Coastal cottage on Grand Manan Island

A vernacular coastal cottage on Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. | www.facebook.com/SmallHouseBliss

The relative isolation of an island community isn’t for everybody, but for many it would be a dream come true. Today Doris shares with us her charming coastal cottage and the island where it is located…


My husband Kim and I have always been interested in the rocky coastline of northern Maine and Atlantic Canada. While visiting Maine and New Brunswick one summer we happened upon Grand Manan Island and took the ferry over to explore. I was smitten at once! The people of the island are warm and welcoming, and the the island is unspoiled and gorgeous.

Years passed and one day while looking at real estate online (a common occurrence) I saw this adorable little cottage on Grand Manan so I watched it online for months and months and months. Last summer while a friend and I were headed to vacation on Prince Edward Island we decided to take a side trip over to the island and have a look. That first visit happened to be when the Lupines were in bloom, adding to the charm of the cottage. Two weeks later I was back with my husband for a closer look and by the end of summer it was ours.

A vernacular coastal cottage on Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. | www.facebook.com/SmallHouseBliss

The cottage is 680 ft2 (63.2 m2). We are not sure of its age but it feels old. The previous owner had done most of the repairs and upgrades, leaving only the kitchen cabinetry and a plumbing issue to be finished. When you walk in the front door you can basically see the whole place. Entry, living and dining areas are located in the front room, with the kitchen and bath in the back rooms. The bedroom is accessed by a ladder in the front room.

A vernacular coastal cottage on Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. | www.facebook.com/SmallHouseBliss

The whole cottage is surrounded by a large deck for outdoor living when the weather is good. We have planted a small herb garden just off the deck and will add a vegetable garden when we retire. At some point we will build a small bedroom off the back as the ladder to the loft may become troublesome as we age.

A vernacular coastal cottage on Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. | www.facebook.com/SmallHouseBliss

The cottage is close enough for our children to go for a vacation or just visit over a long weekend. We try to be there as much as possible but are looking forward to retirement so we can spend the entire summer. Grand Manan has natural geological wonders of interest, hiking trails, whale watching, sea kayaking, beaches, light houses, a museum, an art gallery, a phenomenal bakery, eclectic shops and more. A wonderfully peaceful place to vacation…or live. I wish I was there right now!

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Photographs courtesy of the homeowner.

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