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Enjoy Your Custom Adventure.
Dive into Acadian Culture, Heritage and Scenic Beauty!

Place of departure

Canso Causeway




Chéticamp, Isle Madame, Louisbourg

Note :The distances to be covered and the time required to do so are approximate. They are based on driving according to the speed limits in force. The distances between the regions represent the shortest distance between them from their respective limits, unless otherwise noted.

Days 1 and 2: Cabot Trail with your arrival in Chéticamp

Region: Chéticamp

Travel distance: 229 km

Travel time: 6 to 12 hours including frequent stops along the Cabot Trail.* (*Travel distance and times will vary depending on where you begin today’s journey). This winding road with frequent climbs and descents, has lookouts overlooking spectacular views. A journey of 6 to 12 hours is expected to appreciate its splendor.

Skyline Trail, Cabot Trail

Begin your day at the Canso Causeway, the rock-filled causeway in Nova Scotia that connects Cape Breton Island to mainland Nova Scotia. The causeway itself is an engineering marvel, with the Strait of Canso being one of the deepest straits in the world. As you cross the Canso Causeway, make a short stop at Port Hawkesbury, a gateway to Cape Breton Island. Grab a breakfast bite and perhaps some snacks for the road. Once you’re ready, head north on the Cabot Trail. This world-famous scenic roadway is renowned for its stunning vistas, winding roads, and picturesque landscapes. The trail loops around the northern part of Cape Breton Island, offering views of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, lush highlands, and rugged coastline.

As you continue along the Cabot Trail, consider a detour through the Margaree Valley. This area is famous for its salmon-filled rivers, charming farmland, and artisanal shops. Maybe even try your hand at fly-fishing if time allows. Before reaching Chéticamp, you'll pass through a significant portion of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. This national park is home to stunning plateaus, lush forest valleys, and steep coastal cliffs. Make a point to stop at some of the lookout points for unforgettable views and photo opportunities. One of the most recommended hikes in the Cape Breton Highlands National Park, the Skyline Trail, offers an easy walking path with a payoff of dramatic cliffside views over the Gulf of St. Lawrence. If you're up for a hike, this trail is a must-do, though be sure to budget about 2-3 hours for the round trip.

As the day winds down, you'll arrive at the vibrant Acadian fishing village of Chéticamp. This town is renowned for its rich Acadian culture, which is expressed through its music, dance, and art. You'll see distinct French influences everywhere, from street signs to the local cuisine. Treat yourself to a hearty seafood dinner in Chéticamp. The town boasts an array of restaurants where you can savor fresh lobster, clams, mussels, and other maritime delicacies.


Paddeling in Chéticamp

Spend a perfect day in Chéticamp, immersed in the vibrant spirit of Acadian culture. Begin your morning at Freya and Thor, where you can enjoy a delightful coffee and explore their art gallery, surrounded by inspiring creativity.

Next, journey to the Mi-Carême Center, a whimsical hub of Acadian traditions. Immerse yourself in cultural experiences and uncover the fascinating facets of this cherished local tradition.

If the weather is favorable, make your way to St. Pierre Beach, a serene oasis where you can relax by the water's edge and bask in the beauty of the surroundings. As the day unfolds, explore the charming streets of Chéticamp, discovering local shops and boutiques that showcase Acadian crafts and arts.

For dinner, head to one of the restaurants in Chéticamp, where you'll discover the authentic flavors of Acadian cuisine. There, delectable dishes that celebrate seasonal local produce and the rich culinary heritage of the region await you. In just one day, you'll weave a tapestry of Acadian experiences, from cultural immersion to culinary delights, in the heart of Chéticamp.

Day 3: Visit the Fortress of Louisbourg

Region: Louisbourg

Travel distance: 150 km

Travel time: 2 hours and 15 minutes

Fortress of Lousibourg National Historic Site

Uncover the lifestyles of early French settlers in the New World as you traverse the Fortress of Louisbourg. This remarkable reconstruction transports you to the 18th century - meet community members, told through engaging interpreters in period attire. Be cautious not to speak English at the entrance, lest you're seized as an English spy!

The sprawling fortress, the largest historical reconstruction in North America, requires a minimum three-hour exploration. Afterward, embark on a coastal hike to Louisbourg Lighthouse and end your day with a remarkable 18th-century dining experience at the Beggars Banquet. Don't forget to check the trail's accessibility on-site. Enjoy this immersive journey into history!

Day 4: Isle Madame

Region: Isle Madame

Travel distance: 165 km

Travel time: 1 hour and 20 minutes

The Groundswell - Oceanfront Pub and Boutique Inn

Venture to the captivating Isle Madame. Begin at La Picasse community center in Petit-de-Grat to explore Acadian heritage, then discover the island's shipbuilding history at the LeNoir Forge Museum and Boat Barn.

Relish the traditional meat pie, and savor freshly harvested seafood at local spots. Stay at Clairestone Inn or Groundswell for memorable dining experiences, outdoor adventures, and stunning ocean views.

Mark your calendar for the Petit-de-Grat Acadian Festival in August, or the exciting Isle Madame Yacht Race in July. Enjoy music festivals like Bluegrass and Old Time Country Music Festival and Codstock. Wit

Day 5: Return to departure destination – Canso Causeway

Begin your day on Isle Madame, an archipelago with a rich Acadian history. If you haven't already, take a morning stroll along the shores of one of its islands, enjoying the tranquil atmosphere. Before you embark on your journey, enjoy breakfast at a local café or bakery, savoring the flavors of this coastal gem. As you leave Isle Madame, consider a stop at Lennox Passage Provincial Park, located on the southeastern coast of Cape Breton. It's a lovely place for a brisk walk or to simply appreciate the views of the Lennox Passage.

As you head towards the Canso Causeway, you'll skirt the southern edges of the Bras d'Or Lake, an inland sea and UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The lake is a blend of salt and fresh water and is home to diverse wildlife. There are several scenic viewpoints along the way, perfect for capturing photos or taking a moment to breathe in the fresh maritime air.

Before reaching the Canso Causeway, you'll pass through Port Hawkesbury. This town is a hub of activity and serves as the gateway to Cape Breton Island. Here, you can indulge in some last-minute shopping or enjoy a late lunch or early dinner at one of the local restaurants.

As the sun begins to lower, you'll find yourself back at the Canso Causeway. Reflect on your adventures, from the serene landscapes of Isle Madame to the bustling energy of Port Hawkesbury.

We hope your stay was pleasant and our itinerary was to your satisfaction,

feel free to plan your next trip to Nova Scotia by using our other itinerary selections.

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