Travel Guides to Canada


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MUST-SEE SITES Like its scenery, Nova Scotia's man-made attractions cover a broad range, from museums to amusement parks, art galleries to golf courses. Historic ones, however, are especially plentiful here because the region once played a crucial role in the imperial plans of both British and French forces. The star-shaped Halifax Citadel, for example, is a literal highlight of any trip to the capital city ( halifaxcitadel ), and the meticulously re- created Fortress of Louisbourg lures history lovers north to Cape Breton (www. ). The Annapolis Valley, which contains some of the continent's oldest European settle- ments, has even more in store. Witness Port-Royal, founded by the French in 1605, three years before they established their base at Québec City ( www.parkscanada.gc. ca/portroyal ); Fort Anne, a.k.a. "the most attacked site in Canadian history," originally erected in 1629 as an Anglo counterbalance ( ); and gorgeous Grand-Pré, where politically- neutral Acadians were forced into exile for refusing to pledge their allegiance to the British crown in 1755 ( www.parkscanada. ). All are national historic sites, and Parks Canada is waiving entry fees to them in honour of Canada's 150 th birthday. Since so many major attractions here fall under the Parks Canada umbrella—and thereby qualify for complimentary admission in 2017—the province off ers visitors top value for their vacation dollar; and the fact that it's a good buy is just one more reason why you'll want to say "hello" to Nova Scotia. WHAT'S NEW? In 2016, Bay Ferries reintroduced The Cat: a high-speed catamaran that makes the crossing between Portland, Maine, and Yarmouth in 5.5 hours ( thecat). Last spring, WestJet's regional carrier, Encore, expanded into the U.S. and began off ering direct daily fl ights between Halifax and Boston ( The Halifax Distilling Company and Guysborough's Authentic Seacoast Distillery give visitors two more ways to wet their whistle (www.halifaxdistillingco. ca, Cape Breton's Cabot Cliff s, named 2015's best new course in North America by Golf Digest, offi cially opened to the public last year ( cabot-cliff s). In late July, a fl eet of tall ships arrives in the capital to help celebrate Canada's 150 th birthday ( /events/2017-canada-150-tall-ships-regatta). The Discovery Centre's new larger location —featuring fi ve themed galleries—gives families an added incentive to visit the Halifax waterfront ( www.thediscovery CITY LIGHTS If you need an urban fi x, Halifax is the place to go. Although this is Atlantic Canada's largest, most cosmopolitan city, its tourist centre is conveniently compact, and most major attractions—the Halifax Citadel, the Historic Properties, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic and the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 among them—are all within blocks of its huge natural harbour. Tempting shopping, dining, and nightlife options are close at hand as well. After strolling around the bustling waterfront boardwalk, you can take a leisurely harbour cruise or follow the locals' lead and hop a commuter ferry for a quick cross-harbour trip ( PEGGY'S COVE • SHUTTERSTOCK/MEUNIERD NS 121

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