Where to go while social distancing

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Over the last few weeks, many of us, hopefully, have been social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. This has been a challenging time for everyone both physically and mentally as the isolation from loved ones, activities and routines takes its toll.

Mispec Beach (Bill Lapp/Flickr)

Research has shown that spending time outdoors is extremely beneficial to both our physical and mental health. Spring has also just begun, and soon the weather will improve, and the outdoors will be a beautiful place to explore.

Here is a list of some of the Saint John area’s great outdoor spots that you can check out during this pandemic that allows you to be active, have fun, and still comply with the isolation requirements.

Rockwood Park

A well-known spot to just about all Saint John residents, this park is beautiful and very well-maintained. There are plenty of different trails to explore, short and long, for whatever amount of exercise you feel like. Take in the view of Lily Lake, and say hi to the ducks!

Irving Nature Park

Another beloved park of our city is the Irving Nature Park on the west side. There are plenty of look out points to admire the marsh and the beautiful views of the ocean. You can also take a walk along the beach and listen to the calming sound of the waves.

Mispec Beach

Though the property hasn’t been well maintained by the city in the last few years, it’s still a great spot to take in the view of the ocean from your car, or you can walk down the steps to explore the beach. The rocks on the far end are also fun to climb and explore. Even with Canaport’s LNG terminal in sight, it’s a great place to go for a drive and enjoy the beauty of the Bay of Fundy.

Cape Spencer

Just a short drive from Mispec, Cape Spencer has a spectacular view of the ocean. It has a spectacular view of the water, and you can even see the coast of Nova Scotia on the other end.

You can also see beautiful cliffs to your right, along with the crashing waves on the rocks at the bottom of the hill. Though it’s a small area to walk around, make sure you take it all in, but be careful of the edge!

The Little Reservoir

Along with its beach in the summer, it has a 3 km walking trail that can be used in all seasons. It’s a nice, easy, quiet walk, with a few spots to admire the small lake as you go around. It also has a great dog park to take your furry friends to if desired.

St. Martins Caves

Though it’s a bit of drive from the city, the sea caves in St. Martins are picture-perfect and beautiful to look at. You can also walk along the rock-covered beach, and explore the outside of the lighthouse and two covered bridges just before the caves. This spot is a must-see to catch the true beauty of New Brunswick.

Duck Pond

A harder spot to find if you’re not familiar with the rea, Duck Pond beach is one of my favourites around. It has beautiful views of red cliffs, a short trail in the back used for ATVs that you can explore, and a long, beautiful, rock-covered beach to walk along. If you can find it, it’s worth the drive!

Black Beach

A gem of the west side, black beach is exactly as it sounds: the beach sand is a beautiful black colour. A beautiful spot tucked inside a cove, it’s a great place to admire the water and explore its unique colour. This spot is a really cool place to check out if you’ve never been there before.

Split Rock Trail

Located in the Lorneville area, Split Rock Trail is absolutely beautiful. If you’re looking for a bit of a longer walk, this is a great choice. It’s about a 4 km walk to get to the lighthouse at the end, but it’s well worth it for the stunning views of the coast. It’s also near Black Beach, so you could cover two places in one day if you wanted!

New River Beach and Lepreau Falls

If you’re willing to take a long drive, gas is pretty cheap right now, New River Beach and Lepreau Falls are great places to check out. There are short trails along the New River Beach park to walk on, and the view of the water there is phenomenal.

You could also walk along the beautiful sandy beach if you wanted. Lepreau Falls is just a few minutes from New River Beach. Though there’s no where to really go for a walk, it has a viewing deck to take in the beauty of the Lepreau falls. You could definitely make a day out of visiting these places.

Keep in mind, you are still required to be two metres from people at all times, so if you check out a spot and it looks busy, either stay in the car and just take in the view, or pick another spot.

It is also important to remember that all public playgrounds are not to be used at this time to prevent the virus spread. That being said, make sure you leave your home safely at least once a day if possible to keep yourself healthy and happy during this difficult time. Happy exploring!