Maine’s beauty is unmatched. An outdoor wonderland in New England region, Maine is a must-visit destination for many reasons. Gorgeous landscape, exotic seafood, Maine is a place where your pursuits of adventure end. And today we are going to talk about one incredible facet of the state’s rich treasures. And that is its national parks. Diverse ecosystem, unique flora and fauna, natural beauty, and whatnot – national parks in Maine encompass vast wilderness. And they are of great historical and cultural values too. Offering you with a great scope of recreational as well as outdoor activities, scenic vistas, and breathtaking landscapes – the 4 national parks in Maine are outstanding in every possible way.
Acadia National Park is not the only national park in Maine as you may think. Other than this, there are many services sites registered by the United States National Parks System that are equally gorgeous. In this list of national parks in Maine, we have included the famous Acadia National Park, the Appalachian National Scenic Trail, the Katahdin Woods, and Waters National Monument, and also the Saint Croix Island International Historic Site which is more commonly referred to as Dochet Island. All of these sites are the pride of Maine. And the Appalachian Trail that runs from northeast to southwest starting from Mount Katahdin Mountain in Maine is simply stunning. Other than these, the state is also home to some of the wealthiest state parks too. So if you are up for adventure in the New England region, these are the most beautiful 4 national parks in Maine you just need to visit.
Best National Parks In Maine Everyone Has To Visit:
Acadia National Park:
The first national park east of the Mississippi River, Acadia National Park, Maine is the only national park in the Northeast of the United States and is one of the best national parks in Maine. Verdant, lush, and diverse, this national park locates along the mid-section of the Maine coast. One of the top ten most visited national parks in the United States, Acadia covers more than 49,000 acres and is home to a unique array of flora and fauna. Mostly contained within Mount Desert Island, Acadia was once inhabited by the Wabanaki people. During its inception in the year 1916, the park’s name was Sieur de Monts National Monument and it was only in the year 1929 when the park finally got named Acadia National Park.
Acadia showcases various glacial landforms. Considered as one of the most geologically remarkable sites along the Atlantic Coast, Acadia is the only national park along the eastern seaboard that has a coastline carved by Pleistocene glaciers. The Cadillac Mountain standing on Mount Desert Island is not only the highest mountain in the park but also is the highest point on the east coast of the United States.
Flying Mountain which stands at an elevation of 284 feet is the lowest mountain in the park. Jagged coastal cliffs, rocky beaches to towering granite peaks – Acadia’s splendid beauty is beyond any description.
The park is heaven to spot wildlife. Among the faunal diversity, one can spot bears, moose, seabirds, and even whales. The predator bird, the peregrine falcon is one of the major attractions here. Besides, there are songbirds, herons, and a wide variety of ducks. Deep inside the park’s forests, one can get to see salamanders, frogs, and toads as well. Raccoons, otters, foxes, and more – Acadia is one of the best national parks in Maine for wildlife watching.
There are more than 158 miles of hiking trails in there. From easy coastal walks to strenuous hiking trails that lead to the top of the towering granite peaks, Acadia has some of the best hiking trails and carriage roads that are worth exploring. The easy hikes include Ocean Path, Thunder Hole to Sand Beach, and Jordan Pond Nature Trail. If you are a more experienced hiker, trails like Beehive Loop Trail, Orange and Champlain North Ridge Trail Loop, and Cadillac North Ridge Trail are for you.
Katahdin Woods And Waters National Monument:
Encompassing the mountainous and wilderness area in north-central Maine, Katahdin Woods and Waters National Monument is one of the national park servie sites in Maine. Of great historical value, this national monument has served as one of the oldest human settlement sites that dates back to more than 11,000 years. Encompassing a land area of about 87,560 acres, this park manages by the US National Park service is one of the greatest outdoor atttractions in the country and also one of the best national parks in Maine.
A great place to experience majestic landforms, rivers, trails, and spectacular vistas, if you are seeking solitude and want to go hiking, bird watching, and camping, Katahdin is the place for you. Get to see the wonderful views of Mount Katahdin which is the tallest mountain in Maine and stands at an elevation of 5,268 feet. The monument’s exact location is along the eastern border of Maine’s Baxter State Park. Established only in the year 2016, the park is also home to a number of great hikes. Barnard Mountain Trail, Orin Falls Trail, and International Appalachian Trail are among the must mentions.
A great escape into the solitude, the park, monument, and scenic byway is one of the finest places to get into fishing, wildlife watching, whitewater rafting, hiking, and also snowmobiling.
Saint Croix Island International Historic Site:
A unit of the National Park System, Saint Croix Island or Dochet Island is one of the most geographically and historically significant national parks in Maine. Uninhabited and designated in 1984 as an international historic site, this 6.5-acre island does not allow public access. However, there is a visitor contact station on the mainland of the United States and a display on the Canadian mainland that locates just opposite to the island. Though the island is not accessible, you can get a beautiful overlook of the island from the park’s Canada interpretive site in Bayside.
Visit the self-guided interpretive trail, take the chance to set a picnic at the Saint Croix Island International Historic Site that overlooks the Saint Croix River, and relax a while. Overall, it is a great place for hiking, trail walking, picnicking, photography, and dog walking.
Appalachian National Scenic Trail:
The famous Appalachian Trail starts from Maine and then passes through 14 states. Generally known as A.T. the trail runs for about 2,200 miles and is one of the longest continuously marked trails in the nation. One of the longest hiking routes in the entire world, it is hard to get completed with the whole trek. One of the national park service sites in Maine, being a thru-hiker of the trail is such a challenging job. Thru-hikers are those who explore the entire trail.
One of the best national parks in Maine, this is also intriguing to know that The Appalachian Trail is the world’s longest hike-only trail. The establishment of the trail was completed in the year 1937 and it took about 10 years of work.