College of the Atlantic is a small, liberal arts college on Mount Desert Island, off the coast of Maine. The campus sits on the ocean bay and each student at COA designs his or her own course of study in human ecology. The campus is .9 miles walking distance to the Village Green in the center of Bar Harbor. One can also take a shuttle bus from the campus each half hour to the Village Green and from there to just about anywhere in Acadia National Park.
Every evening during your stay our meeting hall will be converted to a concert venue for shows hosted by the Acadia School of Traditional Music and Arts. Enjoy one or more concerts by world-class Irish, Acadian, Cajun and Cape Breton musicians. We will be sharing our meals in the Dining Room with this group.
Bar Harbor is one of the most popular tourist destinations on the U.S. East Coast. Check out attractions and happenings on its official town web site and its history on Wikipedia. Around July 4 is a great time to be in Bar Harbor and some folks have had their families join them at the end of similar conferences in the past.
Acadia National Park is one of the most popular and visited National Parks in the United States.
In addition to the information below, download a new printable information packet on College of the Atlantic, Island Explorer Bus Routes and Schedules, and biking and hiking information.
Early career scientists will be housed typically in single dorm rooms and senior scholars also have this option if desired. Single dorm rooms are included as part of your registration fee along with all meals during the conference. These are “camping style” rooms where you typically share a bathroom with 3 other members of our conference group. You are supplied with basic linens (mattress pad, pillow, blanket, pillowcase, sheets, towels and washcloths) and little else. Bring soap, shampoo, small fan if desired, flashlight, etc. You will have Internet access so you can watch movies on line if you bring a laptop. If two people share a dorm room with two beds the cost is reduced per person per night. We will be staying in the Milliken, Eno and Shorey houses which are all part of the Kathryn Davis Village, as well in Blair/Tyson. See housing as well as some internal photos for Milliken - in the photo bar above - that we were able to take while some rooms were vacant.
Bar Harbor has a large number of hotels and camp grounds to choose from with several of them located within easy walking distance. Many hotels are on one of the free Island Explorer Bus shuttle routes. Bus Route 2stops at College of the Atlantic every half hour has on its route the Atlantic Oceanside, Regency, Bar Harbor Motel, Acadia Inn, Eyrie Lodge and the Wonder View. Other hotels can be reached by transferring to another bus route at the Village Green. There is also free parking on the campus if you intend to bring or rent a car.
We highly recommend that you make hotel reservations as early as possible since July 4 is the unofficial beginning of the tourist season and the town will be packed. You might want to stay Saturday evening since Bar Harbor’s old-fashioned “Fourth of July Festivities” has been voted in the past as the top Fourth of July celebration in America by the Today Show and was recognized as well by National Geographic as one of the top ten in the U.S. Most hotel rooms will be well over $100 per night.
Many people living on the East Coast staying for a week would simply get in a car and drive to Bar Harbor which is 8 hours from New York City or 5 hours from Boston. Others might check out the cheapest flights to major nearby airports and then rent a car for the week to travel the remaining distance to Bar Harbor. People might fly to Bangor Maine (1.5 hour drive), Portland Maine (3 hour drive), Manchester NH (4.5 hour drive), or Boston MA (5 hour drive). We can gather arrival times by participants at airports if parties want to share a car rental.
In addition, small commercial aircraft fly directly from Boston to the Bar Harbor Hancock Airport during the summer months. See current flight schedules. Both Cape Air (Jet Blue) and PenAir (Alaska Airlines) have regular flights to and from Boston during the time of our conference. Transport from the BHB airport to town is typically by bus or taxi.
Island Explorer Bus shuttles run regularly throughout Acadia National Park allowing you to drop off anywhere and be picked up anywhere after a hike, bike ride or swim in a lake or the ocean. The buses are convenient and highly recommended. All bus routes converge at the Village Green. Your Acadia National Park pass is your bus shuttle pass. Buy a park pass on the Village Green when you arrive there for a price of $5 for seven days. Bus Route 2 includes stops at College of the Atlantic and nearby hotels.