Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Why Your Next Vacation Needs to be Cape Breton (photos!)

Yesterday Andrew and I just got back from a whirlwind romantic getaway to....

Cape Breton, Nova Scotia.

(Seriously, the best stout- Big Spruce Brewing which is a Cape Breton Brewery. This stout tasted like yummy delicious goodness with just a *hint* of chocolate. Perfection. As you can see by my expression I was very happy. We were at the Governor's Pub in Sydney)

I honestly have no idea why more people don't choose the Cabot Trail and various stops in Cape Breton as their #1 choice for a vacation. It's gorgeous.

We tried to keep the wastefulness to a minimum and what is interesting to note is that the regular 'hotel' we first stayed had things like composting, recycling bins, reusing towel policies and overt messages on reusing and recycling throughout the hotel. Whereas the pricey, fancy resort hotel had zero composting, minimal recycling, a wasteful nespresso (which I admit we used since it was free... and it tasted nasty- confirmed my dislike for all things 'Keurig') and heated bathroom floor.

What is a bit cray cray is that we're leaving tomorrow for a five day stay at my parent's cottage on a lake with minimal internet and cell reception. I cannot wait, even though I am exhausted. From one end of the province to the other (despite the deceptively small size of the province, it is about 8-10hours to drive from one end of Nova Scotia to the other...).

(Our first stop was at a little church on the Bras d'Or lake that I had discovered on my last trip to Sydney in the winter. It has the perfect view of the lake)

(Bras d'Or lake at Irish Cove. The water is brackish as it connects with the ocean... and it was WARM!)

I also made Andrew stop at Rita's Tea Room where it's basically a shrine to Rita MacNeil (who passed recently). I thought it was neat that they had her wardrobe trunks!

This was a low section of the highlands where you just start to get the impression of the furry mountains... breathtaking really.

This doesn't even begin to really show just how high up we were and the ridiculous rolling views of the highlands. Andrew was mesmerized. What is crazy is that there are little villages smattered all along the Cabot Trail... it blows my mind that people actually get to LIVE THERE.

On the other side of the Cabot Trail we stopped to do to the Skyline hiking trail. A National Parks lady was there with wildlife display. Andrew and I practiced lifting a "small" moose antler to show how strong we are.

(ps, Moose shed their antlers naturally every year, so no moose were harmed in this photo)

The view from the skyline trail... on the left would be towards Ch├ęticamp. Ridiculous.

Tree! my one bit of yoga for the weekend

(The view from the top of the skyline)

On our way back from the boardwalk along the trail we actually saw TWO moose! They were young, and one was obviously male (from dangling bits) and not afraid of us at all. 

The view from our second, more pricey hotel balcony in Inverness. Behind us were the rolling foothills of the Cape Breton highlands.


  1. I'm so proud of you guys and so happy you took this step and had your adventure! I hope the rest of your week is just as relaxing and rewarding. You deserve it!

  2. Beautiful! I feel much the same way about many parts of Ontario. We live in such a breathtaking and diverse country :)

  3. I love that you visited the Skyline as it's one of my favourite places in Cape Breton!

  4. Cape Breton is so gorgeous. Looks like you had a great time. I toured the other side of NS last week and plan on posting soon. Geez I love this province!

  5. We have done the Cabot Trail several times and I agree -it is beautiful. A couple of times we stayed for a few nights in a cabin on the Bras D'Or Lakes and we always made it to Rita's Tea Room. All our kids, now adults, continue to take trips around Cape Breton, as well as the rest of Nova Scotia. It is my second favourite province, only surpassed by my home province of PEI.

  6. I have never been to N.S but my husband and I will be spending the first 2 weeks of October there . We are so excited...cant gt here soon enough. Hitting it just right for the Celtic Colours Festival in Cape Breton. Oh my. Soooo ready.
    Thanks for the photos!!!!!!!

  7. My sister was just there this summer! She spent a couple days in Halifax and then went to stay at a former professor's cottage in Cape Breton--she said it was beautiful.

  8. Love it. We vacationed there two years ago. Have you visited Gampo Abbey? If not, you must. It was a highlight for me.

  9. Thanks everyone! it was a lovely vacation :)

    @Carol Horton: I tried my best to make it there- but their website had some pretty strict guidelines for clothing and etiquette- which intimidated me... to be honest. Also- we couldn't make it there on time for their tour schedules. I was also informed of an even BETTER place to visit as a yogi: Kalapa Valley. If you get there again- it came highly recommended. (also couldn't get there- need more than a day to do the trail haha). http://kalapavalley.shambhala.org/

  10. after a stop in cape breton in 2012 i ended up buying 42 acres near margaree and cheticamp. its just so amazing there!


I love hearing from you! So I don't miss a comment, I like "pre-approving" them :)
I ask only that we stay respectful.
Also, please note that this is a personal blog and not a space for advertising your company. I reserve the right to delete "advertising" comments.

**NB: The ANONYMOUS option is the BEST way to comment if you don't have a blogger or established google/gmail account.