Another beautiful fall day greeted a group of tourists who boarded Acadian Nature Cruises for a boat tour. We set out into Frenchman Bay in search of wildlife and scenic views of Acadia National Park. We would not be disappointed.
Getting on board
The boat is a dual level, which is nice as passengers can either sit atop or seek protection from the elements at the bottom level in case of rain or excessive heat. The weather in Maine was pretty much perfect for the three weeks I explored the state, and today was no different. We all congregated on the seats at the top for the best views and to listen to the folksy narrative from our guide.
It does get a little cooler out on the water, so bring with warm clothes and a rain jacket. The boat has a heated cabin, and they provide blankets, but it is best to be prepared.
Acadian Nature Cruises two-hour tour
The two-hour tour promoted the possibility to see eagles, porpoises, seals, and perhaps other marine wildlife. The tour also promised views of Acadia National Park and views of Egg Rock Lighthouse. The beautiful views are just about guaranteed. Wildlife sightings; on the other hand, cannot be guaranteed. The likelihood of seeing something interesting is pretty good.
We began by skirting the rocky shoreline just outside Acadia National Park. There were some incredible houses along the shoreline. Our guide gave a little historical background to some of the residences.
We then left the homes behind and drifted past the gorgeous coastline of Acadia National Park. Hiking the park provides one picturesque view after another; however, you cannot get the same type of perspective from hiking as you get from a boat. I am an avid canoeist, and I always preach about the beautiful views one gets from a canoe. A tour boat is not different, and to get the full spectrum of views from Acadia, you definitely want to take this tour.
It was fall in Maine; however, this tour is not the best way to see fall colors in the state. The shoreline and the hills overlooking the coastline are rocky with few hardwood trees. Many of trees, especially on the islands, are pines. Despite this, there were a few dashes of color on the hills, which did make for some scenic images.
Related: Moose madness on the Allagash River
The wildlife spotting got off to a slow start. After we pulled away from the Acadia shoreline, we headed toward some rocky islands and Egg Rock Lighthouse. We saw a few harbor seals around the rocky islands as well as some waterfowl and gulls.
The wildlife highlight was seeing a bald eagle not only fly over the boat, but follow it. In fact, at one point, it soared right above the American flag. See the video below for a shot of the bald eagle flying past the American flag. I just missed getting a photo of the eagle right above the flag. We saw another bald eagle a little later in the day roosting on a pine tree on one of the islands.
Egg Rock Light Station
Maine is well renowned for its lighthouses. Another great reason to book this tour is an opportunity to get close and photograph Egg Rock Light Station. Egg Rock Light Station is on an island midway in the Mt. Dessert narrows between the mainland and Mt. Dessert Island.
Unless you have a quality zoom lens, it is tough to get a good shot. Hop on an Acadian Nature Cruise boat tour to get closer and take photos with your cell phone. We circled the lighthouse in order to get quality photos from each side, which helps get the best angle with the sun.
Acadia National Park is one of the most visited national parks in the system. It is also one of the smaller ones, so it can get pretty crowded. A perfect way to escape the crowds and see the park from a different perspective is through a nature boat cruise. It only takes two hours, so you still have plenty of time to return to the park and go for a hike, bike a trail, or drive one of the scenic drives.
After tour lobster
When the tour is over, there is only one way to celebrate. That is with a Sea Dog blueberry wheat ale and fresh lobster at Geddy’s. Check out the smile on my face in the photo below. A Maine fresh lobster dinner has that power. You can definitely meet me at Geddy’ anytime I am in Bar Harbor.
For more information on the boat tour check out their website.
This tour and my hotel in Bar Harbor were complimentary thanks to Visit Maine; however, my meal at Geddy’s and the 4,000 miles I drove to Maine and back were not. These facts did not impact my post as my opinions, photographs, and videos are my own.
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