On the banks of the Petitcodiac River, Moncton, New Brunswick, has a lot to offer – and not just because of the many great local bars, gastro pubs, and fine-dining restaurants in its downtown. Here are the top things to do in Moncton, New Brunswick.
About an hour and a half drive from Saint John, Moncton is a charming town with great views, nature, activities, and a lively food and bar scene. Spend the day immersed in nature, experience fine dining, or take a day trip to the exciting sites of New Brunswick. When the night falls, hit up one of the many great local pubs and make friends with some locals.
On the Petitcodiac River itself, onlookers can observe a natural phenomenon called a tidal bore where, twice daily, the tidal river water rolls back upstream in a single wave, as high as two feet tall. In the summer, watch local surfers don their wetsuits and attempt to “ride the bore.” A second, marvelous natural wonder is the Hopewell Rocks, just under an hour’s drive from Moncton. Here, you can truly experience the effects of the Bay of Fundy’s tides – the highest in the world – as you walk on the ocean floor, surrounded by red sand cliffs. Aside from the tide-related sites to see, New Brunswick in itself is surrounded by nature and water. Make time to go for a hike or a small fishing trip to step back and become one with nature.
Aside from the must-do Hopewell Rocks day trip, there are a number of other hot spots you can easily get to from Moncton. The wonderful city of Saint John is only an hour and a half away if you want a quick change of scenery. For more historic sites and musuems, the capital of New Brunswick, Fredericton, is about a two hour drive. If you want to venture over to a whole other province, Prince Edward Island is less than a two hour drive away. Take advantage of the small distance between cities in this region, because you likely won’t have the same luxury in any other part of Canada. Here’s our guide to the Best Roadtrips from Moncton if you want more information or ideas for trips that are on the longer side.
Good Eats n’ Drinks
If you like deliciously fresh seafood, Moncton is the place to be. There are a ton of restaurant options for some of the best oysters and lobsters you’ll ever taste. Try some local favourites such as Catch 22 Lobster Bar or Skipper Jack’s Maritime Restaurant. Many people will also direct you to Little Louis’ Oyster Bar and Cuisine; don’t let the outside fool you, this is a must-try spot for seafood. For those who are not the biggest fans of seafood, there are an endless number of spots for comfort food and more international options. Tide and Boar is a popular hangout for food and drinks amongst both locals and those visiting the city.
Things to Do With Kids
For families, Moncton is a wild summertime playground. Splash your heart out at Magic Mountain waterpark, see tigers at the Magnetic Hill Zoo, and while away the afternoon with cool hands-on activities at Resurgo Place, a new science discovery center. In early spring, ask your hotel concierge to help you locate a local sugar shack. If the sap is running, many small operators will open their cabins to the public for servings of maple taffy on snow and delicious pancake breakfasts. If you happen to be in Moncton in July, make sure to attend the Shediac Lobster Festival. Not only can your whole family fill up on delicious fresh lobster, there are a ton of rides and events for your kids to lose their minds over.