Exquisite Beauty of Maine’s Acadia National Park
Stepping onto the geologically magnificent soil of Acadia National Park is like stepping into a scenic calendar. Each of the four seasons is equally dramatic and just as beautiful as the next. The glacial remnants of a begotten era have left behind spectacular pink granite cliffs, mountainous scenery, sandy beach deposits and a natural fjord that splits the island in two.
The Somes Sound is actually the only known fjord on the East Coast of the U.S. Naturally deep water in the fjord is a sailor’s dream. They navigate back and forth up the Sound until their boats reach frigid waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
Millions of visitors come to Acadia each year, for the breathtaking scenery, plentiful outdoor activities and delicious seafood that can be found within its territory. The state of Maine is fortunate to have Acadia as a God-given tourist attraction. Besides the logging industry, the tourism industry is the state’s bread and butter and the National Park is one of the main reasons for the mainstay of the economy.
The majority of Acadia Nat’l Park is within Mount Desert Island. A few islands, including Baker Island, Bar Island, Isle the hat and the small piece of the mainland at Schoodic Point make up the rest of the national park’s 47,000+ acres. People often stop at the visitor information center on Thompson Island or one in Hulls Cove to retrieve brochures before crossing the one bridge to MDI. Once there, they must choose to go left toward Bar Harbor or right to the quiet side of the island in Southwest and Northeast Harbor.
The town of Bar Harbor is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the State of Maine. Many tourists flock to Bar Harbor as a base to spend the day sightseeing, whale watching, biking, kayaking or hiking throughout the island. On the other side of MDI, one might find lobster fisherman in the quaint villa of Southwest Harbor, where Stephen King filmed the movie “Storm of the Century”. Northeast Harbor is at the crux of the island, amid fancy homes owned by the likes of such celebrities as Martha Stewart and the Rockefeller family.
Exquisite Beauty of Maine’s Acadia National Park
The Rockefellers have been a mainstay in the area since the affluent era of the early twentieth century. Their family was responsible for building the well-known Carriage Roads, which can still be found throughout Acadia. Those early horse and buggy roads have become hiking and biking trails, although many of the original stone bridges are now overgrown with tall embers. At that time, Bar Harbor and MDI was notorious as a playground for the wealthy. Swanky hotels were developed as influential people returned each year to its reputable lavish retreat. A great fire in 1947 burned much of Mount Desert Island and Acadia Nat’l Park. Many of the original buildings were lost in the inferno.
The draw of this region is not lost. To this day, its visitor count exceeds millions of travelers each year. Acadia has numerous points of interest for the adventurous one. Cadillac Mountain is a highlight of the park. At over 1,500 feet, the pink granite terrain is the first place to see the sunrise between October and March.
The 3½ mile drive to the top winds around the mountain, with breathtaking scenery and views of the Atlantic Ocean within eyesight. Along the way, people often get sidetracked on the Park Loop Road as it takes them to other popular sights, like: Thunder Hole; Otter Cliffs; Sieur de Monts Spring; Bubble Rock; Jordan Pond and Sand Beach. Sand Beach is one of the few public beaches in the area for sunbathers to take a dip in the ocean. The whole region is a haven for engagement proposals and weddings because of its romantic allure.
Just beyond the Park Loop Road, people who like to explore off-the-beaten path will run into Eagle or Echo Lake, both of which are excellent spots for canoeing and kayaking adventures. Brave souls who like rock-climbing or rappelling can dangle from the edge of the Precipice. For those who need less than a heart-pounding adventure, there’s many hiking trails — like the Gorham Mountain or Great Head Trail, that offer abundant views with a seasonal bite of wild Maine blueberries, strawberries or flowering lupines.
Photographers have taken every angle possible of the Bass Harbor and Bear Island Lighthouses. People love the Asticou, Thayer and Wild Gardens of Acadia for the same reason; for their picturesque beauty and photographic splendor when in season.
Speaking of seasons, each of the four Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter are a sight to behold in their own right. Tourists can try horseback riding on the Carriage Trails from the Wildwood Stables or snap pictures of Long Pond as the fall foliage makes its magical debut in late September. For those who want an exciting day trip, the CAT Ferry to Nova Scotia, Canada takes visitors every few hours to points in Canada from the dock just past the suburbs of Bar Harbor. The region is a haven for campgrounds, bed & breakfasts and charming New England inns or hotels.
Kayak, canoe and bike rentals are available to visitors, with a choice of sea or lakes to dip into. Courageous paddlers can maneuver between the five Porcupine Islands just off the shore of the mainland. On any given day, spotting of an eagle, seal, sea turtle, deer or wildlife creatures will make the trip to Acadia unforgettable.
Unstable weather could change scheduled activities at any moment. Early morning fog could burn off to sunny days or open showers. Colorful evening sunsets could yield abundant stars at night or equally vivid sunrises in the morning. One must always be prepared for the variable changes from hot to cold; or sunny to rainy. Acadia National Park is a potpourri of unspoiled nature mixed with a fascinating glacial terrain. It is for that reason that many imaginations have been stirred up by its natural beauty and mark on America as a national treasure.