Acadia National Park is an east coast gem, and with nearly 47,000 acres to explore, there’s sure to be something for everyone. Acadia National Park in the fall is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s packed with scenic drives, thrilling hiking trails, and is famous for its colorful foliage. Continue reading to discover more about this beautiful national park!
Acadia National Park is located in the Northeast United States, primarily on Maine’s Mt. Desert Island. There are multiple ways of getting to the park. The option that involves less driving requires you to fly into Boston and then catch a smaller plane into Hancock County–Bar Harbor Airport. From there, the park is just a short 10-minute drive away. Of course, if you choose this option you will miss out on Maine’s picturesque Coastal Route 1. This option is a 6.5 drive to the park from Boston, but the views along the way are well worth it!
While summer is a great time to experience Acadia, we prefer the fall. We recommend planning your trip for any time between September and November, after the summer crowds have left and before the freezing winter weather arrives. October is the best time to see the famous fall colors, as the foliage will be at its peak.
There are plenty of places to stay in Acadia National Park. While there are multiple inns, the best way to experience the natural beauty of the area is at one of the many campsites. Blackwoods Campground is the largest and most populous campground in the park. It’s located only a short walk away from pristine coastline, mountain hikes, and tree-lined trails for biking! This is a great place to stay but it does have an admittance fee, so keep that in mind when booking your trip.
There are plenty of things to do in Acadia National Park in fall. Here are some of our favorites:
Hiking in Acadia National Park is exceptional in the fall and there are plenty of trails that showcase the famously colorful foliage. Here are a few of our favorite trails:
Jordan Pond. For beautiful fall reflections and quaint New England scenery, you can’t beat Jordan Pond. The hike around the lake is perfect for families as it’s relatively flat and easy to navigate. For a birds eye view, head to the North and South Bubble Mountains across the water. And be sure to stop at the Jordan Pond House when you’re done for a scone and tea!
Beehive and Precipice Trails. For the adventurer seeking a bit of a challenge, we recommend one of Acadia’s famous Iron Rung hikes, like the stunning Beehive Trail or Precipice Trail. These hikes feature iron supports bolted into the exposed areas of rock, allowing you to access the trail without technical climbing experience. Hiking these trails is wholly unique, and not for the faint of heart!
Biking around Acadia National Park is a great way to take in all the sights. Old carriage roads running through the park take cyclists from viewpoint to viewpoint. Originally constructed to travel by horse-drawn carriage through the park, these roads were built between 1913 and 1940. Now, these historic roads are closed to motorized traffic, making them the perfect place for hikers, walkers, and bikers.
Due to its location and height, Cadillac Mountain is one of the first spots in the United States to view the sunrise, making this one of the East Coast’s most popular sunrise spots. You can drive to the top of the mountain, making it a fun way to start your day. Pack a thermos of coffee and enjoy the stunning views!
We would be remiss not to mention Acadia’s iconic coast. With nearly 64 miles of coastline and so many different things to see, it’s no wonder people make it a must-do to explore this part of the park. A local favorite is the Ocean Path, where you can stroll along the beach, past Thunder Hole, to incredible cliffs. If you’re looking for something a little more relaxing, head to the Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse. This historic lighthouse was built in 1876 and remains mostly in its original form. To the left of the lighthouse, there is a small trail leading down a set of stairs to a viewpoint that allows for photographs of the lighthouse from the ocean-side.
The stargazing in Acadia National Park is underrated! There are plenty of places to do it in the park, such as at Sand Beach, Seawall, or Jordan Pond. These locations have extremely low levels of light pollution, which make them perfect spots for stargazing. The best time to see what’s up in the night sky is on a clear night, one to two hours after sunset, once the residual light has faded away.
There you have it: Acadia National Park in the Fall. If you’re interested in experiencing this park’s natural beauty first hand, check out our Acadia Getaway! Our trip is designed by a local expert who will customize it to your preferences and needs!
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