New Brunswick’s Miramichi region offers something special for everyone—from world-famous fishing to riverboating to festival-hopping to museum-going. Here is where “Atlantic Canada’s Great Outdoors” meets the tides of modern life and history’s rich tales—all day, every day.
“What distinguishes our area is the sheer variety of activities available to visitors,” says Wade Hallihan, the City of Miramichi’s tourism administrator. “We’re the go-to place for every kind of pastime—paddle boarding, hiking, mountain biking, golfing, canoeing, kayaking, river cruising, festival-going, historical and cultural pursuits and, of course, fishing.”
Speaking of fishing, the Miramichi area is world-renowned for it. In fact, the namesake waterway is one of the best salmon rivers in the world. A variety of packages for the ultimate fishing vacation for all experience levels are readily available. Cast a line alongside experienced guides who know that secret spot. Compete in Atlantic Canada’s premier bass fishing experience, the Miramichi Striper Cup. Says Hallihan: “Fly fishing on the Miramichi is truly an experience no one ever forgets.”
The water promises other delights, too. In fact, there’s no better way to experience all that is Miramichi than by spending a day on the river. Set sail aboard the double decker Max Aitken riverboat. Navigate back in time in a voyageur canoe. For family fun, rent a tube and float down the river. Feeling adventurous? Try stand-up paddle boarding.
Even in the city, nature is never more than a stone’s throw away with parks and trails throughout the community. Spend the night in a riverside cabin. Bike, hike, or run the trails at French Fort Cove. From flat wetlands to hilly hikes through the woods, there are routes for every skill level. Also, saddle up and enjoy kilometers of fast and flowing single-track mountain biking.
When all’s said and done, pop down the road 30 minutes to Kouchibouguac, one of two wilderness Canadian national parks in New Brunswick—a fascinating mosaic of bogs, salt marshes, tidal rivers, sparkling freshwater systems, sheltered lagoons, abandoned fields and tall forests which characterize the Maritime Plain Natural Region.
In the Miramichi region, expect to meet lots of friendly folks at one of the many festivals. The area is known for its unique and thriving arts and culture community. Whether providing cedar tea at a 3,000-year-old village, making a Voyageur canoe ready to course down the river, or offering songs and stories rooted in folklore, Miramichi bundles a variety of experiences fit for any visitor. Jive all the way to the Miramichi Rock ‘n’ Roll Festival. It’s impossible not to dance a jig at Canada’s Irish Festival. Miramichi Folksong Festival, Indigenous Powwows, the Napan Agricultural Show, Scottish Festival, National Acadian Day and the Lumberjack Festival: Miramichi has it all, and it guarantees a good time!
After all the adventures, take time for a break and learn about the history and culture of Miramichi at its many museums. Experience the ways of the Mi’kmaq people at Metepenagiag Heritage Park. Explore the area’s cultural heritage with tea at Beaverbrook House. Visit MacDonald Farm, a 19th century Scottish settler’s homestead; discover its secrets and appreciate the charming scenery (visitors take a horse-drawn wagon along a winding trail leading to the spectacular historic homestead).
Discover all the yarns about Miramchi’s old shipbuilding industry at Beaubears Island—a place where fortunes were made and lives were lost, and learn the role the Island played in Miramichi and Canada’s history. Historic sites are the stage on which the stories here are retold by the decedents of the original cast. Step back in time in “Atlantic Canada’s Great Outdoors.”
Says Hallihan: “We’re known for many things in this area. What brings it all together is our friendliness, outstretched hands, and our spirit. We know what we have to offer is special and that’s what we share with the rest of the world.” •