Nova Scotia Captured My Heart

As a young girl, there were places in Canada for some reason I always wanted to visit – Banff, PEI, Quebec City and Nova Scotia. I’ve always been worried when I visit that I have too high of expectations, and I’m going to be disappointed (like in Croatia for instance). Yet every time I’ve been astounded at how great the experience has been how beautiful the landscapes are.

We flew into and out of Halifax and spent a few days exploring Nova Scotia. Wow! Though April is off-season, it was still so beautiful. The last day the sun was out, the temperature had risen, and we heard it was patio weather.  A smile was brought to my face when I saw church billboards displaying “Spring is Here!” For those of us accustomed to the Arizona weather, we were still in our coats.

After walking around the Halifax Public Gardens and Citadel, we headed out toward Lunenberg. We drove along the coast stopping at various vantage points to see places like Oak Island and the scenery in general.  My favorite was Mahone Bay. Looking across the water at the three churches was awe-inspiring. The town had several cute shops. We enjoyed Sugar Bubbles. Those soaps are truly pieces of art.

It was then off to Lunenberg where we walked up and down the streets. The brightly colored buildings were fun to look at. Many had signs telling visitors who the homes were built for. Being a Sunday in off-season, not much was open, but just taking in the sights and the sunny day was enough for us. We enjoyed lunch overlooking the water at the Grand Banker.  My po-boy fish sandwich was enough for two people -great flavor and the bread was just right. We also split a lobster tail. So good!

Then, we headed back toward Halifax driving towards Peggy’s Cove. There were so many little beaches to stop and admire the waterfront. I loved looking at all the homes on the water and the boats. Peggy’s Cove was beautiful, especially with the sun behind the lighthouse casting a shadow. There were many visitors there. I enjoyed walking along the rocks and understanding why a lighthouse was needed there.

We had to be on our way to return the rental car, but what struck me most is how beautiful Nova Scotia is – it’s landscape and the friendliness of the people. I’m already planning my next trip back, and if you ever have the opportunity to go, don’t let that opportunity slip through your fingertips.

Here are my top tips:

  • Rent a car. There is so much to see and you can be on your own pace to explore.
  • Talk to people when you are there. They’ll eagerly give you hints on the best places to go.
  • Visit a grocery store. There are lots of great local products you can try or bring home to friends and family. We had an amazing blueberry jam.
  • Visit local shops. We loved Sugar Bubbles and Amos Pewter. Amos Pewter has nice jewelry and gifts for generally reasonable prices.
  • Looking to buy wine, beer or spirits?  You’ll have to go to a bottle shop. They’re not sold in grocery stores.
  • Request and study info from the Visitor’s Bureau in advance to maximize time, but don’t be afraid to deviate from your plan and explore the area.

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