Falling in Love with Prince Edward Island
Learn all about Prince Edward Island and why it should be on your travel bucketlist!
Prince Edward Island, commonly referred to via the acronym PEI, is an island Canadian province in western Canada north of Nova Scotia and east of New Brunswick. The island is situated between the Gulf of Lawrence and the Northumberland Strait. With a population of roughly 150,000 and an area of 5660 square kilometers, the island is a popular getaway for continental Canadian visitors and international tourists desiring to avoid the hustle and bustle of better-known coastal destination. Because of its location, Prince Edward Island is an excellent choice for enthusiasts of nature and hiking trails, beach and coastal activities, the arts and entertainment, history, and local gastronomy. Without a doubt, upon arriving and engaging in all of the activities the province has to offer, you will be falling in love with Prince Edward Island and making plans to return.
First, for nature enthusiasts, Prince Edward Island offers a variety of outdoor activities in order to appreciate landscapes, local flora and fauna, and scenic coastlines. The office of tourism of Prince Edward Island encourages visitors to get outside. Trails throughout the province allow for visitors to hike, bike, and run along the coastline or through nature paths that traverse the island. Among the most popular trails are the Confederation Trail, the International Appalachian Trail, and historical Heritage Roads. The trails are great for simply walking, bird watching, mountain biking, and even geocaching using a mobile device. The best time of the year to hike in Prince Edward Island is between late spring and early autumn, as temperatures are agreeable. Even during the summer months, daily temperatures normally peak around 24 degrees Celsius, or 75 degrees Fahrenheit, allowing for outdoor enthusiasts to take full advantage of all that the island has to offer without having to worry about insufferable heat.
In addition to its hiking trails, Prince Edward Island is famous for its coastal activities, especially during the summertime. Families can easily spend a day at the beach given the island’s pleasant summer temperatures. There are 23 beaches along the coast of Prince Edward Island and 1100 kilometers of shoreline. Among the most famous are: Singing Sands, Basin Head Provincial Park; Jacques Cartier Provincial Park; and Cedar Dunes Provincial Park. Each beach offers a unique vibe and personality for tourists to enjoy. Along with spending time at the beach, tourists can participate in aquatic activities, including kayak and canoe tours, kiteboarding, sailing, and even deep-sea fishing on fishing charters. In addition to catching fish, tourists can catch lobsters and even gain hands on experience clamming along the coast. If not interested in catching sea creatures, more passive enthusiasts of marine life can participate in whale watching tours. In fact, in the past two decades, Prince Edward Island has seen an increase in North Atlantic right whales emerging from the surfaces of the coastal waters. One other feature of PEI’s coasts is its many lighthouses, which allow visitors to take tours and photographs of the province’s famous shoreline architecture.
In addition to appreciating the natural scenery of Prince Edward Island, the Canadian province is famous for its connection to the arts. More specifically, the novel Anne of Green Gables, published in 1908 by Lucy Maud Montgomery takes place in Prince Edward Island. The book has been considered a classic novel for children, featuring an orphaned female protagonist who was adopted by a pair of siblings originally intending on adopting a boy to serve as a farm aid. The novel has been adapted into films and even recently remade into a popular television series. Charlottetown, the capital of the island, has featured a musical version of the novel as part of its annual arts festival for decades. The house in the novel is located in Cavendish on the north shore of the island and is a popular tourist attraction along the northern coast. It serves as an important cultural and literary landmark on the island.
Lastly, one of the best places to visit in Prince Edward Island is its capital city of Charlottetown, located along the southern shore of the island’s center. Charlottetown is known for its appreciation of the arts, architecture, restaurant and pub culture, as well as its gastronomy. One major landmark is St. Dunstan’s Basilica and Province House, which is a historical government-building featuring neoclassical architecture. It was here that the formation of Canada as a nation was prompted. As previously mentioned, Charlottetown offers an annual festival of the arts and the downtown area features many galleries and shops for art enthusiasts and collectors. With respect to gastronomy, the town boasts an array of local eateries featuring freshly caught lobster and other seafood cooked to perfection. For enthusiasts of pub culture, the city has taken advantage of the rise in popularity of microbreweries and pubs, offering three microbreweries to visit, sample craft brews, and even to tour learn about the brewing process.
Without a doubt, Prince Edward Island offers something for any enthusiast of coastal destinations. From outdoor hiking and coastal activities to its appreciation of the arts, historical sites, and famous eateries, Prince Edward Island is the perfect vacation spot for those looking for an experience off the beaten path, thus allowing visitors to avoid large crowds and to relax and unwind in a tranquil environment. Surely upon your visit, you’ll be falling in love with Prince Edward Island instantly!