The National Park Service is proposing to increase public entrance fees to Acadia National Park to put it in the same fee range as some of the country’s most popular national parks, including Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Yosemite.

The park service wants to increase the annual entrance fee at Acadia from $55 to $70; the seven-day private vehicle fee from $30 to $35; the seven-day motorcycle fee from $25 to $30; and the seven-day individual fee from $15 to $20. The last time entrance fees were increased at Acadia was in 2018.

A line of hikers files up the popular Beehive Trail near Sand Beach at Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor. Michael G. Seamans/Morning Sentinel

“The proposed entrance fee increase is based on the NPS’s pricing structure, which has been established for all areas in the National Park System that collect an entrance fee,” the park service said in a statement. “The entrance fee increase would move Acadia National Park into the highest tier group along with other iconic and highly visited national parks, including Yellowstone, Grand Canyon and Yosemite.”

The park service wants to hear from the public before any fees are adjusted. The public comment period begins Wednesday and ends on Dec. 29.

If the entrance fee increases are approved, they would become effective in 2023 and remain in effect throughout the year. Comments can be submitted online through the NPS Planning, Environment, and Public Comment website.

According to the park service, entrance fees are a critical source of revenue used to fund improvements to visitor facilities and services, and to complete resource management projects. About 80 percent of Acadia’s entrance fees are retained by Acadia National Park, with the remaining 20 percent distributed to other national parks. Entrance fee revenues are used primarily to fund deferred maintenance projects.


Acadia National Park in the past few years has used entrance fee revenues to fund about 65 percent of the Island Explorer bus system, a service that provides fare-free transportation to park visitors and community members on Mount Desert Island and the Schoodic Peninsula.

Entrance fees were used to complete hiking trail projects such as the installation of a bog walk on Upper Hadlock Pond and Jordan Pond trails, as well as rehabilitating the Great Head and Parkman Mountain trails.

Fee revenue also has gone toward making repairs to Acadia National Park’s historic carriage road gatehouses, the removal of hazardous trees along park roads and near power lines, repairs to campground restrooms, and replacement of damaged park road gates.

Visitation to Acadia National Park has increased dramatically in recent years and especially during the pandemic, which has resulted in providing more custodial services with the revenue generated by entrance fees.

Due to the increase in visitor traffic, Acadia started in October 2020 charging a reservation fee for vehicles being driven to the summit of Cadillac Mountain. The vehicle reservation fee of $6 is in effect during peak visitation months from May through October. The fee, which hasn’t changed and is in addition to the entrance fee, ensures that visitors will be able to find a parking spot once they reach the summit of the mountain.

Acadia National Park saw a record 4 million estimated visits in 2021, a half million more than in any other year, the park service said. Acadia was the 16th most visited national park in America last year, finishing just behind Yellowstone with 4.9 million visits, and the Grand Canyon with 4.5 million. Yosemite National Park recorded 3.3 million visits.

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