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dbldidit Jul 20th, 2009 11:46 AM

Dbl here again - You may want to stop n Amherst at the beginning of the Sunrise Trail - it is a victorian town where they have carved dead tree trunks into all kinds of sculptures in the town - pretty funny! We are now based near Pictou - a little (well, little to us, "big" for here!) a 1770's HArbor town. We ate take out on the dock, with Taffy. This is also beef and pork country, so there are alternatives to shellfish. We have successfully brought gorgeous weather with us after a downpour before grilling dinner last night. The views from Fitzpatrick mountain at STONEHAME chalets and lodge are fabulous! There were so many stars out last night and we seemed close enough to touch them. I will try to photograph them tonight. We have a knack for avoiding the crowds, probably most people would want to either see the Tall Ships or be in the towns for their bicentennials or Lobster festivals, but we choose the quieter way this time. Off to Cheticamp tomorrow (maybe we are old (I'd like to think not) but we are pretty beat after 4/5 hour drives and are the cocktails at home kind - being single, you probably want to be closer to the towns.

RetiredVermonter Jul 21st, 2009 08:11 AM

A couple of ideas for nice B&B's:

The Eggemoggin Oceanfront Lodge, in Brooklin, Maine (Downeast Maine, not far from Bucksport, Ellsworth and Acadia. We have not been there, but we HAVE stayed at its "sister" B&B, The Tipsy Butler, down farther along the coast in Newcastle, Maine, and that was excellent!

The Eggemoggin looks lovely, too, with oceanfront views, and their OFF season apparently starts October 1, since they are not in a foliage area. Check their web site at You can take a "virtual tour", too.

I cannot say where exactly we had that lobster fritata because it was some time ago, but it was at a B&B around Eastport, Maine. (Obviously, their breakfasts change.)

St. Andrews, New Brunswick:

We have stayed several times there, fo anniversaries, at The Pansy Patch, which is across the street from the huge Algonquin Inn there. We liked the Pansy Patch for its intimacy, and, back a few years ago at least, we were told the Pansy Patch guests were entitled to the Algonquin's pool and other amenities. The Pansy Patch's largest room has windows that open out toward St. Andrews and offer a view of the sea -- truly gorgeous! (A novel little feature were the BLACK -- or perhaps just very dark blue -- pansies at the quaint door leading into the inn!)

We have not been to NS because of the expense of taking the Cat with our car (now the only ferry over to there) and because we did not want to drive all the way up and around to get there! However, New Brunswick is a wonderful place to visit, too. Fundy is special, of course, with its 48-foot (!) tides!

Before we retired up here, we used to live in Connecticut, and had a family membership to Old Sturbridge Village, in Sturbridge, Mass. It is fabulous, and we preferred it to Williamsburg, VA, truth be known, even though Sturbridge is a "created" village (buildings moved there or constyructed there, albeit of old materials) vs Williamsburg more "authentic" buildings. We found the Sturbridge guides or interpreters MORE knowledgeable and more caring, and loved the flexibility of being able to spend as much time anywhere on the grounds as we wished -- like maybe spending an hour with the cooper, making barrels, if we chose to. (just an example.) Just our opinion, of course.

Good luck with your plans!

owlwoman Jul 21st, 2009 09:01 AM

Hi, we're about to leave on a similar vacation, any recommendation on where to stay in Alma? Any info about the Bay of Fundy area will be most appreciated. From there, we're thinking 2 nights on Camponello Island, then to Boston for a night and then home to NY. Any comments?

mrkindallas Jul 21st, 2009 11:48 AM

There are a few B&Bs in the Alma area. Check for B&Bs in the area (direct to the listings for the Alma area:

The inns that I found actually in Alma are Captain's Inn (which I considered booking) -, Fundy Highlands Inn and Chalets -, and Falcon Ridge Inn -

I have a reservation at An Artist's Garden (, which is not actually in Alma, but not too far away.

I did not look at accomodations actually on Campobello island. I'm staying across the bridge in Lubec at The Home Port Inn (

Accomodations in Boston are quite pricey. I was able to get a room at the Sheraton in the Back Bay area for about $100/night through If you go with a 3.5 star in Back Bay, you should get either the Sheraton or Hilton in that area according to my research on

owlwoman Jul 21st, 2009 12:19 PM

Thanks, now I'm really confused, looks like nice places to stay. Do you know what the difference is between Hopewell Rocks and Bay of Fundy Parks, do you need to see both?

mrkindallas Jul 21st, 2009 12:29 PM

I think you are referring to two different locations in the same vicinity -

Hopewell Rocks -
Fundy National Park -

If you go to New Brunswick's website for the Bay of Fundy, you'll learn more about the area and other things in close proximity:

china_cat Jul 21st, 2009 12:58 PM

we stayed at the Captains Inn in Alma. It was fine, but nothing really special. The location was very nice, right across the street from the harbor, and we had a good lobster at the restaurant across the way too. Our room was small and comfortable. I thought it was fine for a 1 night stay, but probably a little cramped for longer than that.

mrkindallas Jul 21st, 2009 12:58 PM

Thanks for another update...I didn't realize that Amherst also had the carved trees...I had planned a stop in Truro to see some there...I'll look at stopping in Amherst instead. Although there are portions of the Berlin Wall in Truro that I wanted to see, so depending on time, I might do both. It looks like Amherst has some that have been stained whereas the ones in Truro have not.

Well, it sounds like a beautiful trip so far...Can't wait for October!!

owlwoman Jul 22nd, 2009 06:18 AM

Yes, I realize they are two different parks, but with limited time, would you need to see both or if you've been to one and seen the tides you don't need to do the other.

Thank you China cat for the review of the inn. Did you like Alma? Would three nights be too much there? Trying to decide if we should do 2 nights Alma then 2 nights either on Camponello Island or Lubec, ME. Decisions, decisions!

china_cat Jul 22nd, 2009 08:42 AM

I thought Alma was nice enough, although very small. We were on a long trip, and just did a 1 night stopover on the way from PEI to Bar Harbor. We mainly chose it because I wanted to go to Hopewell Rocks. I could have spent more time there, as we skipped doing a number of thing I would have liked to see. There were some nice sounding short hikes in the Fundy National Park that I would have liked to do, driving through the park was really quite boring...nothing to see from the road at all except woods. And there is the lighthouse and bird sanctuary (Cape Enrage and Mary's point) which we didn't manage to see. Also, because it was pouring rain the morning we left, we didn't do anything that day(and I had wanted to drive back to Hopewell rocks for the low tide). So 2 nights might be enough to cover a few things, but if the weather is bad you still might not see everything. Or if you are not interested in hiking at all, it may bore you quickly.

I've also spent a whole week in Lubec on a previous trip, and there are a number of nice places to hike around there too, plus the house at Campebello. Hard to choose.

owlwoman Jul 22nd, 2009 09:21 AM

Thank you so much, I know, I've been agonizing over what to do and where to stay, plus we don't want a huge trip to Boston on the way home to NY.

So, coming from Quebec, with a stop overnight along the way around Grand Falls, I think we'll do 2 nights in Alma, 1 on Campebello Island, then, stop in Lubec for lunch on the way to Rockland/Camden area for one night, then Boston for a night and home. This way we won't have more than 4 hours of driving a day, which will leave us 1 1/2 days to explore each area.

mrkindallas Jul 22nd, 2009 09:32 AM

owlwoman - I am likely going to have to choose between Hopewell Rocks and Fundy National Park and my priority will be to see Hopewell Rocks and allow for Fundy National Park only if there is extra time. Only you can determine what your priority would be. I would research the two and find out what is available at each and then make a decision. For me, if I went to Fundy National Park at the cost of seeing Hopewell Rocks, I would probably be disappointed. For very limited time, I think that Hopewell Rocks are probably your best option as they are easily accessible and you can get more Bay of Fundy scenery and experiences in a shorter amount of time than you would hiking through various trails in Fundy National Park. My plan is to see Cape Enrage and Hopewell Rocks while in the area. If I have time, I might pick one of the shorter hikes to do in Fundy National Park.

If you are headed to Lubec, then you might also look at stopping on the way for the Fundy Trail Parkway near St. Martins, NB. There are also sea caves in St. Martins. If you did Hopewell Rocks, the sea caves and Fundy Trail Parkway, you'd probably get to experience enough Fundy scenery to meet your scenic goals.

Be sure that you look up the tide schedules for the days that you plan to be in the area. If you are wanting to see the Hopewell Rocks or sea caves at low tide, then you need to know what time that is.

mrkindallas Jul 22nd, 2009 09:39 AM

owlwoman - When is your trip? I learned that the ferry between Campobello Island and Deer Island is seasonal and stops running by the time I'll be in the area. I'm still headed over to Campobello Island, but rather than crossing Deer Island to mainland Canada, I'll have to backtrack to Lubec in the US, go north through Calais and St. Stephen and cross back into Canada. Just something to know about if you are going after that seasonal ferry stops.

owlwoman Jul 22nd, 2009 09:45 AM

We're leaving a week from Friday, so the ferry will be running.

Thanks for the info, I've been to both web-sites. We'll try to see both Hopewell Rocks and Fundy National Park during our 2 1/2 day stay. I will definitely write a trip report when we get back. Got much more info here than on the Canada board.

Thank you everyone!

dbldidit Jul 22nd, 2009 11:10 AM

Hi folks- dbl here at Cheticamp. Took Sunrise Trail (after Canso Causeway) to the Cabot Trail. Not much on the Sunrise trail - we did stop for delicious sandwiches at a place in Inverness. Back to Fundy - Must recommend a walk at the rocky beach at cape Enrage (lighthouse is nothing spectacular, you can't go too close to it) we did the beach on the hour before lowest tides and the tides really went out quite a bit while we walked and Hopewell Rocks was the most amazing at low tide - really try to do that. Dickson Falls was a shorter trail, The Coppermine was quite steep but did have spectacular views. Alma is a sweet, tiny beach town.
Now in Cheticamp (a one road town) but if you don't have a dog and are into culture/history and music - this is an interesting place. We planned to drive part of Cabot Trail and hike - today it POURED - we drove about 50 miles along the Trail (very winding and steep -but dramatic views anyway) have a tank of gas and good brakes and tires) and did take some photos in the rain, but hiking was out of the question. We brought sandwiches with us, although the park goes in and out a couple of times and there were restaurants (no outdoor dining today :) - the gift shops seemed very high priced -I am an artist, so I make a lot of things myself, so to buy a handicraft - it has to be very unusual for me to spend the money) It would be gorgeous when the leaves turn! Whale watching cruises are the other big thing.
Owlwoman - I think the trips may say they are 4 hours, but we did about 175 miles yesterday and it was more like 5 hours. Unless you stay in the towns, that's more driving to get food, sites, etc. We stayed at the Fundy Highlands Chalets, just minutes from ALma, but technically in the park so you are supposed to pay for daily permits (which we did). We bought cooked lobsters at the pound ( EXCELLENT) and ate on our deck and cooked breakfast in the kitchen. The nicest place in Alma looked to be the Tides Inn - Alma is a one block town on the beach - 45 min to the Rocks ((No traffic ). Cheticamp area has tons of places to stay - why is Merry's booked up while others have vacancies? Several of us have pups, but not everyone. The light breakfast was very light - but I am sitting on the bed with my laptop and can see boats in the harbor and the maid really cleaned the room -super clean -owner is a Swiss and is a hoot! You can walk the whole town from here - no kitchen, just a fridge and 2 comfy double beds. Harbour restaurant was a fine dinner last night.
WOuld have liked to hike in the Highlands, but we are off to the River's Rafter's Cottages near Truro tomorrow and plan for fine weather for Friday's boat trip up the TIdal Bore Basin. Hope this helps out.

mrkindallas Jul 22nd, 2009 11:48 AM

Thanks again for an update. On the accomodations in Cheticamp, I know that I had a hard time deciding on one because there I had a hard time finding good pictures or many reviews of places in that area. The ones that I most commonly found were for Merry's, which is probably why they fill up. I decided that I'm going to try to L'Auberge Doucet Inn and if I like it, I'll do them the favor of posting a good review and good pictures.

dbldidit Jul 26th, 2009 06:15 AM

Hi - All - no wifi at our last stay at the Rafters RIDGE cottage near Shubencanadie. The Chalet was large and had a great covered deck with a grill. Must say that the Tidal Bore Rafting was a real blast - TOO MUCH FUN! we had a rainy day but trust me- you'll get very wet anyway. They boat you to a big sandbar and then wait to see the Tidal bore come in - back in the boat to ride the waves - some went in swimming and mud sliding as well. WOuld do it again!
BTW - Lobster from the pound on the beach in Alma (Fundy) was truly the sweetest!.
Stayed last night in St. John at the luxurious HOMEPORT B & B - which is waling distance along the waterfront to the"downtown" area - This had a street festival going on and lots of pubs with outdoor seating (weather held up for us- we walked the pup , sat outside with a beer while waiter packed up a dinner for us to bring back) - We had coctkails on the lawn with the fabulous view of the city and saw the big gray fog clouds come rolling in! Woke up to find out there was a major water main break in the town, so hosts are providing bottled water for everything---better than being at the Hilton or other place directly in town as we heard they had to shut down power in some spots. Off for our last night in Camden.

dbldidit Jul 29th, 2009 05:06 AM

Well. after 15 nights, we are back home and I am ready to obsess on my vacation scrapbook! :) Anyway, Camden has a beautiful port and harbor and the restaturants and shops were consistent to Boston prices-there was a fun consignment shop that let us bring Taffy into and due to proximity and our mood , we had take out sandwiches from Camden Deli (excellent for what us was). We did not find the service at the Lord Camden "unsurpassed" at check -in . I could go through a long laundry list of how the staff and room could have been better. The dog policy seemed antagonistic - $25 for our non shedding pup - kids under 13 stay free ???? anyway , breakfast is another story "full" should mean food in the serving trays when you arrive....I guess calling down to the office to complain that I was woke up around 11:30 (which was 12:30 from our maritime time) by a rowdy couple doing the humpty-dumpty - they comped us the room (which would have been about 300 w/ the pup charge)- I did write out my comments and called the manager - to her credit - she called me at home immediately and asked to discuss it with me. I explained it all - she apologized (This never happens" _ i LOVE that comment - apparently it DOES happen because it did - why can't I be the one in a million that wins the lottery instead? :) She offered us another free night on a future visit - however, Camden is a long ride for us and frankly why would I risk an annoying stay. Bright side- Mindy the massage therapist was very calming - although she does does do hot stone massage and the Inn should get that off their website.) Wlking Taffy in the morning , I did meet a lovely shop owner and other friendly tourists and discoverd that the RIverhouse Inn just behind the Lord Camdem is much more odg friendly , has on site parking, a beautiful private garden to enjoy w/the pup and outdoot patio dining for guests w/pups to have breakfast with them and they have an indoor pool and spa too - front desk clerk was lovely when walked taffy in and asked about room rates, etc.
MRDALLAS - I still think you have some ambitious drives (Wisscasset toke about 20 min to get through just because people cross the street by Red's Eats and Spraque's Lobster CONSTANTLY (no traffic light) so stop and eat:) Below is a link to the amazing Narrows Bridge near Bucksport. I wish we would have stopped and gone up to the observatory, but we were really tired - but got some great shots both directions!
I HOPE this trip report helps people out as there is so much to experience and see
(wanted to Add Merry's owner suggested we drive over to the free Ile D'Cheticamp and we walked the rocky beach and drove to the left and found a trail up to these amazing cliffs - just as we left another couple and dog drove their jeep up - the hike was beautiful and the drop off the side dramatic) Also younger than us motel neighbors hiked the Skyline Trail that rainy day -they did see a Moose and other wildlife, but also took a nap and then walked across the street foran early dinne --rand then we stopped at Joe's Scarecrows (a real hoot) and had freshly made for us crabmeat sandwiches at Ethel's - a real roadside trip spot!
And stop at the Giant Wild blueberry Store just near Cherryfield) HAVE a great time everybody! dbl from Burlington, MA

For a spectacular view of the entire Midcoast region and Mount Desert Island, visitors will enjoy the new observation tower that sits 42 stories above the Penobscot Narrows Bridge on Routes 1 and 3. The bridge is minutes from Bucksport, a picturesque town rich in maritime history and lore an hour west of Acadia National Park.

Visitors access the Observation Tower through Fort Knox Historic Site, a fort constructed of granite in 1844. A $5 admission fee grants visitors access to the fort and the Observation Tower, which is accessed via elevator.

With a 2,120 foot span over a plummeting gorge, the bridge itself is a sight to behold. One of only three cable-stayed bridges in the world with an observation tower, the Penobscot Narrows Bridge and Observatory replaced the 75-year-old Waldo Hancock suspension bridge in October of 2006. Since then, it has been a draw for tourists and Maine residents alike. The Observation Tower opened in May of 2007 and has quickly become one of the most popular Midcoast Maine attractions.

The breathtaking span of bridge and the tumbling river below are only a fraction of the beauty visible from the 420 foot high tower. The glass tower affords 360 degree views of surrounding locales that are rich in natural allure. Visitors to the Observation Tower can see up to 100 miles away, from the Camden Hills, where the mountains meet the sea, to Mount Katahdin, the highest mountain in Maine and terminus of the Appalachian Trail.

Katerbug Jul 29th, 2009 07:18 PM

tt so I can read this later! We'll be on an expedition ship out of Castine and I'm sure we'll go north to Acadian Park and beyond-but I can't plan anything as it's up to our captain when we board Aug 10!

dbldidit Aug 6th, 2009 05:05 AM

Have fun eveybody - here's our photos (narrowed down!)

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