Hit eight hot-spots on a multi-day road trip along New Brunswick’s scenic Fundy Coast:

Saint-John: A Rapid Zipline

Zipline Saint-JohnTourism New Brunswick

Kick-off your road trip with a zipline tour alongside the Saint-John River’s famous Reversing Rapids. A series of five ziplines await, each longer and faster than the last. Time your tour for peak tide-change to view the rapids in full glory—and save your most aerodynamic pose for the last line, where two zippers race head-to-head. $80; saintjohnadventures.ca

St. Andrews-by-the-Sea: Fundy Giants

Bay of Fundy WhalesTourism New Brunswick

Fundy Tide Runners—an ethical whale-watching operator—has an eight-metre Zodiac ready to go at the government wharf in St. Andrews. Don a Mustang suit and in just a few minutes you’ll be in prime whale-watching waters. Extreme Fundy tides stir up nutrients to feed the food chain—including minke, finback, humpback and, occasionally, blue whales. Plus, plentiful porpoises entertain between big-whale sightings. $60; fundytiderunners.com

Ministers Island: Historical Respite

Ministers IslandDavid Webb

At low tide, drive one-kilometre across the ocean floor to explore the heritage Van Horne home on pastoral Ministers Island. Tour the main house and beachside bathhouse and have a picnic on the picturesque grounds overlooking the Bay of Fundy. Keep moving, though—the island is only accessible for five hours daily. At high tide, the access road will be swamped below five metres of seawater. $10; ministersisland.net

Grand Manan Island: Lighthouse Hopping

Grand Manan IslandDavid Webb

While many historic outports have converted to an eco-tourism economy, Grand Manan is still very much a rough-and-tumble lobster fishing community. Experience its authenticity before the secret gets out. Start with a hike to Swallowtail Lighthouse, the most famous and most scenic station on the island. Cruise the windy roads and buy some dulse—a locally-harvested seaweed treat. Then catch sunset from The Whistle, another renowned cliffside light-station, keeping an eye for passing whales in the water far below.

Fundy Trail: Family-Friendly Hikes

Fundy TrailDavid Webb

Not to be confused with the epic, multi-day Fundy Footpath, the Fundy Trail is a lovingly maintained, accessible multi-use path that meanders for 16 kilometres along the Bay of Fundy, near the village of Saint Martins. With 17 designated lookouts, pathways to secluded beaches, a dozen restrooms and an interpretive centre, the trail caters to families looking for an outdoorsy day-trip. $7.50; fundytrailparkway.com

Fundy National Park: Camp & Stargaze

Fundy National ParkParks Canada

How long you’ll spend in New Brunswick’s first national park is up to you—but start with at least an overnight. There are three front-country campgrounds, eight backcountry campsites, two rustic cabins, five yurts and one cabin that’s shaped like a teardrop—but the best option might be the 30 oTENTiks. Think of a mix between a cabin and a tent and you’ll have an idea of what these units offer. Just bring sleeping bags, food and something to cook with and Parks Canada will set up the rest. Fundy National Park is a Dark Sky Preserve, another reason to stay at least one night in its woodsy splendour. $90; pc.gc.ca/fundy

Hopewell Rocks: As Above, So Below 

Hopewell RocksTourism New Brunswick

Bay of Fundy tide descriptors like “100 billion tonnes of seawater” or “more than the daily outflow of all the planet’s rivers combined” are too massive to comprehend. See it for yourself—ideally at the province’s most iconic landscape, Hopewell Rocks. Stay a full day and kayak in the morning, then watch the tide ebb as much as 17 metres before you stroll the bare ocean floor near Staircase Cove, touching the ocean-sculpted flowerpot rocks you had earlier paddled past. $10 park admission /$70 kayak tour; thehopewellrocks.ca

Moncton: Tidal Bore Gazing (Or Surfing)

Moncton Tidal BoreDavid Webb

Moncton’s Petitcodiac River, or “Chocolate River,” may look nearly dried-up at low-tide, but when the flood tide hits, watch out! A juggernaut tidal bore rumbles up from the river mouth at the Bay of Fundy, some 30 kilometres away, like an approaching army. Minutes after the wave passes, the Petitcodiac’s water level will be as much as eight metres higher. Spectatorship too boring? There are usually a couple of locals out there trying to surf it. Join them, if you have the skills—and the nerve. tides.gc.ca 

Must Stay
For more than a century, the Marathon Inn has been quietly operating on Grand Manan Island. This well-maintained heritage hotel offers spacious rooms adorned with antiques and pleases guests with warm hospitality. Rooms start at $89. marathoninn.com

Must Eat
East Coast Bistro in downtown Saint-John sources from local producers and fuses French cookery with Maritime traditions. Everything is made in-house. eastcoastbistro.com

 

Looking For More Great Canadian Adventures?

Download this e-book—FOR FREE!

Plan your next great adventure with explore!
Off the beaten path locations, tips and tricks, interviews with intrepid explorers and more.