Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada
Aug 24, 2020
Arrives 08:00 AM
Departs 02:00 PM
In Partnership With AFAR
Saint John, on the southern coast of New Brunswick, is Canada’s oldest incorporated city as well as the only city on the Bay of Fundy. Give your stroll through uptown Saint John a little focus by taking the self-guided Loyalist Trail walking tour, which visits historic attractions like the 1784 Burial Grounds, the 1876 Old City Market, a general store and the Jewish Historical Museum. The New Brunswick Museum, also along the Loyalist Trail, tells the story of the town and exhibits cover some of its natural history, too, with an 80,000-year-old mastodon skeleton. The Martello Tower has been part of Saint John's identity since it was erected for the War of 1812; it was even used to house prisoners during World War I. The most exciting part of your trip to Saint John may be your chance to view the point at which the Bay of Fundy and the Saint John River collide: the Reversing Falls Rapids. If simply observing the churning waves and whirlpool is not enough, ride a zip line over the waters for added thrills.
Sample Port Activities
Saint John City Highlights
Starting At $49
Discover nearly four hundred years of history in Canada's oldest incorporated city, and experience an eclectic blend of past and present personalities, places and events in one of the friendliest places you'll ever visit.
View the beauty of the Bay of Fundy from Fort Howe, which overlooks this charming old port city. You'll be fascinated by the Reversing Falls Rapids where twice a day some of the highest tides in the world meet the mighty Saint John River and cause the river to reverse its direction. Stop to explore the sights and scents of the Old City Market and chat with local folks as they buy fresh produce in an old-fashioned market setting built in 1876. And finally, pass Martello Tower -- a relic from the War of 1812. Learn about the history of the United Empire Loyalists who founded the city in 1783 and the story of General Benedict Arnold from the American Revolutionary War.
Notes: Minimum age is 1 year.
A Walk through Historic Saint John
Starting At $29
As you stroll through Trinity Royal Heritage Area you'll stop to view one of the oldest churches in the city and be captivated by its historic charm. The buildings you'll see feature ornate carvings, exquisite stained-glass windows, wrought iron fences and fascinating gargoyles. Enjoy a relaxing walk with your informative tour guide along some of historic Saint John's residential streets and the old business district in the uptown area. Most of this area was destroyed in a huge citywide fire in 1877 and was rebuilt immediately afterwards.
Visit the Old City Market to see the freshest seafood, farm produce, crafts and collectibles on sale. This is an excellent opportunity to learn the fascinating history and folklore of this old port city and discover its traditions dating back to the time of its United Empire Loyalist founders in 1783.
Notes: The pace is slow and stops are frequent. Your whole tour is within easy walking distance of where your cruise ship is docked. The walking route includes moderately steep hills.
St Martins & the Bay of Fundy
Starting At $99
Your tour begins with a scenic drive to Fallsview Park, where the mighty Saint John River meets the powerful tides of the Bay of Fundy, creating the renowned Reversing Rapids. Stop at the harbor and witness the effects of the extreme high and low tides of the Bay of Fundy. This area is a favorite with artists, with its lighthouse, lobster traps and fishing boats creating a charming scene. Photographers also delight in the scene of the lighthouse and twin covered bridges with the ocean for a backdrop.
Visit the beach, where time and tides have carved echoing caves in the sandstone cliffs. Enjoy a walk along the sand and some seafood chowder at the beach restaurant. Less than an hour away from Saint John, perched on the shores of the Bay of Fundy, is the picturesque fishing village of St Martins, a beautiful window through which to take a peek at life in New Brunswick. It is also a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. During the scenic drive to St Martins, your local guide will entertain you with fascinating folklore about the village, including tales of the thriving shipbuilding era. Return to Saint John for a visit to the bustling Old City Market -- a National Historic Site in the heart of the town.
Notes: The sea caves are only accessible at low tide, but can be viewed from the beach at any time. Wear comfortable walking shoes.
Moosehead Brewery: In Partnership with FOOD & WINE Magazine
Starting At $99
This tour is a fun and fascinating introduction to Canada's oldest independent brewery -- home of the world-famous Moosehead Beer. The Moosehead Brewery, located in Saint John, New Brunswick, operates with values that have been safeguarded by the same family for 150 years. Their journey began in 1867 and, despite devastating fires, Prohibition, the Great Depression, two world wars, complete destruction in 1917, obstructive trade barriers, and bruising competition from mainstream breweries, Moosehead continues to be one of the most resilient, respected, and time-honored Canadian companies. Driven by a passion for beer, dedicated employees and strong family leadership, Moosehead is proud to welcome you today. See Moosehead's state-of-the-art bottle and can packaging lines and enjoy a bird's-eye view of the 450-barrel copper and stainless-steel brewing vessels.
Tour the new small-batch facility to learn how art, science, and passion come together to create award-winning beers. In the taproom, you will sample a variety of beers and learn how Moosehead has survived and thrived over the past 150 years.
Notes: Wear closed-toe shoes. Participants must be able to climb and descend multiple stairs, stand for extended periods, or spend time in varying heat or cold, as this is a tour of the production brewery. Minimum age to drink alcohol is 19 years with valid photo ID. Tour does not operate on Sundays.
Trolley 'Round Saint John
Starting At $49
Discover 400 years of history in the heart of Canada's oldest incorporated city, and experience a delightful blend of past and present as you tour Saint John by motorized trolley, similar to a century-old streetcar. Enjoy the narrative by your driver-guide as Saint John's history comes to life. You'll discover Saint John's charm and learn about the personalities and events that have contributed to the city's fascinating history.
View the port of Saint John and your cruise ship against the beauty of the Bay of Fundy from Fort Howe lookout. Visit the Reversing Falls Rapids, where the mighty Bay of Fundy causes the Saint John River to reverse direction and flow upstream. End your tour at the Old City Market, in the heart of Saint John and within a three-block radius of Saint John's top attractions and shopping area. Guests who wish to stay in town to shop or explore independently are welcome to do so, but must return to the ship on their own.
Notes: Wear comfortable walking shoes. The distance from the market back to the pier is approximately a quarter-mile. There is no storage for wheelchairs or walkers on the Trolley.
Hop on Hop off: Saint John by Big Pink Sightseeing
Starting At $59
Board an authentic London double-decker bus that is painted pink to encourage breast cancer awareness. Choose your own experience, as your all-day pass gives you access to guided loops, and all the best Saint John has to offer, at you leisure. See Fort Howe, an 18th-century British fortification, Loyalist House, one of the few buildings to survive the Great Fire of 1877, the New Brunswick Museum, where the city's rich heritage comes to life. Visit Fallsview Park to see the phenomenon that is the Reversing Falls. Stop at Saint John Skywalk, where a class bottom walkway offers unparalleled views of Reversing Rapids.The waters of the mighty Saint John River collide with the Bay of Fundy for a breathtaking spectacle you won’t soon forget. Take time en route to visit the City Market and King Street -- Canada’s shortest, steepest street whose slope drops 20 stories in just two city blocks. Relax in idyllic Kings Square and visit the bustling market on Charlotte Street where tasty treats and eye-catching crafts will tempt you.
Notes: Collapsible wheelchairs are allowed, but only one per bus. Admissions are not included are at the discretion of the guest. Buses depart the pier and all stops approximately every 15 - 30 minutes all day. A portion of the proceeds is donated to the Breast Cancer Foundation.
Brunch at the Maple Sugar Farm
Starting At $89
Meet your local guide pier-side and hear all about the history of Saint John as you travel through the city and out to the New Brunswick countryside. Cross the Kennebecasis River on one of the few remaining cable ferries in New Brunswick. Take in the sights and stories of the Kingston Peninsula. This is where you'll find Elmhurst Outdoors -- a small. family-operated maple sugar farm. Tag along on an enlightening visit to a present-day Maple Sugar Shack. Informative displays will take you back in time to the beginning of maple sugaring -- invented by Native North Americans, then onward in history to the early settlers, the mid-1900s and the present. Return to the lodge for a brunch of homemade pancakes, sausage and, of course, lashing of syrup. The maple kind! To round out a perfect day, you'll be treated to the age-old tradition of maple taffy on snow .
Notes: Walking is on uneven, loose gravel, dirt and grass areas. Total walking distance is approximately 1/2 mile with 820 feet of uphill walking to reach the Sugar Shack and one step up into the lodge for your tasting.
Bay of Fundy Coastal Photography Tour
Starting At $99
A professional Saint John photographer has designed this special combination of sightseeing and photography. (S)he will offer some great tips to help you improve your own photos -- whether they are simple snaps or part of your artistic portfolio. Board a minibus for a drive to the Bay of Fundy coastline. En route, you’ll stop at Fallsview Park for a chance to photograph the natural phenomenon on the St John River called the Reversing Rapids. This series of rapids changes direction at the whim of the enormous tidal fluctuation in the Bay of Fundy, whose coastline is a staggering 170 miles long. Continue to Lepreau Falls -- a photogenic provincial park where the Lepreau River spills over a rocky ledge. Some of these rocks are believed to be 300 million years old.
Next, stop at Dipper Harbour -- a working wharf in a quaint fishing village on the Bay of Fundy. You’ll also stop at Bay of Fundy Beach. Head back to the port and your cruise ship with a memory card full of great shots to share with friends and family at home.
Notes: Bring your camera. Wear comfortable walking shoes. Not advisable for guests using a wheelchair or for those with mobility limitations.
Saint John for Foodies: A Walking Tour
Starting At $69
Get acquainted with some of the delectable small-plate dishes, irresistible sweets and local beverages that have elevated downtown Saint John into a true foodie destination. Head straight to Saint John's historical downtown area and to Java Moose. Enjoy a hot coffee here made with the highest-quality Arabica beans. Beavertails serves the perfect accompaniment to your coffee -- a fresh-baked, maple-glazed pastry. You will then enter the iconic Old City Market, passing through its original wrought-iron gates. The market opened 1876 and barely escaped the devastating Great Fire of 1877. It has since attracted some of the finest food retailers in Canada. Look up to notice the ceiling -- it resembles the inverted keel of a ship in honor of Saint John's long history of shipbuilding. As you browse among the stalls, enjoy samples of locally-produced food and sweets. You can expect to sample dulse -- a deep-purple sea vegetable that is dried and eaten by the handful like popcorn -- as well as salmon and lobster from the nearby Bay of Fundy. Pomodori Pizza, a locally-owned world award-winning shop, offers a local favorite -- maple pecan pizza. Keep an open mind -- it's pretty good! Around the corner, relax at Five & Dime. This local bar has ties to the Great Fire of 1877 (ask your guide) and offers you a delicious cupcake and a glass of wine. It's a thing here.
Notes: Tour requires approximately two hours of easy-to-moderate walking over mostly even surfaces. There will be a few steps and small inclines to negotiate. Not advisable for guests using a wheelchair or for those with mobility limitations. Wear comfortable walking shoes. Food substitutions are not available on this tasting tour. Minimum age to drink alcohol is 19 years.