The lovely village of St. Andrews—or St. Andrews By-the-Sea, as the chamber of commerce persists in calling it—traces its roots back to the days of the Loyalists. After the American Revolution, New Englanders who had supported the British were made to feel unwelcome. They decamped first to Castine, Maine, which they presumed was safely on British soil. But it wasn’t; the St. Croix River was later determined to be the border between Canada and the United States. Forced to uproot again, the Loyalists dismantled their new homes, loaded the pieces aboard ships, and rebuilt them on the welcoming peninsula of St. Andrews, a short sail away. Some of these remarkably resilient saltbox houses still stand in town today.
In the late 19th century, this community emerged as a fashionable summer resort, as many of Canada’s affluent and well-connected built homes and gathered annually here for social activities. The Tudor-style Algonquin Hotel (now known as The Algonquin Resort) was built on a low rise overlooking the town in 1889, and quickly became the town’s social hub and defining landmark.
St. Andrews is beautifully sited at the tip of a long, wedge-shaped peninsula. Thanks to its off-the-beaten-track location, the village hasn’t been spoiled much by modern development, and walking the wide, shady streets—especially those around the Algonquin—invokes a more genteel era. Some 250 homes around the village are more than a century old. A number of appealing boutiques and shops are spread along Water Street, which stretches for some distance along the town’s shoreline. It’s easy to grab a boat tour from the waterfront, and on Thursday mornings in summer, don’t miss the weekly farmer’s market on the waterfront. I definitely recommend this town if you’re seeking a tame, easy tourism dip into New Brunswick.
ARRIVING: After crossing the bridge into Canada from Calais, Maine, take Route 1 east to Route 127 and head southward 16 km (29 miles).
VISITOR INFORMATION: St. Andrews’ seasonal Welcome Centre (tel. 506/529-3556) is located at 24 Reed Avenue, on your left as you enter the village. It’s open daily from 8am to 8pm in July and August, from 9am to 5pm in May, June, and from September until it closes in early October. The rest of the year, visit or contact the Chamber of Commerce (www.standrewsbythesea.ca; tel. 506/529-3555) at 252 Water St., St. Andrews.
It Costs How Much?
A word to the wise: New Brunswick’s combined provincial and federal sales tax of 15% can prompt some sticker shock, particularly when ringing up your lodging totals. Some restaurants may roll this “harmonized sales tax” right into their menu pricing, so check out the fine print.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.