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Pack your bags and get your appetites ready as we set off on a journey full of culinary delights and outdoor adventure throughout the Canadian Maritimes. A time to taste, tour and explore!
From delectable seafood feasts to the charming warmth and hospitality of the locals to the breathtaking coastal views that seem to stretch to eternity. Welcome the majestic Canadian Maritimes.🇨🇦
My girlfriends and I visited the Canadian Maritimes in September and had the most amazing 8-day adventure where we indulged in farm-to-table adventures, stayed in the gorgeous inns, airbnb’s and luxury hotels and experienced adventures like none other.
Our journey begins at the Bay of Fundy in New Brunswick. The Bay of Fundy, located between the provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in Canada, is renowned for having the highest tides in the world. A pitstop at the Hopewell Rocks Provincial Park is the perfect start to the journey.
From there the path leads us to the enchanting Prince Edward Island for a glimpse at its renowned picturesque landscapes, characterized by rolling hills, red sandstone cliffs, and sweeping beaches. The island boasts a thriving culinary scene, with a focus on fresh, locally sourced ingredients. seafood, particularly oysters and mussels and of course potatoes!
We attended two genuinely unique farm-to-table dining events: The Culinary Studio Dinner & Chef Michael Smith’s Inn at Bay Fortune Fireworks Dinner. Both events showcasing the fresh foods of PEI and the wonderful charm of the locals. A truly authentic experience showcasing PEI hospitality that will be forever etched in our hearts.
Then, we will venture over to Nova Scotia and onto the Cabot Trail on beautiful Cape Breton Island. We will embark on a 3-day adventure of hiking, sea kayaking and of course plenty of eating!
Our dining experience in Cape Breton unfolded at the Woodroad Dining Experience. Crafting something extraordinary, Chef Daryl MacDonnell, his brother and the rest of their amazing team curated an unforgettable culinary affair, showcasing sensational dishes amongst breathtaking views.
In Halifax, we spent time perusing along the harbour front and stayed at the luxurious 5-star Muir Hotel. Halifax, a vibrant urban pulse beats against a historic backdrop, inviting exploration of its waterfront, amazing dining and rich maritime heritage.
Peggy’s Cove beckons with its iconic lighthouse standing over weathered granite rocks, while Lunenburg whispers tales of seafaring history through its vibrant, UNESCO-listed streets. We enjoyed a seafood tower overlooking the picturesque and colourful harbour.
This road trip is a symphony of coastal wonders, each stop a new movement in a harmonious journey through the soul-stirring beauty of Canada’s maritime provinces.
I made these handy Tri-Fold Brochures that are printable & editable Itinerary packages for my friends. The brochure includes a day-by-day account of events, highlighted activities, flight and car information and more. It really came in handy to have on hand! I also included a Travel Packing List. This packing list is incredible and we even tweaked it since returning home as we missed some essential items!
The best thing about the Itinerary brochure was having all of our information at our fingertips. This included all of our scheduled adventure activities, dinners and hotel reservations. Everyone just loved how organized and easy it was to fit into our backpacks and purse. It is such a nice souvenir from our trip.
Follow Our Journey: Google Maps
The Itinerary By Day
Day 1: Hopewell Rocks: Bay of Fundy and Cavendish. Accommodations: The Gables of PEI
Day 3: Inn At Bay Fortune and the Fireworks Feast Culinary Experience and stay. Accommodations: The Inn at Bay Fortune
Day 4: Travel from PEI to Nova Scotia on the Northumberland Car Ferry and then a drive to Inverness, Cape Breton and a stay for 3 nights to travel around the Cabot Trail. Accommodations: Airbnb- Beautiful Vacation Home in Inverness at Cabot.
Day 5: We booked a Sea Kayaking tour at North River Kayak Tours and then indulged in a spectacular dinner at the Woodroad Dining Experience that I will talk more about below. Accommodations: Airbnb – Beautiful Vacation Home in Inverness at Cabot.
Day 6: Today we drive and take a scenic hike at the Skyline Trail and discover the natural beauty of the Cabot Trail drive ring and finish back at our Airbnb for a final night stay. Accommodations: Airbnb – Beautiful Vacation Home in Inverness at Cabot.
Day 7: Journey to Halifax and check in at the 5-star Muir hotel and explore the beautiful Halifax harbour and Maritime Museum. Accommodations: Muir Hotel, Halifax
The Food Journey
We indulged in three separate Culinary Dining Experiences throughout PEI and Nova Scotia that all featured farm-to-table and 6-7 course meals made by passionate and very talented Chefs.
The 3 Dining Experiences that we participated in are:
- The Table Culinary Studio, New London PEI
- The Inn At Bay Fortune, Fortune Bridge PEI
- The Woodroad Dining Experience, Cape Breton Island
Each dining experience varied slightly from the next but absolutely amazing and a must-try if you love food!
Our first dining experience was at The Table Culinary Studio and is located near Cavendish, PEI. This unique dining experience is located inside an old church that has been converted to a open kitchen and seating for only 26 people.
The culinary affair features all ingredients that can be found on PEI only. Chef Hunter Guindon is super talented and creatively using PEI inspired ingredients to make incredible authentic dishes. Every ingredient is sourced from PEI including using rhubarb juice to replace lemons and limes! How cool is that? Chef Hunter and his team worked in symphony with each other to ensure that our meal was seamless. The food, staff and presentation of food was amazing. A true authentic PEI experience.
The Chef’s Menu changes weekly so you will never experience the same dining adventure. Some of the delightful dishes that we enjoyed were the freshest tomatoes with a basil pesto sauce and a homemade mozzarella stick(so good), scallops in a lobster beurre blanc, a medley of beets done different ways (amazing presentation), mussels in wine, marinated and slow roasted pork belly, and a panna cotta with a wild blueberry sauce.
Here are some of the pictures of the dishes that we enjoyed at the Table Culinary Studio.
Our second dining experience was at the Inn at Bay Fortune and is located in Fortune Bridge, PEI. The dining experience is called the Fireworks Feast. Chef Michael Smith together with his wife Chastity Smith offers a magical dining experience and 5-star accommodations. Their inn is warm, inviting and something special and unique that you won’t find likely anywhere. Chef Michael Smith and Farmer Kevin use their planet-friendly approach and do a wonderful job of showcasing their culinary passion with their community in mind. 🇨🇦 ❤️
The Fireworks dining experience takes place over 4 hours and includes a Guided Farm Tour, Oyster hour (so much fun), and then on to the dining room for the FireWorks Feast! They are serving up true tastiness in the most classy way.
Chef Michael Smith, is a restauranteur, innkeeper, author, Food Network Host, sustainability advocate, nutritional activist. Chef Michael Smith, C.M. is a member of the Order of Canada, Prince Edward Island’s Food Ambassador, a best-selling cookbook author, educator, professional chef and home cook. He is a pretty amazing guy and we were extremely lucky to have had the chance to meet him personally. I remember watching his cooking shows years ago and loved his healthy cooking recipes and his amazing closet of ingredient jars! I always wished to visit PEI one day. It was a true honour to have met him.
The Oyster hour is set in and amongst their farm and features ember roasted oysters, unlimited raw oysters and three fire stations with hors d’oeuvre’s cooked or smoked with live fire. It’s non stop shucking and cocktail making for one hour outdoors amongst the farm. And let me tell you, it is a lot of FUN!
We ate so many oysters we lost count! The food and cocktails were incredible!
After the Oyster hour, Chef Smith made a toast to all of his guests, staff and expressing gratitude for the food we were about to eat! We were then ushered into the dining room for the FireWorks Feast! And what a feast it was!
Here are some of the dishes and appetizers that we enjoyed throughout the evening.
FireWorks Feast - the Oyster hour
fireworks feast - dinner
the charming inn at bay fortune
The Inn at Bay Fortune is a beautiful welcoming place starting with the wonderful staff, to the incredible grounds and farm to the gorgeously decorated rooms. The Inn features high-end designs, colourful, cozy and charming. Our stay was very memorable and can’t wait to return again one day soon. Here are some pictures of the grounds, kitchen and accomodations.
3. The Woodroad dining experience - cape breton island
The Woodroad dining experience offers seating for 26 and is perched up on a bluff and offers stunning views of the St.Lawerence. The intimate dining area has an open kitchen where Chef Daryl MacDonnell, his brother Peter MacDonnell and the team are cooking up something special by creating an awesome and a very genuine dining experience. We indulged in a 6-course Chef’s Menu that featured some of the most dreamy heart-warming dishes.
The food and recipes are all made by scratch and served so creatively. The food was amazing my personal favourite dish was the Lobster Lasagne in a creamy sauce that was magnificent!
The menu changes frequently and will have foods that include the land and sea. Their hospitality was so inviting and it honestly felt that we were invited into their home for an authentic Maritime Dinner. Another memorable dining experience. Here are pictures of some of the dishes that we enjoyed.
Notable Canadian Maritime Restaurants
Aside from these extravagant dining experiences I must mention some of the other restaurants that we visited because they were also so darn good!
- The Blue Muscle Cafe, North Rustico Harbour PEI
- Carr’s Oyster Bar, Cavendish PEI
- The Annex, Inverness Cape Breton Island
- Drift at the Muir, Halifax Nova Scotia
- Rusty Anchor, Pleasant Bay Cape Breton
- The Bicylcle Thief, Halifax Nova Scotia
- 5 Fisherman, Halifax Nova Scotia
- The Half Shell Oyster Bar, Lunenburg Nova Scotia
So after all this good eating, getting out and exploring nature is a must! The Maritimes are so picturesque and experiencing the great outdoors on Canada’s East Coast is definitely one for the dream-list!
Here are the outdoor activities that we can recommend to add to your travel planning.
- Visit the Bay of Fundy Tides in Hopewell Rocks Provincial Park
- E-Biking along the coast near North Rustico Harbour in PEI
- Hiking the Skyline Trail along the Cabot Trail on Cape Breton Island
- Sea Kayaking in the North River located on Cape Breton Island
- Visit the Maritimes Museum in Halifax (Titanic Exhibit)
- Walking along the rocks of Peggy’s Cove
- Visit the picturesque village and UNESCO World Heritage site of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia
- Spa Amenities at the Muir Hotel in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Parting Bites to a Foodie's Journey
From the rich farmlands of PEI to the scenic drives along Cape Breton Island and the rugged coasts of Nova Scotia; the Canadian Maritimes are surely a beautiful trip for consideration.
I feel so lucky to have been able to set off on a trail of world-class foods, great local hospitality and fun outdoor adventures together shared with my great friends.
I hope that you found my article to be helpful if you are considering booking a Canadian Maritime Trip! I also have a great article on the South Shore of Nova Scotia if you have time to extend your Maritime Adventure it is also very beautiful to discover.
Please feel free to contact me for any questions that you may have! I would love to help out with your planning! ❤️❤️