Discover an Earthly Paradise at DownEast Acadia


Photo © Courtesy of Cathy Lookenbaugh

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DownEast Acadia is a place of wild beauty and deep-rooted history perched at the easternmost edge of the United States. The nation’s first sunrise lights up the red-and-white-striped lighthouse at West Quoddy Head State Park and the top of Cadillac Mountain in Acadia National Park. St. Croix International Historic Site is the location of the first permanent French settlement in the United States.

The highest tides in the world begin here, at the mouth of the Bay of Fundy, helping create the largest whirlpool in the northern hemisphere, called Old Sow. Located on the northernmost point of the Atlantic flyway, the region offers world-renowned birdwatching. Machias Seal Island off the Cutler coast is nesting grounds for the largest Puffin colony on the Maine coast.

Stroll through well-preserved National Historic Districts and peruse shops featuring skilled local artisans and makers of unusual DownEast treasures. You’ll find theater, film, music, literature, and dance performed in historic buildings and scenic seaside parks. Follow the Maine Sculpture Trail to view sculptures carved in local granite by internationally renowned sculptors.

Watch lobster fishermen at their trade, feast dockside on freshly caught seafood and wild blueberry pie, and savor award-winning local craft brews and wines. Follow the Downeast Fisheries Trail to learn about the region’s deep-rooted fisheries heritage and the story behind your lobster dinner.

Photo © Courtesy of Cathy Lookenbaugh
Photo © Courtesy of Cathy Lookenbaugh
Photo © Courtesy of Cathy Lookenbaugh

Cruise our three National Scenic Byways through a landscape of bold coastlines, inland lakes so clear you can see the bottom, and unspoiled rivers supporting wild Atlantic salmon. Discover an otherworldly landscape of wild blueberry barrens, a vast carpet of blue in August that turns scarlet red in October.

Hike seaside trails that traverse sheer granite ledges with expansive views across the Atlantic Ocean. Discover stillness and quiet along paths that wind through deep mossy forests containing rare and unusual habitats and species.

Bike the Bold Coast Scenic Bikeway, the East Coast Greenway, or explore the gravel roads and bike paths at Acadia National Park and Moosehorn Wildlife Refuge.

Hire a Registered Maine Guide to experience paddling and camping on the St. Croix International Waterway or the vast network of Downeast Lakes, with abundant wildlife to watch, fish to catch, and night skies brilliant with stars.

DownEast Acadia is a place for artists, adventurers, families, and solitude seekers—we look forward to seeing you!

Plan your visit and order your free visitor guide at

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What does “DownEast” mean? The name comes from the direction ships sailed to get here from New York and Boston—downwind and to the east. Ever since, the terms have evoked the unspoiled and rugged beauty found across the region, its rich maritime history, and the independent spirit of the people.


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