Acadia National Park Road Trip
Updated: Oct 23, 2020
A road trip to visit a local national park is just what the doctor ordered. Our family loves the outdoors and, especially, the opportunity to hike and explore. We're lucky that Bar Harbor and Acadia are within 4 hours of our home. It makes for an easy long weekend outing, and we did just that with a three night stay at an Airbnb. This was our second year visiting the area, and we enjoyed it even more. Despite wearing masks at restaurants and local stores due to Covid 19, it was still well worth the trip. #Acadia #AcadiaNationalPark #Family #RoadTrip #Vacation #Nature #Greatoutdoors #
Day One: We arrived at our Airbnb late in the afternoon and enjoyed eating lobster rolls and playing a family board game, while taking in the beauty of our oceanfront view from our back deck. Our plan was to wake up in the morning, eat a hearty breakfast, and enjoy the great outdoors. Although our Airbnb provided AMAZING views of the ocean, I cannot recommend it due to the unbelievable uncleanliness of the home. And, I would warn you to stay away from this listing: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/27228337?source_impression_id=p3_1596041857_6wJGYnk0ILJeSqPm&guests=1&adults=1
Day Two: After a solid morning breakfast, our family decided to do a hike of Jordan Pond. We loved it last year, and it's a great way to start your vaca in Acadia. Jordan Pond is a relaxing walk through the park that leads into the Bubble hike, which is a lot more challenging. The Jordan Pond Loop Trail is an easy 3.4 miles with stunning views of the surrounding mountains, including the famous views of North and South Bubble Mountain at the beginning of the trail. You have the option of going off the trial to North Bubble Mountain (which loops back to the Jordan Pond Loop trail), and it is such a great addition to the hike. Since it is pretty strenuous to hike up some parts of North Bubble, I would not recommend hiking down the side facing the pond for it is very steep. It can also be a difficult hike for some dogs, but I've seen some do it! I have seen people carry their dog through some sections because they involve some minor climbing through narrow spaces. I have also seen others turn around at this certain part as well. Despite the challenging narrow spaces, I think the views make this hike very worthwhile, and it is a must-see at the park. You can always take the back-side of the trail to go up and down if you want to go a safer route, so don't let this discourage you. We loved this hike so much last year that we decided to to it again this year and let me tell you, we will be back again. Jordan Pond has a restaurant with outdoor dining if you're looking for sit down service. We packed a picnic, but the restaurant is a nice option.
Jordan Pond - words don't do this walk/hike justice
Day Three: We started our day with a full breakfast, packed our lunches, and made our way to hike Beehive and followed that with a Sand Beach walk, which included visiting 'Thunderhole.' Beehive is a popular hike, but it is not easy. The hike is 2.8 miles for the loop hike and takes approximately 1.5 to 2.5 miles to hike. My kids were all onboard with doing it..again..but I took the easy route and climbed the same way up and down, while the others climbed and scaled the side of the mountain using iron rung ladders! The Sand Beach views that you get when you reach the peak are simply amazing..breathtaking. I've included links for info on Beehive: https://www.citrusmilo.com/acadiaguide/thebeehive.php and http://www.acadia.ws/beehive.htm The total miles are two and the total hike time is two hours. This hike is rated 'Strenuous.'
On our last night, we dined out at Side Street Cafe. My kids were in the mood for mac and cheese, and they serve it up custom! Also, I checked on Trip Adviser and they were rated in Top 10...so, I went with it. https://www.sidestreetbarharbor.com/. This was a great choice, and I would definitely eat here again.
Entrance to parks is $30 per car (15 person max for seven days) and can be purchased online so that you don't have to purchase there. Get it in advance and avoid the lines! https://acadiamagic.com/acadia-fees.htm
Must Do: Morning sunrise at Cadillac Mountain followed by breakfast at Jordan's Restaurant, which opens at 5am! Make sure to get the mountain no later than later than 30 minutes before sunrise..it gets busy there! Lots of instagramers getting their shots. Jordan's is completely prepared for the early risers taking in the sunrise! My kids loved the blueberry pancakes. http://www.jordansbarharbor.com/
Day 4: Our last day of vaca is always spent shopping, and we enjoyed all that downtown Bar Harbor had to offer! We parked our cars on Main Street and proceeded to shop! We bought new Acadia t-shirts, blueberry jam, and blueberry soda..which is fabulous..my kids LOVE it! There are lots of shops to choose from, and there is tons of parking available.
I found this cool piece in one of the shops and am pretty confident I can paint something similar. If I'm successful, I will post for sure!
“Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” –John Muir
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