Posts in Category: Travel and Holidays

6-Day Central Nova Scotia Road Trip Itinerary


Nova Scotia may be small compared to many Canadian provinces – but it packs a punch for its size. It’s home to three national parks (Kejimkujik, Cape Breton Highlands and Sable Island), 13 national historic sites and six UNESCO sites including two that are biosphere reserves. You’ll find everything from long white sand beaches to lakes that look like they’ve been taken out of a painting by the Group of Seven. Colourful coastal villages, cute towns and one big city ensure you’ll find plenty of culture. There is a vibrant wine scene too – with upwards of 20 wineries in the Annapolis Valley region alone. And you can find lobster on menus year-round.

If you like the idea of slow travel then this six-day, central Nova Scotia road trip itinerary will be perfect for you. It starts and ends in Halifax – completing a loop that includes numerous national historic sites, a few wineries, a stop in Halls Harbour for lobster, a look at the cute fishing village of Blue Rocks along with overnights in Lunenburg, Annapolis Royal, Grand Pré and Kejimkujik National Park.

Map of the central Nova Scotia Road trip

                 

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Nova Scotia Road trip – day one: Explore Halifax

Unless you’re a Maritimer, you’re going to have to deal with a time change when you visit Nova Scotia. The province is on Atlantic Time so they are one hour ahead of Ontario and Quebec, two hours ahead of Manitoba, and three hours ahead of Alberta – where I flew in from, on a direct flight I might add. The bottom line – spend a day in Halifax, catching up on some sleep and seeing some of the prime sites at a relaxed pace.

If you only have one day in Halifax, I’d suggest you include an exploratory walk along the waterfront. If you’re visiting in summer and early fall, be sure to hop across to George’s Island and do the Tunnel Tour. Another not to be missed experience is a spirit tasting at the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. Pair that with a ghost walk and you’ll have quite an exciting evening.

If you’d like to spend more time in Halifax, check out 25 things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Where to stay in Halifax: If you fly in late, you could stay at the Alt Hotel at the airport. Otherwise, I’d suggest a downtown hotel so you can walk to everything. I have enjoyed a couple of stays at the Westin Nova Scotian.  The Lord Nelson Hotel & Suites near the Halifax Public Gardens would be another good choice.

The view of downtown Halifax from Georges Island
The Halifax Waterfront is a colourful place to walk and hang out literally in these hammocks
The Halifax Waterfront is a colourful place to walk and hang out literally in these hammocks

Nova Scotia Road trip Day 2: Halifax – Grand Pré

Take the morning to enjoy a leisurely drive to Grand Pré, enjoying a stop at a winery along the way. Then visit the Landscape of Grand Pré – Canada’s 16th UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Scenery on the drive from Windsor Forks to Grand Pre
Scenery on the drive from Windsor Forks to Grand Pré

Drive from Halifax to Bent Ridge Winery – 96 km

Driving time: About an hour

Time needed at the winery: One – two hours assuming you have lunch here; 30 minutes if its only a tasting

Plan to leave Halifax later in the morning so you have an excuse to enjoy a delicious pizza and a glass of wine at Bent Ridge Winery & Brewery.

Bent Ridge Winery is a small batch winery located in the middle of a U-pick apple orchard. The winery produces 10,000 bottles of wine per year. Glen Dodge, the co-owner explained to us that Marquette grapes – with their pinot noir parentage thrive in the Avon Valley and can fully ripen here. They are the basis of six different styles of red wines that are offered, including an appassimento or dried grape red wine.

Onsite is also the Bent Nail Brewery for those of you keener on wine than beer.

This beautiful building is home to the Bent Ridge Winery & Brewery
This beautiful building is home to the Bent Ridge Winery & Brewery
Glen Dodge the owner of Bent Ridge Winery & Brewery
Glen Dodge the co-owner of Bent Ridge Winery & Brewery in Windsor Forks showing off Marquette grapes
Order the Bent Ridge Belly pizza - house
Order a glass of rose and the Bent Ridge Belly pizza with house-made Italian sausage, roasted red peppers, caramelized onions, Kalamata olives, mushrooms, blue cheese & tomato sauce

Drive from the Bent Ridge Winery to Domaine de Grand Pré – 29 km

Driving time – 22 minutes

Time needed: 30 minutes – 1 hour

The winery at Domaine de Grand Pré was the first one in the Annapolis Valley. Nineteen acres of vines are under production with 90,000 litres of wine produced annually. The winery offers tours and tastings on a first come, first served basis – unless there’s a big group. I highly recommend trying their Tidal Bay and the Pomme d’Or. 

The Tidal Bay wine is the first wine appellation in Nova Scotia. To receive the Tidal Bay designation, all grapes must be grown in Nova Scotia from specific grape varietals. There’s a strict set of standards to be met – and every year the wine is blind tasted. It is the white wine I consistently enjoyed on this central Nova Scotia Road trip.

The Pomme d’Or Ice Cider is a delicious dessert wine available with and without cream. The one with cream as been called the Baileys of Nova Scotia.

Pomme d'Or Cider - with and without cream
Pomme d’Or Cider – with and without cream
Tasting the Tidal Bore wine at Domaine de Grand Pre
Tasting the Tidal Bore wine at Domaine de Grand Pre

Grand Pré National Historic Site

Time needed: Allow a few hours to a half day to visit.

It’s a five-minute drive from the winery to reach the visitor centre at the Grand Pré National Historic Site, located in the heart of what is the UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Step into the visitor centre and slip into the theatre for a 22-minute multi-media presentation that will bring the Acadian deportation to life. What may strike a chord with many of you, is how ingenious the Acadian people were at building dykes to keep the Bay of Fundy-at bay. For hundreds of years the system of dykes was used, maintained and expanded by Dutch, English and Scottish settlers. 

Have a look around the exhibits in the visitor centre before heading off on a walk to visit the Memorial Church and to see the Evangeline statue. Evangeline’s statue is the heroine in Longfellow’s poem – Evangeline: A Tale of Acadie. She can be seen crying for the lost land.

For those of you who want to do a deep dive into the history of Grand Pré, time your visit so you can take a 45-minute tour, offered in English or French, twice daily in the summer.

The Landscape of Grand Pre National Historic site is immediately behind the vineyards of Domain de Grand Pre
The Landscape of Grand Pré National Historic site is immediately behind the vineyards of Domain de Grand Pré
You can sign up to do a tour of the Grand Pre National Historic Site with a Parks Canada interpreter
You can sign up to do a tour of the Grand Pré National Historic Site with a Parks Canada interpreter

Need some exercise?

Bike or walk on the Harvest Moon Trailway – an old railbed that connects Grand Pré to Annapolis Valley. If you visit the Memorial Church in Grand Pré (pictured above), you’ll walk right over the Trailway. 

Where to stay in Grand Pré

The Inn at Grand Pré Winery would be an excellent choice. Six rooms have been fully and beautifully renovated. And it’s just a short walk across a courtyard to get to their onsite restaurant too.

Book an oTENTik and sleep within sight of the Memorial Church. Expect starry nights and a peaceful sleep.

The oTENTiks at Grand Pre
The oTENTiks at Grand Pre
From the oTENTiks you can see the Memorial Church
From the oTENTiks you can see the Memorial Church

Nova Scotia Road trip Day 3: Grand Pré to Annapolis Royal via Hall’s Harbour

Take a two-minute detour out of Grand Pré to visit Tangled Garden, “30 years in the making.” Wander down flower and berry lined paths to a pond. Admire the perennials and grasses, check out a flowering labyrinth, and pause to enjoy views over the Bay of Fundy. Then visit their shop to stock up on vinegars and oils, scented with herbs from the garden, along with jams, jellies, chutneys, honey, mustards, and more. 

Herb and flower infused jellies from Tangled Garden
Herb and flower infused jellies from Tangled Garden

Drive from Grand Pré to Hall’s Harbour: 38 km

Driving Time: 33 minutes

Time needed in Hall’s Harbour: 1 – 1.5 hours

It’s a pretty drive as you climb out of Wolfville on route to Hall’s Harbour. At the right time of day, the view of the Annapolis Valley is stunning. 

The rustic fishing village of Hall’s Harbour sits on the Bay of Fundy, and as such sees the massive variation in tides twice a day. Its most interesting at low tide when the shoreline is exposed, and fishing boats are beached on red-coloured mud. 

After a walk along the rocky beach or a quick wander through the village head for the Hall’s Harbour Lobster Pound. Be sure to take the fun and informative tour with Lowell Simpson, but before you do, place your food order. You can order whole lobster, lobster rolls, lobster nachos, lobster chowder – just about anything with lobster along with a few mainstream choices for the non-lobster lover.

The tour we did was a real highlight. Not only did we learn that it was considered cruel and unusual punishment if you ate three lobster meals in a row in prison – but that kids back in the day that took lobster sandwiches to school were looked down upon by those that munched on bologna sandwiches.

We all know how to sex a lobster now – important if you like the roe.

Other cool lobster facts we learned:

  • It can take 7 – 8 years for a claw to regenerate and catch up in size to the lost one.
  • A lobster license costs up to three million dollars and is based on the number of traps.
  • There are right- and left-handed lobsters.
  • A 10-year-old lobster weighs about 1.5 pounds. 
View over the Annapolis Valley on the way to Hall's Harbour
View over the Annapolis Valley on the way to Hall’s Harbour
Low tide in Hall's Harbour
Low tide in Hall’s Harbour
Hall's Harbour Lobster Pound
Hall’s Harbour Lobster Pound
all's Harbour Lobster Pound
Hall’s Harbour Lobster Pound
Me holding a 17 pound, 75 year old lobster
Me holding a 17 pound, 75 year old lobster 

Drive from Hall’s Harbour to Annapolis Royal: 106 km

Driving time: 75 minutes

Time needed: Allow one hour to visit the Port-Royal National Historic Site and a day to explore the area.

Take a walking tour of Port-Royal National Historic Site, considered nationally significant for its early attempt (1603) at French colonization in North America. Over the course of eight years, a year-round trading community was established with the Mi’kmaq and French Colonists, with an exchange of knowledge occurring to help each other out.

Today you can tour a reconstruction of the Port-Royal Habitation, a replica of one of the earliest European settlements in North America, rebuilt in 1939-40. You might meet the Governor and other people dressed in period costumes as you explore rooms inside the habitation and the trails outside. Meet people at work, just like they would have been. Check out the trading room where furs were stockpiled and then traded with the Mi’kmaq for copper and iron pots, knives, iron axes, blankets, and beads. 

The governor in the storeroom
The governor in the storeroom
Hard at work turning wood by natural light
Hard at work turning wood by natural light

Where to eat in Annapolis Royal

Watch the sunset over the Annapolis River while you enjoy delicious food at Restaurant Composé on George Street. They are known for their Austrian and European food though you’ll find lobster on the menu too.

Watching the sunset outside of Restaurant Compose
Watching the sunset outside of Restaurant Compose

Where to stay in Annapolis Royal

There are loads of B&B’s in Annapolis Royal – some of which are in grand old houses. I can recommend Hillsdale House, built in 1859. Enjoy a true parlour, an open veranda and large gardens along with a large delicious breakfast.

Nova Scotia Road trip Day 4: Annapolis Royal to Kejimkujik National Park with a visit to Fort Anne National Historic Site

Drive from Annapolis Royal to Kejimkujik National Park: 49 km 

Driving time: 37 minutes

Time needed: One day or more depending on what activities you choose to do

Before leaving Annapolis Royal, spend an hour or two walking the expansive grounds of the Fort Anne National Historic Site – either with a guide or on your own. It’s a classic star-shaped Vauban Fort on a beautiful site overlooking the Annapolis River. Be sure to explore the earthwork fortifications and check out the stunning heritage tapestry in the Officers’ Quarters Museum. 

Fort Anne is Canada’s oldest National Historic Site. In its day, it was one of the most fought over pieces of land in North America especially during the 17th and 18th centuries when France and England were after control of North America. On a tour, learn about how the lives of the Mi’kmaq, Scots, French, British, and Acadian people have been woven together over the centuries.

In position guarding Annapolis Royal
In position guarding Annapolis Royal
Stroll the ramparts at Fort Anne National Historic Site
Stroll the ramparts at Fort Anne National Historic Site
Enjoy a red chair moment with a view
Enjoy a red chair moment with a view
Or enjoy the red chairs close to the Annapolis River
Or enjoy the red chairs close to the Annapolis River

Kejimkujik National Park

If you were a paddler, you could easily spend four to seven days in the backcountry of Kejimkujik. But if you’ve just got a day or two, you’ll still find there’s plenty to do – and that’s without stepping into the backcountry.

Discover Mi’kmaq culture

Go with a Mi’kmaq guide to the Mi’kmaq sacred site on Kejimkujik Lake. Its only a short walk to reach the rocks but before you walk on them, you’ll have to remove your shoes. The guide will point out the petroglyphs, engravings left on polished outcrop on the shores of the lake. Over 500 petroglyphs can be found in Kejimkujik National Historic Site. Unfortunately, many of the petroglyphs have been scratched by canoes pulled up on the rocks or defaced before they were protected.

The petroglyphs are off limits unless you visit with a Mi'kmaq guide
The petroglyphs are off limits unless you visit with a Mi’kmaq guide
Some of the petroglyphs are tiny
Some of the petroglyphs are tiny
A larger petroglyph marked up with scratches
A larger petroglyph marked up with scratches; they are clearer with water on them

Go for a paddle 

Head to Jake’s Landing where you can rent canoes, kayaks, and SUPs. Then head out on the Mersey River, paddling upstream until you hit some rapids. Or head for the bigger water on Kejimkujik Lake. 

Go for a paddle on the Mersey River
Go for a paddle on the Mersey River

Go biking on a network of trails

There is a network of multi-use trails in the park including the newly opened Ukme’k Trail. From Jake’s Landing you can now bike to the Visitor Centre via the Slapfoot, Mersey River and Ukme’k Trails. A rainbow-coloured crosswalk connects the Mersey River Trail to Ukme’k. If you bike all the loops you could bike about 27 km. 

There are options on the Ukme’k Trail to choose easier or very difficult sections – depending on your mountain biking ability. 

The rainbow-coloured crosswalk connects the Mersey River Trail with the Ukme'k Trail
The rainbow-coloured crosswalk connects the Mersey River Trail with the Ukme’k Trail
Cycle Ukme'k - the newest trail in Kejimkujik National Park
Cycle in Kejimkujik National Park on the newest addition – the Ukme’k Trail
Kejimkujik's newest bike trail offers options at intersections - green or double black
Options – double black or green so everyone is happy on the Ukme’k Trail

Enjoy a dark sky experience

Kejimkujik National Park is home to Nova Scotia’s darkest skies and a beautiful set-up with angled benches for enjoying the night skies. Sign up for a guided program to learn about the night sky and the different constellations you can see at various times of the year.

Where to stay in Kejumkujik National Park

There are a range of options in Kejimkujik National Park when it comes to camping. There are both front-country and backcountry campsites along with four roofed accommodation options that include oTENTiks, Ôasis, rustic cabins or yurts. I enjoyed a peaceful night in an oTENTik overlooking the lake though I have to say the Ôasis would be a cool choice.

The oTENTik set-up in Kejimkujik National Park
The oTENTik set-up in Kejimkujik National Park
My oTENTIK with a view of the lake
My oTENTIK with a view of the lake – Photo credit: Guy Theriault
The Oasis set-up in Kejimkujik National Park
The Ôasis set-up in Kejimkujik National Park

Where to eat in Kejimkujik

You’ll need to bring your own food and be prepared to cook it. There are bear-proof lockers available as well as gas barbeques for any roofed accommodation. Otherwise, bring a camp stove and fuel or better yet – hire Andy Hay from the East Coast Kitchen (and runner up for Masterchef Canada Season 5) and dine on some of the most delicious, gorgeously presented food ever.

Andy from East Coast Kitchen grilling up some lobster
Andy from East Coast Kitchen grilling up some lobster
Andy's charcuterie board is a feast for the eyes
Andy’s charcuterie board is a feast for the eyes

Nova Scotia Road trip Day 5: Kejimkujik National Park to Lunenburg

Drive from Kejimkujik National Park to Lunenburg: 92 km

Driving time: 75 minutes

Time needed in Lunenburg and immediate area: Half a day to an overnight

Lunenburg doesn’t need much of an introduction. Most people know it for its wildly colourful houses, and interesting architecture along with the Bluenose II. Visit the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic and the Big Boat Shed – an exhibit that will allow the public to see traditional boat builders at work.

Old Town Lunenburg is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is an ideal base for a historic walking tour. If you have an hour and you’d like to learn the background of some Lunenburg’s historic homes, sign up with Lunenburg Walking Tours. The Essential Old Town tour will take you from the top of Lunenburg by the old school down to the waterfront. Along the way you learn about some of the century’s old homes and their inhabitants along with some quirky facts. 

Meeting our guide Liz up at the Lunenburg Academy
Meeting our guide Liz up at the Lunenburg Academy
The pink house is the wedding cake house
The pink house is the wedding cake house
You'll come to recognize the Lunenburg bump in short order
You’ll come to recognize the Lunenburg bump – where the windows are built out over the front door 

Where to stay in Lunenburg

I stayed a block off the main street in the Lunenburg Arms Hotel. You’ll find that there are lots of B&B’s and plenty of inns, all within walking distance of the colourful main street.

Colourful houses in the centre of Lunenburg
Colourful houses in the centre of Lunenburg

Visit Blue Rocks

There is a timeless beauty to the fishing village of Blue Rocks, just a 10-minute drive away from Lunenburg. It’s a fantastic place for photographers – with lots of brightly coloured subject matter like fishing boats and shacks.

If you’re into kayaking, sign up for a tour with Pleasant Paddling and explore the calm and protected waters as you maneuver through channels, past a network of rocky islands. Stretch your legs on a deserted white sand beach before heading back to Blue Rocks.

Visit photogenic Blue Rocks
Visit photogenic Blue Rocks
Colourful Blue Rocks
Colourful Blue Rocks

Nova Scotia Road trip Day 6: Lunenburg to Peggy’s Cove and the Halifax Airport

Drive from Lunenburg to Peggy’s Cove via Mahone Bay: 100 km

Driving time: 75 minutes

Time needed in Peggy’s Cove: One to two hours 

Mahone Bay

Mahone Bay, just 10 minutes from Lunenburg is well-worth a few hours of your time. It’s home to a scenic harbour, colourful Victorian homes, and shops along with the world-famous three-churches-in-one-shot photo. There’s a vibrant artistic community that will speak to your inner shopper. Have fun looking for hooked rugs, pottery, paintings, jewelry and more.

Adventurous folks might want to paddle the bay – weaving through some of the 365 islands. Or hop on a bike and explore the area at a leisurely pace.

Make a quick stop in Mahone Bay to catch the shot with three churches
Make a quick stop in Mahone Bay to catch the shot with three churches

Peggy’s Cove

Peggy’s Cove is one the must visit sites in Nova Scotia. There’s not much to it – a church, a few colourful homes, a gallery or two, a restaurant and a handful of B&B’s. Take the time to wander through the fishing village – especially if you’re a photographer. For most people the lighthouse is the biggest draw. 

As of fall 2021, there is an accessible viewing deck – to make your trip just a little bit safer, especially if you’re with little ones.

What I’d recommend doing is finding a rock (not a slippery black one!) and watching the waves roll in for an hour or more – at least if its a nice day. This area can be hit by huge swells – which are awe-inspiring to look at.

Peggy's Cove is an authentic fishing village
Peggy’s Cove is an authentic fishing village
It's hard to get the lighthouse at Peggy's Cove all to yourself
It’s hard to get the lighthouse at Peggy’s Cove all to yourself
Rendering of the new observation deck at Peggy's Cove
Rendering of the new observation deck at Peggy’s Cove

Drive from Peggy’s Cove to the airport: 74 km

Driving time: One hour

Say goodbye to Nova Scotia but not to week of memories you’ll treasure forever. For those of you who are lobster fanatics, allow a few extra minutes and take a little bit of Nova Scotia with you. Purchase lobster at Clearwater Seafood located next to the domestic departures.

One of the Parks Canada Perfect Picnic lobster rolls I enjoyed
One of the Parks Canada Perfect Picnic lobster rolls I enjoyed

Tips for getting the most out of your Nova Scotia Road trip

  • If you’re planning to rent a car, book one as soon as you know your dates. They are still in short supply in Nova Scotia.
  • Book accommodation early – and that includes campsites. Lots of Canadians are traveling locally – and Nova Scotia is a popular summertime destination. 
  • Be curious. Get off the main roads – and explore side roads when you’ve got the time. 
  • Don’t over schedule yourself. Leave room for down time and exploring places you hadn’t considered.
  • Watch for large animals like moose on the road, especially at dawn and dusk.

More ideas of things to see and do in Nova Scotia

A giant thank you to Parks Canada and Tourism Nova Scotia for hosting my stay. All thoughts and opinions as always are my own. 

Click on the photo to bookmark to your Pinterest boards.

A central Nova Scotia road trip itinerary that includes National Historic Sites, Kejimkujik National Park, wineries, UNESCO sites and more



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The most romantic things to do in Southern Spain


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Spain’s southern location, Andalucia is 1 of the most intimate locations in Spain and not with out a reason. With a magnitude of charming white villages and romantic towns, wine yards, very long coastlines, and coastal views, there are so several romantic factors to do in southern Spain. 

Andalucia is the great vacation place for partners all year round no matter if you are foodies, like the gradual life, or are an adrenaline junkie couple.

Browse on to get thoughts for the most romantic points to do in Andalucia for partners!

Romantic items to do in Andalucia

Sunsets in Andalucia, a spectacle like no other.

Check out the sunset from the mountain

Southern Spain is jam-packed with mountains with a coastal perspective and even if you are new to hiking, there are a good deal of good trails for rookies with lovely views of the sunlight placing around the Mediterranean. Just one of the top climbing ideas for beginners when heading on a sunset hike is to often provide a headlamp so that you do not get caught in the dark. Relying on the time of yr, you may also need to bring extended pants and a windbreaker even even though it is warm in the daytime, it can get chilly when the sun commences going down. And you do not want to ruin a intimate instant by acquiring cold!

Some of the finest hikes in southern Spain for sunset are the mountains over Nerja, Mijas, and Marbella. But also in the Sierra Nevada, a person of the most popular mountains in southern Spain, there are a ton of astounding climbing routes, primarily if you are a seasoned hiker.

Wherever to stay near these mountains in southern Spain? 

Below are a couple alternatives of accommodation in this region of Andalucia that are shut to the mountains and lovely beach locations:

(click on on the city’s identify to see the resort checklist)


A white village in Andalucia. White houses scattered on the top of a hill in Southern Spain.
Which is what we simply call a passionate place.

Go on a highway trip to see the white villages of Andalucia

This is without the need of a doubt one of the most intimate factors to do in Andalucia. There are so numerous charming villages, and a southern Spain street vacation signifies you can cover very a several of them. Commit a evening in the ones you like the most and love wine and neighborhood tapas together.

Some of the most romantic villages in Souther Spain include Frigiliana above Nerja in Malaga, Mijas Pueblo above Fuengirola, also in Malaga, and Salobreña on the coast of Granada. Head to the Cadiz coastline wherever you can love picturesque villages like Arcos de la Frontera and Vejer de la Frontera.

If you want to get off the coast, head to Zahara de la Sierra and Setenil de Las Bodegas. There are numerous charming villages nearby Ronda that are truly worth a go to. In Seville, you can visit San Nicolas del Puerto wherever you can stroll via Sierra del Norte de Sevilla Natural Park and take pleasure in glittering waterfalls by means of lush forest or chill at the village’s synthetic seashore.

As we are conversing about heading on a street journey in Spain, never forget to browse this manual about how a great deal does it charge to travel to Spain

Best destinations to keep at Andalucia white villages? 

Right here are a handful of selections of lodging:

 (simply click on the city’s name to see the resort list)


One of the main attractions in Granada, Southern Spain.
The intimate attractiveness of Granada!

Handle you at a spa resort in Granada

Granada is palms on one particular of the most intimate towns in southern Spain (jointly with Andalucia’s money, but we will get again to that later.) Overlooking the Alhambra Palace, it is hard to defeat a several times with your superior 50 % in Granada.

The charming aged city boasts of history so normal for Andalucia, a melting pot for diverse cultures environment their imprint all through historical past. Verify out down below the unique experiences we select for you:

Granada is perfect for sightseeing interrupted by tapas and sangria stops along the way. Make certain you remain at 1 of the major-notch spa motels in the metropolis (checklist below) and you and your associate will feel so peaceful and joyful! Another possibility is to go to a conventional Hamman and indulge yourselves in the very hot and cold steam rooms and even go for a soothing therapeutic massage. Ebook this Hamman Knowledge in Granada right here. 

Where by to remain in Granada?

For the top intimate holiday break in southern Spain, have a look at these remarkable motels in Granada:

(click on on the resort identify to see the details)


Photo of the iconic bridge in Ronda, Southern Spain.
Ronda is like a fairytale city in Southern Spain.

Go on a wine tour in Serrania de Ronda

Most of Malaga’s finest wines derive from Serrania de Ronda and there is no questioning you will have an unforgettable romantic getaway in Spain heading to these wine yards with your partner. 

You can get in touch with the wineries instantly to organize a go to, or you pick out one of the quite a few organized excursions to explore Ronda and the location, and of course, go wine tasting. Here are three tours we’ve chosen for you:

That reported, it is an spot where by you will have to have a motor vehicle to get to, so an structured tour will be the most simple as it is not authorized to drink when you generate in Spain.

Wherever to stay in Serrania de Ronda? 

Below are a number of choices of motels in Ronda that are best for couples:

(simply click on the lodge name to see the particulars)


Photo from a secluded beach in Cabo de Gata in Andalucia, Spain.
Cabo de Gata Organic Park has stunning shorelines for you to discover.

Picnic at the beach

It is challenging to argue that a picnic at the beach front is tremendous passionate. Spain’s southern coast is lined with mesmerizing beach locations. If you want to take pleasure in a romantic picnic (with cava) outdoors the town seashores, head to Cadiz and Huelva coasts as they have some of the most effective shorelines in southern Spain.

But if you select any of these places, make sure you examine out the wind forecast simply because on a windy day you will not be equipped to delight in the beach front or a picnic.

Then head to the shorelines of Cabo de Gata All-natural Park in Almeria as a substitute. They are preferred, but the truth that they are so significant and lots of of them involve a bit of walking to get to, means you continue to get a great chunk of beach front to your self.

Finest destinations to continue to be near the seashore? 

Very well, the beaches in southern Spain are magnificent and so are the accommodations and resorts you can discover there. You will obtain beneath a connection to the most effective sites to keep in Cadiz,  Huelva, and Cabo de Gata, so you can have a search and pick out the best beach & resort combo.

(click on the city’s name to see the hotel checklist)


Photo of Plaza de España – also known as Seville’s Venice,
Plaza de España – also recognised as Seville’s Venice.

Fall in adore all around all over again in Seville

I consider we can all agree that Seville is a person of the most passionate towns in Europe. Wandering the streets with your a person really like admiring historical architecture is tough to defeat. Acquire a boat trip at Plaza de España – also recognized as Seville’s Venice.

Stroll the intimate gardens in the Alcazar Palace or share a bottle of Cava in the Maria Louisa Park. There are so quite a few tapas and cocktail bars in Seville that you can invest a week and not return to the similar a person twice. 

If you like to be lively you can go paddleboarding or kayaking in the Guadalquivir river and if you do not, just cuddle up by the river bank and watch as the boats go by.

It is hard to envision performing everything in Seville that will not flip out romantic!

In which to keep in Seville, Spain? 

Listed here are a few options for all kinds of partners and budgets:

(click on the lodge title to see the details)


Caminito del Rey walking trail and via Ferrata through the canyon in Southern Spain.
Caminito del Rey strolling trail and through Ferrata.

Do a Via Ferrata in Malaga or Granada

Adventurous couples will really like to do a Via Ferrata collectively to increase some spice to their travel recollections. There are so a lot of unbelievable By way of Ferrata’s in Southern Spain, significantly in the Malaga and Granada provinces. 

Just one of the most famed locations is Desfiladero de Los Gaitanes, the place the well-known Caminito del Rey goes. But you can also locate other interesting routes for diverse concentrations.

A lot of businesses are giving By way of Ferratas as guided tours with a experienced information and all the vital devices provided.

All you want to convey is a superior temper and a Go Professional. Oh! And leave your vertigo at property, due to the fact these routes are exhilarating, steep, and you will climb up higher!

Where by to stay in Malaga soon after a working day of journey? 

In this article are the most effective motels in Malaga, a excellent metropolis to use as a foundation to investigate Desfiladero de Los Gaitane:

(simply click on the hotel name to see the aspects)


Scorching Air Balloon experience in Seville or Granada

A sizzling air balloon experience is likely one of the most passionate actions to do in Andalucia and you can do that each in close proximity to Seville and Granada. The warm air balloon tour requires you more than the lovely countryside at sunset and it is pure magic floating earlier mentioned the earth hunting down. Cuddle up in your partner’s arms and you will have a memory for a life span! 

In situation possibly of you demands a tiny trace: It is tremendous passionate to suggest in a sizzling air balloon!

Exactly where to stay in in Southern Spain for a hot air balloon experience? 

We’ve previously outlined the best areas to stay in Seville and the very best lodges in Granada, on the topics above. Go back a little bit and decide on your preferred lodging. 


Young woman dancing flamenco in traditional flamenco dress and a man playing the guitar
It simply cannot get a lot more intimate than this. 🥰

Consider Flamenco lessons in Seville

Why not get transferring and discover a little something new with your associate? There are various superior-quality Flamenco colleges all through Andalucia, but if you want to go authentic, make absolutely sure you head to the Triana community in Seville for classes.

This is a thing that can be a lot of exciting alongside one another as effectively as you develop and study anything together. Some thing that will be your thing for the relaxation of your life. So check out out the Flamenco classes and demonstrates in Seville we’ve picked for you:


Traveling in southern Spain – Simple Strategies

There is no doubt southern Spain is best for a passionate getaway no subject what tastes you and your associate have. There are towns and character, adrenaline actions and comforting pursuits, and all this with a good selection of tasty tapas and awesome regional drinks.

Now that you know what to do in Southern Spain, let us start out organizing your vacation to Andalucia. 

Modern train to Seville waiting in a train station in Southern Spain. Traveling to Spain advice.
Touring to Southern Spain is uncomplicated, just stick to our guidelines.

Having to and about Southern Spain

There 2 intercontinental airports in southern Spain (Malaga and Seville), and 4 domestic airports (Amería, Cordoba, Granada and in Jerez de la Frontera). An additional selection to get to Andalucia is to journey by coach, bus, cruise or auto. 

Spain’s coach and bus programs work quite well, you will uncover companies from main metropolitan areas to small villages. There is also the highspeed train (AVE) to Cordoba, Seville, and Malaga. All the details about trains and busses in Southern Spain you can uncover listed here.  

Touring by auto is a good way to discover quite a few concealed metropolitan areas in southern Spain. After you arrive in Andalucia you can lease a car or truck (evaluate the rates in this article) and check out the region at your have pace. But in advance of commencing your road journey, have a great appear at the map of Southern Spain to have an notion of your route and the places to take a look at in Andalucia, normally, you can get dropped between so numerous amazing destinations you will come across on your way. 

Intimate lodges in southern Spain

When arranging your passionate getaway in Andalucia, you have to just take into thing to consider which style of knowledge you want to have. Then you can opt for in which to keep in southern Spain. 

We have mentioned a couple of great inns and resorts in every activity, so you can have an concept of what to be expecting from the metropolis, the working experience and the lodging there. But in situation you still want to have a glance at the finest lodges in Andalucia, our suggestion is to search and reserve through Reserving.com or Agoda, they have the best selection of destinations to continue to be and superior charges. 

Weather in southern Spain

Andalucia has a heat Mediterranean local weather, so anticipate incredibly hot summer time and gentle winters. The very good news is that they have an regular of 300 sunny days per 12 months. So does not subject which year you resolved to journey to southern Spain, the odds are that you will have sunshine. 

Although it is a sunny place, the weather conditions can change if you are being by the seaside or going up to the mountains. Exploration about the areas to visit in Andalucia and choose the places and period that suits you greatest. 

Picking southern Spain as your subsequent intimate place will not be a disappointment!

Like this guidebook to Southern Spain romantic attractions? Preserve it for afterwards!

Your next romantic getaway must be to Southern Spain. The Andalucia region is packed with stunning cities, white villages, secluded beaches, and delicious food. Here is a list of things to do in Southern Spain that will keep you and your loved one busy for days. An itinerary that mixes nature, food, adventure, history & romance. Andalucia attractions paired with the best hotels in cities like Granada, Seville, Ronda, Cabo de Gatas and more.



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25 Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia


As the largest city in Atlantic Canada, Halifax has loads to offer the visitor, especially with its location adjacent to one of the largest and deepest ice-free harbours in the world. What that means for water lovers is that you can easily access the Atlantic Ocean and beaches galore, along with loads of interesting attractions, activities, amazing food, and nightlife. There are so many things to do in Halifax, I think you’ll find you need at least two to three days in the city.

Described are 25 things to do in Halifax, including the tunnel tour on Georges Island National Historic Site and a Citadel Spirit Tour with alcohol that has been aged onsite.

The Halifax waterfront seen from the boat ride to Georges Island National Historic Site

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Walk the Halifax Waterfront

One of the top things to do in Halifax at any time of the year, but particularly in summer, is to walk along the Halifax Waterfront. If you miss out on this, I feel like you’d miss out on the beating heart of the city. This is where everyone comes and for good reason. It’s colourful, there’s an energy to it and there’s lots to do along its 4 kilometre plus length.

The Harbourwalk stretches between the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 and the Halifax Casino. Not only is it a great place for people watching, but you can also visit museums, shop in boutique stores, hop on the ferry to Dartmouth, marvel at the constant water traffic, and enjoy a meal or drink at one of the numerous waterfront restaurants. In fact, you can even snap up one of the hammocks pictured below and relax, just enjoying the salty, Maritime breezes.

The Halifax Waterfront is a colourful place to walk and hang out literally in these hammocks
The Halifax Waterfront is a colourful place to walk and hang out literally in these hammocks (that’s Georges Island with the lighthouse)

Do the Tunnel Tour on Georges Island and enjoy a Parks Canada Perfect Picnic

Sitting in the middle of Halifax Harbour is Georges Island National Historic Site, a place the Mi’kmaq called home for thousands of years. The island is now one of five sites that make up the Halifax Defence Complex, forts and batteries constructed to protect Halifax from attack. The others, all national historic sites, include Fort McNab, York Redoubt, Prince of Wales Tower, and the Halifax Citadel.

Today visitors can do a self-guided tour of the island with the help of an interpretive map, but in addition I would recommend that you join a free, 15-minute tunnel tour. It’s offered every 20 minutes on a seasonal basis. You’ll get access to a maze of brick tunnels in an underground complex below Fort Charlotte. These tunnels once housed ammunition for the powerful cannons you see on the tour.

Be sure to order the Parks Canada Perfect Picnic before you go so you can savour a lobster roll, ploughman’s lunch or caprese focaccia while enjoying the view of downtown Halifax from one of the Parks Canada red chairs.

Note: To get to Georges Island take a private boat, kayak or canoe or book a trip with Murphy’s On the Water.

On the Halifax tunnel tour with Sergeant Matthew Power
On the Halifax tunnel tour with Sergeant Matthew Power
This giant gun has a 7,000 yard range
This powerful cannon had a 7,000 yard range
The view of downtown Halifax from St. Georges Island
The view of downtown Halifax from St. Georges Island
Parks Canada Perfect Picnic includes the option of a lobster roll
The lobster roll is one of the offerings on the Parks Canada Perfect Picnic menu

Take a Halifax Harbour Hopper Tour

If you want a fun, fast paced one-hour tour of the Halifax Harbour (and part of the downtown), sign up for the popular Halifax Hopper Tour. It’s a little different than most harbour tours as its on an amphibious vehicle. Start off on the streets of Halifax – and finish with a giant splash into the Halifax Harbour. See some of the famous city sights by bus and by boat – expertly narrated with a dose of humour. 

Learn about Halifax by some of the best guides in the business by sea and by land - - Photo credit: Len Wagg
Learn about Halifax by some of the best guides in the business by sea and by land – Photo credit: Len Wagg

Climb aboard Canada’s oldest warship: HMCS Sackville

When you’re exploring the Halifax Waterfront, look for the HMCS Sackville, Canada’s oldest warship. This boat played an important role in winning the Battle of the Atlantic in World War II – and because of that, the warship holds an important place in naval history.

The location of the warship changes twice a year. From November to mid-June, it is berthed in the Naval Dockyard. But from late June until late October, the boat is moved to Sackville Landing, near the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. Tours are offered from 10 AM to 4:45 PM seven days a week. Admission is by donation only.

Explore the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site 

Not only do you get glorious views of the Halifax Harbour from the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, but you’ll find plenty of interactive experiences and places to walk and explore – like the fort walls. Look for re-enactment interpreters, the 78th Highlanders and the Royal Artillery, dressed in uniforms that their regiments sported in the mid-1800’s. 

You can find marching and band drills on the parade grounds, the changing of the guard every hour at the entrance, and a daily demonstration of cannons firing at noon – a practice that dates to 1856. You can also take a tour led by a costumed guide from May through to October. 

If you’re in need of some refreshments, head to the Citadel Coffee Bar and Soldiers Library in the Cavalier Building. It was the library the soldiers of the 78th Highland Regiment used that has been turned into a cozy space with a 19th century vibe.

Colourful uniforms worn by the 78th Highlanders at the Halifax Citadel
Colourful uniforms worn by the 78th Highlanders at the Halifax Citadel

Sign up for one of the Citadel Distilled Experiences

One of the fun things to do in Halifax, especially if you’re with a group you know, is to sign up for one of the Citadel Distilled Experiences. There are three to choose from – the Toast & Tasting, Raise Your Spirits and the Proof is in the Barrel.

I participated in the Raise Your Spirits tour. It started with a quick tour of the Halifax Citadel where we learned about how alcohol was used to rally the troops. Cue the Daily Ration Rum. We also tried Noon Gun Gin and Fort George Genever – with all spirits made by local Halifax company – Compass Distillers and aged onsite at the Halifax Citadel! Along with the liquor, we enjoyed a locally prepared charcuterie board. The tasting came with a guide on how to taste spirits along with the flavour profiles one should expect. Truly great fun! 

Checking out the tasting notes on the the Citadel Spirit Tasting Tour
Checking out the tasting notes on the Citadel Spirit Tasting Tour

Go for a ghost walk at the Halifax Citadel

Pick up a glowing lantern and meet your tour guide dressed in a full period uniform. Follow him across the drawbridge as you melt into the darkness, exploring dimly lit passageways and dark tunnels. Here the haunted stories of the Halifax Citadel come alive over a 70-minute tour.

Tours start at 8:30 PM on Fridays and Saturdays, weather permitting in the summer – after the gates have closed to the public. And that helps set the mood. More information here – including how to buy tickets. You can arrange a private ghost tour year-round!

Dare to be scared on a Halifax Citadel Ghost Walk
Dare to be scared on a Halifax Citadel Ghost Walk

Stroll through the Halifax Public Gardens

When I was in Grade 2, I lived in Halifax, a block away from the Halifax Public Gardens. Even in those days a visit to the gardens was one of the top things to do in Halifax. Back then, it usually revolved around feeding the ducks – though that is no longer allowed.

The 16-acre gardens are “one of the finest examples of a Victorian garden in North America.” The gardens take up a full block, including a section along Spring Garden Road. In summer there’s a concert series, bird walks, story time, and something called Young Singer Outside the Gate. Check the monthly calendar ahead of your visit. If you’re in need of sustenance, ice cream is available in the summer.

As a kid a trip to the Halifax Public Gardens was always a highlight - Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia - Photographer: Wally Hayes
As a kid, a trip to the Halifax Public Gardens was always a highlight – Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia – Photographer: Wally Hayes

Take a hike in Point Pleasant Park

Point Pleasant Park, located at the south end of the Halifax Peninsula, is a great spot for a dog walk, a jog, or taking the time to contemplate the meaning of life as you stare out to the ocean. Within the park are 39 km of trails and the Prince of Wales Tower National Historic Site. You can also cycle through the park and in summer enjoy one of the plays put on by Shakespeare by the Sea Theatre Company, called the longest and largest-running outdoor theatre festival in Atlantic Canada. 

Fun fact: There is a 999-year lease on the park held by the British Government. Halifax rents the site from the Brits for 10 cents per year.

Check out the Halifax Seaport Farmer’s Market

The Halifax Seaport Farmer’s Market began in 1750. It holds the record for operating longer than any other farmer’s market in North America! 

You’ll find everything from lunch options to locally farmed produce, fresh meat and fish, crafts, flowers, maple syrup, honey, and even locally produced wine and spirits. A visit here on a Saturday morning between 8 AM and 2 PM or on Sunday between 10 AM and 2 PM is always one of the fun and delicious things to do in Halifax.

Goodies from the Halifax Seaport Farmer's Market - Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia - Photographer Scott Munn
Goodies from the Halifax Seaport Farmer’s Market – Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia – Photographer Scott Munn

Visit historic St. Paul’s Church – a true Halifax Oddity

St. Paul’s Church, dating back to 1750, is both the oldest Protestant church in Canada and the oldest building in Halifax. On a tour I did of Halifax, we stopped here to look for the face that is forever etched in one of the church’s windows. 

The story goes that the deacon was standing in front of the window at the time of the 1917 Halifax explosion. The legend suggests that the extreme heat left the deacons’ profile etched into the glass – just like you see it today. Whether that is truth or fiction, I don’t know but it is a cool story and a Halifax only oddity.

Check out the deacon's silhouette in the third window
Check out the deacon’s silhouette in the right-hand part of the third window from the left

Get a black history lesson at Africville

Africville was an African – Canadian village, founded in the mid-18th century on the southern shore of the Bedford Basin. The community prospered at times – basically when there wasn’t interference by the whites of Halifax – but in the 1960’s after a dump was located within a short distance of their settlement, it was labeled a slum. Residents were forcibly removed and located to public housing, something we now call a violation of human rights. Read this account for insight into how Halifax treated the Black people in Africville.

Today you can visit the Africville Museum which is in a replica of the community church that was destroyed. 

The Africville Museum
The Africville Museum – Photo credit: Tyson Tolliver

Visit the Hydrostone District

The Hydrostone District in Halifax, built after the horrific Halifax Explosion in 1917, is one of Canada’s National Historic Sites and just a 30-minute walk from downtown Halifax. It’s called a splendid example of an English-style garden suburb. The area features 325 fire-proof homes, all built in the same architectural theme using hydrostone which looks like concrete blocks – and basically is. The district is also home to boutique shops, galleries, and excellent dining options. 

A house made of hydrostone in Halifax
A house made of hydrostone in Halifax

Sip coffee with a view at the Halifax Central Library

The Halifax Central Library opened on December 13, 2014. The library was awarded the Governor General’s Medal for outstanding new civic building design. And WIRED recently called the Halifax Central Library “one of the 10 most beautiful libraries on earth” – so with that kind of accolade you really must visit.

It’s the perfect place to go if you’re a fan of architecture or you really need a coffee to pick you up because your energy is flagging after a round of shopping on Spring Garden Road. Head to the café on the fifth floor for a panoramic view of the downtown and harbour.

The Halifax Central Library at twilight - Photo credit: Discover Halifax
The Halifax Central Library at twilight – Photo credit: Discover Halifax

Admire the Old Town Clock

The Old Town Clock or Citadel Clock Tower is just that – a clock in a three-story tower at the base of the Citadel that started keeping time on October 20, 1803. It’s one of the iconic landmarks in Halifax.

A couple of cool facts about the clock include the fact that the clock mechanism must be wound twice weekly and the number 4 is represented as IIII and not IV for symmetry and aesthetics.

The Old Town Clock is located on the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site
The Old Town Clock is located on the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Pay your respects at Fairview Lawn Cemetery

The Fairview Lawn Cemetery is best known as the final resting place for 121 Titanic victims. There are more Titanic victims interred here than in any other cemetery in the world. It’s a very moving place to visit – especially when you read the headstones and think about how these people met their end. 

About a third of the headstones have no information – just a marker number and the date of death though in 1991 six of the previously unknown victims were identified with the help of the Titanic International Society. One of the graves is of William Denton Cox, called a “heroic steward who died while escorting third class passengers to the lifeboats.” You’ll see some poignant writing on several other gravestones.

Over 100 victims of the RMS Titanic are buried at the Fairlawn Cemetery
Over 100 victims of the RMS Titanic are buried at the Fairlawn Cemetery
One of the gravestones marking a Titanic victim
One of the gravestones marking a Titanic victim

Wander through the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Located on the Halifax waterfront, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic ranks as the city’s most popular museum. Look for a mix of permanent and temporary exhibits like the Sea in Her Blood which highlights the lives of 17 Maritime women who “redefine traditional ways of living with the sea.”

The Titanic exhibit will strike a chord with many, especially the personal stories. Learn about life aboard the ship including what it was like to be an immigrant in third class. Sit in a reproduction Titanic deck chair and check out over 50 artifacts collected as flotsam. 

The museum is open from Tuesday until Saturday from 10 AM until 4 PM and on Sunday from 1 – 4 PM. Admission in 2021 is just $5.15 per adult.

Inside the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic - Photo credit: Scott Munn
Inside the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic – Photo credit: Scott Munn
Become a part of the feel-good Peace by Chocolate story on the Waterfront

If you need an excuse to eat chocolate or buy some as a gift, Peace by Chocolate ought to fit the bill. The Nova Scotia company is owned by Syrian refugees who were forced to flee their homeland in 2012 – after making and selling chocolate across the Middle East for close to 30 years. They spent three years in limbo in refugee camps in Lebanon before being invited to Antigonish, Nova Scotia. With the help of their community, they have rebuilt their company, and I can tell you that what they’re making is delicious. I love their motto – one piece won’t hurt.

When you stroll the waterfront be sure to look out for their new boutique store, located at 1741 Lower Water Street, Suite 166.

Support Peace By Chocolate - A Syrian-Canadian chocolatier company
Support Peace By Chocolate – A Syrian-Canadian chocolatier company

Explore vibrant Spring Garden Road

If it shopping you’re after – especially the upscale variety, head to Spring Garden Road. It’s also home to two malls – Park Lane and Spring Garden Place. It’s not my idea of fun but I might be an outlier.

Shopping in downtown Halifax - Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia
Shopping in downtown Halifax – Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia

Check out the pub scene

Halifax is known for its vibrant pub scene – partially on account of the six universities in the city and the sheer number of students around. The action is in the downtown, particularly on Argyle Street.

The top five pubs to visit according to Discover Halifax are Durty Nelly’s Irish Pub (with live music on weekends and some weeknights), Split Crowe Pub (also with a live music lineup), The Loose Cannon, The Arms Public House inside the Lord Nelson Hotel, and the Rockbottom Brew Pub.

Halifax is known for its high number of pubs - - Photographer: Acorn Art & Photography
Halifax is known for its high number of pubs – Photo credit: Tourism Nova Scotia – Photographer: Acorn Art & Photography

Visit the Halifax Brewery Farmers Market 

On a Saturday morning join locals from 8 AM to 1 PM for a farmers market experience that deals with small scale growers and artisans. This place is a local favourite. You’ll find the Saturday Market at 312-1496 Lower Water Street.

The Halifax Brewery Farmers Market - Photo credit: Nova Scotia Tourism - Photographer: Wally Hayes
The Halifax Brewery Farmers Market – Photo credit: Nova Scotia Tourism – Photographer: Wally Hayes

Visit the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

It’s easy to visit the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 if you’re waking the Halifax Waterfront. This is the place to learn about Canada’s amazing immigrant history. Some visitors may even be able to trace their family roots with the help of the Scotiabank Family History Centre.

Between 1928 and 1971 almost one million immigrants passed through Pier 21. That might help explain why reportedly one in five Canadians is related to someone who was processed through Pier 21.

Bronze sculpture of a woman outside Pier 21
Bronze sculpture of a woman outside Pier 21
The entrance to Pier 21
The entrance to Pier 21

Ride the Halifax – Dartmouth ferry

The oldest saltwater ferry in the world is the one that runs between Halifax and Dartmouth. It’s also the second oldest in the world. The price of a ferry is the same as a bus ticket but with it you get some stunning vistas. On the Alderney Ferry, enjoy views of two bridges, harbour islands, the Bedford Basin, downtown Halifax, and Dartmouth. If you transfer back within the hour, you can just use your transfer and avoid paying again.

For more information about schedules, and fees visit the Halifax Transit website.

The ferry that runs between Halifax and Dartmouth
The ferry that runs between Halifax and Dartmouth

Visit Fisherman’s Cove in Eastern Passage

Fisherman’s Cove, just a 25-minute drive from downtown Halifax, is a restored 200-year-old fishing village. On a short visit you can enjoy a picturesque ramble along the boardwalk with stops to check out folk art, Maritime crafts, ice cream and old-time candy along with other food – alongside a backdrop of working lobster fishermen.

Go a short distance past the village to reach McCormack’s Beach Provincial Park, one of the smallest in the province. Stroll the 1.2 km boardwalk with beach access points and look for birds including the black guillemot and piping plover.

The view across the water to colourful Fisherman's Cove
The view across the water to colourful Fisherman’s Cove

Be awed by the beauty of Peggy’s Cove

One of the best things to do when you’re in Halifax is to make the 50-minute drive to Peggy’s Cove. The authentic, colourful fishing village never disappoints, no matter what the weather throws your way. I have always come away awed both by the beauty of the village and the power of the ocean.

As of October 18, 2021, a new viewing deck has been added to make the visit safer. You can still wander around the rocks but be vigilant about where you’re stepping and avoid the black rock. A warning on the lighthouse states: “Injury and death have rewarded careless sight-seers here. The ocean and rocks are treacherous. Savour the sea from a distance.

It's not very often you get Peggy's Cove to yourself
It’s not very often you get Peggy’s Cove to yourself but its always worth a visit
Peggy's Cove is a working fishing village
Peggy’s Cove is a working fishing village

Local travel tips

Buy a Best of Halifax Tour with Peggy’s Cove. It last 4 – 5 hours and will cover off some of the most iconic sites in the city – and you won’t need a rental car to get to Peggy’s Cove.

If its a lobster dinner you’re after on a visit, check out one of these 9 restaurants.

Need to stretch your legs? Then try one of these top 10 Halifax area hikes.

A statue of Samuel Cunard on the Halifax Waterfront
A statue of Samuel Cunard – founder of the Cunard Line – on the Halifax Waterfront

Where to stay in Halifax

On a couple of visits to Halifax in the last few years I have stayed at the Westin Nova Scotian. I love its location close to the Halifax waterfront. 

Another great downtown hotel is the Sutton Place Hotel Halifax.

A giant thank you to Parks Canada and Tourism Nova Scotia for hosting my visit – but as always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Further reading about Nova Scotia

Click on the photo to bookmark to your Pinterest boards.

25 fun, interesting & unusual things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia



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What is Vietnam famous for? 9 Reasons to visit Vietnam!


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If you love to travel then Southeast Asia really is an unmissable destination with an array of experiences to offer – but if you could also pick one, which would it be? For me, it has to be Vietnam, as this long slither of a country offers a huge amount of diversity that will impress even the most experienced tourist. But what is Vietnam famous for? What to see in Vietnam that makes it an incredible and unique destination?

Bordering China, Laos and Cambodia, Vietnam has over 1,000 miles to explore, with coastline running along almost all of it. Ruins, beaches, rice terraces, spectacular landscapes and some of the most beguiling cities on earth can all be discovered within Vietnam’s boundaries. 

It also has the crown for the world’s cheapest beer for its locally brewed Bia Hoi that is freshly made every day and contains no preservatives. These are just a few facts about Vietnam that draw tourists from all corners to this buzzing country.

Hanoi Streets, busy and interesting!

So, what is Vietnam famous for? 

Below are 9 reasons why Vietnam really is an unmissable destination in Southeast Asia and why you should plan a trip there as soon as possible. After all the travel inspiration you will find a section with practical info to help you plan your trip to Vietnam.

What is Vietnam famous for? 

We start our list of what Vietnam is known for with history, of course, but our inspiring facts about Vietnam also include nature, culture and delicious food. Be ready to start dreaming of your trip to Vietnam 

Photo of the War Museum in Vietnam. The building faced with an old airplane in front of it.
War Remnants Museum one of the many sites you can visit to learn about the Vietnam War.

1- History is everywhere in Vietnam

Vietnam has a fascinating history that can be seen in exquisite buildings from the Nguyen Dynasty in Huế, to the grim Hoa Lo Prison that was built in Hanoi during French colonial times.

Not only that, but there are several sites from the Vietnam War, like the Cu Chi and Vinh Moc tunnels that you can still visit. Central Vietnam has a demilitarized zone known as the DMZ where there are several monuments and museums to visit built on the land where the battles were fought.

After visiting the War Remnants Museum and Ho Chi Minh City Museum, take a half-day or even the whole day to join one of the tours about the Vietnam War and its sites around HCM City. You can book your tour in advance via GetYourGuide, below are a few options.

Photo of a tiny street in Hoi An with colored lanterns hanging over the street. The shops have many dresses and clothes hanging on their doors. Hoi An is a famous destination in Vietnam.
Hoi An colored streets!?

2 – The uniqueness of Huế and Hoi An

Central Vietnam has some of the most exquisite architecture that the country has to offer, much of it in and around Huế and Hoi An. The city of Hue surrounds the forbidden city at its center and houses elaborate mausoleums for its past emperors in the countryside. It even has an abandoned water park complete with a dragon pool and waterslides. 

Hoi An is amazing in a totally different way, the streets of this ex-trading port are lined with traditional wooden houses along the Thu Bon River. It lights up on the 14th day of every lunar calendar month when lanterns are lit with candles and floated down the river to bring luck and happiness. Read Love and Road Hoi An travel guide here

Photo of many fishing boats at the front and some limestone karts in the background. The typical scenery you see on Vietnam's north coast.
Ha Long Bay is one of the many limestone karts you can visit in Vietnam.

3 – Vietnam karst bays

It’s impossible to look at any photos of Vietnam without coming across the eternally famous Ha Long Bay. This picture-perfect seascape is dominated by green limestone karsts with tiny fishing villages in their shadows. 

For a less-touristy experience try Lan Ha Bay near Cat Ba Island which offers the same landscape for a cheaper price. If you want to see incredible views of the karsts on land, then head to Ninh Binh where wide rivers run through grassy rice fields at the bottom of stunning valleys.

A Vietnamese rice pancake being cooked in an Iron flat pan. It's of the many traditional food Vietnam is famous for.
Rice pancakes, one of the many traditional dishes Vietnam is famous for. YUMMY!

4 – Vietnamese food

Even against all the competition with the incredible dishes from its neighbors, Vietnamese food still really stands out. The most delicious savory dishes include so many types of noodles, banana blossom salad, stuffed pancakes, fresh spring rolls, and tasty banh mi (filled baguettes).

It’s also one of the best places in the world to get caffeinated, with deliciously dark Vietnamese coffee that is blended with everything from coconut to egg for a sumptuously rich experience. You can even take these skills home with you as there are some fantastic cooking classes available in the cities.

Woman walking on a trail through the rice terraces in Sapa Mountains, Vietnam. This is one of the must-see places in Vietnam.
Discover the rice terraces on foot and meet locals on the way.

5 – Vietnam traditional northern landscapes and rice terraces

The rice terraces of Bali are full of backpackers, but if you travel to Vietnam you might get one all to yourself. Any journey you take in the Sa Pa district in the North is bound to be beautiful and it’s one of the best places to meet indigenous people too. 

Be inspired and read Love and Road 2-days trekking in Sapa guide here

Adventurous types will love the Ha Giang loop which is a stunning 3-4 day motorbike journey that begins and ends at the province capital of Ha Giang.

Photo of a karst cave in Vietnam. A huge rocky chamber with stairs and two people inside it.
One of many caves you can explore in Vietnam!

6 – Vietnam incredible caves

You might not know this one, but Vietnam is famous for its incredible caves. Vietnam is home to Son Doong, the world’s biggest cave that can be found within the emerald-covered expanse of Phong Nha Kẻ Bàng National Park in the North. While that one is expensive to visit, there are many other smaller caves to explore in the region that have so many beautiful formations hidden inside of them. Two of those are the Phong Nha Cave and Paradise Cave that can be found within the same national park.

Photo from a viewpoint showing Vietnam's coast with white sand beaches and lush green forest. Vietnam is known for its beaches and islands.
The incredible contrast of blue and green, sea and forest!

7 – Vietnam beaches and sand dunes

The length of Vietnam means that it’s blessed with so much coastline! There are beautiful beaches all along it, especially near Hoi An, Mui Ne and Nha Trang. Near Mui Ne you can find incredible red and white sand dunes that are best enjoyed at sunrise and sunset. 

If you take the journey over the Hai Van Pass between Hue and Hoi An, you’ll get a beautiful birds-eye view of the golden curves of several beaches surrounded by lapping sea.

Photo of a train track in between houses and buildings. It's one of the famous attractions in Hanoi, Vietnam.
Hanoi local life!

8 – Vietnam’s buzzing cities

There’s something for everyone in Vietnam’s cities, whether it’s the sexy sleaze of booming Ho Chi Minh City or the constant hubbub of Hanoi’s tiny traditional streets. Whether you’re in the north or the south, there is so much fun to be had in the chaos. 

In Central Vietnam, the city of Da Nang has a bright yellow dragon bridge that breathes fire at the weekend, followed by water that is sprayed all over the gathered spectators.

You will find all the must see in Vietnam’s big cities here:

A couple on a boat. They are on a Mekong Delta Tour, a famous day trip from Ho Chi Minh city.
Nat & Rob enjoying their Mekong Delta tour.

9 – The Mekong River

We arrived at the 9th fact about Vietnam, and although it’s our last topic of the list it’s one of the top reasons to visit Vietnam. 

Laos is the Southeast Asian country famous for the Mekong River but it actually finishes in the South of Vietnam. The sprawling tributaries that spill out into the South China Sea are the perfect place to explore traditional life. 

Watching the sunset over the Mekong is truly an unforgettable experience and pictures do not do it justice. No wonder Vietnam is famous for the Mekong Delta and all the incredible activities you can have there. 

Some of the best experiences you can have at the Mekong Delta are listed below:

There so much to see and do in Vietnam, that this list could go on and on. These are just some of Vietnam highlights and there is plenty more to find! Whichever part you choose to explore in-depth, or if you traverse the length of breadth of Vietnam, it’s bound to be a trip that stays with you for years to come. It has certainly been the case for me and I still think about the delicious food even now.

So now let’s jump to our Vietnam travel tips.

Photo of a cave near a beach with two small boats getting inside the cave. Many people travel to Vietnam to visit the caves.
Caves, beaches, rivers, forests, mountains… Vietnam is known for its diverse nature.

How to travel to Vietnam – travel tips

Now that you are dreaming of visiting Vietnam, here are a few things you need to think of  when planning your trip.

When is the best time to travel to Vietnam?

There is no bad time to visit Vietnam, but you must be aware that the weather changes from North to South.If you’re planning to travel around, the best time to visit Vietnam is during the dry season, which lasts from December to February.

Vietnam Visa on arrival, do you need one?

Many countries can get a visa on arrival, but you must apply in advance. Here is an article about Vietnam Visas to help you discover if you need to apply for a visa and how to do it safely and from home. Or if you prefer, you can apply to your Vietnam Tourist Visa On Arrival here.

How to travel to Vietnam and around the country?

Vietnam’s main cities are Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh, both have busy airports connected to many international destinations. Use Skyscanner or Kiwi.com to find the best flights to Vietnam.

You can travel in Vietnam by train, bus and flying. To search and book your tickets, we recommend using 12Go or Bookaway

How to book accommodation in Vietnam?

There are plenty of options of accommodation in Vietnam, from luxury hotels to budget hostels. The trick here is to read all the reviews carefully and book only via trustworthy websites. We recommend using Booking.com or Agoda for hotels in Vietnam, they have good offers, cancellation police and sometimes you don’t vene need to pay in advance.

– What are the best shopping destinations in Vietnam?

All the cities in Vietnam have elaborate open-air markets, some are more like a tourist attraction as the museums and mausoleums, others are for locals. And you can find anything from fresh food to souvenirs, homeware and clothes. Here is a dedicated post about where to shop in Vietnam and how to bargain there.

Don’t forget to buy travel insurance for Vietnam!

It doesn’t matter if you are an adventure traveler or a beach bum, travel insurance is a must when visiting Vietnam. Some of the best travel insurances are World Nomads, SafetyWing and HeyMondo.

If you are in doubt, read our Long-term Travel Insurance Guide here

That’s it! Now you know what Vietnam is famous for and how to start planning your trip! If you have any questions, drop us a comment below.

Love this guide about what Vietnam is famous for? Pin it for later!

Vietnam is famous for its food, history, war, and many other amazing things you can only do and see there. So if you are dreaming of an unforgettable trip to Vietnam this post will feed you with wanderlust and practical information to enjoy the best of Vietnam from North to South, from beaches to mountains, passing by busy cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh. Plus travel tips to plan your Vietnam holiday, from visas to accommodation and tours.
Photo of Jen Sizeland the author of this article called What is Vietnam famous for?

Author: Jen Sizeland

Jen Sizeland is a British writer and producer based in Manchester in the UK. Her travel blog is called Land of Size and it focuses on ethical living and eco-friendly travel. You can connect with Jennifer: on Instagram and Facebook.





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Boom Lake Hike in Banff National Park


Boom Lake is a turquoise beauty, sitting beneath 600-metre cliffs in Banff National Park. It’s accessible from as early as June until late October, though you may have to tromp through some snow at that time. And it’s a fabulous cross-country skiing destination come the winter, through beware of avalanche chutes if you venture onto some sections of the lake.

The Boom Lake hike is easy but not as interesting as many in the park. The wide trail parallels Boom Creek, though you only see the creek at the start of the hike. Don’t count on any views until you reach the exceptionally clear lake but some of the forest walking is very pleasant, especially in fall when there’s some colour in the understory. And in places there are some dandy big alpine firs and Englemann spruce. There’s also a boardwalk towards the end of the hike.

If you’re driving towards Radium Hot Springs on Highway 93 or you’re staying at nearby Storm Mountain Lodge, then it’s an especially good choice, particularly on a hot, sunny day as the trail is mostly in the shade.

The Boom Lake hike is dog-friendly and there’s plenty of water along the trail

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Boom Lake hike details

Total distance: 10.2 km return

Elevation gain: 175 m or 574 feet

Rating: Easy and dog-friendly with lots of water available

Time needed: 3 – 4 hours

Map: Gem Trek – Banff and Mt. Assiniboine

Signage and useful info at the Boom Lake trailhead
Signage and useful info at the Boom Lake trailhead

Boom Lake route description

There are no navigation challenges on the hike to Boom Lake. It’s a straightforward as they get.

Most of the hike on the way to Boom Lake will be in the shade – so it’s an ideal choice on a hot day. Early in the season or after a big rainfall you can also count on a lot of mud.

Start at the parking lot, passing a few picnic spots before you cross a wooden bridge over Boom Creek. If you have dogs, they’ll probably want a swim in here before or after the hike. Continue on the trail as it veers left and starts to head up gradually through the forest. When I did the hike in early September, the understory was already awash in colour.

Well into the hike you’ll pass a junction and a sign saying Taylor and O’Brien Lake. I have not heard anything good about this route (overgrown and hard to follow) so I wouldn’t recommend it. However, I would suggest doing the Taylor Lake hike starting from the Trans-Canada Highway between Banff and Lake Louise, especially in the fall when larches are at their peak.

Read: The Taylor Lake Hike in Banff National Park 

When you reach a boardwalk, you’re getting very close to the lake. From there the trail heads left and starts downhill on rougher terrain. The trail ends near the eastern end of Boom Lake beside a rockslide.

The rockslide is nothing but big boulders so it’s hard to navigate. You’ll find most people don’t go very far in either direction from where the trail ends to enjoy a picnic with a view.

Fun fact: Boom Lake got its name because of a natural log boom that formed on a shallow rock shelf at the lake’s outlet.

It's a wide trail to Boom Lake
It’s a wide trail to Boom Lake
A colourful understory in early September
A colourful understory in early September
Grouse on the Boom Lake hike
A grouse was the only wildlife I saw but I’d still recommend hiking with a can of bear spray
A couple of the giant trees you'll see on the hike
A couple of the giant trees you’ll see on the hike
The overgrown trail to O'Brien and Taylor Lakes starts here
The overgrown trail to O’Brien and Taylor Lakes starts here
The boardwalk is in great shape
The boardwalk is in great shape
At the end of the trail you can see the boulders stacked up
At the end of the trail you can see the boulders stacked up
Looking east down Boom Lake
Looking east down Boom Lake

Rosie is happy to cool off even on a chilly fall dayRosie is happy to cool off even on a chilly fall day

Boom Lake map

Location map of the Boom Lake trail
Location map of the Boom Lake trail

How to get to the Boom Lake trailhead

Take Highway 93 south from the Trans-Canada Highway at the Castle Junction intersection. Follow it for 7.2 km to reach the Boom Lake Picnic Area on the left (north) side of the highway.

Even our dog had a hard time negotiating the boulders beside Boom Lake
Even our dog had a hard time negotiating the boulders beside Boom Lake

Trail conditions

Check trail reports in Banff National Park before you go. They are regularly updated.

Fall is a pretty time to do the Boom Lake hike
Fall is a pretty time to do the Boom Lake hike

Swimming at Boom Lake

If you’re someone who doesn’t mind glacially cold water – and its a hot day, go big. Jump in, catch your breath, and then get out. Just be mindful of the fact that its a rocky shoreline and hard to get in and out easily.

The water is cold and the lake is hard to access
The water is cold and the lake is hard to access

What to take on the Boom Lake hike

Always carry the 10 hiking essentials

On an easy hike like this I’d still recommend an inflatable seat cushion for a more comfortable stop at the lake and a few protein or energy bars

Where to stay nearby

The closest place to stay is Storm Mountain Lodge. But you’re also close to Castle Junction. There you could stay in the Castle Mountain Chalets or Johnston Canyon Lodge & Bungalows

Baker Creek Mountain Resort is west of Castle Junction in a lovely location beside Baker Creek. 

Baker Creek - one of the Charmin Inns of Alberta
Lots of red chairs and fire pits outside at Baker Creek Mountain Resort

Further reading on hikes in Banff National Park

Click on the photo to bookmark to your Pinterest boards.

The easy Boom Lake hike in Banff National Park is a good one if you only have half a day



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