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Baltimore to Bar Harbor roadtrip

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Apr 29th, 2012, 07:05 AM
  #1
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Baltimore to Bar Harbor roadtrip

My fiancee and I are planning a road trip up the east coast leaving Baltimore on Sunday, June 17 and returning on Sunday June 24. We are planning to stop over the first night at the Mohican Sun Casino in Montville, CT and then heading up towards Bar Harbor, ME.
I'm an avid amateur photographer and was wondering if anybody out there had already taken in the sights and wanted to share some of their experience with recommendations of what to see and do and where to stay. Looking for ideas and I really want to make this trip awesome.
marklevy is offline  
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Apr 29th, 2012, 11:24 AM
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So you have about six days? You'd need that 7th to get back down to Baltimore. I'd stick mainly to the coast. The most dramatic scenery is coastal Maine. The most dramatic scenery, and also the least crowded, is further north. So I guess it depends on how much driving you want to do. If you don't mind a lot of driving, and don't really want much time to relax in any one place then I'd just follow the coast and go as far as you can. There's not a lot that is terribly scenic in Connecticut (although Mystic Seaport is interesting). In Rhode Island, Newport is the most scenic. I would skip the Cape (at this time of year it will be very crowded and you don't have time for Nantucket or Martha's Vineyard). So I'd get on the highway and go around Boston. Boston itself has tons to photograph but driving in the city is a bit of a pain if you don't know your way around. Staying in Cambridge and taking the T (subway) in is an option but with limited time I'm not sure it's the best use of time. Just north of Boston is Cape Ann with Salem, Gloucester and Rockport, all very photogenic. Once you cross into Maine make sure you get on the coastal roads. You'll go through York, Ogunquit and Kennebunkport before you get to Portland. Between Portland and Acadia National Park there are a ton of peninsulas you can drive out onto for quaint villages and sea views.

Since you said 'road trip' and photography I'm assuming your goal is to drive around and see what you can versus settle in a couple of quaint spots for a few days. At that time of year you would need to reserve anyplace 'quaint' but you could probably wing it if you are ok with chain hotels. I was in Acadia last summer in mid July and there were plenty of vacancy signs around - a good number of full signs also but you could certainly get someplace decent to stay is lodging itself is not a priority.

From Acadia back to Maryland on the 'un-scenic' route would take two fairly long days but depending on how long it took you to get up there you could go through the white mountains of NH and then Vermont and then take highways back from there, that would probably take an extra day at least.

Here are my photos of New England: http://www.pbase.com/annforcier/new_england

http://www.pbase.com/annforcier/boston
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Apr 29th, 2012, 02:30 PM
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isabel, like your photos, all seasons, incl. the Vineyard. Nice scenes. We're new in the area and still exploring.

Bill in Boston
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May 9th, 2012, 01:17 PM
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I'm new on here so please bear with me. Isabel, on June 1 I will be arriving in Baltimore then driving into Maine, with a return trip thru the Adirondak mountains, arriving back in Baltimore on Thurs June 7. I realize this is a short time to cover a large area, but the two places we are focusing on are Maine and the Adirondaks. The rest of the area we will just be driving through. We want to get far enough up in Maine to make it to Acadia and then head to the mountains. Is this doable? Suggestions, please...
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May 9th, 2012, 02:52 PM
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Thanks Bill. Are you originally fro the Ozarks? How do you like Boston.

Wendy - Go to google maps and try out some different routes. Via the fastest route it is over 12 hours from Baltimore to Acadia - not counting stopping for gas/meals/breaks. I would probably aim for Portsmouth NH for the first night - that's still close to nine hours but certainly doable. If you want to see any of Maine besides Acadia - which I think you should, there is lots of other 'good stuff' - then I would aim for night two in Portland, taking the coastal route through York, Ogunquit, and Kennebunkport. You could certainly get from Portland to Acadia in one day, even stopping in Camden or Boothbay or somewhere else. But I might even consider another night along the way. I think two nights in Acadia is enough but you really can't go wrong if you choose three nights there and not stop between Portland and Acadia. I think that leaves you two nights/days to get back to Baltimore so you wouldn't have time to see much. Don't know what you were interested in in the Adirondaks - it's a pretty huge area.

Here's a trip report I did last summer on a mini-trip I took to Acadia - http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...s-and-tips.cfm
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May 10th, 2012, 12:17 PM
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isabel...was retired for years in Springfield, MO, and lived Middle West. Two years ago to Boston (son is BU African Studies Center director) and we love it so far being in good health...in a plus-55 apartment in Watertown.
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May 10th, 2012, 12:22 PM
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Thank you, Isabel. Your suggestions sound great. I love the mountains and just thought a return trip through there would be nice. I love seeing the scenery. My flight doesn't get in to Baltimore until 1:00 so making it all the way to Portsmouth might be a little tough. Can you suggest another place a little closer? We plan to pick up the car as soon as we get there and head out. Can you give me a few suggestions on what is located in the towns you mentioned above? Any help would be most appreciated.

Wendy
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May 10th, 2012, 02:29 PM
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If when you leave Mohegan Sun, you take 395 north which turns into 290 in Massachusetts, and that runs into 495 which takes you to 95,it will take about 3 -4 hrs to get to Portland ME, depending on traffic. It will be a soulless interstate all the way but will get you to Maine fairly quickly.

From there, you can make it to Acadia by afternoon, or go more slowly and see the sights along the way. Be aware that to actually see the coast in most places you have to leave the big roads, even rt 1 and head down the little peninsulas on the coast. There are lots of beautiful places so be flexible and if it is foggy, or rainy, have a plan B ready.
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May 10th, 2012, 03:00 PM
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Most of the way between Baltimore and Portsmouth is not very scenic - it's the "I-91 Corridor" - basically you will be making a loop around New York City. And actually your timing is not good - you don't want to be anywhere around NYC-Phily between about 4 and 7 pm - and that's just about when you will be in that area.

So actually I think I'd reverse your plans and go up through the Adirondacks - over to Acadia - and then do the return trip down the coast of Maine. You could go up I-95 and get on 295 to go around Phily and then 287 up to 87 northwest of NYC. Once north of NYC I-87 is the the NY State Thruway and it goes up to Albany. The Adirondacks are actually north of there. That area of New york is the Hudson River Valley/ Catskill Mountains and is nice but it will take some time to get off the interstate to find any place really scenic.

Your main problem is that there is no really logical way to get from the Adirondacks over to Vermont/NH/ - Lake Champlain is in the way. There are small roads, ferries, etc. but that kind of thing will take several days leaving you with no time for the coast. Personally I'd just head east from Albany to the coast. Rt 9 through Vermont is very scenic, it connects to Rt 101 in NH also scenic. Basically anything through VT and NH will be scenic but rather slow.
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May 11th, 2012, 11:20 AM
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Thank you, Isabel. I need to get the Atlas out and look at your suggestions. I didn't think about the timing of being in the Philly/NYC area at that time of day. The northern route sounds a little less hectic.

I leave 3 weeks from today and I am really looking forward to this. It's one of the places on my bucket list.
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Jun 25th, 2012, 11:18 AM
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Would love to hear of your experience as we plan to do the same. Isabel, please chime in!!!
My BF and I are planning our first trip in our RV. We will be leaving the Baltimore MD area on July 26 traveling to Bar Harbor Maine, returning to Solomans Island MD on Aug. 2. We have reserved a site within Arcadia however want to make the most of the trip there and back. We will be towing a vehicle and are bringing bikes. What route should we take to and from and where would be the best stopping point for a 1 night lay over on the way and back. We want to see as much as possible. We are interested in beautiful sites, unique settings and can't miss experiences. Not as interested in the big cities but the quaint, new england experiences. Great food included!!!
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