Don’t let an afternoon check-in put a damper on the start to your vacation. Take advantage of these Bar Harbor evening activities.
Whale of a Tale
Every Monday through Saturday at 4:30 p.m., Bar Harbor Whale Watch Co. sets out on three-and-a-half-hour catamaran tours of the Gulf of Maine in search of humpback, finback, and minke whales. All you need to do is keep a keen eye on the horizon and sit back with a glass of wine. The sunset views from the water come complimentary.
Unwind into History
Treat yourself like American royalty at The Spa at Bar Harbor Club; after all, Nelson Rockefeller was the mastermind behind this luxury spa. Nearly four generations ago, he helped transform this Tudor-style building into a destination spa. Today, its top-notch specialists will massage out your worries and help you refresh from a long journey with an herbal facial or wrap.
Down on Cottage Street above Jeanie’s Great Maine Breakfast is a late-night hidden gem: Improv Acadia. Every evening of the week, visitors – and locals – pop in to this intimate downtown venue for a Whose Line is it Anyway?-esque live performance. But don’t get too comfortable in your chair; the local cast has been known to pull audience members on stage to help with skits.
Until 5 p.m., vintners at Bar Harbor Cellars Winery walk wine lovers through the nuances of their organic grape and fruit wines during free wine tastings in a restored Civil War–era barn. What started on a whim in 2004 has bloomed into a collection of dry white, fruity reds, and fragrant dessert wines all made less than a mile from the coastline. It’s the perfect complement to a late-evening stroll along nearby Emery Cove Beach.
If you’re exploring on the first Friday of the month, connect with Art Walk Maine for its summer series when local artists mingle with hors d’oeuvres and cocktails during one-night special exhibits. Midweek travelers should stop by galleries with evening hours, like Kathleen Hall’s gallery on West Street with a collection of Van Gogh–inspired scenes of the Maine coastline. Pop in to Art and Soul Island Gallery on Main Street for Marylin Chamberlain’s watercolor Acadia landscapes and Ulla Hansen’s ongoing pastel series of Acadia National Park’s stone bridges.
Stretch Your Legs
Just a stone’s throw from the Harborside Hotel, Spa & Marina’s check-in desk, Acadia National Park’s 120 miles of hiking trails beckon the weary traveler to take a stroll into the wilderness. A good start is the easy one-mile Jordan Pond Nature Trail loop, which winds through evergreen forest and past pond views. It’s just an appetizer to other hidden trail treasures waiting to be explored.