Karen and I set off on 8-26-16 for a 9-day exploration of Canada’s Maritime province Nova Scotia. Friday was a full day of travel with a lengthy delay in Philadelphia. We arrived in the provincial capital of Halifax, picked up a Mustang convertible at the airport and settled into the Homewood Suites on Brunswick St. at 2:15 am on Saturday.
Saturday morning was gorgeous and perfect for an early stroll along the picturesque and historic Halifax Harbourwalk.
This trip was all about rewarding Karen for all her hard work with a long drought between vacations. She had no problem slipping into tourist mode. I would be her guide and chauffeur for our ambitious itinerary.
The Arcadia is the only ship that survived both World Wars while serving the Royal Canadian Navy. The 10-block boardwalk is sandwiched between a working Navy yard and Halifax’s commercial port with lots of seafood eateries, shops and attractions.
The Halifax Seafood Farmer’s Market was bustling with activity when we reached the end of the boardwalk.
We regrouped at Garrison’s Brewing Company and got some tips from friendly locals regarding where to visit next.
The Government House has been home to royal residents since 1805 and is currently Nova Scotia’s Lieutenant Governor’s residence. He serves as Honorary Grand Master of the Order of the Good Time. As a visitor I was entitled to membership in the Order of Good Time by agreeing to have a good time, remember them fondly, speak of them kindly and come back again. Roger that! I’m in.
While waiting for our Government House tour we walked across the street to inspect the Old Burying Ground founded in 1749. Some 12,000 souls were laid to rest here. Only 1,200 markers remain to represent them. Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica has watched over these dead since 1784.
We made the steep climb past colorful structures back to our hotel to pick up the car and continue our outing with a short road trip outside the city.
With Herring Cove in the background, Karen’s faithful driver waits in the kick-ass Mustang that served as our chariot for this adventure. We were following detailed directions from our good friend Tony Fry to Ketch Harbour where he spent his youthful summers.
The entire coast of Nova Scotia is peppered with coves and quaint fishing villages that beg to be explored. Our last and favorite stop for the day was Peggy’s Cove. The iconic light house stands guard atop a mass of fractured and jumbled granite that has been scoured smooth by crashing waves.
It was too cold to sit comfortably outside when we returned to Halifax for dinner at The Bicycle Thief on the waterfront. Nova Scotia native Julie Metledge made the reservation for us during our lengthy supper in the Philly airport. The meal was superb, but chilly for the blanket clad patrons dining al fresco.
It was a long and splendid first day, but Karen was not too tired to dance for a self-taught busker and increase his patronage by other tourists on the evening stroll after dinner. We were off to a great start and the best was yet to come.