Sand Beach in Acadia National Park is a wonderful way to spent a day at the beach. The beautiful blue/green water paired with the sand made of the crushed pink granite of the surrounding rocks, with expansive views of pine trees, mountains and islands in the distance can not be more dramatic and picture perfect.
What makes this spot special though is that Sand Beach is the only beach inside Acadia National Park despite that a large amount of the park itself is on the coast. The beach is also a cove and the water is not very deep which makes it the perfect place to let kids wade in if they don’t mind the freezing waters. On the Acadia website, it says that the water temperature rarely exceeds 55 degrees Fahrenheit.
This beautiful beach surrounded by scenic views and rocky edges is a great place to sunbath (perhaps only in the month of August), read a book while kids are splashing, build sand castles, enjoy a picnic and walk along the beach and let the little ones jump on the rocks surrounding the shore.
We visited the park in October which wasn’t the best time of the year for sunbathing and took a short walk on the beach and a pit stop for a quick snack before embarking on some beach side hiking.
Sand Beach is the starting point of the Ocean Path and Otter Point. Both trails offer one of the most spectacular sights along the North Atlantic Seaboard. Short after you start the hike to Otter Cliff you would pass another very popular attraction – The Thunder Hole.
Public bathrooms and changing areas are available near the beach. There is a lot of parking as well, but on a busy day we suggest you come early just to ensure that you find a spot as the beach do get busy especially on warmer summer days or during peak leaf changing season. There are two flights of stairs down to the beach if that’s a concern or if you are planing on bringing a wagon with beach gear.
There are no pets allowed on the beach from May 15 through September 15. There is an entrance fee to Acadia National Park of $25 per vehicle and $20 per motorcycle which is valid for seven days (Walkers and bicyclists can get a weekly pass for $12) and all visitors to the park require a pass as of October 2019.
Visitors can access Sand Beach via the Park Loop Rd. just after the park entrance station on the northeastern side of the island or take The Island Explorer Shuttle Bus that runs about every half hour during normal season hours.
A little known but interesting fact about Sand Beach is that part of the movie “Cider House Rules” was filmed at this location in 1999.