Road Trip to P.E.I.

Old Nov 28th, 2012, 10:37 AM
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Road Trip to P.E.I.

Hi there. Looking for some advice on a family of 4 making a road trip from Southwestern Ontario (London area) to P.E.I. Is there one specific route to take (similarly to taking I-75 all the way to Florida)? Looking at making the drive in 2 days. Have 2 children; aged 13 and 11, and they are no strangers to multi-day road trips. I suppose if I had a major route mapped, I could find acceptable overnight accommodations and best sights to see along the way.
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Old Nov 29th, 2012, 06:26 PM
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Why rush? There's more that is interesting on the way than there is in PEI, with all due respect to the little island with the potatoes.

London to Buffalo to Syracuse to Albany, all by superhighway, and then into Mass. on Interstate 90. All kinds of interesting little towns just off the I-90, which is alo the famous Mass Turnpike from a James Taylor song about Stockbridge to Boston.

Have the kids look up Norman Rockell. This is his territory.

Go to Boston, or go close to Boston and then curve north-east on I-95 to Mass 128 and go into Gloucester. Have a lobster down by the water, outdoors.

go back to I-95 and head north to Portland, Maine.

Take a harbor tour on the top deck of the municipal boats that act like buses taking people to the islands in Casco Bay.

Take 295 until you can get to Highway 1 to Wiscasset, and then go down to Boothbay Harbor. Then back to highway 1.

Stick on highway 1 to Lincolnville, and eat more lobster out b ehind the big restaurant by the beach.

Stay on Highway 1 to Ellsworth, and then go down to Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park.

Back to Highway 1, up to Lubec on the border, cross to Canada at Campobello Island.

From there take the ferry to Deer Island (still in Canada) and then to the New Brunswick mainland.

Canadian Highway 1 to Saint John, then to Sussexand either down to Fundy National Park or keep going to Moncton.

Moncton to Shediac to Parlee Beach, and on to the bridge to PEI.

Returning, get off PEI and head up the New Brunswick coast on Highway 11 to Mirimichi, then up to Rimouski, Quebec. Turn left, go to Quebec City, go to Montreal, take 401 the rest of the way home.

BAK
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Old Dec 6th, 2012, 07:37 AM
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How much time do you have total, that is - do you have to make the drive to PEI in 2 days?

We visit the East Coast from Southern Ontario roughly every 3 years on average and usually drive. We once went through the U.S. visiting Acadian National Park and Bar Harbor, Maine, on the way. However we drive through Canada most trips - Superhighway for much of the way. In Canada our highways are Provincial so, unlike the U.S. "Inter"-state system, ours change number at the provincial borders, even though the roadway itself is often continuous. You can take the 401 into the province of Quebec where it becomes Hwy 20. There are a few options for getting through Montreal (check Google Maps) but you will want to cross the St. Lawrence from Montreal ending up again on Hwy 20 until just outside Riviere-du-Loup where you would get off on Hwy 85/185 to New Brunswick (these are all Trans Canada Highway). This becomes Hwy 2 which will take you right to Moncton where you'll branch off to head towards PEI. Google Maps will give you the detailed route.

Going all the way out to the East Coast, it's a shame not to enjoy some of the spectacular scenery in other parts of the Atlantic provinces. For example - the dramatic Fundy Shore and famous Tides of New Brunswick around Alma/Fundy National Park and Hopewell Rocks. And Cape Breton Island which offers one of North America's most scenic drives in the Cabot Trail as well as lots of spectacular coastal scenery and nature walks in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.

On the way there or back - Quebec City's "Old Quebec" (Vieux Quebec) district is unique in North America. It's worth a couple of days, but we have stayed there for an overnight on route.
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Old Dec 10th, 2012, 04:22 PM
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Hi, my husband and I drive from Toronto to Charlottetown every summer. We also drive through Canada, basically as described above. We stop overnight; Quebec City is lovely or Levis across the river with ferries to Old Quebec. Levis is less tourist laden and has great bike paths along the river (i.e. flat).

We always dread the drive through Montreal as it's really busy traffic and involves lots of road repair work delays - every time! Now we take the car ferry ($6) from Hudson, Ontario to Oka, Quebec. It's generally less than a half hour wait, a 15 minute crossing and you avoid downtown Montreal entirely. Also nice to get out of the car for a bit, we try to time our packed picnic lunch for the ferry. We take it again on our return.

There are most certainly many towns and cities worth exploring in more depth along the way but for us it's mostly about getting there quickly but enjoyably.
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Old Dec 13th, 2012, 09:39 PM
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Hi, PexiDust:

I would just get on the 401 & head East if I had to drive. But I never have to drive.

When are you going to PEI?

Have you considered flying?
If you book in advance, you can get great fares Toronto/ Halifax for the 4 of you. Then rent a car @ the Halifax airport & drive to PEI.

Check Westjet & Air Canada.

OB1
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Old Jan 2nd, 2013, 09:36 AM
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Hi. Thanks so much for the replies. To further answer a few questions, we are taking approx 2 weeks for the entire vacation. We would like to take 2-3 days to drive there, and the same for the drive home; although I am sure we would like to get home a lot faster than we would to drive there.
We are heading there during the first week of August. I understand the ocean water will be cold, however, I thought by August it should be bearable for us to stick our feet in.
Thank you SO much for advice on highway travel. I will further look into that, and attempt to map out some stops along the way; specifically, some decent stops for overnight.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2013, 04:18 PM
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Hi, many times the first week of August has some of the warmest ocean temperatures of the summer on Island beaches so you should definitely take your swim suits.
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Old Jan 4th, 2013, 09:17 AM
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The water is especially warm on the Northumberland Strait (south shore) of PEI. Many of the beaches there have extensive sand bar systems that heat up in the sun at low tide and then warm up the water when the tide comes in. The north shore (Gulf of St. Lawrence) is a bit colder. But you can definitely swim in the ocean in PEI in August!
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