October 4, 2023
The Maritimes is a haven for the hop-curious traveller, featuring over 50 breweries waiting to be uncovered. Beer enthusiasts and locals, united by their love for liquid libations, can try everything from timeless IPAs and Irish Reds to Belgian wonders, robust stouts, and specialty concoctions right here in Atlantic Canada. Each sip is a journey into the region’s flavours and a glimpse into the character of each destination.
Dive into the Maritimes — where plenty of breweries await — with the help of The CAT, Northumberland Ferries, and MV Fundy Rose. Join the journey through our Local Brew Lover Guide for a taste-filled exploration!
Before setting sail on The CAT high-speed car ferry, don’t miss the chance to enjoy exceptional craft brews at Bar Harbor’s Atlantic Brewing Company. Nestled in the heart of this quaint Maine town, Atlantic Brewing boasts a range of meticulously crafted ales that capture the essence of the region and its people. From hop-forward IPAs to rich stouts and always-refreshing seasonal offerings, their lineup promises an unforgettable tasting experience amidst the charms of New England.
Looking for even more breweries in Maine? This handy map can help.
Credit: Tourism Nova Scotia / Photographer: Davey and Sky (@daveyandsky)
Welcome to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia! After a relaxing trip aboard The CAT ferry, we bet you could use a cold one to familiarize yourself with this port. Thankfully, you can kick off your trip at Rudder’s Brew Pub. Soak up the ambience as you dine on fresh seafood and sip craft beer brewed on-site at Southwest Nova Scotia’s only microbrewery restaurant. Rudder’s Brew Pub offers full-bodied ales handcrafted in the English tradition. You’ll be able to find Rudder’s Red, a local favourite that pays homage to traditional pub beers. To get a taste of the town, try the Yarmouth Town Brown, an English-style brown ale, a must-sip if you’re a fan of brown ales.
For the more contemporary crowd looking for modern takes, there’s Heritage Brewing Co. Here, you can sample various beer flights or try out one of their famous beer cocktails. Heritage Brewing Co. is committed to the artistry of craft beer, blending tradition, creativity, and bold flavours to produce an unmatched selection of small-batch craft brews like their Melon Mania Session IPA and Blueberry Kettle Sour.
As you make your way through the seaside towns of the South Shore of Nova Scotia, you’ll find four excellent breweries to quench your thirst. Boxing Rock Brewing in Shelburne has made a name for itself in Atlantic Canada with several award-winning beers. In downtown Liverpool, you’ll find the small but mighty Hell Bay Brewery. This owner-operated brewery prides itself in keeping tradition and paying tribute to the well-known bitters of English pubs across the pond. In Mahone Bay, stop by Saltbox Brewery to try the self-proclaimed best IPA in Nova Scotia. Swing by any of these breweries to witness what they can do with water, grain hops, and a dash of creativity. Take a tour if they’re available, enjoy a beer flight, and make sure to grab a growler or a couple of cans for later.
Credit: Destination Canada
Once you reach Halifax, you’ll be spoiled for choice of breweries and pubs to spend a sunny afternoon in. However, if you’re short on time, we recommend the following must-see spots to grab a cold beer. You can’t go wrong with Garrison Brewing Company, conveniently located on the waterfront across from Pier 21 Immigration Museum. It’s perhaps Halifax’s most famous microbrewery and one of the first in the area. Tour the brewery, grab a t-shirt or a glass as a souvenir, and grab a spot outside to enjoy the beloved Irish Red and some people-watching.
Propeller Brewing Company also joins the ranks of Halifax’s micro-brew originals. Nowadays, it boasts several locations throughout the province. Visit the original Gottingen Street location, featuring the basement arcade, for a night of beer sipping and old-school fun.
For even more fun, visit Good Robot Brewing Company. This innovative brewpub specializes in eccentric, experimental, and groundbreaking brews. Try the Diablo Mexican Lager with a hint of lime and jalapeño, a spicy twist on Mexico’s typically light and crisp beers. For a truly unique beer, sip on a Guava and Blackberry Sour, a refreshing blend of authentic guava and blackberries that feels like a tropical vacation.
Concluding your journey around Halifax breweries, head across the bridge to Dartmouth to visit Nine Locks Brewing Co. Despite being a newcomer to the brew game, they’re causing a buzz with their Blueberry Blonde and Strawberry Blonde beers.
Learn more about the many fantastic craft breweries of Nova Scotia.
It’s time to say goodbye to Nova Scotia and set sail with Northumberland Ferries to Wood Islands for a change of scenery. Prince Edward Island is known for its red-sand beaches and Anne of Green Gables, but it is also home to 10 microbreweries, all serving unique beverages you won’t want to miss.
Following a brief scenic drive, you’ll reach the provincial capital, Charlottetown. This coastal gem is full of historical relevance — not to mention breweries as well! Make your first stop in Charlottetown The Gahan House. The Island’s first microbrewery and pub is a popular local venue for those searching for good times and great company, and their taproom is open to the public for tasting and touring. You can also pick up your favourite beer to go. You’ll also find Gahan House beer, as well as Colliding Tides craft cocktails and Beach Chair Lager at the PEI Brewing Company, located on Kensington Road.
Upstreet Craft Brewing is another popular brewery in Charlottetown. Home of tasty beers and drinks, Piatto pizza, cans to go, and more, Upstreet’s brewmaster, Mike “Hogie” Hogan, has been winning over beer lovers since he brewed his first batch in 2006. And if you’re the driver for the trip to Upstreet, don’t worry! They also brew a delicious line of craft sodas.
It may be called Lone Oak, but this brewery has locations all across Prince Edward Island. You can sample their suds at the Lone Oak Brewery & Taproom in Borden-Carleton, the Lone Oak Brewpub in Charlottetown, Fox Meadow Restaurant in Stratford, and seasonally at the Lone Oak Beer Garden in Avonlea Village in Cavendish. Whether you’re craving a sour, a classic Maritime pilsner, an oatmeal stout, a West Coast IPA, or a zesty vodka seltzers — just to name a few options — you find them at Lone Oak Brewing.
Drive to the Island’s western end just outside of Tyne Valley, and you’ll find Moth Lane Brewing, the first microbrewery to open in Prince County. Moth Lane boasts a 50-person seating area on the second floor, as well as outdoor seating. If you’re lucky, a local Island musician might be playing some live music, so grab a seat, a beer, and some BBQ from their smokehouse and enjoy the view overlooking the Conway Narrows.
Evermoore Brewing Co. has emerged as Summerside’s inaugural brewery, quickly evolving into a cherished community hub. Located ‘where rail meets the water,’ the brewery found its home in the city’s historic train station, meticulously restored to its current shining glory. Evermoore proudly presents a diverse selection of exceptional brews, from a maple-spiced ale to a German-style hefeweizen. Complementing their beers is an ever-evolving dining menu that promises an elevated experience not to be overlooked in PEI.
Plan your next PEI brewery crawl with this handy list of breweries located on Prince Edward Island.
New Brunswick is a popular destination for craft beer lovers. Sail across the Bay of Fundy on MV Fundy Rose from Dibgy, Nova Scotia and start your journey into New Brunswick by visiting the vibrant port city of Saint John, where small city attitude meets robust craft beer. Big Tide Brewing Company is Saint John’s only brew pub and restaurant since 2009. They’ve gained a reputation in the area for offering high-quality beer accompanied by tasty food that reflects the flavours of their brews and the city. Big Tide strives to celebrate its regional heritage, history, and culture through the names of its brews: Seaworthy IPA, Fogbound Hemp Pale, and Sandpiper Pilsner, to name just a few.
Continue your journey into New Brunswick by visiting Pump House Brewery in Moncton. This brewery is beloved in the province and across Canada, and for a good reason. Their experienced brewmaster creates a wide range of drinks, including top-notch pilsners, rich stouts, and the award winners Blueberry Ale and the Grapefruit and Tangerine Crafty Radler. Recently, they’ve also been experimenting with their ‘Real Vodka Water’ and other spirits.
Explore even more breweries across New Brunswick here.
Feeling thirsty? It’s time to try a Maritime craft beer or two. Book your ferry passage and have “hoppy” travels — please remember not to drink and drive!