It’s officially spring here. Somebody, please, tell Mother Nature. Before you know it, it will be fall,and summer will be gone. And you’ll be wondering how it happened to sneak away without you enjoying one speck of it. No Nova Scotia day trips. No fun.
Let me help. I’ve made a list of some of my favorite spots in alphabetical order to help you plan ahead for your days off to be posted in a 3 part series.
This week, you get A to H.
A– Advocate Harbour- I love Advocate Harbour.The scenery is stunning and Advocate Boats Tours and NovaShores Adventures tours is definitely on my bucket list. Cape d’Or Lighthouse is a steep down hill stroll from the parking lot, but you can grab a meal or even stay overnight. Please note that restaurant hours are subject to change without notice so please call ahead 1-902-670-8314 or email at email@example.com (or pack an emergency lunch)
And don’t even get me started on Cape Chignecto with it’s challenging backpacking trails and gorgeous vistas.
B-Bear River – Just off the beaten path, and inland from Digby, Bear River is an artist’s mecca and a photographer’s delight. Sometimes referred to as “Little Switzerland” the houses closest to the river are protected from tidal influence by stilts. Add a visit to Bear River Vineyards to your itinerary .There is a guest suite on the property-please contact the property at 902-467-4156 to check availability. Bear River has a large Mi’kMaq population -Bear River First Nations.
C.Chéticamp – At the western entrance to the Cape Breton National Highlands Park, this small Acadian fishing village boasts big cultural influence- in fact, along with Saint-Joseph-du-Moine, it’s the largest francophone region in Cape Breton, evidenced by the opportunities to see and purchase Acadian crafts and gifts. We treated ourselves to supper at Le Gabriel Restaurant, which serves Acadian fare and traditional dishes such as burgers, fish and chips and lobster.
D.Delaps Cove– This is one of my favorite short hikes, because you can see both the Bay of Fundy and a waterfall at one point along the Bohaker Trail hike. The Bohaker Trail is just over 2 km in length and a pretty easy hike-unless you decide to crawl down to the foot of the falls. There are a few benches along the trail including one that overlooks the falls, so you can sit and soak in its beauty. Wear shoes suitable for hiking because part of the trail runs along the rocky shoreline. Keep an eye peeled for grey seals!
E.Eastern Shore. Ok, this is quite a chunk of land to cover,so I suggest you don’t do it in one day. Some of the highlights I love about this section of the province is Taylor’s Head Provincial Park -a series of 4 trails ranging from easy to difficult. We did the Headland Trail quite a few years ago-a 8 km trail that rims the Atlantic and requires really sturdy footwear. It’s on our to do list to go back to do it again. There are galleries, museums and bakeries scattered along route 7 and while Willy Krachs Smokehouse is closed after 60 years in business, farther along the eastern Shore is St. Mary’s River Smokehouses. Liscombe Lodge is a great getaway spot-trails, kayaking and more.
F. Five Islands.Named after the cluster of five islands-Long,Diamond,Egg, Pinnacle and Moose – located just off the coast. Legend claims these islands are the result of an infuriated Glooscap, the benevolent culture hero of the Mi’kmaq . Angered by Beaver, Glooscap retaliated by throwing sticks,stones and mud.into the Bay. There are other variations of this legend but this is the one I’m sticking with. Campers can enjoy Five Islands Provincial Park -many sites have beautiful views or just stop for a picnic. Hikers can explore any of the three trails inside the park.
I’d thought we’d explored everything in that area, but in my research I found out about Five Islands Lighthouse Park-so that is on my list for the next time we are up. that way. It has a playground, beach access )check the tides, please ) washrooms and a short walking trail. Lastly, Five Islands is the home of the infamous ‘Not Since Moses’ run. You may enjoy a stop at Diane’s for supper or grabbing some fresh veggies at the ‘mini Masstown market there.
G.Grand Pre.From the dykes to the beach to the eastern end of the Harvest Moon Trailway, the small community of Grand Pre has plenty to offer, especially the Grand Pre National Historic Site. I highly recommend you take the time to watch the 20 minute film that tells the sad story of the Acadian Deportation. Round out your day with a stop the Covenantor Church, a glass of vino at Grand Pre Winery,lunch at the quaint Evangeline Cafe, snap some photos at the View Park and last, but not least, a stop at the Deportation Cross at Horton Landing.
H.Hall’s Harbour The community of Hall’s Harbour is reportedly named after a American privateer named Samuel Hall who made his living by raiding the Valley settlers. Rumour has it that he found it necessary to flee unexpectedly, leaving behind abandoned treasure. Stroll the beach ( need sturdy shoes and don’t forget the tides ) have a lobstah at the restaurant and peruse the art at the Captain’s Treasure Chest open May to October. I recommend being there for both tides- there are plenty of things to do in the area while you wait the six hours from high to low or vice versa. It’s worth it to see the boats sitting on the ocean bottom and then slowing rising with the incoming tide. Check out the sampling of activities in Port Williams-it’s only about 23 km away.
Stayed Tuned for next week’s list Letters I to P !