Prince Edward Island: Places to Explore


North Cape

The northwest point of Prince Edward Island, called North Cape, has a well-known lighthouse, but these days the windmills dotting the landscape are more prominent, looming in the fog or with blades flashing brightly in the sun. Part of the Atlantic Wind Test Site and Wind Farm, the windmills here, like those elsewhere on the Island, were built to make the "Gentle Island" greener.

The reef here is one of the longest in world; at low tide, it gives way to tidal pools teeming with marine life. Seals often gather offshore. The 2-km (1-mi) Black Marsh Nature Trail takes you along the coastline and through bog, with interpretive panels along the way. It's quite wonderful, especially on a sunny day, though rainy ones have their own mystical feel.

Black Marsh Nature Trail. One of the best ways to see North Cape's natural and manmade assets is by hiking the Black Marsh Nature Trail. The 5.5-km (3.5-mile) return path extends past tidal pools, whirring windmills, and the Cape's 1908 lighthouse to a pretty bog crossed via a boardwalk. 21817 Rte. 12, North Cape, PE, C0B 2B0.

Matthews Deep Sea Fishing & Ocean Adventures. Matthews Deep Sea Fishing & Ocean Adventures offers C$40 fishing trips (sometimes with bird- and whale-watching on the side) out of Northport from July to mid-September. Bay cruises and beach picnics are other options. 265 Rte. 152, Northport, PE, C0B 1B0. 902/853–7943.

Jacques Cartier Provincial Park. Jacques Cartier Provincial Park, south of North Cape, was named for the famed French explorer who came ashore nearby in 1534. In July and August, you can take naturalist-led hikes on park trails or swim on the supervised Gulf of St. Lawrence beach. 16448 Rte. 12, Kildare Capes, PE, C0B 2B0. 902/853–8632 or 877/445–4938.