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15th Anniversary Trip - Nova Scotia - 1 week

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Apr 20th, 2013, 08:55 AM
  #1
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15th Anniversary Trip - Nova Scotia - 1 week

Just booked (award) tickets to Halifax for mid June. (Yes, I know it's not as warm as it will be later in the summer but DD will be away at camp in June.) DH and I are mid 40s, interested in walking, biking, exploring by car and foot, good food, etc. (Our last trip was to London but also loved the time we spent hiking in Acadia NP.)

Looking for some suggestions on how to divide up our time... we arrive late on a Monday night in Halifax and leave early the following Monday morning. So we really have only six full days / seven nights. We are renting a car upon arrival.

We were thinking a couple of days in Halifax but then are undecided... would love to see Cape Breton/Cabot Trail, Bay of Fundy, PEI, New Brunswick but I know there isn't enough time to do/see everything or even a fraction of everything! Any suggested itineraries would be helpful!
iowamom is offline  
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Apr 22nd, 2013, 07:41 PM
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I would spend the first day doing a day trip from Halifax to Chester, Mahone Bay and Lunenburg. Back to Halifax for the night and then if you want to spend a half day or more in Halifax and then on to Cape Breton. I would do Cabot Trail in 3 days allowing time for hiking trails and sightseeing. I also would do Inverness and Mabou areas with perhaps a trip to Glenora Distillery. When you go on to Cape Breton there is a good tourist booth right by the causeway that will give you great brochures with all the hiking trails.
Then head to either Prince Edward Island for one overnight ( ferry route over and bridge for the way off) OR the Annapolis Valley OR to Five Islands, Parsboro areas for an overnight.
The airport is at least 1/2 hour from Halifax so if you dont have to return to the city it will be more efficient.
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Apr 26th, 2013, 05:04 PM
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If you want to go the Cape Breton Island you have a 5-6 hour drive from Halifax to Sydney or Chitecamp (on the Cabot Trail). If you do the trail go in a clockwise direction as that puts you on the "inside" of the road and gives the best views. Also, consider going the Forteress Louisburg for the history. The Alexander Graham Bell Museum in in Bedeck. After you leave CB you will have a good 3 hour drive to the ferry to PEI. The Valley is about an hour from Halifax (to Wolfville) and then as far as you want to go -Digby has a ferry to St John, NB and then drive back to NS (another 5 hours). Truro is 1 hour north of Halifax and then you can turn off to Parrsboro (The Little Cabot Trail)and see the highest tides in the world, UNESCO petrified site at Joggins. Stop at Masstown Market just north of Truro to go up their lighthouse to get a look at the Bay of Fundy. Lots to see but it takes time to get places. Want any night life? That is fun, too.
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Apr 28th, 2013, 03:31 PM
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Hi Iowamom, I love the idea of NS for an anniversary trip from Iowa.

Just wanted to suggest that I've chimed-in on numerous NS itineraries here at Fodors, and usually in considerable detail. Just click on my name and plenty of the threads will surface.
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May 4th, 2013, 09:23 AM
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Great suggestions - thanks! I need to get serious about planning this trip!
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Jun 6th, 2013, 11:44 AM
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Finally planned our accommodations... not ideal but had to make some choices. I guess we picked sleeping in the same place for a few nights in a row and doing more driving over moving to a new place to sleep every other night (we had considered two nights PEI, two nights Baddeck, two nights Halifax).

Monday - arrive in Halifax late (midnight) - stay at hotel near airport
Tuesday - pick up rental car, drive to PEI via ferry? Stay at Fairholm Inn.
Wednesday - PEI
Thursday - PEI
Friday - drive to Halifax; stay at Cambridge Suites
Sat - Halifax - maybe explore down to Lunenburg or up to Cape Breton area
Sun - Halifax - maybe explore down to Lunenburg or up to Cape Breton area
Mon - fly home

I am beginning to regret picking PEI over Cape Breton, especially seeing this:
http://www.fodors.com/news/canada-ro...ef=twt_fd_6844
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Jun 8th, 2013, 05:47 PM
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Well, I'll say one thing... at least, with PEI, you can feel a sense of having covered it with three nights there.

Some people could just about cover it in three nights/days when using only bicycles for transportation.


In no way should you think about Cape Breton for the maybe explore element of it unless you leave PEI and go directly to Cape Breton, for perhaps two nights and only then return to Halifax. You don't even leave yourself a chance to get near to Hopewell Cape, NB with your path.

Maybe drive around (via Hopewell Cape) on the path ONTO PEI, (bridge toll only when leaving the island) and then take the ferry off, putting you nearer to Cape Breton then.
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Jun 10th, 2013, 05:12 PM
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As I said in the itinerary suggestion in the beginning and in agreement with Northwestmale if you are intending on going to PEI and Cape Breton you should not drive to Halifax in between. You will be wasting valuable time. Go directly between the two places.
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Jun 11th, 2013, 07:29 AM
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Cabot Trail... clockwise or counter-clockwise?
I have a feeling that it's a matter of one's own personal experience ("The way we did it is the best..."), but can anyone give concrete reasons for why they feel the way they do?
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Jun 11th, 2013, 03:04 PM
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If you are unable to change your itinerary, all is not lost. PEI is a wonderful gentle island. I hope the weather cooperates for you. Remember you are on vacation so c'est la vie - pack a picnic and head for one of the parks, walk the beach, enjoy fresh seafood. I think sometimes we pack way too much in a few days without enjoying the real reason we are on vacation - to relax!
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Jun 11th, 2013, 06:45 PM
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I think I'm content with our plans - the two nights before we arrive in Halifax will each be a different hotel/city en route to taking DD to camp so I think we will be happy to spend three days just relaxing on PEI.
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