Acadia National Park

A centerpiece of the DownEast Acadia region, Acadia National Park protects the natural beauty of some of the highest rocky headlands along the Atlantic coastline. Abroad variety of habitats are found throughout the park. Many features celebrate the area's rich cultural heritage.

The Bubbles and Jordan Pond are must sees in the park.

Located on Mount Desert Island, the park sits about halfway between New Hampshire and New Brunswick, Canada. The 80,000-acre island itself is 18 miles long, 14 miles wide, and roughly shaped like a lobster claw and is connected to the mainland by a short bridge and causeways.

Tourism has been a thriving industry on the island since the mid-1800s, beginning with the painters of the Hudson River School and summer rusticators. At the end of the century, the Rockefellers, Morgans, Fords, Vanderbilts, Carnegies, and Astors chose to spend their summers here transforming the island with their elegant estates, euphemistically called "cottages."

George Dorr and Charles W. Eliot, two influential figures in the founding of Acadia. Courtesy National Park Service/Acadia National Park

At the turn of the century, George B. Dorr, a tireless spokesman for conservation, devoted time and fortune to preserving the Acadian landscape, presenting an initial 5,000 acres of land to the federal government. In 1916 President Wilson announced the creation of Sieur de Monts National Monument. More land was acquired, and in 1919, President Wilson signed the act establishing Lafayette National Park, the first national park east of the Mississippi. On January 19, 1929, Lafayette National Park was renamed Acadia National Park by an act of Congress.

Millions of visitors have discovered the simple pleasures of "ocean, forests, lakes, and mountains" for over a century in the park's more than 47,000 acres. While 30,000 acres of Acadia National Park are on Mount Desert Island, additional acreage is located across Frenchman Bay on Schoodic Peninsula and various islands. Today visitors enjoy 27 miles of historic motor roads, 158 miles of hiking trails, 45 miles of carriage roads, four campgrounds, bicycling, bird watching, climbing, picnicing, horse back riding, fishing, paddling, sightseeing, swimming and tidepooling.

Because the park sees typically 3.5 million visits a year and in 2020 has implemented new guidelines and travel restrictions, we recommend you plan. Before you come to Acadia, visit the National Park Services site to learn about current conditions, operating seasons, road conditions, services, activities, etc. From now on, vehicle reservations will be required to access certain popular attractions in the park.

Visitor Resources: Acadia National Park | Visit Bar Harbor

Related Stories
You Might Like
9/29/23 10/1/23

6th Annual Art of Ellsworth: Maine Craft Weekend

5th Annual Art of Ellsworth: Maine Craft Weekend in Downtown Ellsworth

10/7/23 10/8/23

Maine Craft Weekend

Annual Statewide Tour of Maine Craft Artist Studios, Business and Events!


Hidden Legacies: A Walking Tour of Castine’s African American History,

Join Georgia Zildjian and Lisa Lutts for an hour-long walking tour on Castine’s African American...


Eastport ArtWalks - Witches of Eastport

Explore life on the creative edge - Way DownEast. Celebrate our region’s rich cultural heritage...

11/11/23 11/12/23

2022 Downeast Cider + Cheese Festival - 5th Annual

Celebrating a revival of two traditional foods, hard cider, and cheese, the Downeast Cider + Cheese...

View All >
9/2/23 10/15/23

Special Day and Night Paddling Combo Package

Here at Castine Kayak Adventures, we are offering a Special Day and Night Paddling Package: Join us for a day and night trip and receive 20% off your day trip when you book them at the same time! This is a great option if you are looking to get some...

View All >