THE MARITIMES: NOVA SCOTIA, NEW BRUNSWICK, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND
With its eastern most location in Canada, The Maritimes may be a trek for some (you’ll likely need to connect through Toronto to get there), but in summer months these beautiful places are teaming with tourists from the northeast USA and Europe (think Maine-like). With long coastlines, abundant seafood, friendly locals, relaxed atmosphere, and distinct history & character, add Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and/or Prince Edward Island (Newfoundland too!). Nova Scotia boasts an artsy capital (Halifax) and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of old Town Lunenburg, New Brunswick encompasses river valleys and the Appalachian Mountains, and Prince Edward Island, in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, has beaches, red sandstone cliffs and a renowned culinary scene.
Anne of Green Gables anyone? That was always the vision I had for this beautiful little island, and the first time I visited (for the PEI Shellfish Festival while on assignment) I was spellbound in its quiet, quaint beauty. Full of authentic local charm and leisurely living, Canada’s smallest province is known for its rust tinted dunes and beaches. Check out the island’s many festivals, explore Murray Harbour, watch a live performance at the Victoria Playhouse, drive through the island’s network of scenic back roads.
The lively capital Halifax is usually the destination for people, but there are so many beautiful places to exeploe here (hello Lunenberg). The locals’ friendliness is as legendary as the rolling terrain and its coastline extends for miles and offers stunning vistas for picture-taking as well as placid waters for fishing. To visit Nova Scotia is to become immersed in history: the province is littered with tartan shops and Gaelic signs, evidence of its proud Scottish ancestry. A cultural melting pot despite its relatively small population, Nova Scotia is also home to Acadians of French origin and the native Mi’kmaw, as well as immigrants from around the world.
See/Do: Whale watching in Cape Breton, The historic fishing village of Peggy’s Cove, Tidal bore rafting on the Shubenacadie River, The majestic cliff-side views along the Bay of Fundy, The Halifax Citadel, a National Historic Site of Canada, The fishing village of Lunenburg
The first time I came here was to visit a family friend’s summer home in Shediac – a popular, laid back vacation town known as the “Lobster Capital of the World”. It’s not as well known (or visited) as its neighbors Prince Edward Island (PEI) and Nova Scotia, but the waterfront towns are relaxing and not as crowded.