Hole in the Wall: Cliff Side Camping in New Brunswick

Posted by on July 5, 2012 in Accomodation, Camping, Destination, New Brunswick | 4 comments

I know that title may frighten some but it isn’t as bad as you might think. On my trip to Grand Manan Island, with Corbin Fraser (from www.ibackpackcanada.com) we worked out staying in a Hostel for 2 nights and camping for 1. This is in early June. In the Maritimes. Yes, I’m aware. We prepared for it with sweaters, sleeping bags and hats, and if that really didn’t keep us warm, the car was just parked up a hill close by.

Hole in the Wall

We arrive at the Hole in the Wall campsite mid afternoon to be greeted by David, a friendly man sitting in the welcome booth. We cut to the chase and he takes us down to view some of the campsites. The drive was scenic and short. There were about 64 campsites in the park but he showed us his favorite three. All on cliffs overlooking the water. They were gorgeous! We settled on Site number 21 which had an amazing view of the Swallowtail Lighthouse.

Hole in the Wall

After we picked our site, we drove back with David leading to grab some wood for the campfire we were soon to be roasting our hands and hotdogs on. We met up with Kaye Small, the owner of the Campground. Kaye immediately greets us warmly and takes us inside, offering us Ice T and chocolate. I of course take her up on this offer and indulge myself. We picked their brains about all of the history and interesting tidbits that make up Grand Manan Island and Hole in the Wall Campground for about an hour until we decided to head back to camp and set up our tent.


Finished product!

We set up the tent pretty quickly and I was quite proud of myself. It was time to check out what the campsite was named for, the Hole on the Wall. It was a bit of a hike to get there, the trail was tight and we had to squirm our way through but it was definitely worth it for the view we were about to see. It was literally, a giant hole in a wall of rock. It might not sound exciting to you, but seeing it is a whole different story. It was huge!  We crept along the trail to take a few pictures of us on top of the hole. Dangerous, yes. Worth it for cool photo opportunities, hell ya!



 The night ended up with us roasting weenies over a fire, jamming to some tunes and talking about how great the trip had been overall. The night wasn’t THAT cold but I had a constant but unnecessary worry about rolling over the edge of the cliff. Opening the tent door at around 6am and seeing the gorgeous view quickly put that all the fear that I had previously had out of my mind. Apparently, in the heart of the Summer, whales will wake you up in the morning, unfortunately I think we were there a little too early. Next time though!



  1. Just wanted to say way to go, great that you are taking the opportunity to see the country. You are Brave!!! Love the Video, Very funny. I am looking forward to seeing when you are back on home ground. Take Care!! Be careful & stay Safe.

  2. Sounds like a great place to camp. Looking forward to reading adventures of backpacking from a fresh viewpoint.

    PS I laughed when the whole tent fell down about half way through.

  3. Hello Riles, I have stayed at Hole in the wall many times over the years. The campground was owned by a very interesting man named Basil. Did Kaye mention what happened to him ? His family we were told had owned this land for several hundred years and it also was the site of the first airport on the island. Just wondering because we haven’t camped there in a few years and we knew Basil wasn’t in the best of health last time we saw him. Thanks for your help.


    • Hi Peter,

      Kaye didn’t mention him by name, but she said her husband had passed away, so putting two and two together, I’m going to assume that was Basil. It was a fantastic stay and she was so great to meet and have a conversation with, I wish that I could have met him as well.

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