Share:

Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens

Downeast + Acadia, Maine

Start Exploring
Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens

Share:

  • The entrance to the Wild Gardens of Acadia.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Wandering the gardens.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Low sweet blueberry (Vaccinium angustifolium).- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Wild columbine (Aquilegia canadensis).- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • The garden's paths are mostly crushed stone.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • A few bridges span small streams.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Bog rosemary (Andromida polifolia var. glaucophylla).- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Venus flytrap (Dionaea muscipula).- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • A small stream flows through the wild gardens.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Large-seeded hawthorne (Crataegus macrosperma) in bloom.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
  • Walking toward the Sieur de Monts Spring.- Sieur de Monts Nature Center + Wild Gardens
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Wildflowers. Hiking trails. Family friendly.
Cons: 
None.
Region:
Downeast + Acadia, ME
Congestion: 
Moderate
Preferable Season(s):
Spring, Summer, Fall
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
National Park Pass
Points of Interest:
Historical landmark, Wildflowers
Dogs allowed: 
Yes, with restrictions
Current Local Weather:
Powered by Dark Sky

Today

Partly cloudy throughout the day.
67°F
56°

Sun

Foggy starting in the evening.
69°F
57°

Mon

Foggy in the morning.
70°F
58°

Tue

Light rain in the morning and overnight.
62°F
54°

Wed

Light rain in the morning.
67°F
55°

Thu

Clear throughout the day.
62°F
48°

Fri

Clear throughout the day.
61°F
49°
Published in collaboration with
Adventure Description

Adventure Description

Pro Contributor

The Sieur de Monts Nature Center in Acadia National Park is home to the Abbe Museum, the Wild Gardens of Acadia, and the Sieur de Monts Spring, all of which are free to access with a national parks pass. The nature center itself covers a wide variety of topics including the role of fires, wildlife, and air quality on Mount Desert Island.  The Sieur De Monts Spring is just behind the nature center, a key historical factor in the foundation of the park. The Wild Gardens sit to the right of the building, harboring over 300 native plant species, each labeled. The Abbe Museum is dedicated to displaying the Native American culture that flourished on Mount Desert Island before the parks existence.

From the parking area, the most noticeable feature is the Wild Gardens of Acadia. Fenced in for protection from the many grazing creatures of Acadia, the gardens represent nine different habitats found throughout Mount Desert Island. The plants are labeled with small placards giving both their common and scientific names. The garden is maintained by the Bar Harbor Garden Club.

Immediately to the left of the garden, the Nature Center is housed in a small stone building. When it’s open, between mid-June and late September, the center is staffed by park rangers ready to answer any questions. Admission is free, and it’s located at one of the entrances to the Park Loop Road, making it a great place to begin your Acadia National Park experience.

A small pond and a network of several trails are found behind the nature center building, with the Sieur De Mont Spring clearly visible in a white shrine. The Sieur de Monts Spring was named by George B. Dorr, the father of Acadia, in honor of Pierre Du Gua de Monts, a Liuetenant Governor of New France, who had authority over much of North America in the early 1600s. De Monts was commissioned by King Henry IV to explore and settle the region. For his part, Dorr was an early admirer of the beauty of Mount Desert Island and later became the park’s first superintendent. Dorr built the spring house and carved “The Sweet Waters of Acadia” in the bedrock nearby. While many believe the spring house was built to preserve the purity of the water, it was actually built to capture the cold air surrounding the spring.

A bit further beyond the spring is the Abbe Museum. Founded in 1926, the Abbe Museum celebrates the Wabanaki culture. The museum illuminates over 12,000 years of tradition and historical events. Admission fees from May 25 to October are $3 for adults, $1 for children 11 through 17, and children 10 and under are free.

Many other paths are accessible from the Sieur De Monts Nature center, including the Jesup Path.

Updates, Tips + Comments

Updates, Tips + Comments

Field Guide + Map

Field Guide + Map

Download
Published in collaboration with
Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(1 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(16 within a 30 mile radius)

Published in collaboration with
Related Content

Related Content

Adventure Community

Adventure Community

Who Wants To Do It
4 Members
Who's Done It
2 Members
Submission by
Pro Contributor
167 Adventures Explored
138 Adventures Published

Published in collaboration with #KeltyBuilt

Kelty's goal is to deliver up proven gear that’s innovative, uncomplicated and built to last. They are there for those of you seeking good times, adventure and gear that brings it all together. They hope to empower and inspire you to get outside… create memories and fulfill the passion for adventure that we all have.

Because no matter what you’re doing. Kelty will be right there with you… Adventure after Adventure. That’s #KeltyBuilt

Newsletter Signup

Join the Outdoor Project Community

Get access to essential planning materials and information for your next adventure. Take a few seconds to join the community. It’s FREE!

Free Field Guides + Maps

Post Updates, Tips + Comments

Organize + Track Your Adventures

Insider Detailed Info, News + Benefits

Custom Driving Directions

Recommended Campsites, Photos + Reservation Info