Nova Scotia: A Guide to the BEST Things to Do!

If you’re looking for an amazing Canadian getaway, look no further than Nova Scotia. This Atlantic province is home to stunning natural beauty, delicious seafood, and vibrant cities.

There is something for everyone in Nova Scotia, whether you’re a nature lover or a history buff. In this blog post, we will explore some of the best things to do in Nova Scotia.

From exploring charming coastal towns to sampling local cuisine to visiting iconic landmarks, you’ll want to add all of these activities to your itinerary!

Things to Do in Nova Scotia

Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk

If you’re looking for a great place to take a stroll and enjoy some fresh air, the Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk is the perfect spot. Stretching for almost 2 kilometers along the harbor, the boardwalk is a popular spot for both locals and visitors alike.

Along the way, you’ll find plenty of fantastic views, as well as plenty of opportunities to stop and grab a bite to eat or do some shopping.

Also, the boardwalk is also home to a number of historical sites, including the Halifax Citadel and the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21.

Whether you’re looking to learn more about Nova Scotia’s history or just enjoy a leisurely walk, the Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk is definitely worth a visit.

Annapolis Valley

Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley is a great place to visit for both its natural beauty and its rich history. The Valley is home to many interesting attractions, including the iconic fortress of Halifax Citadel, the scenic cliffs of Cape Breton Island, and the charming town of Lunenburg.

Halifax Citadel is a must-see for any history buff; the fortress was built in the 1800s to protect Halifax from enemy attacks and has been meticulously preserved.

You can explore the Citadel’s tunnels, gun emplacements, and barracks, and learn about the soldiers who once called it home.

For a more relaxed experience, take a stroll through Lunenburg’s quaint streets or enjoy a picnic at one of the Valley’s many parks.

Whatever your interests, you’re sure to find something to love in Nova Scotia’s Annapolis Valley.

Cabot Trail

The Cabot Trail is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Nova Scotia. The drive takes you along the coast, through forests and past mountain lakes.

There are many different things to see and do along the way. You can stop at lookouts to take in the stunning views, hike through old-growth forests, visit historic sites, or go whale watching.

There are also plenty of opportunities to sample the local cuisine, from fresh seafood to lobster rolls.

No matter how you spend your time on the Cabot Trail, you’re sure to have an unforgettable experience.

Canadian Museum of Immigration

Halifax’s Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 is a can’t-miss for anyone interested in learning about the country’s history. The museum tells the stories of those who have arrived on Canada’s shores, both voluntarily and involuntarily, over the past centuries.

You can explore exhibits on topics such as the Underground Railroad and the experience of early Chinese immigrants. The museum also offers a variety of programs and events, ranging from art workshops to historical walking tours.

Best of all, admission is free, making it an affordable option for families or groups. Whether you’re a history buff or simply looking for an educational way to spend an afternoon, the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 is sure to please.

Halifax Public Gardens

Nova Scotia is home to some of the most beautiful gardens in the world. The Halifax Public Gardens are a must-see for any visitor to the province. These world-famous gardens were established in 1874 and cover nearly 20 acres of land.

They feature stunning floral displays, manicured lawns, and tranquil ponds. Visitors can also enjoy the historic buildings on the grounds, including the Dingle Tower and the Grand Parade Clocktower.

The Halifax Public Gardens are open year-round and are free to enter, making them a perfect activity for any budget.

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site is one of the best things to do in Nova Scotia. The Halifax Citadel was built in 1749 and was used as a fort, barrack and garrison until the 1880s. The Halifax Citadel is now a national historic site and museum that tells the story of the Halifax defence systems from the 18th to the 20th centuries. Visitors to the Halifax Citadel can explore the ramparts, walk through the soldiers’ barracks, see the artillery collection and learn about the history of the Halifax Defence Force. The Halifax Citadel is also home to the 3rd Brigade Royal Artillery Band and the 1st Battalion Royal Canadian Regiment Band. The bands perform public concerts throughout the year.

Visit Peggy’s Cove

Peggy’s Cove is a small fishing village that is known for its incredibly picturesque setting.

The village is located on a rocky coastline, and it features a lighthouse that is one of the most photographed in the world. Visitors to Peggy’s Cove can enjoy exploring the village, taking in the views, and visiting the lighthouse.

Peggy’s Cove is also a popular spot for whale watching.

Bluenose II

For anyone looking to explore the beautiful Canadian province of Nova Scotia, the Bluenose II is a must-see. The ship is a replica of the original Bluenose, which was launched in 1921 and won numerous international racing titles. Today, the Bluenose II is used as a sailing ambassador for Nova Scotia and can be chartered for special events. Visitors can also take part in public sails and day-long cruises. Whether you’re interested in exploring Nova Scotia’s maritime history or simply want to enjoy a day out on the water, a trip on the Bluenose II is sure to please.

Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic

One of the best ways to experience Nova Scotia is to visit the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic. The museum is located in the province’s capital city of Halifax, and it tells the story of the province’s fishing industry.

You can explore exhibits on the history of fishing, try their hand at net-mending, and even meet some of the friendly resident seals. The Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic is a must-visit for anyone interested in learning about Nova Scotia’s culture and history.

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

If you’re looking for a fun and educational activity in Nova Scotia, be sure to check out the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. This museum is dedicated to the province’s maritime history, and it has something for everyone. From interactive exhibits on shipwrecks and piracy to a replica of Samuel Cunard’s flagship Britannia, there is plenty to see and learn. The museum also offers a variety of hands-on activities, such as knot-tying and rope-making. And for those interested in Nova Scotia’s nautical past, the museum houses an extensive collection of artifacts, including model ships, paintings, and maps. Whether you’re a history buff or just looking for a fun day out, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is sure to please.

Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens

Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens is a must-see for anyone visiting Nova Scotia. The Gardens are located in the heart of the Annapolis Royal Historic Centre, and they feature over four acres of beautifully landscaped gardens. Visitors can stroll through the manicured flower beds, relax in the tranquil Japanese Garden, or explore the historic herbs and vegetables garden. The Gardens are also home to a number of unique sculptures, including the iconic “Three Graces” Fountain. With so much to see and do, Annapolis Royal Historic Gardens is an ideal destination for a day trip or a longer stay.

Halifax Harbour Ferry

Nova Scotia’s capital city, Halifax, is a bustling metropolis with a rich history and plenty of things to see and do. One of the best ways to get around the city is by ferry, which offers stunning views of Halifax Harbour. The ferry terminal is located in the heart of downtown, making it easy to explore all that Halifax has to offer. Once you’re on board, be sure to take in the sights of the harbour, including the iconic Halifax Citadel and the magnificent Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. You can also enjoy a relaxing ride on one of the many ferries that operate between Halifax and Dartmouth. No matter how you choose to spend your time in Halifax, a ferry ride is sure to be one of the highlights of your visit.

Alexander Keith’s Brewery

Nestled in the heart of Halifax, Nova Scotia, is Alexander Keith’s Brewery. This historic brewery offers visitors a chance to step back in time and learn about the rich brewing heritage of the city. Founded in 1820, the brewery has been a beloved landmark for centuries. Today, it remains one of the best places to get a taste of Nova Scotia’s culture and history. The brewery offers tours that take visitors through the brewing process, from start to finish. At the end of the tour, visitors can enjoy a deliciousbeer tasting. The brewery also has a restaurant and gift shop on site. Whether you’re a beer lover or just looking for an interesting place to visit, Alexander Keith’s Brewery is definitely worth a stop. Cheers!

Halifax Central Library

The Halifax Central Library is one of the best things to do in Nova Scotia. The Library opened in 2014 and is located in the downtown area of Halifax. The Library has eight floors and over 360,000 square feet of space. The Library has a cafe, a conference center, and a roof garden. The Library also has a History Room, which has over 200,000 items, including documents, maps, and photographs. The Halifax Central Library is open Monday to Friday from 9:00am to 9:00pm, Saturday from 9:00am to 5:00pm, and Sunday from 12:00pm to 5:00pm. Admission to the Library is free.

Sunrise Trail

The Sunrise Trail, located in the Cape Breton Highlands, is a must-see for any visitor to the province. The trail winds its way through forests, along cliffs, and past waterfalls, providing stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. Along the way, hikers can also enjoy stops at several lookout points and picnic areas. The Sunrise Trail is a moderate hike, taking approximately 3-4 hours to complete. However, the effort is well worth it, as hikers are rewarded with incredible views of the Nova Scotia coastline. Whether you’re a local looking for a new adventure or a visitor looking to explore all that Nova Scotia has to offer, the Sunrise Trail is definitely worth a visit.

Dartmouth Crossing

Dartmouth Crossing is one of the best places to shop in Nova Scotia. With over 150 stores, including big box retailers, specialty stores, and restaurants, there is something for everyone. The mall is also located close to several major highways, making it easy to get to from anywhere in the Halifax region. In addition to its excellent selection of stores, Dartmouth Crossing also has a number of great features, including a children’s play area, a movie theatre, and a go-kart track. Whether you’re looking for a new outfit, a night out at the movies, or a fun afternoon with the kids, Dartmouth Crossing is sure to have something for you.

Lunenburg Historic District

The Lunenburg Historic District is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Nova Scotia, and it is easy to see why. The district is home to a number of historic buildings, including the iconic St. John’s Anglican Church. Visitors can also explore the fisheries museum, stroll through the picturesque streets, and enjoy the views of the harbor. Stop by one of the local cafes for a bite to eat, and be sure to try some of the delicious seafood dishes that Nova Scotia is famous for. Whether you’re looking to experience history or simply enjoy some time in a beautiful setting, the Lunenburg Historic District is definitely worth a visit.

Fairview Lawn Cemetery

Fairview Cemetery is best known as the final resting place of many of the victims of the Titanic, including Jack and Rose from the famous movie. Seeing the graves of these lost souls is a moving experience, and it really puts into perspective the tragedy of the Titanic. In addition to the Titanic graves, Fairview Lawn Cemetery is also home to a number of other interesting monuments and memorials. The cemetery is definitely worth a visit for anyone interested in Nova Scotia history or simply looking for a quiet place to reflect.

Victoria Park

Victoria Park is one of the best places to visit in Nova Scotia. The park is located in the heart of downtown Halifax and is a great spot for picnics, walks, and people watching. The park is also home to the Halifax Public Gardens, which are considered to be some of the finest public gardens in Canada. In addition to the gardens, Victoria Park also features a bandstand, a fountain, and a number of statues. The park is also a popular destination for special events such as concerts and farmers markets.

Ironworks Distillery

Ironworks Distillery is a must-visit for anyone interested in Nova Scotia’s rich history. The distillery is located in the heart of the Annapolis Valley, in an area that was once home to many of the province’s iron foundries. Today, the distillery produces small-batch spirits using traditional methods. The distillery’s tour is a great way to learn about the history of iron production in Nova Scotia and see how Ironworks’ spirits are made. Visitors can also enjoy a tasting of the distillery’s products, including its signature gin, at the on-site pub. Whether you’re a history buff or simply looking for a unique place to enjoy a drink, Ironworks Distillery is well worth a visit.

The Big Fiddle

The Big Fiddle is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Nova Scotia. Located in Halifax, the Big Fiddle is a replica of an old-fashioned Nova Scotia fiddle. Visitors can take photos with the Big Fiddle, and there is also a gift shop where you can buy souvenirs. The Big Fiddle is open all year round, and there are also several other tourist attractions in Halifax that you can visit while you’re in town. If you’re looking for something different to do in Nova Scotia, be sure to check out the Big Fiddle.

Try a Donair

Does Canada really enjoy meat? Nova Scotia’s love for lobsters is rivaled mainly through its love for Donair. Donair is an official food of Halifax and makes excellent lunches as well as an evening snack after dinner. The donair is a remake for the Greek Gyros wrapping containing beef shawarma accompanied by Donair sauces. Take an extra one of the dozen in your free time when visiting Nova Scotia with Contiki.

Blue Rocks

Blue Rocks is a small fishing village located on the Bluenose Coast of Nova Scotia. The village is best known for its scenic lighthouse, which has stood at the entrance to the harbor for over 200 years. Visitors can also enjoy a variety of activities such as hiking, kayaking, and whale watching. Blue Rocks is also home to a number of unique shops and restaurants, making it the perfect place to spend a day or two exploring. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing vacation or an adventurous getaway, Blue Rocks is sure to have something for everyone.

Graves Island Provincial Park

Nova Scotia is well-known for its beautiful coastal scenery, and Graves Island Provincial Park is no exception. The park is located on a small island off the coast of Dartmouth, and it offers stunning views of the Halifax Harbour. Visitors can enjoy hiking, biking, and picnicking in the park, and there are also several beaches to explore. One of the best things about Graves Island Provincial Park is that it’s relatively unknown compared to other Nova Scotia destinations. As a result, it’s usually much less crowded than places like Peggy’s Cove or the Cabot Trail. If you’re looking for a beautiful place to relax and take in the scenery, Graves Island Provincial Park is definitely worth a visit.

Cape Breton Highlands National Park

Cape Breton Highlands National Park is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Nova Scotia. The park is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the province, with towering cliffs, pristine forests, and stunning ocean views. There are plenty of activities to keep visitors busy, from hiking and camping to canoeing and fishing. And in the winter, the park is a mecca for snowshoers and cross-country skiers. Whether you’re looking for an adventure or a relaxing getaway, Cape Breton Highlands National Park has something to offer everyone.

Skyline Trail

Nova Scotia is an outdoor lover’s paradise, and the Skyline Trail is one of the best places to explore all that the province has to offer. The trail offers stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean, as well as opportunities to see wildlife including bald eagles and ospreys. The trail is also a great place for bird watching, with over 100 different species of birds that have been sighted along the route. In addition to the natural beauty of the trail, the Skyline Trail is also rich in history. The trail was once used by Mi’kmaq people as a transportation route, and later became an important part of the lumber industry in Nova Scotia. Today, the trail is a popular destination for hikers, cyclists, and nature lovers from all over the world.

La Have Lighthouse

La Have Lighthouse is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Nova Scotia. The lighthouse was built in 1832 and is the oldest surviving lighthouse in the province. The lighthouse is located on a small island just off the coast of Lunenburg, and it is only accessible by boat. Visitors can take a tour of the lighthouse, and learn about its history and how it operated. The views from the top of the lighthouse are stunning, and on a clear day, you can see for miles. If you’re visiting Nova Scotia, be sure to add La Have Lighthouse to your list of things to do.

Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site

If you’re looking for an educational and historical experience, be sure to visit the Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site. This site commemorates the life and work of inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who was born in Edinburgh, Scotland and later moved to Nova Scotia with his family. The museum on site tells the story of Bell’s life and work, as well as the history of telecommunications. Visitors can also explore the recreated laboratory where Bell conducted many of his experiments. The Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site is a must-see for anyone interested in the history of technology or Nova Scotia.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Nova Scotia best known for?

Nova Scotia is best known for its stunning scenery, friendly people, and rich history. The province is home to some of the most beautiful coastline in the world, as well as a number of national parks and historical sites.

What is the best month to visit Nova Scotia?

The best time to visit Nova Scotia depends on what you’re looking for. If you’re interested in outdoor activities, the summer months are the best time to visit. However, if you’re looking to avoid the crowds, the shoulder seasons of spring and fall are also great times to explore all that Nova Scotia has to offer.

What is the prettiest place in Nova Scotia?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. However, some of the most popular places to visit in Nova Scotia include Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Skyline Trail, and La Have Lighthouse.

When is the best time of year for whale watching in Nova Scotia?

Whale watching season in Nova Scotia runs from June to October. However, the best time to see whales is typically August and September.