First time in Acadia? Consider a tour of Bar Harbor and beyond

Acadia National Park is one of the most popular national parks in the United States and one that everyone should see. L’Acadie is a charming and timeless park with its unique motorable road network. It is home to many trails and some of the best hiking in New England. As with many national parks, the best way to see and explore Acadia is on a guided tour.

Acadia is a region with a high level of biodiversity and landscapes dominated by U-shaped valleys, granite domes, mountains, lakes, wetlands, forests, prairies and the coasts of New -England. Acadia is a landscape of restful beauty and richness. Book your accommodation in Bar Harbor and experience the best Maine has to offer.


Acadia Classic Bus Tour

For those who want a short visit, Acadia Tours offers short 2.5 hour and 3.5 to 4 hour tours of the national park. These tours are ideal for visitors coming on cruise ships with limited time ashore. The tours are fully narrated bus tours that focus on the history of Bar Harbor and Acadia, as well as the region’s geology and wildlife.

The classic tour includes a stop at the top of Cadillac Mountain, Thunder Hole and Sieur De Monts Spring (Wild Gardens of Acadia). Their Premium Tour option is an extended version of the Classic Tour with an extended itinerary. This option includes the entire 27 mile Park Loop Park Road.

  • Season: Mid-May to October
  • Ideal for: Cruise ship passengers, visitors will have limited time

Classic visit:

  • Duration: 2.5 hours
  • Stops: Cadillac Mountain, Thunder Hole and Sieur De Mont Spring
  • Cost: $50.00

Premium Tour:

  • Duration: 3.5 to 4 hours
  • Stops: Cadillac Mountain, Sieur De Mont’s Spring, Thunder Hole and The Jordan Pond House
  • Cost: $77.00

These tours are done by bus, so walking is limited (only at the discretion of the passenger). This means it is also worth considering for people with mobility issues.

Related: The only guide you’ll need to find the best hikes in Acadia National Park

Carriage tours on Acadia’s motorable roads

One cannot visit Acadia without visiting the famous Rockefeller carriage roads. Perhaps the best way to explore them is on a guided horse-drawn carriage tour. Carriages of Acadia is a company that offers carriage tours on these scenic roads.

They have a contract with the National Park Service to provide carriage tours in the park (as well as private horse boarding if you have your own horse). They have the choice between three different circuits.

Mountain Loop Day Trip:

The tour loops around Day Mountain and meanders in and out of the woods with breathtaking views along the way.

  • Duration: 1 hour
  • When: 9:00 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m., 2:30 p.m.

Visiting the Mr. Rockefeller Bridge:

This is a two-hour tour that focuses on some of the most notable bridges in the United States. Expect to see three of the bridges built by Rockefeller.

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • When: 9:45 a.m., 1:45 p.m.

Mountain Top Day Trip:

Climb to the top of Day Mountain and soak up the views. From there, you can dismount and contemplate the Cranberry Isles.

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • When: 4:00 p.m. (offered on a limited basis)

If one is planning to bring a private horse, Carriages of Acadia also offers boarding facilities for up to 34 horses per night. For more information and pricing, check out their website or call them at 1-877-276-3622 or 207-276-5721.

Related: Every Out-of-the-Box Thing You Can Do in Maine (It’s Not Just Hiking)

Multi-Day Hikes In Acadia

Of course, the best way to explore Acadia is to explore it on foot. Wildland Trekking offers a 4-day hiking odyssey through Acadia National Park and exploring all that Maine’s coast has to offer. Each night, we unwind at an upscale beachfront hotel in Bar Harbor.

Each day head to Acadia and hike along the ridges of mountain peaks, through spruce forests and see much of Mount Desert Island. The tour also discovered the Schoodic Peninsula, accessible by ferry.

  • Cost: From $2,940 per person
  • Type: Hostel visit
  • Group size: 4-8 Guests
  • Duration: 4 days
  • Distance: 19 miles or 30 kilometers
  • Included: Meals, guide, three nights accommodation

Experience Acadia like never before with the expert guide while enjoying picnic lunches.

There are many other guided tours in Acadia. No matter how much time you have or what you would like to see and do, there are options in Acadia for everyone.