islanders and explore the area by sea. Guided hiking and biking tours are also available.

Visit the Nature Center - Kids and adults will love a trip to the Nature Center located at Sieur de Monts Spring. Visitors can explore the park's plants and animals through hands-on exhibits, browse a small bookstore and find answers to all their nature questions.

Visit Schoodic Point which is actually off Mount Desert Island to the north. Schoodic Peninsula drive provides beautiful scenery looking back at Mt Desert and out to see, stop on the huge granite rocks for a picnic and photos when you drive the very scenic loop road which is part of Acadia National Park.

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 Mount Desert Island | More on Downeast Acadia


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