Acadia Has So Much to Offer
See the stars and hear the thunder
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Last summer I was fortunate enough to explore all of the natural beauty of Acadia National Park with the people that I love. Acadia is a nature reserve located on Mount Desert Island in Maine, about a five and half hour drive from Boston. The island has rocky coasts, mountains, lakes, ponds, meadows and even Bar Harbor, a small town that attracts people from all over the country. Personally, the outdoors is where I am most comfortable, so Acadia is the place for me.
One of the first stops my family and I made was the summit of Cadillac Mountain. We hopped in our car and drove up the winding road to reach the top, stopping at many of the viewpoints to take in the stunning views. From the top, you could see the countless islands off of Maine’s coasts and everything else below. The true beauty though, is Cadillac Mountain at night. At around 11 p.m., my Dad and I drove up the same winding road to the summit, this time not to see the view below, but to see the view above. In Maine there is less light pollution than our home in Massachusetts, so the stars are much clearer, and many more are visible compared to Abington. When I laid down to see the sky, I was able to clearly see a part of our Milky Way galaxy. My Dad had a pair of binoculars in the car, and with the magnification, we were able to locate many constellations, and even the galaxy closest to us (Andromeda).
Echo Lake is a popular swimming spot with a small public beach and a view of Beech Mountain. The beach is a great place to relax and take in some sun, but it is extremely crowded. My family and I stumbled upon a great spot on Echo Lake that had huge rocks, perfect for eating lunch, relaxing, and even for jumping off of. The fresh water leaves you feeling refreshed and cool.
Thunder Hole is a major tourist attraction in the heart of Acadia. It is a huge inlet in the rocks of Maine’s shore that was naturally formed by water smashing against it. There is something about the shape of the hole that creates a loud noise when the waves crash into it that resembles the sound of thunder. You can see the waves reach a height of 40 feet during the intense impact. There is a small elevated walkway leading tourists to the attraction and providing a great view of the water flushing in and out of the inlet. The famous thunder-like roar doesn’t happen all the time. You have to visit when the tide is coming in if you want to get the full effect.
Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse
The Bass Harbor Head Lighthouse was built in 1858 and is now used for Coast Guard housing. When we arrived, we walked down a short trail that leads to the rough face of the cliff the lighthouse stands on. The view of the lighthouse from that point seems like one from a postcard or calendar. There is a separate trail that brings you to the lighthouse. When standing next to the structure, you really appreciate the amazing view of the ocean, sparkling in the sun.
Acadia National Park is a family friendly place that connects people to nature. It helped us truly appreciate the world we live in. We sometimes take for granted the beauty that the world provides us, so going to places like Acadia can remind us of what really matters. Whether you find peace in swimming in lakes, hiking a mountain, natural thrills, or just fresh air, Acadia is a great getaway. And if you go, be sure to bring your camera!