It is June 26 in travel blog world and since yesterday was a down day I am up out and early (for me) in order to see as much of Moncton as I can before heading to Saint John. I didn’t realize that Moncton was going to be more city than town and it is quite large with lots of parks and places to visit! It does toot its own horn calling itself Atlantic Canada’s Entertainment Capital. There truly is much to see and I’m not quite sure why but I have limited myself to only a handful of hours to see it because for whatever reason during my down day I searched for a hotel in Saint John and booked it for tonight breaking my own rule about playing it by ear! I never listen to myself and I should…I often give myself very good advise!
My very first stop for the day was Riverfront Park…great place because they not only had a park on the Petitcodiac River but an Honour Garden with flowers, a Tidal Bore (I think I have been able to find them at low tide all the time but I am curious what they would be like if the water level were higher) and a Skate Park. When the young men at the skate park first noticed me taking pictures a few of them hesitated. I held up the camera and asked if it was okay. Most of the young men carried on but a few continued to hesitate so I walked forward and told 2 of them that I would make sure not to take pictures that included their faces and if they wanted, I would come to them before I left if they wanted to see if I had left their faces out. They said not necessary…if I said I wouldn’t include their faces they would take me at my word. Polite and trusting young men!
Next I went to Main St Park…it was on the other side of the river from Riverfront Park. There wasn’t much to see there but it was a pretty area. I took the pictures of the trees reflecting in the water…I thought they looked like a city skyline with buildings of differeent heights. Nope…just trees!
My next stop was at the zoo…however, I did not end up going inside because it would have taken up too much of the day. I could easily spend 4-6 hours at a zoo and would not have had a chance to see much else. Instead I stopped at Magnetic Hill. This is a hill above the city that is not too far away from the zoo. Before stopping at Magnetic Hill I also stopped at a small amusement type park curious to see what might be going on. It was primarily a park for kids but I did snap a few pictures before I left. I also realized when I left this park that I had taken a wrong turn for Magnetic Hill so I pulled into a hotel parking lot to turn around and took a few pictures of their garden.
I was driving around the city after leaving Magnetic Hill trying to find some place on my list of things to see and I could not find it but I did find what appeared to be a lovely restaurant so I checked TripAdvisor for reviews and decided to venture in for a late lunch…so once I arrived in Saint John I wouldn’t have to worry about dinner. The restaurant was Gusto Italian Grille. Outside were a couple of murals…which of course I had to get a picture of for my travels! The restaurant was quite large and lunch was enjoyed upstairs. A few shoppers and business people there enjoying lunch but I pretty much had the area to myself. The murals on the building are unrelated to Gusto’s…they were for the business located across the parking lot from Gusto’s.
After a wonderful lunch and quick tour of the restaurant it was time to head to Saint John. The drive was only supposed to be 1.5-2 hours but it seemed I might be getting into rush hour traffic and I wasn’t sure if that would be the same here as in the Boston area! I did see many cool things on the road and stopped more than a few times to enjoy the sights. And no, I don’t eat at McDonald’s…I saw the sign that showed they sell bagels…I don’t know of any Micky D’s in the States that sells bagels.
I arrived in Saint John shortly before the sun began to set. Traffic was crazy and I could not for the life of me figure out how to get to the hotel. I could see it but the address on the website could not be driven to without a boat. I finally pulled into a parking lot near the waterfront and called…the actual address is not available on the website but they are more than willing to give it out if you call! DUMB! Anyway…I found it…it is down the street from the building where Red Rose Tea used to be. Do you know Red Rose Tea? It was one of the first teas I drank back in the 70’s. I’m not sure what is in the building now but it was renovated a while back. The hotel I was staying at, Hilton Saint John, had a restaurant in it called York Bistro Pub. This pub also had an outdoor sitting area. The hotel and restaurant included a very long dock that went the length of the buildings (there were also condos attached to the Hilton). After checking in and getting myself settled I went down for dinner and took a walk out on the deck and enjoyed the surrounding water and sunset. In walking around I met an interesting character who had a story he wanted to share and we talked for some time. I’m not sure I believe all he had to share but he was interesting. At the end of our chat he asked if I would take his picture and he posed while requesting I take pictures of him from various angles. He checked each after it was taken and would make other suggestions. I asked him what I was supposed to do with all of these pictures and he said he would give me his e-mail address. I ran inside to get a pen and paper and wrote down the info he gave me. Alas, it came back as undelivered when I sent them. I am going to post his pictures here…if anyone knows him, please share the website so he can grab them! There was a cruise ship that was leaving port as I checked into my room and I got a shot of it from my window and it was still heading out when I went down for dinner. Did you see the homemade potato chips with onion dip I had for an appetizer? It was enough for 3 people and I barely made a dent in it but it was so worth ordering! I can’t eat anything I ordered back then these days so looking at the pictures now makes me long for the old days!
The fishermen in the small boats were setting out their nets for the night. I had never watched a fisherman do that before. The man who had joined me in conversation said he had been a fisherman in the past and they were setting out some of the longest nets he had seen and was surprised they were not getting them tangled. He suspected they would be back before sunrise to pull up the nets. Also out in the water around the fishermen were several seals. I did manage to get a few pictures even though it was getting dark.
Did I mention the name of the man who asked me to take his picture is Adrian? I am guessing that is how he spells his name but since I wrote the e-mail I may have spelled his name wrong. I should have showed it to him after I wrote it to be sure…I lost the piece of paper with the address on it at some point but I do remember it included his first name and was a g-mail address. Here is Adrian…if you know him, please let him know! Thanks!
This ends a lovely day traveling from Moncton to Saint John. I spent two nights at the Hilton Saint John. Tomorrow I booked two tours…one of the area with a tour guide and one of Reversing Falls. I’ll post that some time between tonight and tomorrow.
“Travel far enough, you meet yourself.” – David Mitchell
Not all of the photos here are for sale on my site but if there is an image you would like, please contact me through my website and I will create it for you!