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Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

Barry, United...
6 posts
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Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

For the past four years my wife and myself (late 50's) have, for our summer holiday, visited friends in Connecticut (in Sept.). and then gone to Stowe, Vermont for a week. We are not going this year but plan to go back in Sept 2014.

While we really like Stowe (small friendly town, nice restaurants / bars within walking distance of good self-catering accommodation and spectacular scenery - we both like sight seeing by car), we thought we would like to try somewhere different, but still New England.

Some research led us to Maine, specifically Mount Desert Island / Acadia National Park.

My question is given that we like Stowe so much, would Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor be the best bet as a base for us. We both like the idea of the "Quiet side" but wonder would Bar Harbor really be that "noisy"

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Connecticut
Connecticut
United States
Stowe
Stowe
Vermont
Maine
Maine
United States
Mount Desert Island
Mount Desert Island
DownEast and Acadia Maine, ME
Acadia National Park
Acadia National Park
Mount Desert Island, ME
Bar Harbor
Bar Harbor
Mount Desert Island, ME
Wolcott, Connecticut
Destination Expert
for Bar Harbor
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992 posts
173 reviews
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1. Re: Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

We also love Stowe. As a matter of fact we are leaving to go up there for 5 days this afternoon. I would say that Stowe is right in the middle of BH and SWH as it comes to crowds, things to do, places to eat etc. BH is physically a bigger town and can be full of people when the cruise ships are in port. More nightlife in BH. SWH has a few smallish blocks and has some very good restaurants, a nice food market and a few shops. That being said while you're on Mount Desert Island you won't necessarily be spending a lot of time in a hotel. There is so much to do in the park. Distances are not bad so you can easily drive to where you need to be.

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Mount Desert Island
Mount Desert Island
DownEast and Acadia Maine, ME
Bar Harbor, Maine
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6,834 posts
8 reviews
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2. Re: Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

No, Bar Harbor isn't really that hectic, especially if you are coming in September. Bar Harbor has two nice village parks. One has a great view of the harbor. You can sit with an ice cream cone or a coffee and watch the lobster boats and pleasure craft. Southwest Harbor really doesn't have anything like that. And, really, traffic on the main street during the day can be worse in SWH than in Bar Harbor.

In my opinion, Bar Harbor has much more of a nice village feel to it than SWH.

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Bar Harbor
Bar Harbor
Mount Desert Island, ME
Barry, United...
6 posts
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3. Re: Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

Thanks 'mrsomes' and 'bonniemaev' for the quick response.

We had been leaning towards Southwest Harbor but there may be more choice for us in the evenings in Bar Harbor. We will have plenty of time to do our research.

Mrsomes, sitting here in South Wales we are very envious of your trip to Stowe. We still talk about the meal we had in Harrison's the last time we were there.

Thanks again for your help

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Bar Harbor
Bar Harbor
Mount Desert Island, ME
South Wales
South Wales
Wales, UK
4. Re: Bar Harbor or Southwest Harbor

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