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Fredericton Holidays Guide

Fredericton is one of Canada's smaller capitals with a  population of approximately 85,000 people. It is the capital of New Brunswick and was first settled by the French in 1732. It is a river city that flanks both sides of the St John River. It was officially named the capital in 1785 after New Brunswick had become a separate colony from Nova Scotia.

Many historic churches, residences and buildings dating back to the late 18th century have been preserved. Of note must be the 300 acre site north of Fredericton which replicates life in the 1800's and provides visitors with an authentic living history museum.

The lumber industry was the mainstay of the local economy during the 19th and early 20th century, but today the city is focused on educational centres, information technology and engineering industries. The city has two universitites and several educational training facilities that attract many students from overseas.

As a result of the influx of these international students, Fredericton has become predominantly cosmopolitan and there are numerous ethnic restaurants, cafes and food outlets offering a variety of cuisine. There are theatres, museums and art galleries throughout the city to tempt the cultural visitor and the city is renowned for its popular Jazz and Blues Festival held annually. A great transport network is available for both locals and visitors.

Although Fredericton enjoys a fairly mild climate, temperatures vary from mild to hot in the summer months of April to September and to very cold with snowfalls in the winter months with temperatures ranging anywhere from -5 to -14 degrees C.

Fredericton Highlights

Christ Church Cathedral: This fine example of Revived Gothic Style architecture was declared a National Historic Site in 1983.

New Brunswick Legislative Assembly: The building was opened in 1882 after the original building was destroyed by fire. An impressive building with its Victorian architecture and 41m dome, it is currently undergoing restoration.

Odell Park and the Odell Arboretum: A 432 acre year-round park situated in the heart of the city, this is a  popular place for meetings, picnicks and summer and winter outdoor activities. Some of the trees are more than 400 years old. The arboretum was built in 1985 and every New Brunswick tree species is on display.

Historic Garrison District: This National Historic Site is situated in the downtown area, next to the St John River. Music, concerts and summer outdoor theatre are among the attractions on offer. It is popular for its local craft and souvenirs as well as providing visitors with cultural and historic heritage information.

Beaverbrook Art Gallery: This small, prestigious art gallery, established in 1958, can be found on the banks of the St John River. There are paintings on display from world-renowned international artists, a collection of 19th and 20th century Canadian artists, sculptures and on permanent display is Salvador Dalí’s Santiago el Grande. There is a varied programme of lectures, classes and musical entertainment also on offer.

Old Government House: Official residence of the Lieutenant Governor of New Brunswick, the building is located alongside the St John River. Standing on an 11 acre site, it is a very popular tourist attraction. The building has an impressive sandstone exterior and has an interesting collection of historic furnishings on display. A variety of art, paintings and craft exhibitions are featured during the year.

Gallery 78: Located in historic downtown and overlooking the St John River, this is the oldest private art gallery in New Brunswick. Established in 1976 this stately 19th century building hosts exhibitions and concerts throughout the year.

Great Pumpkin Sacrifice: Fun time in October on Halloween. An annual event held at Harrison House Residence on the University of New Brunswick campus.

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