Although I was born in Vancouver and have lived here my entire life, I absolutely adore travelling! I always find myself wanting to explore faraway places! So this year, Guido and I decided we were going to plan a trip closer to home, to Canada’s East coast. Let me tell you, it did not disappoint! The East coast is absolutely breathtaking! In this post, I’m sharing our top sights, activities, restaurants, and accommodations in Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island! But stay tuned for Montreal and Quebec City travel guides!
We spent a total of six days exploring Nova Scotia and P.E.I. I’ll have to say though, I would have loved to have had a few extra days on our holidays! To do both provinces in less than a week was a little ambitious! I’m glad we saw everything that we did, but it was a fair amount of driving and activities packed into a short period of time 😛 So if you only have six days, I would recommend just spending your time in Nova Scotia. Otherwise, plan for a trip closer to 10 days if you want to do both Nova Scotia and P.E.I.!
Guido and I love being by the ocean, and we especially love seafood! My number one tip – eat seafood wherever you go! We had countless lobster rolls (that were just to die for!), entire lobsters, and all kinds of other seafood! It comes fresh from the ocean right off the coast, and boy can you tell! So fresh and tasty – take advantage of that! 😉
Nova scotia is a beautiful province, and with such diverse landscape and scenery – from the rolling hills in the winery region to the rocky ocean coast! We had so much fun just driving through, stopping at various sights, and hanging out by the ocean (although it’s a bit cold to go swimming!). Here were some of our favourite sights, restaurants, and accommodations!
Things to do:
- Citadel in Halifax – It’s a neat place to walk around and learn about Canada’s history! Everyone is dressed in costume as well so it feels as if you stepped back in time!
- Peggy’s Cove – The lighthouse in the picture above is here, and it really does look straight out of a postcard! It’s beautiful! Try to get here early, because it’s by no way a secret place. There are huge tour busses coming in and out so it can get packed with people pretty quickly! But regardless, totally worth it!
- Mahone Bay – This is a small little town on the way to Lunenberg from Halifax, and if you have some time, it’s worth a quick stop to check it out and walk around the town and ocean!
- Blue Rocks – You can stop here on your way in or out of Lunenberg, but it’s absolutely BREATHTAKING! Without a doubt it was one of my favourite spots of the trip. We went early in the morning, and it was so peaceful and quiet. For the most part we were the only ones walking around. All you could hear were the waves gently lapping, it was incredibly calming and serene!
- Lunenberg – This was our pit stop for one of our nights, and it’s a gorgeous little seaside town! There are tons of small shops and restaurants, and a beautiful boardwalk along the water. The colours of the town’s buildings are so vibrant and cheery!
- Wineries in Wolfville – We drove to a few wineries ourselves, but you can take a bus tour around them all if you have more time! Our favourite was Grand Pré winery. They take you on a tour around the grounds, offer a wine tasting, and they have a lovely restaurant (more on that below!).
- Tangled Garden, Grand Pré – There is a beautiful garden that you can walk around, and a store with all kinds of delicious jams, jellies, and syrups infused with plants from the garden!
- Bay of Fundy – We saw the bay from a handful of different places, but the amazing aspect is the enormous tides! We walked along these huge flat beaches, hiked Blomidon national park with gorgeous views of the bay, and walked in harbours where there are boats aground at low tide and then float back up at high tide!
Where to Eat:
- The Bicycle Thief, Halifax – A great Italian restaurant on the boardwalk, we sat outside on their patio and ate seafood!
- Hall’s Harbour, Bay of Fundy – It was a little bit of a drive from where we were staying in Grand Pré, but so worth it! You pick your own lobster and take it to the cooks, and eat right outside by the marina! They do close sort of early at 8:30pm, so make a note of that. After dinner, we walked down around the fishing boats in the marina that were all just sitting on the ground!
- Red Lobster Shack, Peggy’s Cove – We had to wait a while in line for our lunch here, but they have amazing lobster rolls! Big clumps of lobster in a light, buttered, toasted bread – melts in your mouth!
- Le Caveau, Grand Pré Winery – A beautiful restaurant right next to the Inn we stayed at (see below), so we just walked here! We sat outside on the terrace next to the vineyard, underneath this lovely canopy. The sangria, food and dessert were all delicious!
- Fish Shack, Lunenberg – A common theme here, but this place has a great patio overlooking the harbour with delicious lobster rolls!
- Salk & Shaker Deli, Lunenberg – Here’s another great little restaurant with seafood and a few other classics with a fun atmosphere!!
Places to Stay:
- Olde Lantern Inn (B&B), Grand Pré – We stayed in quite a few places in Nova Scotia, but the one I would highly recommend is this little B&B! Nestled beside the vineyards of the Grand Pré winery, it’s just beautiful! I spent one afternoon reading in the backyard beside the vineyards while drinking a local glass of wine! The rooms were lovely, and breakfast was amazing!
Prince Edward Island
P.E.I. is a small province, but with stunning green grass hills, contrasted with bright red cliffs along the ocean! There is so much history in this province, yet it’s all so picturesque with its lighthouses and beaches!
Things to Do:
- Walk along the red sandy beaches – Most of P.E.I.’s coast is red sandy beaches and cliffs, so they’re not hard to come by! Spend some time wandering down the beach and dipping your toes into the ocean (which is cold!).
- Check out all the lighthouses – There are dozens upon dozens all over the province, some are huge and you can walk in, others you can admire from a distance! It’s a neat character trait of P.E.I.!
- Walk around the historic sites of Charlottetown – It’s a colourful town full of history! It’s worth walking through the streets, around the park, and along the boardwalk!
Where to Eat:
- The Catch, West Point – We stayed over in West Point one night, and while this was the only restaurant nearby, it did not disappoint! The lobster rolls were some of the best we had on the entire trip – so good!
Places to Stay:
- The Great George, Charlottetown – The hotel is in a stunning, historic building. The suites are quite large (hahah ours even had a bathtub taking up a corner of the room!), and they serve fresh baked cookies every afternoon in the hotel lobby! 😉
- West Point Inn (Lighthouse), West Point – If you book early enough, you can actually stay IN the lighthouse! We unfortunately didn’t, but we were in one of the suites adjacent to the lighthouse, and it was still a great room facing the ocean! You can walk up to the top of the lighthouse and check out the museum they have about all P.E.I. lighthouses!
All in all, we had an amazing time! I am so glad that we got to explore the other coast of our country! It was truly amazing, with such beautiful places! I highly recommend planning a trip over to these provinces and seeing them for yourself! 🙂
Hope that helps!! If you’ve been to any of these places or have any recommendations – comment below! And if you have any other questions – be sure to reach out and say hello!