About Bay of Fundy Tides

According to Guinness, and a bunch of other world renowned sources, the Bay of Fundy  has the highest tides on the planet: 16.8 meters (54.6 feet). It takes 6 hours and 13 minutes for the tides to go from low to high, and vice versa. Therefore, the predicted high and low 'tide times' in the tide cycle move ahead by 52 minutes each day.

How are Tides Measured?

Tide height is normally measured as vertical distance: the change in the ocean’s elevation from low tide to high tide.


How much water goes out with one Bay of Fundy tide?

The equivalent outflow of all the world's fresh water rivers is less than the amount of water that moves out of the Bay of Fundy on one tide: that's 100 billion tonnes of sea water! 

Where were the highest tides actually recorded?

The site of the highest recorded tides was in Burntcoat Head, Nova Scotia, just a few kilometres across the Minas Basin from our run location in Five Islands, Nova Scotia. The tides are similar at our location. 


Where can I see one of those cool harbour where boats on are on ground at low tide?

There many small harbours around the Bay that are empty at low tide and then completely full about 6 hours later at high tide, including the  Parrsboro Harbour, only 20 minutes west of our run location in Five Islands.  Here you can witness the vertical tidal effect: a harbour previously full at high tide will look like someone pulled the plug on it at low tide.   This effect can also be viewed at Five Islands Provincial Park.

What are the other tidal effects visitors can see? 

In additional to the vertical effect, there is also the horizontal effect of the tides: in areas such as Five Islands, the tide retreats as much as 5 km (3 miles) at low tide, leaving vast areas of the ocean floor exposed at various times in the tide cycle (changes daily).


Tidal bores & rapids are another effect. You can experience those across the Minas Basin from Five Islands on the Shubenacadie River in the Maitland area. Here the incoming tide reverses the outgoing flow of the river, causing a standing wave, known as the tidal 'bore' to flow back up the river. Tidal bore rafting is a huge amount of fun!  Another tidal bore can be viewed near Truro at the Fundy Discovery Site.

Got any tips for 'seeing' the tides?

One of the best ways to experience the full impression of the Bay of Fundy’s tides is to visit the same coastal location at high tide, then return about 6 hours later at low tide (or vice versa).