Where To Fly Into For Acadia National Park Update: Please note that some of the offers mentioned below may have expired. Refer to the current offers for accurate information. The enchanting, rugged coastline of Acadia National Park in Maine has beckoned adventurers since it gained national park status in the summer of 1916. Located on Mount Desert Island, roughly three hours north of Portland, this national treasure showcases deep blue waters crashing against granite cliffs and misty shores. The park seamlessly combines ancient coniferous forests, formidable mountains, abundant wildlife, and the wild Atlantic, creating an aura of pristine wilderness despite its enduring popularity.
Getting to Acadia National Park To reach Acadia National Park
You can start by flying into Boston Logan International Airport (BOS). From there, you can catch a direct flight to Hancock County–Bar Harbor Airport (BHB), which is serviced by Cape Air, Silver Airways, JetBlue, and United Airlines. This airport is just a short 10-minute drive from the park.
However, opting for this route means missing out on the scenic drive along Maine’s Coastal Route 1, a 6.5-hour journey that takes you through picturesque coastal towns. Airlines flying into Boston include American, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Spirit, Southwest, and United. You can also consider promotions like Frontier’s Kids Fly Free or JetBlue’s flash sales to save on flight costs.
Another option is to fly into Bangor International Airport (BGR), located about an hour inland from Mount Desert Island and Acadia National Park. While it has a limited number of airlines, including Allegiant, American, Delta, and United, it’s worth considering for its convenience.
For those interested in exploring Portland
You can fly into Portland International Jetport (PWM), which is roughly three hours south of Acadia National Park. Airlines serving this airport include American, Delta, Frontier, JetBlue, Southwest, and United. Whichever airport you choose, you’ll want to rent a car to make the most of your Acadia National Park experience.
Acadia National Park Entrance Fees As of now, the entrance fee for a vehicle into Acadia National Park is $30, and it’s valid for seven days from the date of purchase. You also have the option of purchasing an annual Acadia National Park pass for $55, which is valid for one year from the date of purchase. If you plan to visit at least one other national park this year, you might want to consider the annual America the Beautiful pass, priced at $80. This pass grants you and everyone in your vehicle free access to all national parks, as well as national wildlife refuges, national forests and grasslands, and lands managed by the Bureau of Land Management, Bureau of Reclamation, and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The Best Times to Explore Acadia National Park October is my personal favorite time to visit Acadia. During this month, the crowds of tourists have significantly diminished, the mosquitoes have disappeared, and daytime temperatures are still pleasant enough for hiking and beachcombing.
In reality, each season offers its own unique charm.
Winter provides a raw, icy landscape and an almost abandoned atmosphere. Spring ushers in a sense of joy with blossoming tree buds and wildflowers. Summer brings warmth, vacationing families, and favorite pastimes in Bar Harbor’s historic downtown.
Where to Stay You might have noticed that the terms “Acadia National Park,” “Mount Desert Island,” and “Bar Harbor” are used interchangeably. That’s because Mount Desert Island is home to Acadia National Park and the town of Bar Harbor. A visit to any of these places often entails exploring all three. The island is just large enough to offer a variety of accommodation options, including hotels, bed and breakfasts, Airbnbs, campgrounds, and more. Regardless of where you stay, you’ll be able to explore the entire area due to its compact size.
Best Points Hotels near Acadia National Park If you plan to use points for your hotel stay, you’ll find limited options in the area. However, the breathtaking setting compensates for the lack of points hotels. Here are a couple of options:
- Hampton Inn Bar Harbor: This hotel is within walking distance of downtown Bar Harbor and a three-minute drive from the park’s entrance. It offers both indoor and outdoor swimming pools, complimentary hot breakfast, and free Wi-Fi. Rates start at 48,000 points.
- Holiday Inn Resort Bar Harbor: Located about a mile from downtown Bar Harbor and a bit further from the entrance of Acadia, this hotel overlooks Frenchman’s Bay and features a pool, bay views, and 1,000 feet of ocean frontage. Rates start at 50,000 points per night.
If these options don’t suit your needs, you can still find ways to offset the costs of your stay on Mount Desert Island. Look for great deals during the shoulder season and consider earning bonus points for a stay at an independent property by using cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve (3x) or the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card (2x).
For those who prefer camping, Acadia National Park offers multiple camping options. Blackwoods Campground, surrounded by forests, provides basic facilities like bathrooms and water fountains, along with campsites featuring picnic tables and fire pits. It’s an ideal location for hikers and climbers, with easy access to the popular South Ridge trail up Cadillac Mountain.
Things to Do in Acadia National Park Beyond exploring Bar Harbor and the rest of Mount Desert Island, Acadia offers a plethora of outdoor adventures.
Best Hiking Trails in Acadia National Park
One of the most beloved activities in Acadia is hiking to the summit of Cadillac Mountain, which stands at 1,529 feet. It’s the highest point on the North Atlantic seaboard and offers incredible sunrise views. To catch the sunrise, you’ll need to start your hike very early, around 3 a.m. However, your efforts will be rewarded with unobstructed vistas of the island, ocean, and wilderness below. Keep in mind that you’ll share this experience with other early risers, as each day begins when the sunlight hits Maine