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Why Go To Bar Harbor

Famously known as the gateway to Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor, Maine, has enjoyed a centuries-long reputation as a scenic respite that combines all the best qualities of the state. Its placement along Frenchman Bay means that travelers are spoiled with soothing water views left and right, as well as craggy coastlines that look straight out of a landscape painting. Not only that, but the town fosters a special kind of charm that makes it feel as if you've stepped out of real life and walked into the pages of a storybook. Though, the abundance of finger-licking local lobster will certainly snap you back into reality in the best way possible. This is the kind of place you visit to reset and get back to marveling in the basics: taking a nice long stroll, watching the water sway as the day fades and enjoying tasty local grub. Bar Harbor is perfect for all of that.  

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Best of Bar Harbor

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Bar Harbor Travel Tips

Best Months to Visit

The best time to visit Bar Harbor is from June to August. Because of the state's geographic location in the northernmost point in the U.S., Maine enjoys cool weather year-round. As such, the best time to explore the greater Bar Harbor area is when it will be the warmest and sunniest. Fall and spring are also fine times to visit if you don't mind chillier temperatures; there will certainly be far fewer people visiting Acadia National Park during these seasons. Winter is another option, but only if you love the cold. Not only will temperatures dip to the teens during this time, but the region will be blanketed with snow, making it more difficult to get around.

What You Need to Know

  • It's cold Even during its warmest months, Bar Harbor can dip down to the 50s at night. Bring layers regardless of the time of year, especially if you are taking a boat tour.

  • It's full of outdoor attractions With the proximity to Acadia National Park and Frenchman Bay, there are plenty of outdoor adventures available either on hiking trails or on the water that will keep you occupied for days.

  • It's small Bar Harbor boasts a population of less than 6,000 residents. Combining a trip to the town with a day or two spent in the national park has all the makings of an ideal weekend getaway. 

How to Save Money in Bar Harbor

  • Visit during the shoulder seasons Because of Bar Harbor's placement so far up north, summer is the most popular time to visit. Before and after that, temperatures dip low fast, so if you book a stay during the chillier months, you may score travel discounts.

  • Take the Island Explorer This free shuttle bus not only takes visitors through Bar Harbor, but also various points of interest in Acadia National Park, including Jordan Pond and the Schoodic Point.

  • Skip the tours Boat tour tickets can add up fast. To save some coin, consider booking your own water sport rentals, such as kayaks or paddleboards, or simply wait until low tide to cross the natural bridge that leads to Bar Island.   

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The best way to soak up Bar Harbor is along the town's beautiful Shore Path, which sits right along Frenchman Bay.

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