Canada // The Maritime Provinces //

Riding the tidal bore rapids


The Bay of Fundy is noted for its high tides, but while it can be intriguing to watch harbours around the bay fill up in a matter of minutes, don’t confuse this with the hypnotic spectacle of the Fundy tidal bore. This only occurs higher up rivers towards the end of the bay: an advancing wave, ranging anything from 2m (very rare) to a few centimetres (the size depends on various factors, including the lunar cycle) powers upstream, smothering the river bank. One of the best places to see it is Truro in central Nova Scotia; aim for the former Palliser Motel (closed, and up for sale at the time of writing) on the edge of town (Hwy-102, exit 14), which overlooks the Salmon River. Check w before you go.

To get a closer look, you can take an exhilarating boat ride across the bore and crash through the 1–6m rapids temporarily formed as the tide rushes over rocks and boulders. Three main operators run Zodiac boats on the Shubenacadie River, south of Truro, all offering a similar experience (May–Oct only; reservations are crucial; arrive 1hr in advance).
Shubenacadie River Adventure Tours 10061 Rte-215, South Maitland t 1 888 878 8687, w Three-hour tours from $80, ending with all-you-can-eat hamburgers and hot dogs.
Shubenacadie River Runners 8681 Rte-215, Maitland t 1 800 856 5061, w Runs full-day trips (with a steak BBQ) for $80–90 (half-day $60–70, no BBQ).
Tidal Bore Rafting Park 12215 Rte-215, Maitland Rd, Urbania (9km off Hwy-102 exit 10) t 1 800 565 7238, w Offers 4hr (18km) for $85–90, 2hr $60–70.

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