A certain amount of dedication is required to see the sunrise. You have to commit to getting up early, then fight the urge to hit snooze when "go time" comes around. You drag yourself out of bed and to the prime sunrise watching spot - in this case, the shores of Acadia National Park. The morning air is cool and the sky begins to turn a variety of pastels before it's finally bathed in golden light. The top of the fiery sphere pops over the horizon line and a new day has begun.
To watch the sunrise in Acadia National Park, there are two prime spots: the top of Cadillac Mountain (where you'll be joined by plenty of others), or the shoreline by Thunder Hole. Park your car on the side of the road and climb along the rocks to pick the perfect, secluded spot to see the new day begin. Added bonus? Bring a thermos of coffee and some freshly baked scones for the perfect morning breakfast.
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Leaf-Peeping Really is a Thing
Watch carefully and you will see the colors just starting to pop all over New England, and you can be sure that the minute they do, the tourists will flock in like wide-eyed kids, staring out and up at the trees. It is Leaf Peeping Season again!
It's free, it's wonderful, and it's available throughout New England. The tree in this picture was discovered in Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor, Maine, and it was part of a cacophony of colors: everything on the brown, yellow, red, and green spectrum. Some of the reds were so deep you might have called them purple.
Book a hotel and take a walk. Take a camera, a sketch pad, or a field guide. If you have kids, name the trees and press a few of the leaves in a book of their own.
Acadia National Park is truly a treasure. With forested mountains dropping right into the rugged Maine coast, you'll find yourself exploring countless adventures...from hiking and biking, to relaxing on a beach, or enjoying a meal in Bar Harbor.
Being an avid hiker, biker, and photographer, I knew that I would feel right at home here and that my wife would love its scenic coastlines, marine life, and fauna. But what about the kids—would they appreciate Acadia and all its splendor? This would be put to the test when we rented bikes and headed out to peddle a 10-mile loop around picturesque Eagle Lake and Jordon Pond. Although they were pretty wiped when we finished, the boys really enjoyed stopping along the way to skim rocks and look for tadpoles along the water’s edge. When we went to Cadillac Mountain, the highest point on the eastern seaboard, for its breathtaking views, and hiked along Gorham Mountain and the Otter Cliffs, the boys found great pleasure in traversing the granite boulders and picking wild blueberries. So even though an 8 and 11 year-old boy may not appreciate beautiful sunsets or panoramic vistas quite the same way us adults do, they still manage to take complete advantage of nature’s many enticements. For my older son, however, the "Maine" attraction came of the man-made variety—lighthouses!
The natural beauty of Acadia National Park attracts over 2 million visitors per year. Escape the crowds near Bar Harbor and head to "The Quiet Side" of Mount Desert Island. Past the sleepy fishing village of Southwest Harbor you'll find the park's southern loop.The views are no less stunning and you'll practically have the trails to yourself.