The Miramichi River area includes much of central New Brunswick running from the northeast Acadian Coast to the capital of Fredericton in the southwest. Unlike much of the surrounding area, the Miramichi passes through Anglophone towns settled by Irish and Scottish who brought with them history, culture, and a love of festivals.
The main centre, called Miramichi, offers a number of attractions. It has no one centre as it is an amalgam of two towns and three villages, forcibly united by the provincial government in the 1990s.
The former town of Newcastle, further up the Miramichi river on the north bank, features the Old Manse Library, once the home of the British press magnate, Lord Beaverbrook. A number of his books are now in the town library.
The other town and former rival of Newcastle, Chatham lives 5 miles further downstream and on the south bank. It has a more Irish character than Newcastle. It is dominated by St. Michael's Basilica, on a hill overlooking the town. It is worth a visit. This neoGothic structure is surprisingly large, before 1949, the largest church in Canada, east of Quebec city.