Saint John is a lovely seaside city that has a lot of things to do. It is easy to walk around the city that comes alive during the summer with many free and affordable things to do. There is no need to break the bank to have fun during a visit to Saint John.
1. Saint John City Market
Open Monday through Saturday, year round, the Saint John City Market is the only place in the city where you can get a ‘traditional’ farmers market experience. The market is living with the busy clerks and shoppers, and there is always something new at the market.
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2. Irving Nature Park
This green oasis is only a few minutes outside of the city. Irving Natural Park is home to over 6 different ecosystems and 11km of coastline. To learn more about the park, ask the staff about the free guided tours. Lookout Town is a hike but has breath taking views.
3. Poutine Challenge at Market Square
Come and enjoy free poutine samples at Market Square at the annual Poutine Challenge. Uptown restaurants are challenged to create the best of the best of Canada’s soul food. Enjoy live music along with your poutine. on June 24, 2019
4. East Coast Games
The largest multi-sport tournament to be held in Saint John since the Canada Games in 1985, The East Coast Games showcases over 13 sports with over 2000 athletes completing. Events happen across the city, so check the schedule to learn more. on June 21 – 23, 2019.
5. National Multiculturalism Day
Enjoy traditional dance, food, music at the National Multiculturalism Day. Learn about the unique people that call Saint John home and their traditions. on June 27, 2019
6. Fun in the Rockwood Park
Rockwood Park is one of Canada’s largest municipal parks, and has a lot of things to do. There are lakes for swumming, a playground, Interpretation centre and over 50km of trails to explore. The park has something for everyone all summer long.
7. Buskers on the Bay Festival
This years, Buskers on the Bay Festival is the 29th annual, and is one of Canada’s oldest festivals. This signature event is held at the New Brunswick’s Festival Place, and buskers travel from across the world to entertain you with their skills. on July 16 – 21, 2019
8. Blueberry Hill Nature Preserve
Located on the easterly shoreline of St. John River, Blueberry Hill Nature Preserve is one of the last undeveloped properties in the city being 19.8 hectares. The Nature Preserve is home to a variety of animal and plant species that can be spotted from the trail.
9. Mispec Park
Mispec Park is only 15 minutes outside of the city, and is a popular location for those looking for a day away from Saint John. The main feature of the park is Mispec Beach, which is one of the finest sandy beaches on the Bay of Fundy. There is also a playground, picnic sites, and sports fields.
10. Fundy National Park
Reconnect with nature at the lovely Fundy National Park. There are over 120km for trails that will take you around the park to explore. There are regular live music performances in the park. Watch the highest tides in the world on the cliffs. Plan to spend the whole day here as there is some much to see and do. Free admission on Canada Day.
11. Relax in the Saint John Public Gardens
An oasis in the middle of the city, the Saint John Public Gardens are the perfect place to spend sometime in nature. The gardens are perfect place of a picnic or to just take time to stop and smell the flowers.
12. Explore Wolastoq Park
Wolastoq means “beautiful river” in the Maliseet language. Wolastoq park overlooks the Reversing Rapids, which is a must see. Explore the shoreline and you will see how the river provide the Maliseet with food, medicines and material and how to the river effected trade and hunting.
13. St. Martins Caves
These sandstone sea caves are hidden during high tides, but during low tides you can explore the St. Martins Caves. The caves are ever changing as the tides erode the sandstone walks. These caves are a great example of what the Bay of Fundy and the ocean can do.
14. Walk n’ Talks with David Goss
Take a tour with the local author, storyteller and folklorist David Goss. Walk n’ Talks with David Goss have been taking place over of 40 years. These free community walks have themes and will take you around Saint John, including ghost walks on Friday nights.
15. Visit the Frank & Ella Hatheway Labour Exhibit Centre
Learn about how Canadian workers lives where like from the 1800’s to today. The Frank & Ella Hatheway Labour Exhibit Centre is dedicated to preserving, honouring and promoting the history of workers and the labour movement in Saint John, and is free to visit.
16. Swing by the King’s Square Bandstand
This copper roofed and metal framework bandstand was donated by the City Cornet Band. It is a local favourite for performers. There are concerts during the summer months at the King’s Square Bandstand, so it is worth visiting if you love live music.
17. Fort Howe Lookout
Take in the amazing views of Saint John from the Fort Howe Lookout. The fort has a replica blockhouse, 18th century cannons, WWII anti-aircraft batteries and the huge Saint John sign. It is one of the best places for sightseeing.
18. Saint John Police Museum
Dedicated to sharing and teaching the police history in Saint John, The Saint John Police Museum has a 1965 Volkswagen traffic car that you can take photos with. There are retired and former police officers you can meet and hear their stories. A great option for spending a rainy summer inside.
19. St. Andrews Creative Playground
St. Andrews Creative Playground is a local favorite play park and is one of the largest playgrounds in New Brunswick. The massive wooden play structure is on the Passamaquoddy Bay Shore and has activities for all ages.
20. Take Photos with the World’s Largest Axe in Nackawic
The Giant Axe in Nackawic was built in 1991 and is a symbol of the area’s industrial history. It is a popular location for photos for travelers. The base of the axe is often used for a stage for live music and theater performances.
21. Hike the Fundy Trail Parkway
The ideal place to take in breathtaking views of the Bay of Fundy. The Fundy Trail Parkway is a walking and hiking trail that will take past pristine beaches, waterfalls, and along the shoreline. Make sure to stop at the interpretive and do not forget to take your camera.
22. Chocolate Fest in St. Stephen
If you are chocolate lover, Chocolate Fest is for you. Create your own ‘hand-crafted’ chocolates or take pictures with Chocolate Mousse and his wife, Tiffany. It is a fun week celebrating all things chocolate. on August 4 – 8, 2019
23. Check out Food Truck Weekends at East Point Shopping
Food trucks often are overlooked, but they can have amazing and creative options. Relax on the pop-up patio and enjoy live music, or check out what the food trucks are offering. Food Truck Weekends at East Point Shopping takes place each weekend until the end of September.
24. Cheer for the next Saint John Idol
This event has been growing in popularity every year with thousands of spectators flocking to cheer their favourite local talent. The event kicks off on June 26 and continues for over 10 weeks until the grand winner walks away with the $5000 in prize money. Have you selected your favourite yet?
25. Go Geocaching
Geocaching has become a popular pastime in New Brunswick, and it is super easy to get started. The Inside Out Nature Centre in Rockwell Park will show you how to geocache, outfit you with the items you need, and then you just need to pick a cache to hunt for.
New Brunswick provincial parks can be visited for free on Canada Day and New Brunswick Day (August 5, 2019).