Ship Harbor Trail – Acadia National Park
Located in the southwestern corner of Acadia National Park and Mount Desert Island, in what has commonly been referred to as the quietside of the island, lies a small pocket of Acadia attractions. From east to west east along this stretch, points of interest include: Seawall and the Seawall Campground, the Wonderland Trail, the Ship Harbor Trail, and Bass Harbor Lighthouse.
The Ship Harbor Trail is located on the south side of Route 102A. The trailhead features approximately 20 parking spaces, with additional roadside parking, wheelchair accessible parking, and a restroom facility. The trail is a 1.3 mile figure-8 loop that allows visitors to experience spruce forests, tidal mud flats, rocky coastline, and stunning ocean views.
With a difficulty level of easy, the Ship Harbor Trail is ideal for families and those looking for a less intensive walk in the park. Much of the beginning of the trail is wheelchair accessible with a flat crushed stone path, however, the entire trail is not wheelchair accessible. Pets are also allowed on the Ship Harbor Trail with a leash.
The Ship Harbor Trail features a number of helpful information stanchions and signs throughout the loop that provide excellent insight into the wildlife, geology, and ecosystems that are seen over the course of the trail. The trail also provides a number of stunning photo opportunities along the way including foot bridges, granite cliffs, and lobster boats.
The Ship Harbor Trail takes approximately 30 to 60 minutes to complete, though it’s easy to spend even more time exploring some of the many trail offshoots that provide a closer look at the surrounding environment. The trail is ideal for picnicking at the farthest point out, where you can watch the tides and boats come and go.
Similar to its nearby neighbor the Wonderland Trail, which runs parallel to the east, the Ship Harbor Trail offers a quieter look at the unique ecosystems of Acadia National Park.