Nova Scotia might be Canada’s second smallest province, but it’s a diverse destination with an array of must-see cultural, historical, and geographical activities. If you’re planning a visit in the coming year, here are just a handful of the attractions you won’t want to miss.
Travel the Cabot Trail
The Cabot Trail is one of Cape Breton’s most famous tourist attractions, and at 300 kilometres long, the trail is more than your average sightseeing destination. Winding through the northern part of the province, the trail takes visitors through various island communities and includes spectacular views of the coast, rivers, and highlands. Visitors should notethat unlike a lot of other trails, the Cabot Trail isn’t seasonal, as parts of it can be used in the winter months for snowmobiling and skiing. Also, for those who want to spread their trip over a few days, there are a number of campgrounds, hotels, cottages, and B&Bs in the area.
Explore the Joggins Fossil Cliffs
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the cliffs are about 15 kilometres long and are home to plant, fish, and reptile fossils from a time 300 million years ago known as the “coal age.” As the cliffs and its beach are located near the Bay of Fundy, and the area is being eroded more and more each year. This makes Joggins a place that you can visit again and expect to see something different as the landscape changes and more fossils are uncovered. Visitors should note that Joggins is mostly a seasonal place, accessed through the Joggins Fossil Centre, but it’s available in the off-season by appointment.
See the Fortress of Louisbourg
Every vacation needs to take a step back into history, and one of the more popular places to do this is at the Fortress of Louisbourg. Despite only being a quarter of the original fort’s size, Louisbourg is full of historical and architectural wonders that often take a full day to explore. Looking as it might have in 1744, the fort allows visitors to walk about at their leisure or take a guided tour to see various exhibits, re-enactments, and artifacts, as well as the fort’s bakery. Visitors can also research their own connection to the town with the help of digital archives that are available at Lartigue House and the Parks Canada Visitor Centre.
View the Blomidon Look-off and Provincial Park
While the valley region of Nova Scotia is full of fields and farmland that make for a picturesque drive, but the land is best viewed from above. The Blomidon look-off, located on the North Mountain, shows visitors a panoramic view of five different valley counties, the Minas Basin, and on a clear day the New Brunswick coast. While the look-off can be visited year round, the best time to take in the sights is either during the summer or fall months to see a palette of colours from crops and leaves. Near the look-offthere’s also a seasonal provincial park, which is open from late May to early October and has campsites, hiking, and walking trails and beaches.