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Worth the visit in April?

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Canada
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Worth the visit in April?

I know that most people would come in summer or fall but my husband and I will be around in mid-April. Are there things to do at that time of year? Is it worth it to come up and visit? We would be coming up from Boston so we only want to come all that way if there are still things to do and see before the summer season begins. Please let me know what you think.

Also, how far is it from Boston?

Thanks!

Wolcott, Connecticut
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1. Re: Worth the visit in April?

It's about 5 hours or so from Boston. I guess it all depends on what you mean by things to do. Most of the shops and restaurants are still closed in mid-April. It can be cold and wet (think mud) and there could still be snow on Cadillac Mountain. That being said, we've come up from mid to late April for a number of years and we like it very much. We come to Bar Harbor to visit Acadia and all it has to offer. We love to hike and will often spend an entire day without seeing another person. It's cool but as long as it doesn't rain it's great. Geddys is open for lunch and dinner as are a few other places. Plus the coast is spectacularly beautiful regardless of the time of year. We really feel that you get a better sense of the area and the town when you go off-season.

Bar Harbor, Maine
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for Bar Harbor, Acadia National Park
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2. Re: Worth the visit in April?

mrsomes has pretty much hit it. April is fondly referred to as mud season---the ground is thawing, it is cool, and there are no leaves to block the view of the mountains and valleys.

The five-hour estimate for Boston-Bar Harbor is based on using the interstate routes to Bangor and then 1A and 3 to Mount Desert Island. If you elect to use the coastal route (Rte. 1), add an hour.

We still can get snow in early April but at that time of the year, it doesn't stay long. Acadia National Park typically opens, i.e., the Loop Road and the road to Cadillac summit are fully opened, about 15 April. Before that, there still is access to the park but you might have to do more walking to get where you want to be. Most of the hiking trails will be open although there still may be some snow/ice in the higher or more sheltered areas. The carriage roads should be open and sufficiently dry for walking or bicycling.

Geddy's and McKay's typically are open all week; a few other restaurants will be open on weekends---Thursday-Saturday or Friday-Sunday.

Bar Harbor Inn---a large place---typically opens in late March; some B&Bs are open then. If you are interested in B&Bs, check:

http://www.sleepbarharbor.com

Many of the B&Bs listed there show availability (you might have to wait until this season closes down to see about next April).

A full range of lodging alternatives is available at:

http://www.acadiamagic.com

and our April weather history can be seen at:

www.wunderground.com/tripplanner/index.asp

Enter our zipcode -- 04609 -- and the range of dates that interest you.

Canada
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3. Re: Worth the visit in April?

Thank you.

I guess I will have to wait and see. I would love to visit there but am wondering if the 5 hour drive is worth it. If most of the shops etc. are closed would booking a shorter time there be advised? (Since there are limited things to do at that time of year?)

Bar Harbor, Maine
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4. Re: Worth the visit in April?

If it's really shopping that you are interested in, then you could go just two hours north of Boston and visit Freeport, Maine. Everything there will be open. It's the home of L.L. Bean's flagship store and also has many outlet stores.

Canada
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5. Re: Worth the visit in April?

I was interested in the cute shops that may be in Bar Harbour more than big box stores. I like looking around at different things. I wanted more to see the town which looks so gorgeous but know that won't fill all of my time. Plus, depending on weather we may not be able to be outside the whole time like most people probably are when they come up.

Wolcott, Connecticut
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6. Re: Worth the visit in April?

Freeport has outlets, LL Bean and a lot of unique, interesting shops. It's a real mixture and no big box stores in town that I'm aware of. There's a state park by the water which is lovely. You could also stay in Portland. Get a hotel in the Old Port section and walk everywhere. Lots of great restaurants, shopping, museums plus you're only 15-20 minutes from some beautiful coastline. Either place will cover your bases if the weather is lousy.

Bar Harbor, Maine
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for Bar Harbor
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7. Re: Worth the visit in April?

There are enough small shops open in April to take spend a couple hours one after noon checking things out. Also, McKay's, Galyn's, Guiness and Porcelli's, Reel Pizza, Jack Russells, Thirsty Whale, and other restaurants are open. You won't have to eat at Geddy's every lunch and dinner.

Last April, my friend and I biked the Park Loop Road which was closed to traffic and it was awesome. We took our time (walked up the big hills) and spent about 2 1/2 hours biking around. There was still some snow on the shady parts of the road. It was probably one of the best days I've ever had! During the summer there is too much traffic for a novice biker like me to even think about riding on the loop road.

My husband and I also enjoy hiking during April and May because you have the whole trail to yourself. There is no trouble finding parking.

There will probably be about 5 B&B's open at that time and they will all be offering their reduced rates so it's a great time to get a really good deal on lodging.

The carriage roads usually close during those last two weeks of April in order for them to dry out after all the melting snow, so you may not be able to bike or walk on those, but the hiking trails will be open.

The drive from Boston is definitely worth it! It's an easy drive either taking Rt 1 or 95.

Portsmouth VA
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8. Re: Worth the visit in April?

You might be able to find some cute shops open in the SE Maine beach areas - Kennebunkport - Kittery etc. You could drive Rt 1 from Kittery up to Portland then for antiques etc and then jump up to Freeport.

9. Re: Worth the visit in April?

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