Location, Location, Location: Fundy National Park

Full moon and high tides

We originally planned to camp in Fundy National Park, the second-to-last stop on our summer road trip.  Fundy was selected for two reasons–both of which were location-based.  One, it made a good stopping point between Prince Edward Island and Portland, Maine.  And two, it was located on the bay of the same name, the Bay of Fundy, home to the most extreme tides in the world.

Of course, I was not thrilled about the camping part.  I did enough of that at jam band festivals in college.  I know exactly how cold and how hot and how buggy a tent can get–and this is sometimes all in the same day.  So I switched our plans.  We stayed in a ‘cottage’ at the Fundy Highlands Inn and Cottages.  This ended up being an absolutely perfect location. Here’s our ‘cottage’ (in quotes because, clearly, it is a cabin!)


Our 'cottage' At Fundy Highlands

And here’s the view from the deck of our cabin.  You are looking at the Bay of Fundy and, in the distance, the western edge of Nova Scotia.


The best view I've ever had for $100 per night!

An amazing place to have dinner if I do say so myself!  Speaking of dinner, this cottage was located a quick five-minute drive from the town of Alma–featuring a perfectly passable pizza restaurant and a rather understocked grocery store.  And, the best part of all–Fundy Highlands Inn and Cottages is located inside of Fundy National Park proper.

Our amazing location resulted in a few days of rising early, cooking breakfast, and heading out–but barely out, as there were multiple trail heads within short driving distance–to hike the day away.  We saw waterfalls, seemingly endless meadows, and the ever-present scenic overlooks.

On one of the shorter hikes

Hiking in a dress!

A beautiful meadow at the end of a longer hike

Some of the shorter, easier paths in Fundy National Park were also marked with educational signs–my husband learned about different types of animal tracks and how to tell the difference between a spruce and a fir (and then insisted upon inspecting every single animal track and identifying every single conifer for the remainder of our trip–it was only a little annoying!)

We even rented a double kayak and attempted to paddle a lake–yeah, that didn’t go very well.  We may be happily married, but we are not coordinated enough to paddle together!

Clearly, this is before we tried to kayak. You can tell because I'm still smiling!

The only thing our little cottage was not close to was Hopewell Rocks–the unusual flowerpot rock formations located about 45-minutes from Fundy National Park.  No worries–we’d driven over 2,000 miles at this point, what’s the harm in another several dozen?  We headed out a bit too late one afternoon and arrived at the rocks just as the sun was setting behind the cliffs.  However, the Hopewell Rocks were still stunning in the fake-twilight.

Can you tell why they are called flowerpot rocks?

I highly recommend a visit to this strange part of the world to people of any age.  Just be warned–it’s a really long flight of stairs to get down to the sea floor and, of course, you’ll eventually have to walk back up!

At this point in our trip Fundy was the perfect stop.  It provided yet more hiking for my hiking-addicted husband, gave me some quality time with my camera at Hopewell Rocks, and our cottage featured a full kitchen that was quite welcome after three weeks of eating in restaurants and clam shacks (if I never see another fried scallop again I may be ok with that!)

Fundy National Park and, more specifically, Fundy Highlands Inn and Cottages would be a great place for a family vacation.  It is relaxing, beautiful, and well-located.  Unfortunately, the only member of my family that would consider hiking and (attempting) kayaking a vacation is my husband.  But if you have an active family, check it out.  Just, um, don’t all go at once.  Because half of the awesomeness of Fundy is how blissfully not-crowded it is!

Reader Note:  As you can see, it is my plan to finish posting about our summer trip before I fully begin posting about my extended Disney trip or my most recent trip, a Bermuda Cruise.  I’d like to sincerely apologize for taking so long to finish all of these posts, but I’ve been having the very best travel blogging problem ever–I’ve been traveling too much to keep up with posting!  Sadly–or fortunately, depending upon how you look at it–I will not be traveling anywhere until at least mid-January (famous last words, right?)  I need to stay home to finish my book and allow my credit card to cool off a bit!  It is my hope that during these next two months I will have time to share all of my stories, photos, and lessons from Portland, Disney World, Universal, St. Augustine, and Bermuda.  Stay tuned!

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