Admittedly, we’re huge National Park nerds and we would be lying if we said we didn’t base vacations on which National Parks we were going to get to visit. All of that to say if you’re on the hunt for your net National Park to visit, allow us to recommend Acadia National Park, 47,000 acres located along the mid-section of the Maine coast. If you aren’t familiar, check out these rad facts! (We have a feeling we won’t have to twist your arm to plan a trip!)
This entire National Park was brought to us through the tireless efforts of two (yes, two) men. Mount Desert Island was a popular vacation spot for wealthy East coast residents during the 19th century. Charles W. Eliot, a regular Mount Desert Island visitor and “cottager” as those who built small vacation homes on the island came to be known, had a son that was a landscape architect. Both of these men simply adore the island and unfortunately, Charles Jr. died an untimely death at the young age of 38, but not before advocating for the preservation of this beautiful land. Charles Eliot Sr. set out to achieve his son’s dreams eventually partnering up with George Bucknam Dorr, an island resident that became so committed to the cause he was known as “the father of Acadia National Park”.
Calling all plant lovers, this park is home to over 1,000 plant species. This has a lot to do with the park’s diverse ecosystem that consists of coastal, mountain, wetland, and forest. Various species that are commonly found in Acadia range from aspen, spruce, and maple trees to wild strawberries, huckleberry, and juniper. (And everything in between!)
John D. Rockefeller made a lasting donation of not only 11,000 acres of land, but he’s the reason why guests can really get deep into the island now after creating carriage roads. If you prefer a hiking trail, the island has plenty of those, 158 miles of them to be exact!
Cadillac Mountain is the highest mountain on the East coast and if you’re into bird watching, you’ll want to check it out. Bird watchers spot about 2,500 species per year here including eagles, vultures, and owls.
While it does tend to get busy despite the summer crowds thinning out, October is the ultimate month to visit the park since this is when the fall foliage is peaking. (Mid-October to be exact!)