Wow, it’s already been over 3 months since we got back from Europe. That’s just crazy! We barely had time to settle into a routine at home that the warmer weather arrived and it was time for us to get into our “p’tite Lizzie” (camper) and we headed off to the countryside for the summer.
In Canada, we live in a city center and actually quite enjoy that lifestyle. However, come summertime we look forward to the serenity of country living.
Camping gets us to slow down, brings us closer to nature and makes us appreciate the simple pleasures of summer.
We headed to the northeastern part of New Brunswick, with our destination being the Acadian Peninsula. Click on the link, Acadian history and culture. to learn more about l’Acadie.
To be closer to family, we decided to stay at Camping Pokemouche situated in the heart of the Acadian Peninsula along the bank of the Pokemouche river.
At sundown, the sky glows a vibrant red just behind this Catholic church (see below). With this view most evenings, it isn’t hard to settle into the rhythm of camping life.On this same river, not far from our campsite we get to also enjoy family gatherings at a beautiful family cottage. Summer is the perfect time to reconnect with extended family and friends. We always look forward to these get-togethers which include lots of food, music and scrumptious desserts. 😊
These gatherings always seem to end up with everyone sitting around a campfire, singing songs for the rest of the evening. Of course, “le placotage” of past events gets a few chuckles from everyone!😊
Pokemouche is a great spot for boating enthusiasts and it has great fishing and clam digging areas.
Back at the camper it’s time to eat those delicious fresh clams with a few crabs legs on the side. For such a feast we had to bring out la p’tite nappe champêtre!😊
The Acadian Peninsula is the ideal place to enjoy fresh fish and seafood. One place to definitely try out is the small, but unique restaurant, La Terrasse à Steve which is located at the entrance to Miscou Island. It’s casual dining with many picnic tables outside where you get to literally wiggle your toes in the sand beneath you, while you eat😎. This place can get very busy in the summertime so you might have a bit of a wait, but it’s all worth it!
One of the attractions that we just love to visit each year is the Village Historique Acadien. in Bertrand. It’s about a 20-minute drive from Pokemouche. This village highlights the Acadian history from 1770 to 1949.
Interpreters play the roles of the Acadian people as they go about doing their daily chores in old period houses. We got a good chuckle when we listened to the stories told by this interpreter (see below). She was great for me to photograph as well.The atmosphere and authenticity of the site’s reconstruction really gets you to experience what it would have been like to live back in those days. It isolates you from our modern lifestyle. This attraction has won a number of prestigious awards, including the Phoenix Award for its authentic character. You even get to sleep in the Village at Hôtel Château Albert. (see below)
This year we purchased a two-person pass for $80 (Can) which allowed us to visit the site as often as we wanted too. We loved getting up in the morning and going there for walks. Walking three times around the village is about 7 km. At each turn, we never know what we are going to see on our route. I must say as I walk around this site I always enjoy hearing the sound of the whispering long grass & wheat swaying in the wind and the smell of homemade bread baking in the old wood stove ovens. It makes me feel nostalgic every single time.
During these walks, it’s always fun to take a break and just “kid around” at a few different historic houses along the site. Life appeared to be so much simpler back then. No Nintendo games here!
We enjoyed eating on-site a few times over the summer as they serve traditional home-cooked meals in the historical house of La Maison Dugas (1867). They serve amazing fresh bread that is cooked on-site daily. On this specific day, we had salted pork and bread pudding for dessert that was to die for!
We kept quite active over the summer. When not walking through the Village Acadien we would head to the beach for our walk. Most times it was the beach at Four Roads located only a few km from our campsite. The beaches in this area are off-the-beaten-path and never get too overcrowded, which is nice – you can walk for miles and only hear the sounds of the waves crashing against the beach. Just click on this link beaches in the Acadian Peninsula and you will get a list of all the beaches to explore during your stay. It’s on our bucket list to walk all of those beaches next summer.On a few of our walks, we came across people fishing directly on the beach. They were getting awesome catches. You can be sure that we’ll be getting a couple of fishing poles for next year! 😊
We also did a lot of biking. The Acadian Peninsula is very fortunate to have an extensive newly paved biking circuit. AND it is mostly all flat terrain! 😊 👍
We also enjoyed golfing at Le Club de Golf Pokemouche . It is a beautiful 18-hole course. Golfers click on the link to see the beautiful photos of this course. I was fortunate this summer to benefit from “pro” tips from two generations! Okay did I shrink this year, what’s with that!😊
While visiting this area you’ll certainly experience la joie de vivre and the hospitality of the locals can be found everywhere you go!
They have harsh winters so in the summertime they love to get out and celebrate. Each village has its own festival. I’ve noted a few at the end of this post. From Pokemouche most of these festivities are accessible within a few kilometres. One festival, in particular, Festival Acadien de Caraquet is always for us a day-long event. Each year on August 15th at 18h00, thousands of Acadians and tourists alike take to the streets for the grand tintamarre , dressed up in the colours of the Acadian flag. This celebration is intended to demonstrate the vitality of the Acadian people.
Even some of the campers at the campground gets decorated for the occasion!
People who have followed our travels have discovered that we are indeed coffee lovers. However, for us it’s not just about the coffee it’s about the whole experience; the quality of the coffee, the atmosphere of the café and the friendliness of the service. While at the Acadian Peninsula we keep going back to the Grain de Folie in Caraquet.
The barista at Grain de Folie needs to get himself registered into a latte art competition. Wouldn’t you agree? He did this artwork on our lattés while chatting away.
Another location we discovered this summer was the Café Stella Maris in Bas-Caraquet. We ate lunch there and we particularly enjoyed their healthy menu selection. We also appreciated the fact that they list some of the local products they use to make up their menu selections.
It is housed in an older style home and all the table legs are actually foot pedals which were recovered from old sewing machines!
When not enjoying a coffee in a local café we quite enjoy having a great coffee right outside our little camper!
This summer we had fun being out in the fields.
A picnic, after all that work, with a bowl of blueberries and milk for dessert! Yummy!
So yes camping this summer wasn’t all about relaxation we also got to work and made jams, pickles and basil pesto. All of it makes great gifts for family and friends.😊While we certainly spent lots of our time relaxing at our campsite, we did venture out several times to the nearby town of Caraquet. The waterfront area around the Carrefour de la mer ( the town’s cultural center) is a pretty nice spot. You can easily spend a few hours, looking at local art, walking the path that runs along the waterfront which is popular with both locals and tourists. To end it all you can grab a bite to eat or have a drink on the large patio which overlooks the Bay. de Chaleur.
From the Acadian Peninsula, you can easily do a number of day trips to explore other villages and sites.
One side trip we took this summer was a 4-day stay at Kouchibouguac National Park. This can easily be done as a day trip from Pokemouche but we decided to take advantage of our camper and stayed here at the Park’s campground for a few days. What a treat!
During our stay, the weather was awesome. At nighttime it was amazing as it got very dark at the campground and we got to appreciate what is noted on the Park’s website, “at night, this Dark Sky Preserve is a celestial masterpiece”. The campsites are only illuminated by campfires and the stars in the sky. It’s absolutely awesome!
At this park, you can enjoy, hiking, cycling, swimming, canoeing, kayaking, and paddleboarding. All of these can be rented on site.
A stroll over a boardwalk gets you to a beautiful sandy beach, Kellys Beach.
This beach has beautiful natural sand dunes.
Over 60 km of flat, easy cycle trails are available to explore. We did a lot of cycling over the four days we were there.
Well with Fall now just around the corner, it is soon time to pack the camper and leave the Lizzie hat behind for next year’s camping adventures. I can’t wait to return to this peaceful place.
As promised here’s a shortlist of some of the festivals in the Acadian Peninsula that takes place each summer:
Festival Acadien, Caraquet.
Festival des Pêches, Shippagan.
Festival de la Tourbe, Lamèque.
Festival des coques, Saint Siméon.
Octoberfest des Acadiens, Bertrand
A few restaurants to note as well.
Mitchan Sushi , Caraquet.
Poissonnerie Pro-Mer , Caraquet.
Le Nouvo Caveau , Paquetville.
Le Kabernet, Lamèque.
There are various accommodations options in this region but the one mentioned below is a new one we discovered this summer. These luxury domes are unique and are situated in a natural setting along the bank of a beautiful Bay. with beautiful sunsets. Please take the time to open the link below to see these amazing domes from the inside. It is important to book many months in advance as you will see for yourself on their booking page. On weekends they have happy hour on Fridays & Saturdays and serve many local products. “On vous prépare une belle programmation automne-hiver avec des repas🍴, des soirées chansonniers🎸, des dégustations et des soirées animées🎙️!”
Bravo Pat & Emilie pour avoir réussit ce beau rêve!
CIELO Clamping Maritime, Haut Shippagan.
What we enjoy about the Acadian Peninsula in the summertime –
- Being close to family & friends.
- Acadian culture and joie de vivre.
- Relaxed vibe.
- Fresh fish, seafood and local produce.
- Many festivals that are well attended and organized.
- We were connected to nature every single day.
What we don’t find here –
- All services at your fingertips!😊