As green gives to reds, yellows and oranges, it’s a little chillier and the days are shorter, but that is no excuse not to enjoy fall in New Brunswick! Here are ten getaways in the province, best experienced during this time of change.
For more New Brunswick Getaways & Road Trips, Explore New Brunswick.
For Fall events, see Things to do This Fall in New Brunswick
1: Fundy National Park
Fundy, as with many other National Parks is always a great place to spend a few days in the fall months of September and October, even into November if you dress appropriately.
Fundy offers so many opportunities to experience the beauty of fall in New Brunswick — whether you’re on two feet as you hike the myriad trails found throughout the Park, each with its own unique way of showing you the beauty of the changing nature that surrounds you, or on two wheels, as you ride around the two mountain bike trails and various other multi-use trails, taking in the fall beauty at high speed.
In the fall, there are not many better places to be than in a New Brunswick National Park.
2: Kouchibouguac National Park
We’ve come to the second National Park on our list — and whilst it is no lesser in terms of beauty, it is perhaps the lesser-known of the two. Kouchibouguac is located on the Acadian Coast and is very different from Fundy National Park, not least because of its geographical location and all of the variety that comes with that.
The hiking and biking trails that surround the park move in loops, and the main activity area of the park is much more centralized and open — hence you’ll get to experience the joys of Fall right in the Park, with unobstructed views of tree leaves changing colour.
Kelly’s Beach is an absolute must-see, as you’ll be surrounded by bright vibrant colours on all sides. As far as northern Parks in New Brunswick go, Kouchibouguac is the place to be for Fall.
3: Caraquet & Miscou Island.
Caraquet is home to Eastern Canada’s French Canadian community, known as the Acadians. Beautiful fall colours illuminate the town that sits on the Acadian Peninsula. Caraquet is also home to the Acadian Historical Village, an 18th-century village that’s just as alive with 18th-century fervour as it was 200 years ago. If history is your thing, then the Acadian Museum is a must-visit, too, as it showcases the history of the Acadians from deportation in 1755 to resettlement in the East.
From Caraquet, continue to Miscou Island to see vast peat bogs that turn scarlet red in the fall and walks along spectacular beaches backdropped by magnificent fall colours.
Caraquet is a fantastic place to be in the Fall, whether you’re early and celebrating Festival L’Acadie (Every year in August, there is a five-day festival celebrating the Acadians, their heritage and culture, with food, song and dance) or arrive later in the season and just want to check out Caraquet, the changing colours and the vibrant Acadian culture are a winning combination.
4: Atlantic Balloon Fiesta, Sussex
Atlantic Balloon Fiesta in Sussex is one of the largest gatherings of hot-air balloons in the country and is rated amongst the top ten festivals in the Atlantic region. While the tree leaves are turning slowly in early fall in September, the real colour will be seen in the balloons as they soar. You can even take a ride yourself and experience the beauty of the festival — and the stunning views from above. The Atlantic Balloon Fiesta is a fantastic way to experience Sussex and usher in the Fall season.
5: Kedgwick Fall Festival
Fall is just coming into its own as the Kedgwick Fall Festival takes place.
There’s plenty to see, do and experience as the leaves changing colours and the days getting cooler is in full swing. Kedgwick is located in northern New Brunswick in Restigouche County.
It is, as it happens, the perfect place to experience Fall. It’s high in the mountainous region — and thus looks down upon beautiful valleys and rows upon rows of trees, all with their leaves changing colour. Aside from its natural beauty, the Fall Festival is a place of song, dance, good food, good vibes and fantastic scenery.
6: World Wine & Food Expo, Moncton
The World Wine and Food Expo in Moncton isn’t a Fall festival to miss. As the leaves have now all changed colour and are falling from the trees in Moncton, the world’s best wineries and winemakers are gathering for a taste of great wine and exotic foods.
Take a stroll through downtown Moncton in between tastings and experience fall in the city — with vibrancy accompanying the yellow and orange leaves which dot the roadways throughout Main Street. Moncton’s World Wine and Food Expo promise a fantastic atmosphere, and a great way to embrace the coming winter for all foodies and wine-lovers everywhere.
7: Mount Carleton Provincial Park, Saint-Quentin
Mount Carleton Provincial Park is the third-such park location on our list, however, in Fall, it perhaps supersedes both Fundy and Kouchibouguac in terms of the natural beauty on offer. Always a favourite among hikers, Mount Carleton in the fall is just absolutely stunning.
No matter where you go for a hike in the Park, you’re sure to find some gorgeous scenery, however, it is our recommendation that you hike to the peak of Mount Carleton, on the Mount Carleton Trail — it is a 9.27km loop trail, which takes you up to the peak of Mount Carleton, before looping around and taking you back to where you started.
It is the most challenging of the Park’s trails, but also the most rewarding. Once atop the mountain, you are rewarded with a stunning view of the valley below, and if you time your hike right, you’ll see the glorious mix of trees with different coloured leaves. If you have a day or two to spare in your fall trip around New Brunswick, Mount Carleton is an absolute must-climb.
8: River Valley Scenic Drive, Saint John – Edmundston
If you have a week to spend in New Brunswick in the Fall, spend it on any one of these drives that make up the rest of our list.
Beginning in the south of the province in Saint John, the route goes north, through the Provincial capital of Fredericton, on to tourist destinations like Hartland and into Edmundston, the first city you’ll come to if you cross the border from Quebec.
The drive hugs the banks of the Saint John River, celebrating every culture in New Brunswick — Scottish, Irish, Acadian, English, Mi’kmaq and Maliseet — all of those cultures that make New Brunswick unique can be found on this drive — you’ll see the beauty of the Fall constantly out of every car window, from sprawling forestry with every colour of leaf to golden grasses stretching into arable farmland.
Best destinations include Fredericton, Saint John and of course, the longest covered bridge in the world in Hartland, beautifully framed on a backdrop of oranges, reds and yellows.
9: Appalachian Range Route, Northern New Brunswick
From south to north, the Appalachian Range Route will take you through the province’s northeast, and along the range of 400-million year-old mountains that make this route such a spectacular drive during the Fall.
Drive either from Dalhousie, on the northeastern tip of the province, or from Perth-Andover, a small community near Edmundston and take in the glory of New Brunswick’s Appalachian mountains.
With rolling hills as far as the eye can see, and high mountain passes to climb up, with stunning three-hundred and sixty-degree vistas of the valleys below, with nothing but bright oranges, reds and yellows to greet the eye — you’d best have your camera ready!
It should take about three or four days of driving to reach Dalhousie and the northeastern shore of New Brunswick, and you’re greeted with a stunning view of the Gaspé Peninsula.
10: Fundy Coastal Drive
We have already mentioned the Bay of Fundy and Fundy National Park, but on this drive down the Fundy Coast, you’ll get to experience all of the beauty of coastal New Brunswick as the leaves change colour. Beginning in Sackville, just across from the Nova Scotia Border (or Saint Stephen, if you’re on the other coast) you’ll first drive north, through the major population centres of Dieppe and Moncton, where you can stop and explore the cities in Fall — each has their own unique charm to offer — before continuing east down the Fundy Coast.
You’ll then drive south through Hillsborough and Hopewell Cape, which offer spectacular views of inlets along the Bay of Fundy, lined with brightly coloured trees and cool sea air. You’ll then arrive at Fundy National Park (see #1 on our list), before heading North to Sussex — again a spectacular place to see the beauty of New Brunswick in Fall, with arable farmland and meadows stretching as far as the eye can see, all with the beauty of changing leaves taking place. You’ll then head south and hug the Bay of Fundy, passing through the city of Saint John, be sure to make a stop there! Then you’ll carry on east, past charming fishing villages, each with its own unique personality and reasons to stop and explore. Ending your journey at St. Stephen, right on the doorstep of Maine in the US.
No matter where you go in New Brunswick in the autumn, there is plenty of fun to be had and many, many spectacular things to see. It’s one of the best times of the year to visit the province, as things are constantly changing. You can spend as long as you have here due to the relatively small size of the province, and see all of the beauty that Fall in New Brunswick has to offer, by combining many of the things on our list. You’ll certainly enjoy your time on Canada’s East Coast in the Fall.