Acadia National Park Sample Weekend Itinerary

Christie Turnbow
On 3 min read

Summer is great for beautiful weather. Fall is best to avoid crowds. Where: Acadia National Park can be found 5 hours from Boston. Bar Harbor, ME is the closest town to Acadia National Park.

Why Acadia is the most dog friendly National Park. There are more than 100 miles of trails that are dog-friendly. Bar Harbor has many restaurants and inns that are dog-friendly. Acadia’s coastal location is a great option for those who don’t have dogs. It is a great place to relax and hike.

Friday Night

5PM: After work, leave Boston and drive to Acadia. Although there are many rest stops along 95 for food, the food is not very interesting. You can pack your food and stop by Chipotle/Panera Bread Augusta if you need something fast. Portland ME is another great place to order Thai take-out.

10PM: Check in at Blackwoods Campground. This campground is one of two Acadia’s dog-friendly campgrounds. Reservations must be made in advance. However, you don’t need to notify them that you will not be arriving until late. When you arrive, find your name on the sheet and then drive to your spot.


5AM: Get up early and catch the sunrise on Ocean Path. Either drive to Otter Cliff, then walk up to Sand Beach. Or park at Sand Beach, and walk south towards Otter Cliff. Many photographers camp at Otter Cliff. This website will show you the sunrise times in Acadia. You can stop at multiple places along the 2 mile Ocean Path, including the famous Thunder Hole. Thunder Hole can be viewed 2 hours before high tide or in rough ocean conditions.

9AM: Go to Bar Harbor for breakfast. 2 Cats is a great choice, but you should be prepared to wait between 30 minutes and 1.5 hours. Bark Harbor is worth a visit while you are in town.

11AM: Once you are full, go to Acadia Mountain in the middle of the island. It is a small mountain at 681 feet with stunning views over the ocean. The hike can be anywhere from 2 to 4 miles depending on the route taken. Although the rock scrambling isn’t too bad, I recommend wearing hiking shoes for the descent. You can find descent coverage on most of the ascent, nestled amongst cedar and spruce trees.

3:00 PM: Return to your campsite and relax. Perhaps you’d like to have a snack.

6 PM: Drive to Seal Cove on the quiet west side Mount Desert Island. This is the best spot to see a New England sunset. Street parking is available.


3AM: Head up the Cadillac South Ridge Trail if the weather is good for the famous Cadillac Sunrise Hike. Cadillac Mountain can be driven up by cars, just like Mount Washington. It is possible to feel a bit of shock as you go from total darkness and solitude to the summit surrounded by tourists. Cadillac Mountain is the first to see the sunrise in fall or winter.

9AM: Get ready to go!

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