ARRIVING: Grand Manan is connected to Blacks Harbour on the mainland via frequent ferry service in summer. Coastal Transport ferries (www.coastaltransport.ca; [tel] 506/642-0520), each capable of hauling 60 cars, depart from the mainland and the island every 2 hours between 9:30am and 5:30pm during July and August; a ferry makes 3 to 4 daily trips the rest of the year. The round-trip fare is C$12 (US$9.50) per passenger (C$6/US$5 ages 5–12), plus C$36 (US$29) Boarding the ferry on the mainland is free; you purchase the tickets when you leave the island. The ferry arrives in the village of North Head at the northern end of Grand Manan Island.
A couple of tips: Reserve your return boat at least a day ahead to avoid getting stranded on the island an extra night, and get in line early to secure a spot. A good strategy for departing from Blacks Harbour is to bring a picnic lunch, arrive an hour or two early, put your car in line, and head to the grassy waterfront park adjacent to the wharf. It’s an attractive spot; there’s even an island to explore at low tide.
VISITOR INFORMATION: The island’s Visitor Information Centre, in the Grand Manan Community Center, at 1021 Route 776 (tel. 888/525-1655 or 506/662-3442), is usually open daily in summer. It’s closed from mid-September through early June, though; if you’re coming and it’s not open, ask at island stores or inns for a free island map published by the Grand Manan Tourism Association, which has a listing of key island phone numbers and spots.
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.