25 reasons we’ll return to Mount Desert Island

1. The views! Every! Where! You! Look! Gorgeousness everywhere.


Day’s end in Southwest Harbor


2. $40 for an annual pass to Acadia National Park gives us a good reason to go back next summer.

3. Camping at Blackwoods Campground: big wooded lots, clean(ish) bathrooms, and so quiet in the middle of the night, I could hear the ocean roaring in the distance.


Yes, our tent. Yes, we are outgrowing it.


4. Lobster so fresh at Beal’s in Southwest Harbor, it was swimming that morning.


Before and after

5. Hikes for all abilities, even a scaredy cat like me. Though I will never ever do Beehive or Precipice. Going up the metal ladders on Beech Cliffs hike was about as radical as I’m every going to get.


I climbed this high!


6. Biking on carriage roads is the bomb. It’s especially cool when your 9 year old goes whizzing by on the downhill and disappears from view for a good long time.


The blond will be FAR ahead pretty soon.


7. 2 Cats for breakfast. Orange juice is fresh-squeezed, and the food is delish.


nom, nom, nom


8. Dive-in Theater with Diver Ed Boat Cruise. Laughed so much during this two-hour tour. It was hilarious, fun, interesting, and informative. The kids were glued to every word Diver Ed and his wife, Captain Evil, had to say. Worth every last penny.


My little Sea Cucumber lover


9. Popovers at Jordan Pond House Restaurant. As good as everyone says they are. Especially if you bike to the restaurant.

10. So, so, so clean. I never wished I had a garbage bag with me to pick up the trash I found on our walks.

11. I’ll make GORP again.


You know you want some.

12. Stars over Sand Beach. Lying on a blanket on a sandy beach nestled between rocks, gazing up at the amazing Maine summer night sky, having the constellations pointed out by a park ranger. . . so very relaxing and cool. Next time, I had better see one of the shooting stars everyone else saw, though we all got to wave to the International Space Station.

13. Swimming in Echo Lake. Warm(ish) fresh water with sandy bottom felt great after a long hike. Plus, we could look up to the mountain on one side and say, “we were up there!”


Echo Lake. Too many people to test the name.


14. Maybe I’ll touch Bubble Rock next time. Or, maybe I’ll just sit way over here again.


So. High. Up. (gulp)


15. The Boobles. One local told us to look for the two Bubble mountains by looking for the two that look like breasts. From then on, we called them The Boobles.


The Boobles. Heh, get it? BOOBles?

16. No internet service for the majority of our trip meant no fighting over iPads or video games, and no staring at screens. But, when we were jonesing for some Wifi, there were options, like this retro-funky coffee shop in town.


Plug me in, Scotty.

 17. So many lobsters this year, the Side Street Cafe had knocked $5 off many of their most popular dishes, like this beauty:


Come to mama. . .

18. Dogs everywhere!


The cuteness!


19. “Yes You May Use Our Bathroom” signs on restaurant doors.

20. Ice Cream good enough for our President.


Obama had Coconut. Belly had Salted Caramel, Jilly had Butterbeer, and D had Chocolate (of course).


21. Thunder Hole was cool, but maybe next time we’ll catch it when there’s a storm at sea and we can really scream.

22. Although it can get busy in Bar Harbor, this is still plenty of lawn space to sit and look at this:


Bahhh Hahhhbah (we don’t really talk like that)

23. We need to come back because we never made it to the top of Cadillac Mountain.

24. And we didn’t have time to try kayaking on Long Pond in Somesville.

25. The kids will never forgive us if we don’t go back next year. I can’t blame them.


Google Maps says under 6 hours. Lies, total lies.

Many thanks to my friend (and local) Robin for all of her amazing tips.


  1. That sounds almost as good as Disney World! I do want to do something like that next summer so I’ll be chatting with you!

  2. That sounds so fabulous! How can you possibly wait until next year to go again?
    Patois recently posted..Did You Hear the One about the School Board?My Profile

    • As much as I’d like to turn around and go right back, I’ve camped up north when the nights dip into the 40’s and. . .brrrrrrrrrrrrr. . .I’ll take the 5 days of gorgeous weather we had! : )

  3. One of my very favorite places on earth – so much so that we’re already talking about going camping there with the whole extended clan next summer (so I’d love to hear how you liked the campground, would it work for both tents and rv, proximity of facilities/swimming/playspaces/etc to site, all that jazz :)).

    Jay and I have stayed in Southwest Harbor a few times now, we really love the quiet side. Cute village, nice accommodations, great restaurants (oh, the lobster!)…

    The Dive-In boat is on our list for next summer with the kids but for adults/older kids the kayak tour we did with Maine State Sea Kayak was spectacular (http://www.tripadvisor.com/Attraction_Review-g40898-d1089608-Reviews-Maine_State_Sea_Kayak-Southwest_Harbor_Maine.html). We were out on Somes Sound and the wildlife was not to be believed – we were surrounded by nearly 100 baby seals!!! One of the most incredible experiences of my life, one came up not ten feet off my boat!
    Robin from Israel recently posted..Viceroy Butterfly on an Orange FlowerMy Profile

    • Robin that sounds incredible!
      Blackwoods is on the south side of Acadia, near Sand Beach (though the Park Loop is one way, so you need to loop around to get there)—I didn’t find it to be too crowded at all, though it probably is busier in high season. There were definitely plenty of tent and RV sites there but the amenities are scarce (no electric at our site; a faucet every few sites; bathrooms but no showers—coin showers on main road). Seawall Campground is more on “your” side of the island so you may prefer that, but I liked being so close to the park loop so we’ll probably do Blackwoods again. We drove to Echo Beach to swim once—it wasn’t so hot we felt like we needed to swim daily though. Keep me posted on your plans, okay? Would be so great if we were on the island at the same time next year!

      • That would be great! This is the place we’re thinking of – a bit further from the loop but right on the Sound. http://www.ssvc.info/
        Robin from Israel recently posted..Viceroy Butterfly on an Orange FlowerMy Profile

        • It looks awesome Robin! Just be careful and read the Trip Advisor reviews from this summer—-it sounds like they are still working out kinks with new owners. I know not every campground is going to get glowing reviews (ours didn’t have on-site showers which some people hated) but just make sure you are okay with the complaints too. I kind of wish the reviews were better b/c that place does look awesome, esp with a pool and dock on the sound. . .

  4. Wow. You almost have me wanting to go camping. Almost. But I think I’d have to go with a family like yours, because I am a big spoiled baby. 😉

  5. What a beautiful vacation! I am very jealous!
    Meg recently posted..La Mancha List Part 1My Profile

  6. Christine Sierra says

    Very cool. We don’t venture that far north but we will definitely consider it now! Our little edge of Maine typically sits just north of the NH border, and that’s like being home for us.

  7. Looks like fun!
    Nan | wrathofmom.blogspot.ca recently posted..For the Love of a Good Modem.My Profile


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