Acadia National Park is located in Bar Harbor, Maine and is a popular east coast destination. The park is a total of 47,000 acres. There are a variety of activities at the park, but my favorite activity was hiking! There are over 125 miles of hiking in the park with many accessible trails for various skill levels. Keep reading for a two day itinerary for Acadia National Park.
The Basics: Acadia National Park
- Address: 25 Visitor Center Road Bar Harbor, Maine 04609
- Hulls Cove Visitor Center:
- Open from early may to end of October
- Hours: 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM
- Entrance Fee: $35 per vehicle for 7 days
How do I get to Acadia National Park?
If you are coming from Florida, you will most likely want to fly to Maine. There are a few options for airports near the park. Driving distance from multiple airports to Acadia National Park are listed below. I chose to fly into Portland based on the best flight prices at the time of my trip.
Closest Airports to Acadia National Park
- Hancock County-Bar Harbor Airport: Approximately 15 minutes
- Direct flights are available from Boston Logan International Airport
- Bangor International Airport: Approximately 1-hour
- Knox County Regional Airport: Approximately 2 hours
- Augusta State Airport: Approximately 2 hours
- Portland International Jetport: Approximately 3-hours
Where should I stay near Acadia National Park?
There are a lot of lodging options nearby in Bar Harbor, Maine. This is also a cute town with plenty of shops and restaurants to spend time in the evenings. Unless you are looking to camp, I highly recommend staying in the Bar Harbor area.
We stayed at The Elmhurst Inn and absolutely loved it! It was the cutest bed and breakfast, and we enjoyed the grab and go options as well as the sit-down breakfast. The drive to Acadia was only about 15 minutes, which made it very convenient to come and go as needed.
When should I visit Acadia National Park?
The summer is an ideal time to visit Acadia National Park. The weather was great with comfortable temperatures throughout the day. I would also love to see the park in the fall during peak leaf season which is mid-October. Acadia National Park has annual closures for various areas of the park. Additional information can be found on the park website as these dates may change annually. I would recommend planning your visit between June to October.
How many days should I spend in Acadia National Park?
My suggestion is to spend as much time as you can in Acadia! We spent two full days in the park and there were still a lot of trails I would’ve loved to hike! That being said, any amount of time you can spend in Acadia you can definitely find something to do. The entrance fee is good for up to 7 consecutive days.
Two-day itinerary for Acadia National Park
Day 1: Travel Day
Living in Florida, a travel day is needed to first get to Acadia National Park.
- Fly into Portland, Maine
- Drive to Bar Harbor, Maine
- Grab a drink at Bar Harbor Beer Works
- Dinner at the Thirsty Whale
- Walk the Shore Path in Bar Harbour
- Stay the night at The Elmhurst Inn
Day 2: Acadia National Park
Today was the first full day in the park. We started early to avoid crowds and got to see many of the popular destinations in the park.
- Grab & go breakfast at the bed and breakfast
- Visit Sand Beach
- Hike Gorham Mountain Trail
- Take Ocean Path Trail to Thunder Hole
- Watch the tide come in at Thunder Hole
- Check out Acadia National Park Visitor Center
- Relax at the bed and breakfast
- Hike to Bar Island and hike the Bar Island Path
- Dinner and drinks in Bar Harbor
- Stay at The Elmhurst Inn
Day 3: Acadia National Park
An early alarm clock woke us up for our second day in Acadia National Park. We started the day watching the sun rise on Cadillac Mountain. Below is a list of everything we did!
- Grab and go breakfast
- Watch the sunrise at Cadillac Mountain
- Hike the Cadillac Summit Loop Trail
- Hike Jordan Pond Path
- Second breakfast at Jordan’s Restaurant in Bar Harbor
- Drive scenic Park Loop Road through Acadia National Park
- Hike the Otter Cliffs Trail to Otter Point
- Relax at the bed and breakfast
- Dinner and drinks in Bar Harbor
- Soft serve blueberry ice cream for dessert!
- Stay at bed and breakfast
Day 4: Travel Day
Our time in Acadia National Park was sadly over and we had another travel day today.
- Sit down breakfast at the B&B
- Continue our New England road trip to New Hampshire
More details of our New England road trip will be up on the blog soon!
Tips for visiting Acadia National Park
This two day itinerary for Acadia National Park includes seeing a lot of different places within the park. Below are a few helpful tips for planning your trip to Acadia National Park
Bar Island Hiking Trail
This trail is outside of the main park entrance. The path is accessible for 1.5 hours before or after low tide, so plan accordingly. Expect it to be crowded since there is limited time this trail is accessible each day. If you do not make it back across during low tide, you will need to be prepared to stay on the island for 12 hours until the next low tide or call for a private water taxi. Once you cross the land bridge you can continue hiking on Bar Island Path.
Jordan Pond House Restaurant
If you want to try the famous popovers, plan to make a reservation for the restaurant in the park as soon as they open. We were too late for this and were not able to snag a reservation. The website states reservations open 1 month in advance. More information can be found here.
Time your visit for Thunder Hole
The best time to arrive at thunder hole is 1-2 hours before high tide to hear the thundering sound. Again, expect crowds as this will be the most popular time to visit.
Be aware of Peregrine Falcons Nesting Season
Some trails are closed yearly for the peregrine falcons nesting season. According to the park website, most recently Jordan Cliffs Trail, Precipice Trail, and Valley Cove Trail closed in March due to falcon nesting. Nesting typically begins in early spring, but the exact trails impacted could vary from year to year. If any of these trails are at the top of your list, make sure to time your visit outside of nesting season and check the park website for updates. During our visit in mid-August 2022 the Precipice Trail had just reopened.
Tips for Cadillac Mountain
Make a reservation: A permit is required to drive up Cadillac Mountain at any time of day between May and October. There are permit time slots for sunrise, sunset, and at various intervals throughout the day. Depending on the time of the year a proportion of the permits will be available 90 days in advance, with the remainder available 2 days in advance. My recommendation is to book the sunrise time slot if you are able!
Give yourself plenty of time for sunrise: You will want to factor in the time to drive to the park, show your permit, drive the 3-miles to the top, park, and find a spot to watch the sunrise. We arrived at the top of the mountain about 45 minutes before sunrise and really enjoyed watching the sun slowly rise.
Bring a blanket/wear multiple layers: Even in August the temperature was cool on the top of Cadillac Mountain. We layered up, but wished we would’ve also brought a blanket.
Summary of a two day itinerary for Acadia National Park
I had so much fun exploring Acadia National Park and it is in my top 5 favorite national parks that I have visited. Two days was a good amount of time to explore the park. I hope there is something you can take away from this article to help plan your trip. Comment below and tell me what you are most excited to do from this list!
Looking for more National Parks to Visit
Check out these posts:
- Hot Springs National Park
- Congaree National Park
- Biscayne National Park
- Everglades National Park
- Mammoth Cave National Park
The information above was accurate at the time of publishing to the best of the author’s knowledge. Information will be verified and updated periodically. If you are planning to visit Acadia National Park I recommend verifying the most current information with the National Park website.