Less crowded than Mount Desert Island, there is no park fee to access the Schoodic Peninsula. Encompassing 2366 acres, it is the only portion of Acadia National Park on the mainland.
- Access to Schoodic Peninsula is free
- 7 mile one-way Scenic Ocean Drive
- Hiking, Biking, Picnicking, DownEast villages
- By car, from Ellsworth to Rte 1 east to Hancock. Turn right onto Rte 186 to Winter Harbor and the Park entrance.
- By Ferry June to August
- Free Bus Service from late June to August
In 2002 the Winter Harbor Naval Airbase closed, returning land and donating the facilities to the Park. The brick Tutor style Head Quarters is now the Schoodic Education and Research Center (one of seventeen in the country). It is also an ideal area for large groups with ample picnic space and a complete recreational field.
View Mount Desert Island from a unique perspective off its coast. Visit Winter Harbor, that boasts of its quite community, restaurants and shops and its famous annual lobster festival. Or explore the unique coastal habitat, dark diabase dikes between pink granite ledges, inter-tidal zones, and stunted spruce/fir forests along the coast.
Perfect for Bicycling, Hiking, Picnicking. Frazer Point picnic area, located at the beginning of the ocean drive, has tables, fire rings, restrooms, drinking water, and a dock. Those bicycling can take advantage of the bike racks on the Island Explorer bus.
Four hiking trails include:
- The Schoodic Head Trail (Views of Mount Desert Island)
- Anvil Trail (Longest trail, about 2 miles)
- East Trail (Short steep forest trail to the top of Schoodic Head)
- Alder Trail (Easy level trail and shrub-land)
Four miles from Bar Harbor by Ferry and boat or an hour’s drive by car, visitors are rewarded with a quiet coastline for exploration. From Ellsworth, bear left at the Y to go onto Route 1, toward Schoodic. Take the Schoodic National Scenic Byway (Rte 1 starting in West Sullivan) about 15 minutes through small towns and fishing villages, to Gouldsboro and Winter Harbor. Take a right onto Route 186 and follow it to Winter Harbor to the Park entrance. The park provides a 7.2 mile ocean drive with spectacular views of rocky shores, ocean waves, lobsters boats and wildlife.
The Ferry Service, open daily, mid June to early fall, cuts travel time and links to the free Island Explorer shuttle in Winter Harbor. The shuttle runs from the last week in June through August.