Chaleur Bay & Miramichi Bay, New Brunswick
The Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the world's largest estuary - a semi-enclosed body of water into which both fresh water from streams/rivers and salt water from the ocean flow - is the home of two of Canada's most beautiful bays: The Chaleur Bay and the Miramichi Bay.
The Chaleur Bay or, as it is called in French, Baie des Chaleurs, is a large body of water that flows between Quebec's Gaspé Peninsula and New Brunswick's North Shore. The name Baie des Chaleurs means "bay of warmth" or "bay of torrid" water. The explorer Jacques Cartier is said to have given it this curious name.
There's a lot to do and discover in the beautiful bay of Chaleur. The Eel River Bar is one of the most noted hotspots. It is the longest natural sand bar in North America, and is frequented by many rare birds, including bald eagles, peregrine falcons, blue herons, harlequin ducks and piping plovers. It really is an environmentally significant and cherished national landmark that should not be missed!
Miramichi Bay shares the ocean's wild storms and exotic marine life. It consists of two bays -- the "inner" and "outer" bays - and Portage Island, which is a product of the ocean storms. Portage Island actually split in two because of a tumultuous storm in the 1950's. (During ocean storms, it is much safer to be at the inner than the outer bay).
Just like the Chaleur Bay, Miramichi is known for its spectacular marine life, its seals and its many magnificent birds - such as herring gulls, common terns, great blue herons, common loons (also called Great Northern Diver), cormorants, knight fishers, plovers, snipe and killdeer.
The Common Loon of Miramichi Bay is pictured on the one-dollar Canadian coin -- hence the term "Loonie." It is also the provincial bird of Ontario, and of the state bird of Minnesota.