Planning A Dream Road Trip: Spotlight On Bar Harbor

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Planning A Dream Road Trip: Spotlight On Bar Harbor




*If you're just finding this road trip, start here to find out all of the cities we're planning to visit on our trip



Ahhh, I have been waiting for this week!  This is the week I get to talk about Bar Harbor!  Ever since I've started planning this trip, looking at pictures, activities to do, etc....I've known that Bar Harbor, Maine was going to be one of my favorite spots on this trip.  I can't wait to go.  To be fair, I'm super excited about the next couple stops and have been waiting to get to this point!

Ok, so after leaving Portland, we'll drive a little over 3 hours to Bar Harbor.  It'll be late by now, so we'll just check into the hotel and call it a night.

What to do first in this fantastic little town?  I think we'll take the first day kinda slow and maybe go to Jeannie's for breakfast.  It opens at sunrise and they use fresh, local ingredients.  It looks like they have large, hearty portions, with options that you don't see everywhere.









Then maybe we'll walk the shore path with views of the lobster boats, cruise ships, and an area known to spot seals!





photo courtesy of acadiamagic.com





I would love to go on a whale watching cruise, but everything I've read about them seem to say that they get canceled quite often because of fog, rough seas, etc.  I also read a lot of people saying that they've seen people getting sea sick on these cruises.  If it were just me and my husband, I'd take my chances, but I'd really hate to have Jaxson be sick the whole time on the boat and not be able to get him off.  So I think a good alternative is to check out Diver Ed's dive in theater.  It's focused more on children and families and doesn't go as far out to sea-meaning it stays in calmer waters.  It's about a 2 to 2 and a half hour cruise in Frenchman's Bay, where you will see Diver Ed dive down to the ocean floor and bring up wild life (in touch tanks) for you to touch and look at.  While he is diving, you can see and hear the ocean floor through specialized equipment.  At the end, they safely return the animals to sea.  It's supposedly really funny and children and adults love it.



Then, I think we'd need some lunch downtown from Stewman's.  The locals say it's a touristy spot, but supposedly still very good.  They sell lobsters by the pound, like you can order a 1 pound lobster, 1 and 1/2. 2 pound lobster, etc!  The menu has a large selection, many of which being wonderful seafood selections, but there are other options if you're with others who don't enjoy seafood.










After a little more exploring, it's time to check out some of the dessert in the area!  Ben and Bill's chocolate emporium has won awards for their 64 flavors of homemade ice cream!  If you want a quieter atmosphere, check out Choco-latte for coffee, croissants, and other yummy items.





The rest of the evening, I think we'll take it slow and just explore since it's been a couple hectic days and we've planned some time here!


Bright and early the next morning, we will either drive or hike up Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park.  The park has a $25 fee, but it's good for 7 days.  $10 of that money goes towards the Island Explorer bus to take you to different areas in the park so you don't need to bother finding parking spaces in the high season.  Cadillac Mountain boasts some of the best sunrise and sunset views in the state.  It also claims to be the first sunrise seen in the US (which is true for part of the year -October through March).  Dress warm and bring a blanket to enjoy the breathtaking views.


photo courtesy of acadiamagic.com



After that, we'll head back down the mountain and stop at Jordan's Pond House restaurant for homemade Maine blueberry muffins and famous popovers.

After eating a bit, we would probably take advantage of the beautiful area around the restaurant to explore.  It has interesting wooden plank walkways throughout the rougher terrain, and beautiful views of Bubble Mountain.






photo courtesy of acadiamagic.com




From there, we might go back for a short nap since we had gotten up early to see the sunrise on the mountain.


At some point, I'd really like to check out Thunder Hole. It's a place at the edge of the ocean that you want to be at between high and low tide.  It is a cavernous area that the waves have cut out over time and when the waves crash against it, it sounds like thunder.  Between high tide and low tide is the best time to go for the loudest booms and biggest splashes.  There are stairs and railings to stand behind to watch safely.






The following day, we might take the Island Explorer to Sand Beach in Acadia to play on the beach for the day.





That evening, we might take an easy hike around Gorham Mountain trail or walk to bar Island during low tide- it disappears during high tide, so don't get stuck!









Then we'd head back to get some rest before our long drive to Montreal Canada the next day!!





Have you been to Bar Harbor/ Acadia??  What are your favorite spots?



Have you missed some of the cities we talked about?  No problem, find them all here.  Check back next week when we'll find out all the cool things Montreal has to offer.  Or, sign up for the newsletter so you won't miss a city in the series!









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