There is nothing quite like sailing under nothing but the power of the wind on the ocean waters off Mount Desert Island. The view? It is fantastic! And, the sound of the canvas flapping and the waves splashing against the hull simplifies life in a way that is timeless. Some may desire a faster way of travel across the water. Perhaps there is somewhere you want to get to more quickly. In that case, only a powerboat will do. The salt air is more brisk against the face and the boat rides the waves like a bucking bronco sometimes. But at the control of a skilled captain, it is tamed for a while.
Boat rentals are available to experienced and qualified customers. If this defines you, renting one may be a good option. In some instances, a captain's license, AS certification, or a resume showing extensive experience may be required. Your experience, and the condition of the weather at the time, are often the deciding factors other than the ability to pay the required fee. Review each company's policies and contact them directly with your questions and concerns. Some may offer refresher courses as well as captain services so you can relax while the captain takes care of responsibilities and even act as an informed tour guide with some great downeast stories.
There are two boat rental companies available on the island and they both are in the Manset section of Southwest Harbor, a well known boat building community. They are listed below:
Mansell Boat Rental Co.
Pier location: 135 Shore Road, Manset in Southwest Harbor, ME
Manset Yacht Service
113 Shore Road, Southwest Harbor, ME
Note: Renting a boat in Southwest Harbor has the added plus of being located at the southern entrance to Somes Sound, the only natural fjord on the east coast of North America, and the location of the Bear Island Lighthouse (on the east side of the entrance). Also, located in Southwest Harbor is a logistics and support department of the U.S. Coast Guard.
The Free Island Explorer Shuttle Bus Service makes regular (in season) stops in Southwest Harbor. (Refer to their #7 Southwest Harbor Route.) The bus also makes regular seasonal stops at the Bar Harbor Village Green.
Southwest Harbor GPS Coordinates: Latitude 44.278333; Longitude -68.321944
Enjoy Safe Boating!