Staycation-ing in New Brunswick

Finding adventures closer to home has been the theme since the world has slowly begun re-open for business. Our family loves to travel (kids and all). It’s our way of getting quality time together and also create amazing memories sharing new adventures.

This year we had to cancel our winter/spring vacation due to the Covid crisis. So when the small businesses around our beautiful province of New Brunswick began to open back up, we were really excited to be able to spend Canada Day in St. Andrew’s by the Sea.

We have spent a couple Canada Day holidays in this quaint little town. It’s only about a 1.5 hour drive for us, so it’s super convenient and we try to get down there at least twice a year.

We love how everything there is within walking distance around the town. So we can just park the car for the duration (for the most part). It boasts of cute shops and great restaurants. It’s known as an artsy town and it is also is host of “Horticultural Masterpiece,” Kingsbrea Gardens, which is one of our favourite places to go in all of New Brunswick.

There are plenty of great accommodations to choose from, however, we usually opt to stay at the Algonquin Resort. (It’s pet friendly!) It’s a signature Marriott, which feels different from the typical Marriotts. The signature hotels tend to be historic properties and have a more unique boutique hotel vibe, which is definitely more in sync with our taste. The rooms are well appointed, and they have a large executive suite, which gives us lots of space for our family to feel comfortable, but it’s the lobby and porch we enjoy the most. We love to gather by the fire indoors or out on the very large wrap around porch for food and drinks. It’s always very lively and nice to just hang out and people watch. They also have an indoor and outdoor pool and a spa.

This year, the Canada festivities were cancelled, which was a bummer. However, the town was still dressed up in flags and we still enjoyed celebrating wearing our festive red and white and enjoying our time together. We found lots to keep us busy: taking Elle swimming; walking around the town and market and always a trip to the Gardens with a late lunch at their lovely cafe (tip: the lobster on croissant is so good and they make their caesar salad with kale and it’s delish – also the best Bellinis!)

Aside from walking around and checking out the local boutiques and shops or sampling the local food fare, some other popular things to do while visiting St. Andrews, including some of my favourites are:

Minister’s Island (when tide is out)

Dinner at the Rossmount (tasting menu is the perfect date night! Also a lovely place to stay)

Golf (award winning course)

Aquarium (great for children)

Whale Watching

Farmer’s Market

McGuire Chocolate Company (homemade ice cream)

The Leather Company (I picked up two really sweet jumpsuits here last visit!)

Honeybeans Coffee, Tea & Treats (coffee shop)

When I was there the last few times, I had so many people from our own province comment on my Instagram after seeing photos, particularly of the gardens. With the Atlantic Bubble in place, so many people are looking for places to explore for their summer (or autumn) vacations and I really think St. Andrew’s is a great choice.

Also, did you know, if you’re a New Brunswicker, our Government is offering a 20% rebate on travel related expenses from within the province. Such a great incentive to have a staycation and discover (or rediscover) great little places in our own backyards, like St. Andrews. You can find out more information on that rebate here.

So, for my own curiosity, what are your thoughts on traveling right now? Have you travelled since things began to open up? If so, where have you visisted? Do you feel safe going outside your province? Would love to hear what you’re up to and what your thoughts are on travel during these very unique times. Also, please feel free to share other recommendations on St. Andrews or other places to visit in our Atlantic Bubble. Comment below!

Until next time, I hope you’re staying well and enjoying your summer. Thanks or reading!

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