For Labor Day weekend, we decided to visit Maine. It seemed fitting as neither of us have been to Maine before and we wanted to spend the last few days of summer outdoors and in nature. We were lucky enough to find a place on a farm by a river through Airbnb. This place was cozy and offered an amazing view of the mountains to wake up to each morning. This trip was definitely about unwinding and disconnecting. We could truly appreciate what was around us and live in the present.
We left for Maine early Saturday morning and stopped by Old Orchard Beach, Old Port, and the Freeport area. Old Orchard Beach embodied summer with its carnival rides, the sound of the waves, and the smell of boardwalk food. Old Port was a small town near Portland with shops and restaurants. We also stopped by L.L. Bean Headquarters. This place was huge with a number of buildings selling everything from outerwear and home decor to outdoor gear. It was also the last weekend of their outdoor summer concert series.
Since we arrived at our place at night, we weren’t able to see our view from the deck. When we woke up, we were greeted with a view of the mountains, our hosts’ vegetable garden, some sheep, and a crowing rooster. This place was cozy enough to sleep in the whole day, but Acadia was calling us.
You could spend days at Acadia. The vastness of the forests and water was both breathtaking and humbling. We stopped by Cadillac Mountain, Sand Beach, and Thunder Hole. We couldn’t make it to Jordan Pond because of traffic/parking issues but we would definitely recommend that you see it if you can. We then went to Bar Harbor, a small town along the coast just outside of Acadia. This town was filled with small shops and several great lobster places.
On our 8-hour trip back to NJ, we stopped by Portland Head Light. One of several well-known lighthouses in Maine located in Fort Williams State Park in Cape Elizabeth. This place was perfect for picnicking and soaking up the sun.
For a quick summary, check out our itinerary below!
Saturday, September 2
Old Orchard Beach
L.L. Bean & shops
Sunday, September 3
Acadia National Park
- Cadillac Mountain
- Sand Beach
- Thunder Hole
- Bar Harbor
Monday, September 4
Portland Head Light
We brought the Jeep up to Maine and driving was the most convenient way to navigate. There were a lot of open fields where we stayed and most points of interest were further away. Once in Acadia, the park has an Island Explorer shuttle that stops at key points of interest throughout the park. Check the site for bus routes and schedules here: http://www.exploreacadia.com/
Where we stayed
We found a place through Airbnb (not sponsored). It was on a farm with the river and mountains only a short distance away. We were happy to find a basket of fresh eggs and vegetables left by our hosts. Their sheep resided right outside the apartment and were amusing to watch. This place was so cozy it felt like home.
Temperatures varied from 60-70 F (16-26 C) during our stay. It’s best to dress in layers as the evenings can be much colder. It was cloudy and windy when we visited Acadia, especially at higher altitudes like Cadillac Mountain. We suggest bringing comfortable shoes, although hiking boots aren’t necessary for exploring common paths.
There is a $25 pass fee for private vehicles in Acadia. The pass lasts for a week. You can purchase a pass at designated shops in Maine or at one of the entrances to Acadia. You can also purchase it online here: https://www.yourpassnow.com/ParkPass/park/acad. You will just need to print the pass before your trip and place it on your dashboard while you are in the park.