Pets allowed
Allowed with Restrictions
Elevation Gain
225.00 ft (68.58 m)
Trail type
1.40 mi (2.25 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

The Ship Harbor Trail is a pleasant figure-eight loop along Mount Desert Island's southwest coast in Acadia National Park. It is less popular than many of the hikes along Acadia National Park's Park Loop Road, but it offers views that are just as gorgeous. The entire trail is only 1.8 miles, but those who enjoy bird watching or tide pool exploring will be able to spend hours here.

The trail begins at a small pullout along route 102A near the Seawall Campground. A pit toilet is available at the trailhead. The trail dips gradually before rising to the first intersection. Bearing right here leads to a small overlook of Ship Harbor. The placid waters host loons, eiders, and great blue herons, while osprey and eagles patrol the sky.

The trail continues paralleling the harbor, eventually reaching a second intersection. Another right turn will lead to a spur trail out onto a sandbar near the mouth of the harbor. Return to the main trail to continue. It rises slightly before looping around to the left at a rocky headland. At low tide, tide pools ripple with life along this spur into the ocean.

The trail continues to the left and eventually return to the second intersection, where another right turn brings hikers through an open forest. Turn right a second time to continue back to the parking area.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

National Park Pass


Less crowded than other places in Acadia. Wildflowers. Ocean views.



Trailhead Elevation

38.00 ft (11.58 m)


Whale watching
Bird watching
Big vistas

Typically multi-day



Nearby Lodging + Camping


Very easy hike, beautiful views off the rocks.
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