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Whale of the coast of Grand Manan Island
Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Things to See and Do

Photographers and Artists-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Sheds, Seal Cove, Grand Manan    Will find unique opportunities to pursue their hobbies. Unusual natural lighting effects, picturesque vistas of seacliffs and quiet coves, quaint fishing villages huddling in the lee of protective coves, gingerbread Victorian architecture, cascades of wild flowers, and spectacular sunsets and sunrises over the sea.

Wildflowers!-Grand Manan Island, New BrunswickWild Lupins-Grand Manan Island
    Whether you're a naturalist, photographer or plain just like flowers in a natural setting you'll enjoy the profusion of wildflowers found on Grand Manan from late Spring until early fall. Fields of wild lupins devils paintbrush, and wild roses… simple cascades of delicate woodland species…rare seaside species…each in their time and season greet and dazzle the eye.

Bird Watching-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Sea gull, Grand Manan Island    Situated on a major Eastern flyway, the Grand Manan Archipelago is renowned as a bird watcher's paradise. Over 338 species have been reliably identified, 131 of which have been found breeding here since 1900.
   While "birding" is a year round past time for many Islanders, the best times for visitors are the Spring migratory period ( early April to early June ), followed by the Summer nesting season and the fall migratory period. The latter actually begins in late August when many shorebirds return from nesting in high Arctic regions.
   Tourism Grand Manan publishes " GRAND MANAN BIRDS ", a comprehensive guide to the occurrence, breeding, etc. of all species, plus a field check list. Compiled by Brian Dalzell, a local naturalist, it is available locally. Guided nature tours are also available and reservations can be made through your hosts. Seabird enthusiasts should watch while crossing on the ferry or consider whale watching tours.

Machias Seal Island, New Brunswick
Hole-in-the-Wall   This island, outermost of the Grand Manan group, is the southernmost breeding site of North Atlantic Puffin. In addition Razorbill Auks and Arctic Terns breed on this remote, rocky island. While they begin arriving in late May, actual breeding and nesting activities usually commence in mid-June. Seawatch tours take visitors to Machias Seal Island from the Seal Cove Wharf, Monday through Saturday, LATE JUNE THROUGH EARLY AUGUST, weather permitting. Reservations are required and can be made through your host or by calling Seawatch directly, Machias Seal Island is a Canadian Migratory Bird Sanctuary maintained by the Canadian Wildlife Service and restricts the number of daily visitors during the seabird breeding period.
Hiking & Cycling-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Sandy Beaches   There are more than 18 interesting and well marked trails on Grand Manan covering approximately 70 kilometers of shoreline, cliffside and beaches, that can be hiked or cycled. These vary in length from as little as 30 minutes to day long to overnight. Detailed descriptions, with section maps, can be found in HERITAGE TRAILS AND FOOTPATHS ON GRAND MANAN ISLAND, published by Tourism Grand Manan and available locally. FRIENDS OF GRAND MANAN TRAILS is a volunteer organization dedicated to trail preservation. Find out how you can contribute by contacting Don Baldwin, Seal Cove, EOG-3BO. Bicycles can be rented locally.

Rockhounding-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
   The particular geology of Grand Manan, part volcanic basalt ( Triassic period ) and part sedimentary-metamorphic ( palaeolithic/Precambrian ), creates a unique opportunity for visitors interested in rockhounding. Amethyst, agate and copper are common finds. Areas of particular interest are at Whale Cove ( the Seven Days Work formation ), Red Point Beach at low tide ( point of geological contact ) and White Head Island.

White Head Island, New Brunswick
Herring Smoking Hut-Grand Manan Island   The only other inhibited island in the Grand Manan Archipelago, White Head is a satellite of our Island society. Here a small number of families, primarily fishermen, have lived for two hundred years. This island is unique in many ways, with quiet coves, ideal overviews of weir fishing operations, plus flora and fauna not seen on the main island. A small car ferry from Ingall's Head provides six round trips daily. Some accommodation is available on the island or you can return to Grand Manan on the last ferry at 4:30 p.m.

Sea Kayaking-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
   Paddle the rich waters of the Bay of Fundy and see exciting marine life, weir fishing and even whales, seals and seabirds at close quarters. Trips range from easy to challenging but be aware of the tides, fishing boats and whale watching regulations. Kayak rental and guided trips can be arranged through your host or directly with tour operators.

Whale Watching-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Whale Watching Tour-Grand Manan Island   The mouth of the Bay of Fundy, including the Fundy Isles, is a haven to these large, magnificent mammals. Attracted by large schools of fish and zooplankton moving into the Bay, these leviathans of the deep also find a natural habitat for nursing their young, courtship and mating. Finback, Humpback and Minke Whales, and rare North Atlantic Right Whales, abound around Grand Manan and can sometimes be seen from shore. Harbour Porpoises and occasionally Atlantic White-sided Dolphins can be seen from the ferry and from lookouts on shore.
    Whale & Seabird Research Station in North Head offers an interpretative centre of Bay of Fundy marine fauna, including whales, porpoises and seals, through biological and photographic displays. Researchers are available to answer any questions.
    Several tour boats offer day trios, weather permitting, JULY THROUGH SEPTEMBER. Reservations are required and can be made through your hosts or directly with the tour company, for an unforgettable adventure on the high seas.

Fisheries of Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
    The fisheries of Grand Manan are and have always been the mainstay of our island economy.
   Both inshore and deep water lobstering are major contributors during the late Fall, Winter and Spring seasons. The tidal lobster pounds at Woodward's Cove and between Ross Island and the main island collectively represent one of the world's largest lobster holding centres. Live Lobsters from all Atlantic Provinces and Maine are shipped here and held for future shipment to both North America and world markets.
Fishing Weir-Grand Manan Island   Our herring weir fishery is one of the largest in the Bay of Fundy, both for sardines and large herring. During recent years much of the catch of large herring has been sold "over the side" to foreign factory/freezer ships for export. SMOKED HERRING is perhaps the oldest traditional fishery on the island. Cured, hard smoked herring (bloaters) and herring fillets provide a valuable food source that will keep for months without refrigeration. The various smoke stand operations usually begin in late July when the first herring are seined from the weirs and continue into the Fall and Winter months. Once a mainstay of our fishing economy this trade has declined in recent years with the advent of better refrigeration methods. Most of the smoke stands still in operation welcome visitors.
   Seining, dragging ( or trawling ), handlining and gill netting of fish, and scallop dragging are also important sectors of our fishing industry. Digging clams, picking periwinkles, and dragging for sea urchins and shrimp supplement fishing incomes. The Seafood Aquaculture industry is growing rapidly and at present a number of sea cages for Atlantic Salmon can be seen around the island.
    Excellent descriptions of the various methods of fishing can be found in Eric Allaby's book " GRAND MANAN " published by the museum in 1984 and again in 1994. Copies are available at the museum and from Island merchants.

The Dulse Capital of the World-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Spreading Dulse to Dry    Grand Manan IS the dulse capital of the world. This edible seaweed, known locally as Dark Harbour Dulse, is hand picked at low tide on the Western side of the Island, landed at Dark Harbour, sun dried and packaged for export as a condiment and seasoning. Some dulse is also picked on the eastern side of the Island. Visitors can see the drying operations at various locations around the Island. Try it the way most Islanders prefer it, as a snack food, fresh dried and eaten with the fingers. Nori, a thin seaweed used for sushi and sushimi, is now also harvested at low water and exported to Japan and other locations.

Grand Manan Museum
   Centrally located in Grand Harbour, our Museum offers the Allen L. Memorial Bird Collection, the McLaughlin Marine Gallery, a display of Island geology, plus historical artifacts, archives and genealogical records. Truly a " Living Reflection of Island History".
   GRAND MANAN-PAST AND PRESENT is an interesting and informative series of films, slide shows, talks and demonstrations about Grand Manan, it's unique life-style, history, natural features and industry, held on Tuesday and Thursday evenings in July and August. Also watch for special "rainy day " programs in the afternoons. The Museum is open daily from mid-June through the end of September. Tours for groups can also be arranged.

Moses Memorial Bird Collection
Moses Memorial Bird Collection-Grand Manan Island   The Moses Memorial Bird Collection at the Grand Manan Museum in Grand Harbour is an excellence resource for serious birders. It was donated to the people of Grand Manan by the late Allen L Moses ( 1881-1953 ) famed "Island Bird Man" who spent a lifetime observing and collecting valuable specimens for both Canadian and U.S. museums.

Farmers' Market-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
   Locally grown, freshly harvested produce plus fresh and smoked fish, home baking and preserves, and local crafts are available every Saturday morning at our Farmers Market in North Head, from mid-June until late-September. GET THERE EARLY FOR THE BEST CHOICES!!!!!

Canada Days-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
    July 1st is Canada's Birthday and each year the Village of Seal Cove, at the south end of Grand Manan, hosts a three day CANADA DAYS CELEBRATION to honor our country's founding. Old time events such as greasy pole races, scallop shucking contests, village suppers and children's fancy dress parades highlight the program. EVERYBODY IS WELCOME! Grand Harbour and North Head also have Canada Day celebrations. Events are usually advertised or ask your hosts for information.

Rotary Festival-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
   Sponsored by the Rotary Club of Grand Manan Island during the first week of August, our Rotary Festival is an annual community celebration and a highlight of the Summer season. This five day event features sports events, entertainment, midway rides and games, exhibits and crafts displays, children's events, etc., plus a street parade, lobster roll supper and fireworks on Saturday, and one of our special Rotary Barbecues and a Gospel Singspiration on Sunday. GREAT FAMILY FUN FOR EVERYONE. DON'T MISS IT !!!!

Camping & Picnics-Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick
Anchorage Provincial Park-Grand Manan Island   THE ANCHORAGE PROVINCIAL PARK, located between Grand Harbour and Seal Cove, offers supervised camping sites on a seasonal basis, with sanitary and cooking facilities, trailer dumping station, etc. There is also a large seaside picnic area, as well as the Anchorage Beach and the Long Pond Migratory Bird Sanctuary.
   There are also many secluded coves and glades around the Island, plus a government picnic park at Castalia Beach, suitable for family picnics and outings. If your site appears to be on private land, please seek the owner's permission when possible. Most are very cooperative. DON'T FORGET TO CLEAN UP YOUR PICNIC SITE BEFORE YOU LEAVE IT.

BackLocation MapLinks from Grand Manan

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