Everything Goes Guide to Bar Harbor, Maine and Acadia National Park

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Advisor - Daelynn Leach
Curated By

Daelynn Leach

  • Maine

  • Adventure Travel

  • Active Travel

  • Family Travel

  • Off-the-Beaten-Path Travel

  • Beaches

  • USA

  • Guys Getaway

  • Girls Getaway

  • Small Town

lobster shack with buoys hanging on the exterior
Curator’s statement

Bar Harbor holds a very special place in my heart, and my stomach...that’s for sure! Not only is this place a stunning site, it also offers sightseeing and hiking. Great place for family getaways, solo travelers, and will satisfy everyone! The town itself is absolutely adorable and makes you feel like you’re living in a Hallmark movie. Not to mention if you like lobster; this is where you want to be! There are ice cream shops, live music on the green, shopping, and local businesses on every corner. Bar Harbor's main attraction is Acadia National park, which offers beautiful beaches, hiking, biking, and rock climbing. You name it!

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Where to stay in Bar Harbor

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Things to do in Bar Harbor

beach with large rocks dotting the shore and rising rocky cliffs to green forest on a sunny day

Bar Island

The water in Frenchman’s Bay gets low enough that you can wander across the sand bar at low tide to the other side! Offering outstanding views of the Bay, you can also enjoy a nice hike around the island. Make sure to check the tide charts before your walk so you don’t get stuck!

Sand Beach

A beautiful beach near the entrance to Acadia offering beautiful views, open space to lounge, rocks to climb, tide pools for kids to play, and hikes nearby. This is one of my favorite places on the whole island towards the end of the summer. You can go out and watch surfers, enjoy the waves, lay out and get your tan on, or venture across the beach for a few really cool cliff hikes. This is a super family (and dog!) friendly beach!

Jordan Pond House

A famous restaurant inside of Acadia National Park. This place offers famous popovers and many other delicious treats. Nearby is a beautiful loop around Jordan Pond! This is the perfect place for a picnic.

Echo Lake

A fun way to spend the hot days in Acadia, with water warm enough to swim in the summers. This is a family beach that offers stunning views and accessible hikes. The lake is close to South West Harbor to explore the other side of the Island.

Otter Cliffs

Otter Cliffs is a beautiful lookout point right off Park Loop Road in Acadia National Park. Also known for some really good light rock climbing! This was definitely one of my main hangout spots while living here! Definitely stunning.

The Precipice Trail

This is the most vertical and horizontal trail in Acadia National Park. You're literally walking on iron runs across the cliff, but it looks out into a near 360-view of the whole island! I would definitely say this is a challenging hike, and probably not suitable for small children or seniors (I also wouldn’t recommend taking pets on this trail). However, there are lots of ladders up the side of cliffs. This trail usually doesn’t open until late August due to falcon nesting... pretty cool, right? We love this hike: 12/10.

Day Trips

Try these nearby destinations in Maine for a day away: Northwest Harbor, Southwest Harbor, Portland, and Camden.

Places to eat & drink in Bar Harbor

row of seaside town restaurants, with colorful signs including a lobster claw holding a tea cup
  • Project Social: Tapas style is my kind of style! Some of the most unique, handcrafted cocktails you can find! The vibe here is immaculate. This place offers indoor and such a cozy outdoor seating option! Did I mention the food and drinks are amazing? 1000 out of 10 recommend!

  • Atlantic Brewing Company: Really cool rooftop area to sit, relax and drink your beer. Grab yourself something to eat and continue on with your day! I’m a sucker for anywhere that offers flights or pitchers, that’s for sure!

  • The Annex by Side Street Cafe: Live music, great food, amazing handcrafted cocktails and such a vibe! Staff is great! Connected to this restaurant is a side street café that’s more of a daytime feel! I highly recommend the spinach and artichoke dip (that’s always my go to meal)! They also have a great lobster roll which is super underrated, but 10 out of 10 for me! I also really like the aesthetically pleasing bar, not to mention their margaritas of the month!

Advisor - Daelynn Leach

Travel Advisor

Daelynn Leach

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For more travel tips, check out my guide, Shopping, Food and Fun in Lively Seattle. This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Maine.