It was the first weekend in September and Monica and I decided to go south… to the islands of the Bay of Fundy. We booked a one-night vacation to a place we had not been in over 33 years since our honeymoon; Campobello. The weather was perfect and we were as excited as newlyweds to explore this beautiful marine ecosystem and rediscover the natural and historical wonders of the island.
Just 70 kms from our house to the hotel, we had lots of time to kill before check-in, so we started the journey with a full tour of Deer Island. We even stopped into the Original Pickle Guy‘s store (really funky) in Fairhaven but, sadly, he was not there. It’s a photographer’s dream here with the ever changing tides, the abundance of sea life and the quaintness of each buoy-adorned shed. We ended the morning tour with a yummy chicken salad lunch on the beach at Deer Island Point while waiting for the ferry to Campobello. I even ran into an old friend from NBCC – how delightful and sentimental to see her.
Arriving on Campobello at 1:00 pm we still had time to put in so we visited the stunning Herring Cove Provincial Park beach. Here we enjoyed a leisurely stroll looking for sea glass as the sun shone brightly on the calm ocean. Then off to find our accommodations at Campobello’s historic Owen House Country Inn and Gallery at Welshpool.
Built in1835 by Captain William Owen (Welsh), it is completely original and furnished throughout with antiques. We had the beautiful and spacious Captain’s room. Sitting on the edge of the coast, the view from the back lawn (and our room window) is across Welshpool Harbour to Friar’s Head. Surrounding the property are original English Oak trees planted by Captain Owen himself (183 years old). Today, the inn is owned and operated by artist, Joyce Morrell. The rooms are filled with her original watercolors of birds, still lifes and seascapes, some of which are for sale and all of which are fantastic.
The low tide today was at 4:00 pm so, after check-in, we set off to see the famously photographed Head Harbour Lighthouse. Clear blue skies and calm seas welcomed us as we descended and climbed our way across the exposed beach rocks and a bridge to see this magnificent structure with its distinctive red cross. It is immaculately maintained and was so spectacular on this clear day. Bonus, the crowd was very light making for easy and pleasant touring.
Leaving Head Harbour and with still a couple of hours of low tide left, we drove to the south of the island to Friar’s Bay to hike and see the monolithic rock formation on the shore called The Friar. Only accessible at low tide, you must follow a path through the woods to the shore and carefully navigate slippery seaweed covered rocks along the shore to see it. Monica was a trooper and we made it there and back with no mishaps.
The rest of the afternoon was spent enjoying the beautiful inn and grounds including a nice glass of wine on the veranda. As the sun sank to the horizon, we strolled along the cliffside path to enjoy a mesmerizing sunset across the water to Eastport, Maine.
Next morning (Sunday), all eight guests at the inn gathered in the dining room for a home cooked breakfast of scrambled eggs and bacon. Three couples were from New Brunswick and one couple from New York. Nice to meet other people and share stories of travel and home.
Leaving the Owen House Inn, we made our way to the International Park (only one in the world) at Friar’s Bay to tour the Roosevelt Cottage. Monica remembers being here 33 years ago but I do not. Free admission (nice), it is beautiful (needless to say) and well preserved. Next door to the Roosevelt cottage, the recently renovated Hubbard cottage is also open for public tours. More ostentatious than the Roosevelt’s, the Hubbard’s were known at the entertainers of the neighborhood in the early 20th century.
We caught the 1:00 pm ferry back to Deer Island and stopped into the 45th Parallel restaurant at Fairhaven for a hearty meal of scallops and fish. To die for! As we were waiting for our orders to arrive, who should walk in bringing boxes of supplies to restock the shelves but the Original Pickle Guy, Ken Bustin (his store is right across the street where we stopped yesterday). Nice fellow, interesting to talk to and very accommodating for a photo. We bought four bottles of his pickles.
And that was a wrap. Even though we had been before, in just 30 hours we felt as if we’d had a week-long vacation to someplace new and undiscovered. Even then, there were things on both islands we did not have time to see… so that means a return trip! As much as Monica and I love to travel the world, it’s nice to know you can get that same adventurous lift so close to home.
Here are the photo highlights of Island Getaway 2017.