Join the Polar Bear Club

At Spa Chance Harbour, huge picture windows allow guests to sweat while gazing at the Bay of Fundy, occasionally spotting moose and bears in the distance.  Sauna’s don’t typically have much of a view. This one does. After raising the body temperature, it’s time to join the Polar Bear Club. This involves a dip in the Bay of Fundy, the adjacent freshwater stream, or a bucket of ice-cold water over your head if you want to complete the trifecta.


Length of Trip : Half Day

Cost :

Individual Admission Fee:  $40 (including taxes) for use of facility & trails.  Massage and reiki treatments, pedicures and facials are extra.  Discounts for groups of 12 or more.

Best time to go : Open Year Round. A channel to the Bay is cut through the snow in winter.

Wheelchair friendly : No

Family friendly : Yes

Where to eat : High End: East Coast Bistro  Medium: Saint John Ale House  Budget: Saint John City Market

Official Site : Spa Chance Harbour:

Where to Stay : Spa Chance Harbour does offer loft accommodation for overnight bookings.  Alternatively you can stay in Saint John, where we recommend staying with our trusted partner, Holiday Inn Express & Suites.

Getting There : Located at 110 Cranberry Head Road, Chance Harbour, New Brunswick. From Saint John: Take Highway NB-1 W, taking the offramp at Exit 96.  Turn left onto NB 790 N with signs to Spa Chance Harbour. Take a sharp left at Cranberry Head Road, and follow it all the way to the end until you see the signs.

Note from Robin : Polar bear dips take place around the country, typically on New Years Day to welcome in the year (and freeze a hangover in its tracks). There’s no disputing the fact that polar bear dips belongs on The Great Canadian Bucket List. The question is: where? Vancouver, for the thousands that gather on English Bay? The annual Freezin’ for a Reason in Yellowknife, which takes place after the spring thaw? Ottawa has one of those too, while the Toronto Polar Bear Club has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity with its January first dip. My choice combines the plunge with one of Canada’s natural wonders, and the location is just perfect.



On the beach


Dip 1: In the Bay


Dip 2: in the cascade


Warming up


Dip 3: the ice bucket challenge


Further Reading


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