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Bar Island Land Bridge

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The Bar Island Land Bridge connects the mainland of Bar Harbor, Maine to Bar Island. The bridge is a popular tourist destination and offers views of Frenchman Bay and the Porcupine Islands. The bridge is also a great place for hiking, bird watching, and fishing.

bar island land bridge in bar harbor maine.


The Bar Harbor land bridge is a strip of land that connects Mount Desert Island to Bar Island. It’s believed that the low tide path was formed about 12,000 years ago when the last ice age ended and the glaciers melted. The bridge is about 1/2 mile long and consists of a gravel bar that is home to many sea life that get exposed during low tide!

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The bridge has been used by people for centuries, first as a transportation route and later as a place to live. Today, the Bar Harbor land bridge is a popular tourist attraction as the island is uninhabited and part of Acadia National Park. The remains of the old dwellings can still be seen on Bar Island!

bar island path sign.

Reasons to Visit Bar Island Land Bridge

When you think of Maine, you might think of picturesque lighthouses and rocky coastlines. But there’s a lot more to the state than that.

One of the most interesting areas is in the middle of the state, near the town of Bar Harbor. There, you’ll find an incredible land bridge that’s worth exploring.

The Bar Harbor natural land bridge is a unique geological feature that is only exposed for a few hours a day during low tide. This gravel sand bar is home to many native sea life.

Before venturing out, be sure to check out the local tide chart! Otherwise you could be trapped on Bar Island for up to 9 hours!

The area surrounding Bar Island is known for its incredible views, and it’s a popular spot for tourists. People come from all around the world to see the beauties of Acadia National Park. This is the one part of Acadia where you have to be aware of the time and local tide charts!

To those that are fascinated by local marine life, have some fun investigating small tide pools that are formed during low tide. If you are lucky, you may even be able to find some star fish, crabs, and snails.

There are also a few small villages in the area, including Bar Harbor, Southwest Harbor, and Northeast Harbor. All are worth exploring if you’re looking for someplace to eat or shop. Bridge Street, the beginning of the Bar Island land bridge is conveniently located next Downtown Bar Harbor.

walking along the path during low tide.

How to get there

The Bar Island land bridge in Bar Harbor Maine is a popular tourist destination. It can be reached by following Route 3 south into Bar Harbor from the mainland.

The bridge is located at the end of Bridge Street and has stunning views of the surrounding area. It crosses Frenchman Bay and the Mt Desert Narrows.

If you are driving in, there is ample parking around downtown Bar Harbor. There is a public parking lot on Bridge Street not far from the Bar Island land bridge. You’ll also find plenty of street parking at the Village Green and nearby streets.

For those that are using the Island Explorer bus system, Village Green is the main stop in downtown Bar Harbor. The bus stop is an easy 5-10 downhill walk to the Bar Island land bridge. Be sure to pick up a bus map at the Hulls Cove Visitor Center so that you can navigate Mt Desert Island like a pro!

people walking on the bar island path in bar harbor maine.

What to do Near Bar Island Path

The Bar Island land bridge in Bar Harbor Maine is a great place for pedestrians and bicyclists to enjoy the views of the harbor. The land bridge to Bar Island is about 1/2 mile and is an easy hike for pedestrians of all kinds. It can be chilly along the walk so bring a jacket or sweatshirt!

To those that aren’t hikers or can’t get across rougher terrain, take in the beauty of the cairns that can be found at the entrance to Bar Island. If you can get close to one, be sure to ‘add your mark’!

To those who enjoy a little hike, there is a trail to explore Bar Island. The trail will add about 0.9 miles in and out. This trail brings you on the old road that traversed the island when it was inhabited. This trail will also take you to the highest point of the 90 foot elevation on the island.

If you plan to do the Bar Island trail and explore that part of Acadia National Park, be sure to give yourself adequate time to account for the low tide cycle. The total hike in and out can range between 45 to 90 minutes. The land bridge is accessible for 1.5 hours before and 1.5 hours after low tide.

walking on the path.

Nearby Attractions

To those that are not the biggest nature fans or looking to kill time between the low tide cycle, be sure to explore nearby downtown Bar Harbor. It is home to a number of amazing restaurants that always have fresh New England seafood.

To craft beer lovers, there are two stops on the Maine Beer Trail that are only two blocks away from the land bridge. Be sure to get your stamp at Fogtown or Atlantic Brewing Company!


Planning a trip to Maine and looking for other things to do?

bar island land bridge pinterest image.

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