Acadia National Park covers more than 48,000 acres with granite-domed mountains, woodlands, lakes and ponds, and even ocean shoreline.
While these diverse habitats create the perfect haven for flora and fauna year round, autumn offers stunning seasonal scenery with bright fall foliage painted by nature’s hand with yellows and burnt oranges of the sugar maples, crimson of the mountain maples, purples of the white ash and more as vibrant color explodes across the landscape of Acadia National Park.
Along with the spectacular colors comes active opportunities for you to enjoy them. For those arriving solely to see the blush of fall at its best, the peak usually arrives in mid-October. However, each year is a little different, so be sure to visit Maine’s fall foliage website for up-to-date information.
For those who have the itch to be up-close with nature, the park offers more than 120 miles of historic hiking trails including 45 miles of scenic carriage roads perfect for hiking or biking.
No cars are allowed on these roads, so it offers a peaceful yet breathtaking opportunity to drink in the brilliant beauty wrapped in the scents and sounds of the great outdoors.
Novices and those who don’t know the area may want to consider hiring a guide to get the most out of their experience by helping you choose the best route, distance, and level of difficulty. Hikers should plan ahead and dress in layers, wear sturdy shoes and bring water and snacks.
Carriage and Bus Tours
Carriage tours are a popular tradition within Acadia National Park providing an open air opportunity to enjoy the crisp Maine air and take in the sounds and smells of nature as you roll along. It’s peaceful and offers an opportunity for the whole family to take part.
Two and a half hour narrated bus tours are also available (May through October). These include three 15-minute stops. Tours depart daily at 10:00 and 2:00 rain or shine. For reservations or more information, call 207-288-0300.
Ranger-Narrated Boat Cruises
A variety of ranger-narrated boat cruises are available year round, and two of them run from mid-May through early October offering a chance to see the first stages of color take hold.
For the Frenchman Bay Cruise a 151-foot, four-masted schooner takes guests on a 2-hour tour in search of wildlife and history, while the Islesford Cruise is a 2.5 hour tour scheduled to visit Little Cranberry Island and the scenic fjord of Somes Sound, Municipal Pier, and Northeast Harbor. For more information, call 207-276-5352.
Along with the above options, flights are also available to take you up for a bird-eye view of the stunning blanket of fall colors draped across the rugged Acadia National Park. No matter how you plan to take in the view, it will be an unforgettable experience.
Photo credits: 58NationalParks