Canadian Maritimes in the Fall   11 comments

Canadian Maritimes in the Fall

News Brunswick, Prince Edward Island & Nova Scotia

Oct. 10- 19, 2013

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Since we’ve always heard that Nova Scotia, Canada, and the Canadian Maritimes is a beautiful place to see; Jim & I and our friends, Mark & Karen decided to find out for ourselves.  We went in mid-October and couldn’t have picked a better time…..the fall colors were outstanding!   The Canadian Maritimes, is a region of Eastern Canada consisting of three provinces, New Brunswick,  Prince Edward Island and Nova Scotia. {The map below is copied from: gocanada.about.com}

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We went with Caravan Tours (Caravan.com) and were very pleased with the itinerary, and our tour director, John.  We flew into Halifax, Nova Scotia and spent the first night near the airport.  The next morning we drove by coach to New Brunswick where we saw the Hopewell Cape and the Bay of Fundy.  We drove on to Prince Edward Island and spent the next two nights at a Country Inn and toured that area.  Cheticamp on Prince Edward Island was our next destination with a two night stay.  Then it was on to the Baddeck area for two nights.  We spent our last two nights in Halifax at a great hotel along the boardwalk overlooking the Atlantic Ocean.  

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New Brunswick:  The boundary lines in New Brunswick between Canada and the United States were established in the 1842 Ashburton-Webster Treaty, after the Aroostook War (the bloodless cold-war between the United States and Canada) ended peacefully.  New Brunswick is one of Canada’s three Maritime provinces and is the only province in the Canadian federation that is constitutionally bilingual (English-French).  New Brunswick is a relatively sparsely populated province, with considerable forests forming the main body. The core of the province is virtually uninhabited, with most of the population being on the Eastern, Western, and Southern coastlines.

Nova Scotia to New Brunswick:  On our morning drive from Nova Scotia to New Brunswick, we crossed rivers, streams and marshlands that are connected to the Fundy tides. 

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Flowerpot Rocks at Hopewell Cape, New Brunswick:  The rocks stand between 40-70 feet tall.  These formations have been caused by tidal erosion.  The Fundy Tides are the highest on earth and rise and fall an astonishing 50 feet, with an average change of 6 to 8 feet per hour.  The Fundy Tides are created twice each day when one-hundred-billion tons of water flow into the Bay of Fundy. 

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The following sign is located in front of the stairs that go down to the beach.  It indicates in French & English what time the “high tide” will arrive.  The clock indicates that we were there at 11:37 and “To avoid being trapped by the rising tide YOU MUST return to the stairs by the time shown here….which was 3:15.”

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We were there during low tide.  Below is a photo of a picture that shows what this area looks like turning “high tide”.  The next picture features Mark & Karen.  They are standing under the same arch as shown in the “high tide” picture where the first canoe is ready to go under the arch.  As you can see, if it was high tide the water would be over their heads.     

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We walked all along the beach and enjoyed the interesting rock formations that have occurred due to the tidal activity. 

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The Fundy Tides overpower the rivers flowing into the Bay of Fundy and reverse their direction two times a day.

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Confederation Bridge:  We traveled over the 8 mile Confederation Bridge which links New Brunswick to Prince Edward Island.  The bridge is a multi-span beam bridge with a post-tensioned concrete box girder structure.  Most of the curved bridge is about 130 feet above water, with a 197 foot navigation span to permit ship traffic.  The bridge rests on 62 piers, of which the 44 main piers are 820 feet apart.  The bridge is a two-lane highway toll bridge, 36 feet wide with a speed limit of 50 mph.  It takes about 12 minutes to cross the bridge. 

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Just after crossing the Confederation Bridge was a cute shopping area.  A bridge segment is on display here.  And… Jim thinks he has found “his” ice cream!

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Prince Edward Island:  It is located east of New Brunswick, in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  The island’s landscape is a combination of rolling hills, woods, reddish white sand beaches, ocean coves and the famous red soil, which adds to it’s natural beauty.  The smaller, rural communities as well as the towns and villages throughout the province, retain a slower-paced, old-world flavor.

We stayed for two nights near (but not at) the National Seashore at a Country Inn.  The coastline of Prince Edward Island has a combination of long beaches, dunes, red sandstone cliffs, salt water marshes, and numerous bays and harbors.  This is the coast of Prince Edward Island near Cavendish.

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Anne of Green Gables (1908), Prince Edward Island:  We visited the Anne of Green Gables house in Cavendish.  We strolled through Lover’s Lane and other settings from the literary classic.  The author, Lucy Maud Montgomery drew inspiration from the land during the late Victorian Era for her classic novel, Ann of Green Gables.  You should read some of the series of Anne of Green Gables, I am.  Very pleasant reading. 

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A stroll down “Anne of Green Gables” lover’s lane.

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 Let me assure you…there was nothing simple about Karen & I climbing into the carriage for our photo!

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North Rustico, Prince Edward Island:  A community by the sea.  It was fun for these Kansas folks to see a fishing village and learn about lobster fishing.  And….that evening we had lobster for supper. 

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St. Augustine Catholic Church, Farmers’ Bank of Rustico Museum & Doucet House, Prince Edward Island:  The oldest church on this island was built in 1838.   We also enjoyed seeing one of the old original homes of the area (Doucet House).  The museum in the old sandstone building provided an interesting review of the old local banking history in PEI. 

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Potatoes:  Potatoes are Prince Edward Island’s single largest agricultural commodity in terms of farm cash receipts.  PEI potatoes are processed into frozen potato products and chips. They are also supplied to the fresh table market in eastern Canada, the United States, and overseas. Prince Edward Island seed potatoes are shipped across Canada and around the world to other potato producing regions.  We saw lots of potato fields and potato processors. 

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Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island:  It is both the largest city and the provincial capital of Prince Edward Island, it was designated as a city in 1886.

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One has to eat lobster in Nova Scotia!

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Cape Breton Island: The island is located east-northeast of the mainland of Nova Scotia with its northern and western coasts fronting on the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  The island accounts for 18.7% of the total area of Nova Scotia.  It is artificially connected to mainland Nova Scotia by the 4,544 ft. long rock-fill Canso Causeway. 

We went by ferry from Prince Edward island back to Nova Scotia.  Then we continued on by coach to Cape Breton Island. 

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It was a pretty ride on Cape Breton Island en-route to Cheticamp.

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Cheticamp:  Is a busy fishing village in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, with a thriving Acadian culture.  The community has almost 4,000 residents, a large number of whom are Acadians and speak French natively, as well as English.  Music has always been a very important component of Acadian life in Chéticamp.  Both evenings we were there we enjoyed listening to the lively Acadian music.   

Whale Watch:  Well…while in Cheticamp, we boarded a boat and did a whale watch.  What can I say?  It was cold, it was wet, it was long, and we caught a brief glimpse of a whale….I think.  Oh well, we’ve been on a whale watch in Nova Scotia. 

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Elizabeth LaFort Museum of Hooked Rug & Home Life, Cheticamp, Cape Breton Island:  Born in 1914, Elizabeth LeFort learned to hook rugs at a very young age. In her early twenties, she was already hooking landscapes based on photos or illustrations that appealed to her.  She made hundreds of tapestries in a large variety of subjects including pastoral scenes, birds, animals and floral motifs.  She also reproduced photographs, and religious paintings. 

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Cabot Trail, Cape Breton Island:  This world-famous scenic highway, runs along parts of the coastal borders on both sides of the park and crosses the highlands.  At the western entrance of the park is the Acadian village of Cheticamp on the Gulf of Saint Lawrence and a park information center.  On the eastern side of the park are the beaches at Ingonish on the Atlantic Ocean.  In between are mountains, valleys, forests, waterfalls, rocky coastlines and a tundra-like plateau know as the Cape Breton Highlands.  This map copied from Parks Canada shows the route that we drove on the Cabot Trail, through Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

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We had the privilege of driving the first part of the trail twice.  These are pictures of our trip into the park on the first day in partly sunny lovely weather.  The next morning when we headed out it was foggy, so we had a diversified view of the lovely area.  

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Cabot Trail, Cape Breton National Park:  As we began our drive early the next morning it was foggy, but then it lifted and was a beautiful day as the scenery unfolded on our breathtaking journey on the Cabot Trail in Cape Breton National Park.  It is approximately 80 miles from Cheticamp to the Ingonish Beach area. 

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Pleasant Bay, located at the northwest part of the trail just before we headed east across the mountains. 

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Going generally in a eastward direction across the trail.

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Now we are headed in a southerly direction towards Ingonish. 

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Keltic Lodge:  After a delightful morning on the Cabot Trail, lunch was included at the Keltic Lodge near Ingonish.

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Driving from Ingonish to Baddeck on Cape Breton Island.

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Alexander Graham Bell Museum, Baddeck, Cape Breton Island:     Was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1952.  The exhibit complex houses models, replicas, photo displays, artifacts and films describing the fascinating life and work of Alexander Graham Bell.  He invented a lot more than I realized.  

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Bell’s Summer Home:  Alexander Graham Bell, compelled by the beauty of Baddeck, chose this area as his summer home.  Looking across the bay from Bell’s museum, this is a photo we zoomed  of Bell’s mansion.

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Baddeck, Cape Breton Island:  Situated in the heart of Cape Breton Island, Baddeck is considered to be the beginning and end of the world famous Cabot Trail.  Stretching along the shores of the Bras d’Or Lakes, Baddeck is a charming, quaint little town.  We stayed here for two nights. 

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Gisele’s Country Inn:  Our hotel in Baddeck and another nice included meal.  Yes, after the picture taking, Karen did eat it. 

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Fortress of Louisbourg:  A National Historic Site of Canada and the location of a one-quarter partial reconstruction of an 18th-century French fortress at Louisbourg on Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia.  Its two sieges, especially that of 1758, were turning points in the Anglo-French struggle for what today is Canada.

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Driving from Louisbourg to Baddeck we saw another pretty lighthouse and a ferry crossing. 

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  Nova Scotia (New Scotland):  We returned to mainland Nova Scotia for the final two nights of our trip.  Nova Scotia is one of Canada’s three Maritime provinces and is the most populous province with nearly one million inhabitants.  It has over 4,600 miles of coastline.  Nowhere in Nova Scotia is more than 42 miles from the ocean.  The first settlers were the Micmac Indians, and after that Nova Scotia was settled primarily by the French, English, Scottish and Irish.

Peggy’s Point Lighthouse:  Before arriving in Halifax we stopped at the little fishing village of Peggy’s Cove.  This lighthouse, situated on an extensive granite outcrop, is said to be one of the most-photographed structures in Atlantic Canada and one of the most recognizable lighthouses in the world. The original lighthouse was built in 1868, but replaced by this one in 1914.  It is still operated by the Canadian Coast Guard. 

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 Peggy’s Cove:  Is primarily a tourist attraction, although its inhabitants still fish for lobster, and the community maintains a rustic undeveloped appearance.

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Halifax, Nova Scotia:    It’s the provincial capital and most populous province of the four in Atlantic Canada.  We stayed at the very nice Marriott Habourfront.  It was located on the boardwalk of Halifax. 

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Maritime Museum of the Atlantic:  The museum has a collection of over 30,000 artifacts including 70 small craft and a steamship.

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  CSS Acadia:  We toured this steamship, which is part of the museum.  It is a 180 foot steam-powered hydrographic survey ship launched in 1913.

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 Ship Chandlery:  A ship chandler is a retail dealer who specializes in supplies or equipment for ships.  This restored Ship Chandlery circa 1900 was located in the museum.  I understood that it’s in the original store front which the museum purchased and added to it’s artifacts. 

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And I bid you farewell with the setting of the sun over one last lighthouse in Nova Scotia!  It was a indeed fun trip with good friends!

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Posted November 5, 2013 by marilynfarmer in Travel

11 responses to “Canadian Maritimes in the Fall

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  1. Looks like time well spent and lots of fun and beautiful scenery

  2. Wow!! What fun to go on the tour again thru your photos. The only thing missing was being with all the sweet people we met during the tour. Thank you for sharing with us. Marilyn, it was a joy to meet you, Jim, Karen and Mark. It ended too soon!

  3. Think I learned more from your blog than I did from being on the trip. Great pictures!!! It was fun wasn’t it?
    Cherie (Texas)

  4. What a wonderful job you did depicting our tour in pictures and words. You even included the picture you took of us Texans having a coffee break. Thanks so much for sharing!!!!!!!!!!!

  5. What a wonderful job you did on your travel blog! I hope to be that organized when I grow up! We have so many fond memories of our tour to Nova Scotia with such a great group of people!
    Charlotte Mehosky

    • Thank you Charlotte, and so glad it has given you inspiration for when you grow up. haha It was certainly a good group of people to travel with, and like you said, there was lots of fond memories.

  6. I’ll have to make sure Heidi looks at these! Nice pictures.

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