Saving the Ales and Other Things To Do If It Rains in Acadia National Park

Children can have a great time with their parents even if it’s raining in Acadia National Park.  While this kind of weather rules out whale watching, there are touch tanks and an oceanarium, a movie house that serves pizza during the show, and welcoming libraries and picturesque bookstores with waterfront reading areas. Take a look at my recent post for more ideas on what to do with kids if it rains.


This post, however, is for adults.


A book and a nap are high on my list of activities for a rainy day.  Working with that as a theme, here are three options for things to do that surely will get you in a Gene Kelly kind of mood.


1. Taste some of Maine’s best micro-brews.  Bar Harbor Brewing offers tastings of its award-winning ales and stouts at its brewery and storefront, now conveniently located at 8 Mount Desert Street in downtown Bar Harbor.  The day we went Andre Lozano was offering very generous pours to compensate for the fact that their True Blue Blueberry Ale and Bar Harbor Peach Ale were not available.  They only produce 100 cases a week, so many of the brands are in short supply, and they only distribute within 100 miles of Bar Harbor, so this was a treat.  Another day we visited Atlantic Brewing Company in Town Hill, which is in a very pleasant setting and offers tables in a garden for sunny days. Also behind the farmhouse and right next to the brewery is the tiny Knox Road Grill, which really put us in the mood for pulled pork.  Instead, though, we enjoyed an extremely interesting tour of the brewery during which we had the opportunity to smell and taste barley roasted to various depths.  Then we tasted nine different ales and stouts, as well as two sodas.  That brought us to nap time!


2. Relax with a massage.  In fact, Bar Harbor offers world-class services that may well put you into a slumber.  They will certainly help soothe some of your sore muscles from hiking and paddling.  The Bar Harbor Inn beckons you to its spa through a trellis and into a separate building, with a wicker-furnished waiting room overlooking the lawn and Frenchmen’s Bay.  Have some fruit and water before moving to a candle-lit private room (or a couples’ room) for your treatment on a warm massage table – how perfect for a rainy afternoon!  My deep tissue massage was $105.  Another option, in a simpler setting that is appealing in its straightforwardness, is the Tree of Life Day Spa.  It is operated by the owners of the Acadia School of Massage, who also provide treatments themselves on occasion.  Although my therapist exclaimed “You have knots everywhere.  I honestly have never seen so many!” she was able to work many of them out and I was extremely satisfied with the massage, which cost $95


3. Find a new novel.  We headed off the beaten path down to Bass Harbor and Bernard to explore.  This is a great thing to do on a rainy day…or a sunny one if you want to avoid the crowds.  There are a few antique shops in Bernard, but the Old Red Store (129 Bernard Road) was the only one that was open.  It didn’t matter because I found a wonderful old watercolor of loggers loading cargo on to sailing ships for $36 framed, fabulous tote bags made of recycled sail cloth, and very nice stationery.  We then headed over to Port Side, the sister bookstore of Port In A Storm in Somesville, which is also located on the water in an historic building.  I lost myself reading the reviews and recommendations of the staff – a very friendly gesture of this entrepreneurship.  I bought something by Wallace Stegner I hadn’t read, as well as Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods.  We wrapped up the day with a great lobster dinner at Thurston’s before heading home to Somesville.


Of course, a perfectly good option is to just stay in, read, nap, and head out for an early dinner.  Mount Desert Island offers many great eateries from casual to elegant, from lobster pounds to tapas and wine bars.  For reviews of 12 great spots close to Acadia National Park, visit OUR ACADIA. 


Nimbus clouds today?  Let it pour!





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