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42 Interesting Facts About New Brunswick

I’ve recently returned from a 10 day trip to New Brunswick. I’ve seen a huge swath of the province from Miramichi in the north to the Fundy Isles in the south. It’s a province I’ve driven through on several occasions but have never explored. Nor had I spent more than a night in it and that was when I was a kid. I learned a lot. I uncovered all sorts of outdoor adventures worth doing. And on the coast I feasted on lobster rolls – reason enough to return one day.

"Fresh seafood is sold at very reasonable prices"

Fresh seafood is sold at very reasonable prices

I thought you might enjoy some of the facts I learned about the province – many obscure and perhaps already included as a question in the game of Trivial Pursuit.

Here are 42 interesting facts about New Brunswick.

  • New Brunswick is one of the three Maritime Provinces – and the largest by area.
  • New Brunswick had a population in 2011 (the most recent numbers I found) of 751,171 – up 2.9% in five years.
  • Fredericton is the capital of New Brunswick though Saint John is the most populous city.
  • New Brunswick is the only province in Canada that is constitutionally bilingual. French is spoken by about a third of the population, especially by people of Acadian origin.
  • The Bay of Fundy boasts the highest tides in the world. One of the best places to see their effects is by visiting the Hopewell Rocks – either on foot or by kayak – or both.
"The Flowerpots "

Eroded rocks – also known as the flowerpots

  • The French Fry Capital of the world is located in the town of Florenceville-Bristol. Here you can also visit the New Brunswick Potato World Museum.
  • New Brunswick is the second largest peat exporter in the world.
  • There have been 29 premiers of New Brunswick since Confederation.
  • The McAdam Railway Station boasts a heritage railway station built in 1900. The only reason I have any interest in this is because I have the same last name.
  • The largest waterfall in New Brunswick is the Grand Falls Gorge. It’s 70 meters high (230 feet) in a gorge that’s 1.5 kilometers long. During the spring six million liters of water, 90% of the volume of Niagara Falls, flows over the falls every few seconds.
"The canyon through which the Saint John River flows"

The canyon through which the Saint John River flows

  • The Hartland Covered Bridge in Hartland, New Brunswick is a National Historic Site – and the longest covered bridge in the world. It was built in 1901 and for its time was an engineering phenomenon with a span of 390 meters (1282 feet). Back in 1906 it was a toll bridge and cost 0.03 per person.
"The Hartland Covered Bridge"

The Hartland Covered Bridge

  • Sussex is the Covered Bridge Capital of New Brunswick. There are over 60 covered bridges in the province.
  • Christ Church Cathedral in Fredericton, New Brunswick was the first Gothic Revival cathedral built in North America. Built between 1845 and 1853, it is now a National Historic Site.
  • Woodstock was the first town in New Brunswick. It’s over 150 years old.
  • Kingsbrae Gardens in St. Andrews’s makes the Top 10 list of Public Gardens in Canada.
"Maple syrup buckets as art"

Maple syrup buckets re-purposed into an art installation in the gardens

  • The Reversing Rapids – found where the St. John River meets the Bay of Fundy – is a phenomenon where the water feels like its flowing backwards.
  • The Bay of Fundy is home to many types of sharks including threshers, makos, porbeagles and believe it or not even the Great White Shark. Only one has been sighted so far this summer.
  • Squaw’s Cap Look-off has been designated an Amazing Place by the Fundy Biosphere Reserve.
"Squaw's Cap Look-off"

Squaw’s Cap Look-off

  • There is a chocolate museum in St. Stephen housed in the original Ganong factory. The Ganongs are Canada’s oldest family-owned candy maker and the first to introduce the five cent chocolate bar.
  • Campobello Island is the location of the Roosevelt Campobello International Park – and the former summer home of President Franklin Roosevelt. It boasts 34 rooms including 18 bedrooms – though many are tiny by today’s standards. It’s free to visit.
"President Franklin Roosevelt's summer home on Campobello Island"

President Franklin Roosevelt’s summer home on Campobello Island

  • The St. Andrew’s Blockhouse was built during the War of 1812. Today it’s a National Historic Site.
  • The Old Sow Whirlpool off of Deer Island is the largest tidal whirlpool in the western hemisphere. It can be seen three hours before high tide from Deer Island Point Park.
  • The Head Harbour Lightstation on Campobello Island is the second oldest lighthouse in New Brunswick. It’s accessible on foot at low tide only.
"Lighthouse on Campobello Island"

The Head Harbour Lightstation on Campobello Island

  • The Fundy Footpath is a tough trail that takes you 41 kilometres from Big Salmon River to Fundy National Park.
  • Cape Enrage on the Fundy Coast is a fantastic spot for wildlife viewing – and it boasts one of the finest views in the province.
  • Magnetic Hill in Moncton is a gravity hill and an optical illusion. You can experience it today by paying a fee for the experience; then put your car in neutral where you will roll backwards though it will feel like you’re going uphill.
  • Sackville, New Brunswick is home to Mount Allison University. It boasts the highest number of Rhodes scholars (51 so far) per capita of any university in the Commonwealth.
  • The University of New Brunswick is the oldest North American University – though it shares that title with the University of Georgia.
  • A wonderful book – The Nine Lives of Charlotte Taylor by Sally Armstrong is set in the Tabustac area where Charlotte lived in the 1770’s. You can follow the steps of Charlotte Taylor with a tour.
  • You can go swimming in Kouchibouguac National Park where it’s possible to enjoy some of the warmest water north of Virginia.
"One of the warm water beaches in Kouchibouguac NP"

One of the warm water beaches in Kouchibouguac NP

  • There are at least 14 wineries in New Brunswick now.
  • Up to 15 species of whales can be seen in the waters of the Bay of Fundy. Whale watching trips out of Grand Manan Island and out of St. Andrews are particularly worthwhile.
  • The world’s largest lobster is in Shediac, New Brunswick. The sculpture is 35 feet long by 16 feet high and weighs 90 tonnes.
  • The 274 kilometre New Brunswick section of the 3,058 kilometre International Appalachian Trail begins at the border in Fort Fairfield, Maine and continues through Mount Carleton Provincial Park to Tidehead where it enters Quebec.
  • The Right Honourable Lord Beaverbrook, a famous politician, businessman and writer grew up in Newcastle, New Brunswick.
  • Saint-Quentin is the maple capital of Atlantic Canada.
  • The highest point in the Maritimes is 820 metre Mount Carleton, located in Mt. Carleton Park in northern New Brunswick. On a clear day it is rumoured that you can see 10 million trees.
"The view from the top of Mount Sagamook"

The view from the top of Mount Sagamook, close to Mount Carleton

  • Over 500,000 Christmas trees are harvested every year in New Brunswick – no surprise really when you consider the fact that over 80% of the province is forested.
  • Tide Head is the fiddlehead capital of the world.
"Fresh fiddleheads"

Fresh fiddleheads

  • Grand Manan Island is the dulse capital of the world. Dulse is edible seaweed. It is handpicked at low tide in Dark Harbour.
"Dulse signs can be seen all over Grand Manan Island"

Dulse signs can be seen all over Grand Manan Island

  • The Fundy Trail is a 16 kilometre long parkway that provides scenic views of the Bay of Fundy. It can be hiked or cycled too – though beware of grades of up to 17%. There is a fee to access it.
"Bay of Fundy views along the Fundy Trail"

Bay of Fundy views along the Fundy Trail

  • There aren’t many services that are free these days but the ferry between Deer Island and mainland New Brunswick is – and the ferry runs every half hour. Amazing.
"The Deer Island ferry"

The Deer Island ferry

Have you ever traveled to New Brunswick? Have you any interesting or useful facts to add about the province?

Other posts in my fun, weird and interesting facts series you might enjoy.

Leigh McAdam


Author Leigh

Avid world traveler. Craves adventure - & the odd wildly epic day. Gardener. Reader. Wine lover. Next big project - a book on 100 Canadian outdoor adventures.

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