Find the horizon!
I treasure experiencing the rise and fall of Bay of Fundy’s world famous tides from the cliff top balcony of Matthews Head. A moderately difficult trail, it follows the curve of Fundy’s jagged coastline. The reward is panoramic viewscapes that are never changing but always new. Part of the trail is an old wagon road as it slopes down to the remnants of a 19th century homestead. This is where the natural and cultural history of Fundy National Park meet in eternity.
A special place to unwind
Whether I’m camping, hiking, cycling, or paddling, Kouchibouguac National Park has a way of captivating me. It’s where I go when I need to be in nature. Here, I find myself hiking through a vast deciduous forest in solitude, or calmly walking bare feet along kilometers of sandy dunes with the lulling sound of the waves. I can really discover my inner peace; it truly keeps me grounded.
My favourite gem in Kouchibouguac National Park is the Bog Trail. The view from the observation tower is amazing, and walking through the bog almost makes you feel like you’re on another planet! It’s very unique. Love it!
Newfoundland and Labrador
One of the most fascinating and unusual places in Gros Morne National Park is without a doubt the Tablelands. Every time I walk on this golden plateau of mantle rocks, my soul fills with joy and curiosity. The Tablelands are an open-air museum of natural beauty and mystery!
If you want to really see Terra Nova National Park, get on the water in a kayak to explore its rugged coastline edged by thick boreal forests, alive with the songs of nature and culture. There are tours for beginners, sheltered inlets for intermediate paddlers, and offshore paddling for those more advanced. My favourite paddling spot is the Southwest Arm below one of the park’s most distinctive landmarks, Malady Head.
Wondrous place to pitch a tent!
Looking for a rewarding getaway? That is what I found while hiking the Outport trail at Terra Nova National Park. I was pleased to enjoy the inspiring views of the ocean for long stretches, not to mention the pleasant smells of a healthy lush forest and amusing bird singing. This multi-day hike of 35 km return leads to one of my favorite energizing places for some backcountry camping, South Broad Cove. Psst… We also can get access to this charming spot by boat.
The edge of the world
Until I stood along the white picket fence outside Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Site I didn’t fully appreciate what it felt like to be standing at the most easterly point in North America. Every time I visit it’s still truly fascinating to be standing at the edge of the world as waves crash the rocks below and I get to watch the whales dance in the ocean before me.
Memories and homecomings!
Cape Spear’s presence has always shaped my life. From childhood family excursions, to my first Parks Canada position, to becoming a birder – I have always been entranced by this site’s amazing natural and cultural resources. Each time I fly over Cape Spear Lighthouse National Historic Site, walk its rocky barrens or taste the ocean’s salt spray - the Cape says welcome home and our conversation starts again!
Hiking on the edge
Hiking around Signal Hill National Historic Site gives such a serene feeling. The cliff-side trails bring you physically as close to the Atlantic Ocean as possible, and spiritually immerse you in the salt air and the deep fishing history that makes this place special. Throw in a fantastic sunrise and the chance to see whales on top of that, and it really does feel as if you are far away from any of life’s stressors.
Views at Gibbet Hill Trail
This is one of the least used trails at Signal Hill National Historic Site, but the view at the top is spectacular. It offers stunning views of the city of St. John’s, the Narrows, and Quidi Vidi Lake.
The past booms
Signal Hill National Historic Site is a sight to behold, but getting to experience it as a solider of the Royal Newfoundland Companies in 1862 takes it to the next level. Firing a musket over the majestic St. John’s Narrows while wearing a historic uniform—that’s Signal Hill at its best.
Rose Island, (Sallikuluk in Inuktitut) has been used by generations of Inuit who have lived, hunted, gathered, and used the island as a meeting place. Part of Torngat Mountains National Park, this small island located in Saglek Bay, is also a resting place for Inuit as there are over 600 traditional Inuit rock graves. When you step onto the island you know you have arrived at a truly special place.
A tucked away cove
My absolute favorite spot at the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site is the beach. Tucked away along the coast, Kennington Cove’s sandy beaches are the perfect place to play in the waves and watch the sunset. I always bring my binoculars for a chance to spot eagles and seals. Dogs are permitted on leash, and my puppy loves it there too!
Playing under the autumn leaves
Kedge Beach at Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site is a favorite for our family. We love to bike there for a refreshing swim when we’re camping, and we love to play and picnic there under the brilliant autumn leaves.
Perfect for paddlers
The moment I climbed aboard the 10-person Voyageur canoe for a guided tour in Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site I was hooked! Meandering up the Mersey River to the Stillwater Orde, a rarely visited and pristine part of the park, I felt completely removed from civilization. As I dipped my paddle into the still waters while listening to captivating stories of the past, I knew I was in a special place.
Hemlocks and Hardwoods Trail
The looming beauty of this trail will never lose its magic for me. Every time I visit Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site, I always make sure to carve out time to do this special trail. Over the years I keep coming back and every time my fondness for the giant, shady trees grows even deeper.
I cannot visit Grand-Pré National Historic Site without watching the presentation in the multimedia theatre, designed like the hull of a ship. The state-of-the-art presentation depicts the story of the Acadian Deportation and helps you better understand your visit through the site. There is not a dry eye at the end!
Alec and Mabel
Hidden in plain sight! A beautiful photo found at Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site; Alec watching Mabel pilot his speed record hydrofoil - the HD4. It tells so much about them: her adventurous spirit and his anxiety, caution and pride all at the same time. Leads to the story of the importance of Mabel’s role in Alexander Graham Bell’s life.
A Soldier's life
I took my eleven-year-old son and his friend to the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site for his birthday to partake in the "Soldier’s Life" program. Immediately after the role-playing began, you could see a drastic change in them both. Serious fun! From donning their uniforms and working on drills to announcing the changing of the guard, these boys were up for every challenge.
Mica Hill Trail
This trail takes you through all three forest types showcased in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, past a beautiful lake to 360° panoramic views. The mica, for which the destination is named, glitters on the ground around you while quartz boulders glow white amid a riot of spring blooms or fall foliage.
Prince Edward Island
Loving the lane
Lover’s Lane, part of Balsam Hollow trail, is my favourite place at Green Gables Heritage Place in Cavendish. It’s a beautiful red dirt lane with grand trees arching overhead. I feel inspired just like L.M. Montgomery when she walked this same path years ago. I can also picture the story coming to life with Anne Shirley exploring the woods with her friends.
Sundays are the best time to visit Green Gables Heritage Place. We put on a special Sunday Picnic and visitors can play games, take part in old fashioned races with characters from the story and meet our most famous resident, Anne Shirley!
Greenwich Dunes Trail
My favourite place in Prince Edward Island National Park is the Greenwich Dunes Trail. Despite having hiked it many times, my excitement always builds as I cross the floating boardwalk on Bowley Pond, climb the dune access and then turn around to see the most breathtaking views of the parabolic dune system. It’s unlike anything else on Prince Edward Island.
One of Prince Edward Island’s best kept secrets is Skmaqn—Port-la-Joye—Fort Amherst National Historic Siteand its 5 km trail system. The trails meander through the terrain of an 18th century Acadian settlement and offers the best views of Charlottetown Harbour. I recommend packing a picnic and a kite!
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