This past week I had the opportunity to explore New Brunswick Canada and it was amazing! This was my first time visiting New Brunswick and I fell in love with the province. I called John on the 2nd day and told him that we needed to plan a return trip to New Brunswick soon!
During the trip I had the chance to spend time with a few other bloggers and their families. I was adopted into their families since I was traveling by myself. It was so much fun getting to explore New Brunswick through the eyes of their kids and as adults.
The trip kicked off in St. Andrews by the Bay. I flew into Saint John and drove the hour or so to St. Andrews late at night. By the time I arrived at the Algonquin Resort I was so tired and ready for a soft pillow. Thankfully the Algonquin was ready for me and the bed was fantastic. I met Julie from Sober Julie in the lobby and caught up on life until I was falling asleep in the chair.
After a great nights sleep I was ready to explore New Brunswick and see St. Andrews by the Bay. We kicked off the trip with a visit to the Fundy Discovery Aquarium. The aquarium is centered around sea life found in the Bay of Fundy. We had the chance to learn about these species along with enjoy the touch tank. I will be sharing a ton of fun photos from this stop soon!
For lunch we headed to the Garden Cafe at the Kingsbrae Garden. We were surrounded by the gorgeous gardens and got to see their alpacas munching on the lawn. Lunch was fantastic. I had a quiche with spinach and feta that I could happily enjoy any day. The afternoon was spent wandering in the gardens and soaking up the gorgeous sunshine. I can’t believe how perfect the weather was. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and it was warm without being brutal.
Monday afternoon we explored St. Andrews by the Bay. This is a quaint coastal town that you could easily spend a week relaxing in. They offer everything from whale watching to kayak adventures right from town. We had a great pizza dinner overlooking the water and then wandered to the end of town to watch sunset. We quickly learned just how fast the tide does come in at the Bay of Fundy. We were walking out on the sand taking pics and all of a sudden realized our toes were wet and the tide was coming in quickly. We hightailed it up to our cars to enjoy the rest of sunset from the safety of the hillside.
After a fantastic nights sleep at the Algonquin Resort we headed out bright and early for a whale watching adventure on the Jolly Breeze Tall Ship. I was so excited to go whale watching. I have been whale watching in the Pacific Ocean but never in the Atlantic. We saw 3 Minke Whales during our trip along with a ton of porpoises and seals. It was so much fun having the kids be able to haul up the sails. The Jolly Breeze is perfect for families! There is face painting, coloring sheets and great activities for the kids. Oh and you can dress up like a pirate and how can you go wrong with that!
We headed back towards Saint John on Tuesday afternoon so we could check out the Reversing Rapids. We made a quick stop at a local restaurant along the way and enjoyed a bit of local food.
The Reversing Rapids are something that I have heard about many times but honestly was not sure what to expect. We arrived at low tide and didn’t really know what we were looking at. There are thankfully interpretive signs and friendly locals who explained to us what was happening on the river. We did not get to see high tide and the water pushing back on the river due to the times of our visit. I can’t wait to go back and see what high tide looks like.
We spent the next two nights at the Saint John Hilton which is located right on the water near the Saint John Cruise Terminal. Lucky for me there was a Starbucks at Market Square right across the street. Plus a Tim Hortons! I was able to experience my first Tim Bits during my stay in Saint John. The room service employee told me that the cruise ships dock right outside the Saint John Hilton. After visiting New Brunswick I really want to book a New England/Canada cruise this fall.
Wednesday morning we kicked off the day with a great visit to the New Brunswick Museum. If you visit the museum you have to ask for Victor to guide you through the museum! WOW is all I can say. He had the kids enthralled leading them through the museum. They would have done anything to keep following him and learning about the whales and other artifacts. I was really impressed with the variety of displays at the New Brunswick Museum. Everything from whales to the history of New Brunswick is covered.
For lunch we checked out the Saint John market! This is a must visit for any trip to Saint John. The market reminded me a lot of Seattle’s Pike Place Market. Tons of food vendors along with crafts and souvenirs are available. After lunch we drove to St. Martines to check out the Caves Restaurant and Fundy Trail Parkway. Oh my so beautiful!
It is hard to describe just how beautiful the Fundy Trail Parkway is. The view points look out over the Bay of Fundy and really give you an idea of how vast the water way is. In the next couple of years they are going to expand the Fundy Trail Parkway so you can visit a sandy beach and it will run into Fundy National Park.
We stopped at the Caves Restaurant on our way back to Saint John to experience their world famous chowder. The sign said it was world famous so we just had to try it. Everyone who tried the lobster chowder said it was fantastic. The view of the sea caves and the water was fantastic.
I drove with Julie from Sober Julie and her kids. We took a leisurely drive back into Saint John enjoying the gorgeous views along the way. After crashing at the Saint John Hilton we had the chance to check out the Buskers on the Bay festival in Saint John. It was so cool checking out the acts. We saw the worlds largest balloon dragon being created, Elvis and a rock n roll performance on a unicycle.
It was hard to leave the festival as it was kicking off but we needed to head towards Moncton. We stopped at a grocery store along the way so I could check out the store and prices. I will have a post up soon sharing what I found. Oh my dill pickle and ketchup potato chips! Yes they are a thing.
Once we reached Moncton we checked in at the Delta Beausejour Hotel right on Main Street. The hotel is in the heart of the city with a Starbucks right across the street and tons of restaurants. Yes I checked out the Starbucks!
Just outside of Moncton is the Magnetic Hill. This was the first place we visited after checking in to the hotel. It is so crazy, creepy and random you just have to do it. Check out this video of Julie driving the Magnetic Hill.
When I drove the Magnetic Hill the car was up to 16 KM an hour. CRAZY!
After driving the hill we met up with Staci and her family from This Lil Piglet to check out the Magnetic Hill Zoo. The zoo has a variety of animals including quite a few large cat exhibits. The kids loved feeding the deer and goats while we walked around.
Afterward we checked out Resurgo! Place transportation museum. It was so much fun! You can build an aircraft, power a submarine and launch a rocket in their hands on exhibit area. Upstairs they have a section for the history of Moncton and New Brunswick. It was filled with tons of artifacts and exhibits.
For dinner we walked the streets of Moncton and found a Mexican restaurant across from the hotel. I learned that Canadian Mexican is different from American Mexican. It is hard to describe all of the differences. One of the differences was they serve chili on top of their enchiladas. I had never heard of this before.
Friday we headed out in the morning for Hopewell Rocks. We were all a bit nervous but also excited to visit Hopewell Rocks. Someone told us there were 300+ stairs to get to the sea floor. We were not to sure about the idea of crawling back up the 300 stairs after hiking around the sea floor but thankfully this was false and there were only a few stairs. OK maybe 30-40 stairs but much more manageable than 300+. I have to tell you it might have been worth hiking 300 stairs it was so beautiful! It is hard to describe the dramatic landscape standing on the sea floor. Knowing that the tide was coming in and would rise upwards of 45 vertical feet in the area we were standing. Creepy yet amazing at the same time!
We capped off an amazing week with a lobster experience cruise with Shediac Bay Cruises. It was soooooo much fun! Oh my gosh! The kids and the adults absolutely loved it. Even as a vegetarian I learned a ton about lobster fishing and how to cook a lobster. Plus they had a delicious vegetable lasagna that I could eat any day. The cruise was around the Shediac Bay and so relaxing. I didn’t want the cruise to end.
Sadly the cruise came to an end and we headed back to the hotel to pack and get ready to fly out on Saturday. The group met up for one last breakfast and then we headed to the airport.
This trip to New Brunswick was truly amazing! I fell in love with the area and can not wait to return hopefully soon. From the scenery to the great attractions there is so much to see and do! Keep an eye out for more posts soon with even more photos and details of the places we visited.
I participated in a press trip to New Brunswick. All opinions expressed are my own.