Favorite Things To Do & Eat In Bar Harbor, Maine | From A Local Wedding Photographer

Tips & Advice

Hey, I’m Emily – Your Local Bar Harbor, Maine Photographer

Growing up near Bar Harbor, it was easy to take advantage of all that it has to offer. It was so easily accessible to my family and often was avoided during the busier months to avoid the crowds of people from away. But that’s not the case for me anymore! After spending a few years living outside of Maine, and traveling to many new places all over the country, I am discovering a new love and admiration for this beautiful little town on the coast of Maine.

Partly because of it’s quaint charm and yummy eats, but also for what it brings me…. It brings me the majority of my portrait clientele! When I’m not photographing weddings, I get the opportunity to meet, photograph, and capture memories for families, couples, and high school seniors visiting from all over the world! And with that, I also get to find and photograph some of the most beautiful views that I’ve ever seen. I love to create the most epic photographs for my clients!

Since the majority of my clients are from away, I’m always getting asked for recommendations, so I thought I’d jot down some of personal favorites and share them with you all! (Please note: this isn’t in any way sponsored or promoted. I just wanted to share some places that I have personally enjoyed.)

A Few Of My Favorite Things To Eat In Bar Harbor –

Side Street Cafe – My most frequent go-to place. I love their mac & cheese, that has the option to add whatever you want to it!! It’s usually pulled pork in the mac for me. They also have a yummy blueberry vodka lemonade 😉

Rosalie’s Pizza – This was a family fav growing up. You can eat in or get it to go and have a picnic nearby at Agamont Park.

Geddy’s – A fun vibe, with great nachos and many other options!

Thirsty Whale – I ate here for the first time this spring and I was not disappointed. My mom and I each had a cup of clam chowder and shared a Captain’s Platter that was full of fresh seafood (haddock, clams, shrimp, scallops).

The Fish House – indoor/outdoor seating near the water with all the seafood options!

Ben and Bill’s Chocolate Emporium – my favorite place for a sweet treat!

Jack Russell’s Steakhouse – If you’re looking for some surf & turf this is a great option just outside of downtown!

Bar Harbor Catering Co. & Abel’s Lobster – perfect for events, dining, and picnics! (pictured below)

Pictures: Luxury Picnic with food from Bar Harbor Catering Co. on handcrafted charcuterie boards from East of Acadia Woodworking, and florals from Floret Maine.

A Few Of My Favorite FREE Things To Do In Bar Harbor –

Walk Around Downtown – lots of different shops on main street, bites to eat, grassy park with waterfront views of lobster boats.

Walk The Shore Path – 1.5 mile paved path along Frenchmen’s Bay that starts in front of The Bar Harbor Inn.

Have A Picnic In The Park – pack a lunch or grab takeout nearby and have a picnic in the grass at Agamont Park.

Drive Through Acadia National Park – you just need a National Park Pass to enjoy some of the most incredible views.

Sand Beach – listen to the waves crashing along the rocky shore as you stroll through the sand, or lay out to catch a tan!

Trails – so many trails! One of my faves is Great Head Trail with amazing views of Sand Beach.

Jordan Pond – walk around the pond, then stop in for tea and popovers at the Jordan Pond House.

Sunrise/ Sunset at Cadillac Mountain – drive to the summit of Cadillac Mountain to be the first person to catch the sunrise. They are requiring reservations now, so be sure to check that out in advance.

Pictures: View of the Margaret Todd Schooner from the Bar Harbor Inn, Jordan Pond and Bubble Rocks with fall foliage, Engagement session with Emily Brianne Photography on top of Cadillac Mountain overlooking Frenchmen’s Bay.

A Few More Favs –

Boat Rides – so many to choose from. There are schooner sails, lobster boat tours, and more. The Bar Harbor Whale Watch is the only I’ve used to so far. They offer many trips other than just whale watching. I did the nature cruise last summer and had an awesome time! They have indoor / outdoor seating so you can still enjoy it even if the weather isn’t great.

Scenic Airplane Ride – I did this when I graduated high school almost ten years ago and it was an unforgettable experience with Scenic Flights of Acadia!

Mini GolfPirate’s Cove Adventure Golf is still fun even as an adult. Afterwards, you can head across the road for a bite to eat and some ice cream. The nachos at Mainely Meat are some of my fav! And of course, dessert at Udder Heaven is a must!

Narrated Driving Tours– I haven’t actually done this one myself, but Oli’s Trolley offers lots of tour options for the Bar Harbor and Acadia area!

Luxury Picnic – I recently collaborated with Luxury Picnics Acadia to create the dreamiest picnic inspiration – check that out here. “Relax in luxury as everything from set up, to take down, is done for you…enjoy the scenic views of Downeast Maine, and create a memory not soon forgotten.”

Have Photos Done – How could I forget this one?! I’m a believer in capturing little snippets of every chapter.

Whether you’re celebrating a big milestone, visiting Maine on vacation, or just documenting everyday life – it’s all so special and deserves to be photographed! Plus, you’ll have the most unique holiday card this year! Many couples find this to be the perfect place to propose, elope, or even have their wedding! Check out Emily Brianne Photography.

Pictures: Proposal Inspiration with Luxury Picnics Acadia, Elopement at The Bar Harbor Inn, Family Portraits in Acadia National Park with The Bar Harbor Whale Watch boat in the background.

A Little Extra…

If you’re staying in the area for an extended period of time, I would recommended taking a day trip to Winter Harbor. It’s about an hour drive, to an even smaller, quieter lobster fishing town that has a separate branch of Acadia National Park. This is right next door to where I grew up, so it’s extra special to me.

While you are there… drive through town to check out some of the local shops like the 5&10 and whopaints.

Drive through Acadia on the 6 mile one-way road. You could have a picnic at Frazer Point before you get on the one-way, they have picnic tables and fire pits. Once you’re on the one-way road, there are a couple spots to pull off the road or hike. Definitely stop at Schoodic Point for some amazing views of the rocky coast line and Cadillac Mountain on the horizon. On a nice day, you’ll likely even see some lobster boats with fishermen hard at work.

The Pickled Wrinkle – Once you exit the park, you’re going to come out near one of my favorite restaurants – The Pickled Wrinkle! They have so many yummy seafood (and non-seafood) options to choose from, but my go-to is a crab roll or fried shrimp with sweet potato fries! They offer craft cocktails and local canned brews. Takeout and heated outdoor seating is available!

Me & Ben’s – Right next door to the restaurant is my favorite childhood ice cream shop! The have so many ice cream and dessert options to choose from, my favorite choice is the Maine Black Bear ice cream. While you’re there, be sure to check out East Hope‘s one of a kind earrings & more!

Pictures: Winter Sunset in Bunker’s Harbor, Cliffs in Winter Harbor’s Acadia National Park, Ice Cream from Me & Ben’s During an Engagement Session with Emily Brianne Photography.

I hope you found this helpful and have the best trip! Be sure to follow me on instagram @emilybriannephotography to see what I’m up to next! You can also check out my print shop and order scenic Maine prints for your home!

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Emily Brianne • August 10, 2022