Packing a picnic for Acadia
Before you set out to explore, pack a lunch and keep it handy. Once you get inside it, the park has very few places to stop for lunch or snacks. Having drinks and snacks at hand will prevent you from having to backtrack into Bar Harbor or elsewhere to fend off starvation midday. The more food you bring, the more your options for a day expand, so hit up one of the charming general stores in any of the island’s villages first and stock up on sandwiches, sweets, camera batteries, and hydration.
Acadia National Park is full of wonderful picnic spots. Sand Beach is gloriously scenic (bring a blanket, plus a sweater for sea winds). A hike up any of the smaller mountains such as Day Mountain or Flying Mountain is rewarded with ocean views and cooling winds (or, in fall, a blaze of colors). If you’re too tired to hike, truck over to Jordan Pond or to The Bubbles for good views, or check out tiny Suminsby Park off the scenic Sargent Drive, on the eastern shore of the sound—it’s an often-overlooked picnic spot that gets you right down to the water’s edge.
Where to Eat in Acadia National Park
The secret to the Jordan Pond House (www.acadiajordanpondhouse.com;tel. 207/276-3316)? Location, location, location. Located right in the park, on the Park Loop Road near Seal Harbor, the restaurant traces its roots from 1847, when a farm was established on this picturesque property at the southern tip of Jordan Pond looking north toward The Bubbles, a picturesque (some might say suggestive) pair of glacially sculpted mounds. In 1979, the original structure and its birch-bark dining room were destroyed by fire. A more modern, two-level dining room was built in its place—less charm, but it still has one of the island’s best dining locations, on a nice lawn spread out before the pond. The main gustatory attraction here are the light, eggy pastries called popovers—afternoon tea with popovers and jam ($11) is a hallowed tradition here, though you can (and should) get them anytime. The lobster stew is expensive but very good. Dinners (reservations recommended) include classic entrees like New York strip steak, steamed lobster, pasta, and lobster stew.
Entrees run around $14–$27 at lunch, $21–$33 at dinner.
It’s open mid-May to late October, daily from 11am to 9pm.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.