October 26, 2017
When you visit the Maritimes on the BFL Ferries, you’re sure to hear about a few things again and again: the delicious seafood, the lighthouses, and the Bay of Fundy tides. What makes these tides so special, you ask? It’s the fact that they are the highest in the world! Of course, there’s more to the Bay of Fundy than just tides, it’s also home to rare whales and a place where history comes to life. If you’re interested in learning more about the Bay of Fundy, from the tides to the marine life and everything in between, you’ve come to the right place.
Simply put, the Bay of Fundy tides get high—really, really high. In fact, at their most extreme, the Bay of Fundy tides can reach an incredible 16 meters, or 53 feet. That’s taller than the lighthouse at Peggy’s Cove and the letters in the iconic Hollywood sign, as well as longer than the right whales found swimming in the Bay of Fundy waters. Consider for a moment that the average tidal range for most of the world’s oceans is one meter, and you’ll quickly see why the Bay of Fundy tides are so special. These tides occur, in part, because of the Bay’s unique funnel shape.
Whether you want to watch the tide water rush in, catch a before and after glimpse, or get out on the water, you’ll find plenty of opportunities around the Maritimes to take in the majesty of the Bay of Fundy and its tides.
The tidal bore is a rare tidal phenomenon that occurs in only a few locations around the world. During a tidal bore, a standing wave of water occurs at the front of the incoming tide. This wave travels upstream at speeds that can reach 15km per hour and against the natural current in the Bay of Fundy. This tide leaves thrilling rapids in its wake that can reach up to 12 feet high.
Typically, the best places to view the tidal bore are on small rivers that connect to the Bay of Fundy, such as the Salmon River in Truro, Nova Scotia, and the Shubenacadie River near South Maitland. In fact, in South Maitland, you’ll also find the Fundy Tidal Interpretive Centre, where you can learn more about the history and science behind the Bay of Fundy tides while watching the tidal bore roll in.
For those who would rather get up-close-and-personal with the Bay of Fundy tides, check out Tidal Bore Adventures. Here, you can ride the tidal bore in a rafting adventure you’ll never forget. These rafting trips also offer an opportunity to go mud sliding, which is a lot of fun and exactly what it sounds like! Tidal Bore Adventures also allows you to rent a Go-Pro camera to capture a first-person look at your exciting trip down the Shubenacadie River.
To gather a complete perspective on the Bay of Fundy tides, you’ll want to visit a location at low tide and then again at high tide. One of the best places to do this is in Hopewell Rocks, New Brunswick. Here, during low tide, you can actually walk on the ocean floor and take a closer look at the underwater eco-system of the region. You’ll also have an opportunity to walk under the Hopewell flowerpots. These towering statues of red sandstone are completely exposed during low tide and resemble giant flowerpots (hence the name). After your walk, check out the rest of the Hopewell Rocks Park, then return at high tide to see the places you walked mere hours earlier completely submerged by the rising tides of the Bay of Fundy.
A great way to experience the marine life living in the Bay of Fundy is by viewing them from the observation deck on the mv Fundy Rose ferry. While aboard this modern ferry, you can grab a meal, access the Wi-Fi, check out live entertainment, and more! In fact, to learn all about the fun you can have on the mv Fundy Rose, be sure to check out our recent post, 10 Reasons to Take the Ferry This Fall.
The Bay of Fundy is an amazing natural wonder for this region, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Maritime adventures! To learn more about the exciting opportunities waiting for you on Canada’s East Coast, be sure to visit Explore the Maritimes today!