Winter Harbor, Maine is a beautiful working fishing village located next to the Schoodic Peninsula section of Acadia National Park, the only portion of the park located on the mainland. It got its name because it did not freeze over in the winter which was especially important to the local fishermen. The village is in “Down East” Hancock County and has an area of 12.5 sq. miles with approximately 988 people (per year 2000 census). It was originally part of Gouldsboro but then separated and became incorporated in 1895. The village has attractive shops, galleries, and places to eat.
The area was first settled by a non-Native American in the late 1700s when Thomas Frazer, an African American, setup a salt works company to sell salt to passing ships. Frazer Point, near the entrance to Acadia National Park in Winter Harbor, was named in his honor.
Grindstone Neck is an attractive and upscale section worth visiting. The western shore has a turn off point with spectacular views of Bar Harbor and the mountains of Mount Desert Island. The southern tip, called Grindstone Point, has another turn off section with equally spectacular views of the Mark Island Lighthouse, Ned Island, and Turtle Island.
If traveling to Winter Harbor by vehicle from Mount Desert Island, you would take Route 3 to Ellsworth then head Down East via U.S. Coastal Route 1. In West Gouldsboro, you take a right (south) on Route 186. This will take you directly to Winter Harbor and to a turn off to the Schoodic Peninsula section of Acadia National Park.
Photos: Harbor Scene | Grindstone Neck
There is a ferry that makes regular and scheduled voyages between Winter Harbor and Bar Harbor during the summer months. Also, the Free Island Explorer Shuttle Bus Service makes regular (in season) stops at the Winter Harbor Terminal and makes other stops in Winter Harbor village, Frazer Point, Schoodic Point, Birch Harbor, and Prospect Harbor. (Refer to their #8 Schoodic Route.) Once back in Bar Harbor, you can connect up with the shuttle again at the Village Green.
The Postal Zip Code for Winter Harbor is 04693.
Explore Winter Harbor & Schoodic Peninsula