Fodor's Travel Talk Forums

Fodor's Travel Talk Forums (
-   Canada (
-   -   Nova Scotia itinerary advice (

Jyber209 Jun 20th, 2005 11:05 AM

Nova Scotia itinerary advice
We are heading to Nova Scotia for a week around 8/10. We are not yet decided whether we will ferry in on the Cat to Yarmouth or fly in to Halifax.

We have an interest in Cape Breton, but are not sure we have time to do it nicely. Louisbourg Fort and Cabot Trail are of particular interest. We like small hikes and scenery, and "genuine" (not touristy/overrun)places. We would also like to spend some time in Halifax.

Suggestions? Thanks so much!

ScotiaGirl Jun 20th, 2005 04:01 PM

Hi! You definitely have enough time to do Cape Breton, if you fly into Halifax rather than take the ferry to Yarmouth. I gather from your post that Cape Breton and Halifax are the two areas you want to focus on. Supposing you did fly, what time would you arrive in Halifax? This will help to better plan your itinerary. You could do 2 days in Halifax and take the other 5 to travel to/in Cape Breton (or some variation thereof). And not to worry about touristy - you will be rather hard pressed to find that in most of Nova Scotia!!

onlyliveonce Jun 20th, 2005 08:15 PM

Hi Jyber209,

I just returned from the area, we toured Cape Breton, Halifax and Louisbourg. I would recommend being flexible, as the weather may help you decide what to do once in Halifax, some suggestions would be when you have at least two-three days of sunshine, head for the Cabot trail, this may be more difficult for you to do in August, as hotel reservations would be necessary, but try to be as flexible as possible, for example, we fully intended on starting our trip in Cheticamp, but when we landed in Halifax, it was cloudy, and was supposed to be the day after, so we headed to Louisbourg (recommended), this proved to be a good move, as the next two days were perfect for driving the trail. We camped out in a tent which was a great expeirence, and as scotiagirl noted, you wont find much touristy areas although you will see a few. If you want "genuine" I would recommend White Point, Neils Harbor and Meat Cove, I loved the Meat Cove area, the other two are on the scenic detour off the Cabot trail, I hiked a small mountain in Meat Cove, and there are a few good shorter hikes in the area as well. On the Cabot Trail the Skyline Trail is great, saw a few moose up close, and a few whales. this is a great short hike (about 3hrs. in & out), well groomed, gravel and boardwalk trail, leads to a awesome veiw of the coast. I wasnt crazy about Halifax, I spent the last afternoon there and visited the botanical gardens and Citadel, but what we did enjoy was Luneberg which is about an hour south of Halifax, I would recommend the lighthouse trail to Luneburg, and back to Halifax on the highway. Thia was an unexpected but great find. The place is full of history, has great B & B's (we stayes at (Addington Arms, recommended) and a great new restaurant Fleur de Sel. We had a wonderfuil time there. I highly recommend adding this to your itenerary, the town is a UNESCO site and has great history. If you have any oter questions I will check back on this post.

Jyber209 Jun 21st, 2005 05:40 AM

Thanks so much, both of you!
Great suggestions!

At this point flying in seems to be somewhat marginal. There are no direct flights from our city (Philadelphia) so adding in the time we would take to drive to another city (Newark), or fly from ours and have a layover, etc., it may not be worth flying. So we are back to considering taking the Cat from Bar Harbor to Yarmouth.

We can just pass through Halilfax if you think it is not worth much time, considering how much we want to cover. Do you think we could go directly to Lunenburg from Yarmouth, then hit Halifax (perhaps just one day) and then spend a day in Louisbourg, following up with Cabot trail?

How would you recommend we head back to Yarmouth for the return ferry? Or do you think we are trying to cover too much ground if we are starting in Yarmouth? (We are not the most efficient people in the world!)

I am so glad you say that we will not be seeing many touristy places. Good for Nova Scotia for keeping itself genuine!

We are very excited about seeing this special area. Thanks so much for your input!

Jyber209 Jun 22nd, 2005 09:29 AM

Any votes on whether we can make this work if we take the ferry to Yarmouth?

If so, suggested return route? (assuming we'd do Lighthouse Trail to Halifax).

Thanks for your input!

sailorgirl2001 Jun 22nd, 2005 10:33 AM

Do the Evangeline Trail down the other coast. Depending on where you start your day from, you can either spending the night in Wolfville (lots of great B&Bs, eat at either Tempest in Wolfville or at Grand Pre Vinyards) or Annapolis Royal (Bailey House or Bread & Roses are my 2 favorite places). Beautiful gardens to see in Annapolis Royal.

I too would suggest staying in Lunenburg from Yarmouth (2 1/2 to 3 hour drive) and stopping by Halifax enroute to Cape Breton. In Lunenburg my favorite spot is the Mariner King Inn. Definately go out to Blue Rocks for some picture postcard scenery and take a ride on the tallship BluenoseII if she is in port.

Jyber209 Jun 23rd, 2005 04:16 AM

Thanks so much, sailorgirl!

You folks on this forum are great!

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 09:48 AM.