Our Nova Scotia Bucket List for 2016

We’re so hoping to be able to have the opportunity to travel East again this summer!  I’ve compiled a list of the attractions that we haven’t done yet as a family and would love to check out!  I haven’t traveled to Cape Breton since I was a kid myself and remember the wonder that struck me even then.  We’re hoping to get in some hiking, beach going, playing, exploring and learning and make some fantastic memories along the way.

Here goes:

Miner’s Museum, New Glascow

From the website “It is home to profound stories of miners and their families, and the resource that helped build a nation.”

For centuries New Glascow and the area surrounding it has been home to a series of coal mines.  The mines brought good paying jobs, but the work was dangerous and not without cost to both the men working in the mines and their families. There is an underground tour of the mine which I am most excited about. I first became interested in the area and the history of coal mining after watching the documentary titled “Westray” about the Westray Mine disaster.  I highly recommend it.  Many of the communities in Canada have been founded upon and raised around one mine or another and I find the history so intriguing.  I feel that it is important for our children to realize the sacrifices and truly hard work that the miners of this country now and for generations have done to provide for their families and communities.

This museum is not part of the Nova Scotia Museum Family Pass.

Summer Hours 10 am – 6 pm (May 29 – Oct 16), Admission is $15 for Adults and $13 for Children.  The website doesn’t state whether children 2 and under are free as they are at many attractions.

Fortress of Louisbourg

From their website ,“The Fortress of Louisbourg is the largest reconstruction project in North America. The original settlement was founded in 1713 by the French and developed over several decades into a thriving center for fishing and trade. Fortified against the threat of British invasion during the turbulent time of empire-building, Louisbourg was besieged twice before finally being destroyed in the 1760s. The site lay untouched until well into modern times, when archaeologists began to reconstruct the fortress as it was in the 18th century.”

I remember touring here as a child and being fascinated.  I’m sure it will be even better as an adult and my four year old will definitely be excited!  This one is a little pricey, but you can save quite a bit by going during the off season.

June 30 to October 13, 2014
Adult:    $17.60
Senior:  $14.95
Youth:   $8.80
Family/Group:  $44.10

October 15, 2014 – May 18, 2015
Adult:    $7.30
Senior:  $6.05
Youth:   $3.65
Family/Group:  $18.10

Cabot Trail, Cape Breton

From their website

 “Cape Breton Island is rated the #1 Island to visit in continental North America —
Travel & Leisure Magazine”

I also remember traveling along the Cabot Trail as a kid and being amazed at how high up we were.  I can’t wait to take in the beauty of it through the eyes of an adult, and to see the wonder in the eyes of my children.  I’m also excited for Highlands National Park, the festivals, delicious food and hiking along the journey.  There is so much to see and do, I think that we’ll need 5 days to take it all in.   Wonder what my kiddos will think?

Whale Watching, Brier Island  

This is one adventure that I put off doing on our last trip and regretted.  There are a few tour operators in the area and I’ve chosen Brier Island Whale & Seabird Cruises simply because the people I know that have gone have used this one and have had a great time.  Hopefully we can make it work this summer!  I’ve never met anyone who has said “ugh, I really wish we didn’t go whale watching”.  Everyone has something great to say, and I know my son would love every single thing about it from the sea, to the boat, to any wildlife we may encounter.  Kids should only go on the Mega Nova.  Each cruise if 3-5 hours long. For what it is the prices seem pretty reasonable to me!

Adults:                           $50.00
Seniors/Students:      $42.00
Children,  6-14:          $28.00
Children, 5 & under: $22.00

Tidal Bore, Truro & in Hall’s Harbour

This seems like a great day trip.  The boats at the wharf are floating in the water and look like a postcard at high tide, but a few short hours later at low tide they’re  sitting on the ocean floor.  I don’t know too much about Truro but it seems like a great place to pack up a picnic and spend a day or two.

The Nova Scotia Museum Pass is such a great deal!  If we make it to Nova Scotia this year we will definitely be investing in this.

The price for a Family Pass which includes two adults and their children is only $92.65 Cdn.

All of the museums that we’ve visited in Nova Scotia have been great.  No exceptions. However, I am partial to the Fisheries Museum in Lunenburg and have been many times.  I would love to see how many we could visit in a summer. It would make for a great family summer project! Here is a guide to the museums that are included in the pass.

I’d also like to revisit the Black Loyalist Heritage Centre.  I’ve been before but would like to take my son.  I learned so much about the often tragic history of the Black Loyalists that I knew little about before.  The staff blew my mind with their knowledge.  They answered every question without having to look anything up. On my last visit the exhibit featuring “The Book of Negroes” wasn’t available and I would like to check that out as well.  I highly recommend this museum and, along with so many other reasons, is worth the trip to the south shore of Nova Scotia.



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