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Is this itinerary too much for 1 day in St. John NB?

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I need a sanity check of our planned itinerary for St. John NB. I'm concerned that I'm trying to cram too much into a single day and don't want to accidentally overstay our welcome.


We'll be arriving on the Carnival Glory at 8 AM on Wednesday, Oct. 9. The ship leaves port at 4 PM, so I'm thinking we should have about 6 hours to play with. There are four adults. But I really don't want to play "cat herder" and try to rush everyone along.


I have a rental car reserved at Avis. If I leave the ship as soon as possible and walk the couple of blocks down to the rental car place, is it realistic to plan on being on the road by 9 AM? There are 2 other ships in St. John that day, but one of them doesn't arrive until 10 AM.


We plan to drive straight to St. Martins and see the sea caves. Low tide is at 9:31. It's a 50 minute drive. Is about an hour exploring the caves a good amount of time without rushing? Two of the people in our group are in their 70s so we won't be moving very fast. We'll miss the exact low tide, but I'm hoping that won't be too much of a problem.


Next is clam chowder at The Caves restaurant which is right near the beach. It shouldn't take more than an hour here.. right?


Then on to the Fundy Trail Parkway. This is only about 5 minutes away. It closes on Thanksgiving (Canadian), so it should still be open. Just driving around the parkway takes an hour, so I'm adding another hour for stops at lookouts for photos.


If we have time, I wouldn't mind going on down to the West Quaco lighthouse on the way back. It's a 3 km detour.


According to google maps, the round trip drive time is about 3 hours. So assuming 1 hour at the caves, 1 hour at the restaurant, and 1 hour for stops on the parkway, that takes us to 6 hours. That should get us back in town by 3 PM. Is that cutting it too close?


I guess plan B would be to skip the parkway drive, head back to St. John after the restaurant and check out Market Square. But one of the reasons for this cruise is to see the fall colors. So if at all possible, we'd like to fit in the scenic drive.


Any and all recommendations are welcome.

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having been to saint john i can tell you-you should be fine with your plan and timing. we have been to the port enough to tell you you will be fine getting to the rental car location-the streets are busy-but do herd them to the car and off the ship so you can be on your way-then you can relax-alot! The caves we went to this last trip-you will not need quite an hour - maybe a half or three quarters-tell the other couple to watch for you-when they see you come out of the cave and back to the restaurant (it sits above the caves by the road-if they grab an outside table they will see you) ask them to place your order-the chowder was the best we have ever had-but it is cash only and it is $11.00 a bowl......they do a good fish and chips too-it was not the cheapest meal-but it sure was good! Plan to take the extra cash-have them place your order and you won't need to stay so long there and hopefully give you enough time to stop by that lighthouse.

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We did almost exactly what you are doing and had time to check out the reversing falls on the way back to drop off the car before walking to the ship. The restaurant was packed when we were there, tour busses full of people, so it could be a wait. Enjoy your trip it is beautiful!

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