Posts Tagged ‘Bar Harbor’


There are a large number of great places to visit within a day’s drive of the Boston area: north-Vermont, Maine, NH, Canada; south-Cape Cod and the islands, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York City; west-Berkshires, upstate NY.

Because of all the potential journeys but with not enough time, we never made it too far “Down East” Maine. We have visited Boothbay Harbor, Camden, Rockport, and are almost regular visitors to Kennebunkport and Portland, ME- all great areas. But never had we driven the six hours or so to get to Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.

We had heard great stories about the beauty of Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park; but was it worth the travel time? Would it be too cold? Would we be bored with nothing to do there? Summer 2012 it was time to find out!

At first we intended to stay at a wonderful oceanfront campground that was recommended to us: But I was not sure that my wife could take camping for a week, so we rented a lovely little cottage in Southwest Harbor, a charming small town on Mt. Desert Island. I would give the name of the rental agent, but we were not too happy with them…

If you have not travelled through some of the nicer destinations in New England, you might be surprised to find out that even small towns often have some amazing food options, and Southwest Harbor did not disappoint. Our location was removed from the constant bustle of Bar Harbor, but still had much to do.

Some of the things we did while on the island: biking around Acadia and up Cadillac Mountain (hard), dinner and drinks, shopping and boating in Bar Harbor, took in an entertaining Improv show, went to a farmer’s market, bought great baked goods from various people selling out of their houses, rode in a lobster boat with my grandson, spent a day rock climbing with my son on cliffs above the ocean (very hard and a little scary but worth it), drove the access road and hiked all around Acadia. We even saw a prettly lame lumberjack show: embarrassingly bad….

My son was happy as fireworks are now legal in Maine so that killed  a couple of nights. We wanted to fly a glider but ran out of time. Read a couple of books, played games, lots of good clean, healthy fun.

At 1,532 feet, Cadillac Mountain is the highest point along the North Atlantic coast and is the first place to view the sunrise in the United States in the Fall and Winter months. The panoramic views from the summit are amazing, and this entire area is one of the most beautiful places I have ever been to.  There is much to do outside, and gourmet food options are endless. But next year we will have the same dilemma: with so many choices and so little time….

Acadia National Park and Mt. Desert Island are strongly recommended!