There’s a part of Canada we’d never fully gotten to explore in the past and ironically, that part is one of the bits that’s actually closest to the UK.
Said-part is, broadly-speaking, Atlantic Canada – the bits on the East Coast of Canada which, ironically, are the parts of Canada that are closest to the UK.
There are places here (case in point – Newfoundland) that you can get to from London in almost the same time it takes you to get to Rhodes in Greece or Cyprus.
With that we decided it was high time we did an Atlantic Canada road trip – flying a bit further into Nova Scotia and making our way up North to New Brunswick, before heading East to Newfoundland.
Arriving in Halifax, Nova Scotia – by the way, Nova Scotia actually means “New Scotland”, we checked into The Halliburton, a historic hotel perfectly located in the city (*The Halliburton is over 200 years old and was built as the home of Sir Brenton Halliburton, the first Chief Justice of the Nova Scotia Supreme Court)…
…before heading out for some doughnuts and poutine (the former on my insistence, the latter on Lloyd’s).
Seeing as we had a few hours to kick about Halifax (we would be leaving the very next morning), we figured we might as well see the city as efficiently as possible by hopping on a Harbour Hopper Tour.
* The Harbour Hoppers are essentially this boat/car combination vehicle that takes you through the city on land and on water.
Finishing the tour, surprisingly still hungry despite the mountain of poutine and doughnuts we had earlier, we headed over to The Five Fisherman for something of an early dinner.
The trick to staying ahead of jetlag I’ve found (in addition to the obvious one of making sure you align yourself to the same time zone you’re in) is to try to have a really decent night’s sleep on your first night. I find that it just sets me right for the rest of the trip (it also makes it easier to fight those sleepy lulls that might come a-knocking during the day).
We dove straight into mains here, with a deliciously fragrant fish pie for Lloyd and lobster for myself, which I proceed to slather with garlic butter.
With that, we decided to call it a night, rising up bright and early the next day to begin our road trip through Atlantic Canada.
We wasted no time in hitting the road, heading for a spot everyone in the area had recommended visiting – Peggy’s Cove.
Peggy’s Cove is a picturesque little fishing town in Nova Scotia and is just the perfect cute spot to spend an afternoon in.
We parked right up by the lighthouse and proceeded to explore the rest on foot…
…dipping in and out of little quaint shops, with nothing I really needed but so much that I wanted anyway.
There was the temptation to have lunch here but we decided to head over to our next stop of the trip – Lunenburg.
Lunenburg is another fishing town but much (much) bigger than Peggy’s Cove. The town’s long history and rather colourful architecture are huge reasons why Lunenburg is now actually a UNESCO World Heritage site.
See, Lunenburg is considered as one of the best-preserved examples of British settlements in North America and hasn’t changed much since the early days. The town was actually founded over 250 years ago and is actually really gorgeous to visit (I’m a sucker for colourful places).
We traipsed through the town, tour-guide at the ready. We actually did one of the Lunenburg Walking Tours, which just made so much sense as there’s just so much we would have missed here otherwise. Thing is Lunenburg is special, not just because of how pretty it is, but also because of the history so a proper insight into that part seemed almost mandatory. 😀
Each building here has its own unique story – featuring many friends and family, charting how it’s changed over the years or even why it was built with the quirks that it has that sets it apart from the others.
Don’t worry, I won’t provide any spoilers here. 😀 I mean, I technically could but there’s just so much here that I could be at this for hours so I’ll let you find all that our yourself when you visit.
All that walking works up quite an appetite and, on the recommendation of our guide, we decided to head over to The Fish Shack for what turned out to be one of the most delicious meals of fish and chips in all the land! (Like seriously, it was just so good – so nice and fresh, lovely light batter – just amazing).
Re-energised, we figured we might as well explore more of Lunenburg on our own, including some spots we’d made a note to return to after our tour.
Lunenburg truly looks and feels like nowhere else we’d been in Canada thus far.
Suffice to say, it took a bit of convincing for me to decide it was time to bid this colourful town farewell!
Alas, we had to but indeed, thoroughly delighted at finally having gotten to explore this beautiful Nova Scotian gem.
READ MORE: Here’s what we got up to next on this trip.