Here in the Maritimes, there’s a lot you can do over one long weekend. From unforgettable drives and camping experiences to trips back in time and, of course, a lovely voyage on The CAT, the mv Fundy Rose, mv Confederation, or mv Holiday Island, the Maritimes are the perfect long-weekend backdrop. Here are a few of our favourite activities to take in over a long weekend in each of the Maritime Provinces.
Less than an hour from where you step off the mv Fundy Rose in Saint John, you’ll find the Ridgeback Lodge, and a camping experience you’ll never forget. That’s because the Ridgeback Lodge is home to the Dream Dome and Stargazer Domes. When you stay in one of the domes, you’ll have the perfect camping experience—an opportunity to spend a weekend completely immersed in nature, as well as a comfortable bed, shelter, and all the amenities you love. Best of all, your long weekend under the dome also comes with access to a private wood fired hot tub where you can relax after a thrilling day exploring the wilderness.
If your long weekend takes you to Nova Scotia, you can do more than get away—you can escape to a completely bygone era. Start with a trip to the Fortress of Louisbourg and discover a faithful recreation of one of 18th-century North America’s busiest seaports. More than simply a snapshot of the past, at the Fortress you can live like your ancestors. While you’re visiting, you’ll have the opportunity to tend gardens, feed sheep, and more. You can even fire a cannon! You can also plan to spend the night in the fortress for an 18th-century camping opportunity, complete with a period tent, lanterns, and a fire pit. Waking up in the past is an experience you’ll never forget!
Once you safely return to the present, you’ll want to take a drive to Baddeck and the Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site. If you’re using GPS on your phone for directions, you owe it to Bell to stop in, seeing as he is the inventor of the telephone! During your visit, you’ll see photographs and films that highlight Bell’s significant humanitarian work and get hands-on with original artifacts, including his favourite jacket, walking stick, and personal notebook. You’ll also have the opportunity to hear more about the great love of Alexander’s life, Mabel Bell, who is often referred to “The girl for whom the telephone was invented.”
Of course, at this point, you’re already on the Cabot Trail, so there’s really no better way to cap off your long weekend than with a drive you’ll never forget. Discover the natural beauty of Cape Breton along this scenic coastal drive that also takes you directly into the heart of the Highlands. And remember to stop for supper at the Red Shoe Pub in Mabou, where you’re sure to have an amazing meal perfectly paired with great local music.
Fall is not peak tourist season on PEI, which means fewer crowds as you explore everything the Island has to offer! Once you depart the mv Confederation or mv Holiday Island you can start your long weekend off by visiting Green Gables Heritage Place where you’ll have an opportunity to stroll the grounds that inspired L.M. Montgomery’s iconic novels. You can walk through the Green Gables home, see Lovers Lane, and stop for lunch in the Butter Churn Cafe.
For more Anne, head to the Anne of Green Gables Museum in Park Corner. Located in the home of L.M. Montgomery’s aunt and uncle (a home she often referred to as her “wonder castle”), this museum includes the enchanted bookcase described in the Anne of Green Gables series, as well as L.M. Montgomery’s famous patchwork quilt. Tour the grounds, shop for Anne merchandise, and take in a stunning view of the Lake of Shining Waters on this wonderful property that is sure to delight Anne fans.
After your Anne adventure, hit the road toward O’Leary to visit the Canadian Potato Museum! This museum, named one of the top food museums in the world by CNN, is dedicated to celebrating all this potato. During your visit to this wonderfully quirky museum, you’ll learn more about the history of the machinery used to farm potatoes, agriculture, and the importance of potatoes to communities throughout the Island. You’ll also have the opportunity to feast your eyes on the world’s largest potato sculpture!
If all of this food-related learning works up your appetite, don’t worry, the museum is also home to the PEI Country Kitchen. Stop in and enjoy an incredible potato-based meal such as poutine, PEI potato soup, or a loaded baked potato. Still want more? Try some potato fudge for dessert!
From unforgettable camping to historical journeys and delicious local cuisine, the Maritimes are full of travel ideas for your long weekend. Regardless of where you’re headed, make sure your trip includes an exciting voyage on one of our ferries! To get started, book your voyage today!