We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Murcia, Spain
Level Contributor
296 posts
98 reviews
Save Topic
Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

We have four days, with car, to get a taste of the Maine coast, 2-6 June.

We are not fans of crowds and busy roads. Should we avoid Acadia?

Would appreciate some recommendations for this trip. We are a retired couple early (young) 60s. Like to drive and love empty places!

Bar Harbor, Maine
Level Contributor
6,591 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

I would not avoid anything in Maine in early June. Crowds and traffic are a relative thing. Because there simply are not that many people who live in Maine nor any large cities, there is really very little traffic or crowds. Don't deprive yourself of seeing the most beautiful spot on the coast of Maine, Acadia National Park, because a fear of crowds. It just isn't so.

Murcia, Spain
Level Contributor
296 posts
98 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Very much what I hoped to hear. Thanks!

Central Maine
Destination Expert
for Maine
Level Contributor
6,882 posts
152 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

The weekend before you arrive is a three-day holiday weekend....it traditionally marke the beginnng of the summer coastal tourist season.... and while the weekend itself may be busier than usual, the weekday visit you've outlined shouldn't present any problems in terms of either crowds or traffic. Enjoy!

Murcia, Spain
Level Contributor
296 posts
98 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Yes, we will be in Yellowstone over that weekend. I'd wondered how much the holiday period would stretch into that week. We had to be somewhere for that weekend on our 4-week trip round various states! And it happens to be Yellowstone.

For our first night, after arriving at BOS, we have accommodation booked in Cape Ann, MA. We then plan to potter northwards. Should we take the Interstate to the other side of Portland? I'd had in mind, perhaps, Belfast for the next overnight stop? Then Acadia (Bar Harbor best place to stay?) then to Machias, perhaps and back to Boston from there; I'd asked about that drive previously here:

tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowTopic-g28940-i175-k340…

All advice very gratefully received. We've been travelling to and around USA since 1981 and planning then involved much more work than now when we have all the resources on the Internet at our fingertips. I love it!

Edited: 30 April 2010, 08:06
Bar Harbor, Maine
Destination Expert
for Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park
Level Contributor
3,893 posts
13 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Boston to Bar Harbor is roughly a five to six-hour drive on the interstate. The hour variance is in recognition of weather conditions, highway conditions (see the "Best driving routes..." thread), how fast you drive etc.

It certainly can be done in one day; a Belfast overnight stop would take advantage of the Rt 3 route from Augusta and the avoidance of the Rt. 1-A reconstruction.

For accessing Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor is the most convenient place to stay, although nowhere on the island is that far from a park access. For lodging alternatives, see:

http://www.acadiamagic.com

If a bed & breakfast inn interests you:

http://www.sleepbarharbor.com

Central Maine
Destination Expert
for Maine
Level Contributor
6,882 posts
152 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Or -- as an alternative to Belfast for your overnight between Boston and Bar Harbor -- take a look at Camden.....pretty little town, some nice restaurants, and a more varied harborside than Belfast.

From Boston, you'd get into town in time to check in at your accommodations, decide where to have dinner (and make reservations if desired or needed), and still have time for a stroll on the harbor.

The next morning, on your way to Bar Harbor, you could drive up Mt Battie at Camden Hills State Park (just north of Belfast) for a great view of the town, the harbor and the mid-coast.

Substituting Camden for Belfast is easy to do....instead of taking Rt 3 from Augusta to Belfast, just take Rt 17 from August to Rockland and turn north on Rt 1 through Rockport to Camden.

Whether you stay in Belfast or Camden, on your way to Bar Harbor the next day, be sure to stop at the Penobscot Narrows Bridge Observatory, just south of Bucksport. A fantastic two-story observatory built into one of the towers of the bridge carrying Rt 1 over the Penobscot River. Adjacent Fort Knox is also an interesting attraction. You should have time to visit both and still get to Bar Harbor in good season.

Murcia, Spain
Level Contributor
296 posts
98 reviews
Save Reply
7. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Thanks to you both for the advice!

John

Portland, Maine
Level Contributor
303 posts
26 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

The big crowds start around July 4 as most schools let out in mid to late June. If driving from Boston, expect traffic at the toll gates in New Hampshire and Maine.

If you look at a map, the coastline north of Portland consists of many peninsulas or necks. I've enjoyed driving these just to see what's there. Lots of beautiful scenery and small towns. Five Islands Lobster, south of Bath, has been featured as one of the best spots for lobster. Don't expect fine dining as it's paper plates and picinic tables. The view and surroundings are worth it. Have fun.

Edited: 01 May 2010, 14:47
Murcia, Spain
Level Contributor
296 posts
98 reviews
Save Reply
9. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

MainerOnTheGo: <<Or -- as an alternative to Belfast for your overnight between Boston and Bar Harbor -- take a look at Camden.....pretty little town, some nice restaurants, and a more varied harborside than Belfast.>>

Met my partner in Camden, London! So perhaps we should go.

Looking at hotels, maybe the Lord Camden Inn? I think I prefer the look of that to the #1 rated Camden Riverhouse Hotel and Inns??

And thanks for the additional tips, rfische1.

Central Maine
Destination Expert
for Maine
Level Contributor
6,882 posts
152 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: Early June: First Visit to Maine Coast

Haven't personally stayed at any of the Camden properties anytime recently, so really can't make a recommendation.... But the Lord Camden has been around a long time and used to be very good.