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Acadia National Park offers a seemingly endless number of adventures. Even better, there are great choices for all ability levels. Whether you feel like a walk along the coast or a trek up the bold mountains of Mount Desert Island, there’s a trail for you!
Here are five great ideas for an Acadia hike, ranked from easy to advanced.
Located on the quieter western side of Mount Desert Island, Wonderland is an easy mile-and-a-half out-and-back trail that’s great for anyone – including families! The flat terrain leads from Route 102A to a picturesque stretch of rocky coastline that’s great for birding or a picnic. Don’t forget to visit nearby Bass Harbor Head Light after your hike’s complete!
Looking for a single trail that winds through some of Acadia’s greatest hits? Start at Sand Beach and walk along the edge of the coast past Thunder Hole and Otter Cliffs to Otter Point. You’ll see vast stretches of rocky coastline and views you’ll never forget. If you’re up for an early wake-up call, the path is a great opportunity to watch the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean.
If you don’t mind navigating a few rocky sections, Great Head is a wonderful way to experience an Acadia feel wrapped up in a trail that’s just under two miles. Walk through woods and rocky faces as you admire the view of nearby Sand Beach from above. At the farthest point in the loop, You’ll be rewarded with an unobstructed view of the ocean as you explore the granite next to sheer cliffs that drop straight into the ocean.
Penobscot and Sargent Mountains
Those who love panoramic views from above are sure to enjoy a hike up Penobscot and Sargent Mountains. Just under ten miles long, this loop winds through forests and granite to lead you to some incredible overlooks of Mount Desert Island and beyond. Need a treat after your climb? Stop by the Jordan Pond House for some signature popovers.
As the name implies, Precipice isn’t for everyone. This 3.2-mile climb involves ascending a sheer cliff via iron rungs and ladders. The views atop Champlain Mountain certainly won’t disappoint – but there’s a good chance you’ll need to take a breather after making your way up to the peak. (Note: Precipice closes seasonally due to nesting peregrine falcons.)
Want to make the most of your visit? The Appalachian Mountain Club’s guide is an essential resource for anyone who loves Acadia. The book includes an comprehensive map of the trails that crisscross Mount Desert Island.