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laurspag

Bar Harbor, St. John and Halifax ideas?

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On 5/27/2019 at 6:21 AM, declansdad said:

Sorry but as a native New Brunswicker this bothers me. It is Saint John not St. John, I know it's petty but around here people take offense to it. Also in Halifax you are taking the ferry across the harbour not the bay.

 

Happy that you enjoyed your cruise.

Love info from natives. To that: can I walk to Reversing Rapids? According to Rome2Rio its only a few miles, but are those miles along a freeway or a walkable path? 

 

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31 minutes ago, Ombud said:

Love info from natives. To that: can I walk to Reversing Rapids? According to Rome2Rio its only a few miles, but are those miles along a freeway or a walkable path? 

 

 

 

There is a trail that is about 4 Kms I believe, that's about 2.5 miles. Not sure that the walk is like though.

 

You will also more likely hear locals call it Reversing Falls nor Reversing Rapids, even though it is just a big set of rapids.  Check the tide tables before you go though.

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OMG I almost called it Reversing Falls 😊 but it's Reversing Rapids on the Princess excursion site. I just want to leisurely enjoy it. 4km isn't that far IMHO so if its an actual 'trail' not roadway wonderful!

 

Thanks. Will check tide tables 

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On 5/19/2019 at 11:52 AM, laurspag said:

We are cruising in August on RCI.  Our ports are Bar Harbor, Maine, St. Jon, New Brunswick, and Halifax, Nova Scotia.  We would really love to see so many of the scenic areas, but we prefer to explore on our own rather than do a tour as an excursion.  Since these are all new ports for me, I was wondering what is close by in the port area for each of these.  We love to explore on foot, or use thins such as a hop on, hop off bus. 

 

Of course, we love to find a good place to eat too!  I know there are always popular tourist spots, but the hidden gems that the locals go to are usually more fun for us.

 

Any suggestions?  We like history, scenery, places such as that.  Whale watching may be a tour we do though - that is a bucket list item.  

Halifax is entirely walkable. Your ship will dock right next to the Canadian Immigration Museum which is worth popping in to see.  Next to it is a public market.  From there, you can walk along the waterfront for shops and sights. The climb to the citadel is do-able for the mobile and modestly fit.  It has spectacular views of the city. There is also a maritime museum where you can see Titanic artifacts, which I'm told was pretty good. If you like fishing villages and lighthouses, Peggy's Cove is pretty spectacular.  Halifax is a really wonderful place. You'll enjoy doing this on foot. 

As for Bar Harbor, I was just looking at another thread about Acadia Park. There were some options for seeing the park discussed on that thread.   I have not been to St. John NB but I have been to Bay of Fundy and I can say that it is quite spectacular at low tide! High tide I'm thinking is much less impressive unless you have also seen low tide.

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8 hours ago, chefestelle said:

Halifax is entirely walkable. Your ship will dock right next to the Canadian Immigration Museum which is worth popping in to see.  Next to it is a public market.  From there, you can walk along the waterfront for shops and sights. The climb to the citadel is do-able for the mobile and modestly fit.  It has spectacular views of the city. There is also a maritime museum where you can see Titanic artifacts, which I'm told was pretty good. If you like fishing villages and lighthouses, Peggy's Cove is pretty spectacular.  Halifax is a really wonderful place. You'll enjoy doing this on foot. 

As for Bar Harbor, I was just looking at another thread about Acadia Park. There were some options for seeing the park discussed on that thread.   I have not been to St. John NB but I have been to Bay of Fundy and I can say that it is quite spectacular at low tide! High tide I'm thinking is much less impressive unless you have also seen low tide.

Peggy's Cove is not walkable from the Halifax port. It will require some sort of transportation to get there. 

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33 minutes ago, lilchief27 said:

Peggy's Cove is not walkable from the Halifax port. It will require some sort of transportation to get there. 

 

33 minutes ago, lilchief27 said:

Peggy's Cove is not walkable from the Halifax port. It will require some sort of transportation to get there. 

Yes, I hope that's obvious! Dropped that into the middle of the sentence, but Peggy's Cove, Lunenberg, and etc. are all a driving distance from the port. So you will need transportation to get there, for sure.

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The second time I cruised to Halifax I booked a private tour for our family that took us to Lunenburg. If you've already been to Halifax and Peggy's Cove I highly recommend a visit to Lunenburg for something different. Our driver dropped us at a small restaurant with a nice view of the harbor and the pies were outstanding! Sorry I can't remember the name of the restaurant but if I can find it I'll post it.

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The trolley in Bar Harbor sounds so cliche, but it is great and I recommend the 4.5 hour tour if you are wanting to get out and see the stops.  It has 30 minute stops and the other one only 15 minute stops - too fast in my opinion.

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Saint John, New Brunswick

A lot of excursions in Saint John, New Brunswick go to the Reversing Falls Rapids.  It is pretty cool to see, but hopefully you are in Saint John long enough to go back in about 6 hours and 15 minutes to see the change.  Here is a short video at low tide and slack tide.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBGqgM0JWL8

 

Halifax, Nova Scotia

I enjoyed Peggy's Cove a lot.  I've heard some people say they could skip it, but I wish I could have stayed a lot longer and walked and climbed more on the rock formations. We only had about 45 minutes there on our excursion.  Here's a video.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZGAG1SWVPA

 

Bar Harbor, Maine

Bar Harbor was beautiful. I could live here, at least during the summer.

Our excursion went to Acadia National Park, Cadillac Mountain, a lobster bake and a few other places.

Give yourself a little time to explore Bar Harbor. It's a cute little town.

Here's a video on top of Cadillac Mountain. It had gorgeous views all around.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TD5MCf10Lt0&feature=youtu.be

 

Have a great time!

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On ‎6‎/‎2‎/‎2019 at 9:38 PM, Ombud said:

Love info from natives. To that: can I walk to Reversing Rapids? According to Rome2Rio its only a few miles, but are those miles along a freeway or a walkable path? 

 

The path is VERY walkable.  The wide open paved path is along the waterfront for the most part and toward the end of your approx. 2.5 mile walk is a sidewalk climbing a slight hill to view the rapids.  

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Giving some more thought to Bar Harbor - I visited Acadia many years ago and while it's beautiful, I'm not sure it's the sort of thing my husband and daughter would enjoy specifically, and I know we really are not fans of being on crowded buses on someone else's schedule.  We also whine a lot if we start getting hot and sweaty and Kmom hears enough whining in the normal course of life to put up with it on vacation.

 

I see Enterprise has an office just over the narrows.  If we were to rent a car for the day, what might be other uniquely "Maine-ish" interesting options within a reasonable drive?  We are scheduled for a fairly long day stop, in at 7am and out at 6pm. 

 

I looked at Bangor and didn't think being able to look at the outside of Stephen King's house was enough of a draw on its own.  We're not wine country types, and not foodies - we eat too much on the ship already.  I expect to have a lobster roll and chowder in St. Martins on our Bay of Fundy day.  I would consider Fort Knox except that we'll walk up to see the fort in Halifax and my husband is allocated one fort per trip. :)  Really trying to figure out what might appeal to our teenager.

 

Many people have said this port is often cancelled due to being unable to tender.  I wonder just exactly how often?  I won't book a car ahead if we aren't sure we'll be there.

 

They had mentioned deep sea fishing, but the only services I can find don't seem to get very good reviews plus it seems pricey for the experience.

 

I know there have to be interesting options that are off the beaten path and off the usual cruise passenger radar. ????????????? Experts????

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We visit Bar Harbour, St John and Halifax in October, thank you for the useful tips on visiting. We have cruise excursions planned for all but Halifax and Sydney. I think we may just take a walk around Halifax, as suggested.

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On 5/28/2019 at 11:33 AM, cft8 said:

This page has some information about parts of the park you can walk to from downtown Bar Harbor, but   the main part of the park, including highlights like Cadillac Mountain and Jordan Pond are not walkable. https://www.nps.gov/acad/traffic.htm. That page also has information about the Island Explorer bus route, if that will be running when you are there.

Thanks for the link.  If we sign up with Ollie's Trolleys do they provide the pass to get into the park?

 

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Posted (edited)

We just returned from a RCCL cruise with the same ports - Bar Harbor, Saint John and Halifax.  We prefer to diy or use third party vendors for our time ashore. 

 

In Bar Harbor, we did the 4 hour Ollie's Trolley tour of Acadia.  We had time before and after the tour to walk around town.  In Saint John, we did a ship zip-lining excursion.  It wasn't available except through the ship.  Afterward, we enjoyed wondering around town.  And in Halifax, we rented a car at VIA Rail and drove to Peggy's Cove. We stopped at Shaw's Landing for a great lunch afterward! Back in Halifax, we went to the Titanic section at Fairview Lawn Cemetery before returning the car and finishing our exploring on foot.  

 

This provided enough structure that we didn't feel like we wasted our days but enough freedom that we didn't feel rushed or pressured!  It was enough variety that even our teen-aged son enjoyed the trip!

 

 

Edited by LoveThatCorgi

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Hello, went  last year- Bar Harbor was my favorite port- I did on NCL an excursion that was perhaps a 3 hour boat ride all along the area it was fantastic- Halifax I went to the Maritime Museum and walked along the water front.

St John I went to the New Brunswick Museum which I liked, but would have liked to have done an excursion on the water- maybe I'll go back

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On 5/25/2019 at 7:11 PM, Piper934 said:

Here is Bar Harbor and the US Ports...

Bar Harbor is another easy to walk.  They have a map of like 25 sites that you can follow the signs and the trail.  My favorite is always the land bridge, see it at low and high tide and be amazed. Takes you around the city and you learn alot about the heritage and city.  Of course walks goes through all the shops and eateries as well.

 

Feel free to ask any questions that you have.

 

Where can we find the map?

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