Experience the cheerful Acadian Charm of Cheticamp, located on the west coast of Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. Enjoy its folklore, savour its coastal culinary traditions and live some of your most unforgettable moments along its scenic ocean shores!
Visit endearingly colourful cafés and boutiques inspired by Cheticamp’s historical foundations, where residents greet you with a wonderfully wholehearted welcome. Explore Cheticamp’s fabulously unique cultural centres and art galleries, and capture the stunning ocean sunsets along the boardwalk wharves and beaches, while relentless waves carve the picturesque wild coastline as far as the eye can see.
Acadian Cuisine Experiences:
L’Abri Café & Restaurant is a local favourite for deliciously balanced meals with a modern seasonal twist. Fantastic coastal views from the restaurant’s dining room and outdoor patio divinely complement the menu’s gourmet flavours, making it an epicurean treat for the senses!
With the open sea only footsteps away, Cheticamp's restaurants and bars invite you to treat your tastebuds to some of the freshest and juiciest seafood dishes you’ll ever taste. Complete your experience with an enlightening visit to the fish market, chat with local fishermen of Cheticamp, and get the fresh catch of the day to cook yourself.
Celebrate Local Acadian Music and Culture:
Cheticamp is a vibrantly fun community that is “toujours chantante” (always singing)! You’ll always find great musicians playing somewhere in town from spring to fall here. And quite often, where there is fiddle music, there are step dancers and square sets. Le Parc du Pêcheur and most bars and restaurants host live traditional music performances during the summer months.
Acadians of Cheticamp love celebrating their heritage, culture, and traditions, which is also why you can look forward to experiencing 6 exciting annual festivals:
1. With the end of winter comes the week-long Mi-Carême Festival.
This centuries-old tradition has been proudly celebrated every winter since 1785, when Acadians first settled in the area; but it possibly even stems from European medieval times. Originally serving as a respite during a 40-day period of repentance and abstention known as Lent, Mi-Carême has preserved its delightfully topsy-turvy spirit to this day. Enjoy immersive cultural experiences infused with this delightfully quirky Acadian tradition all through Summer!
Immerse yourself in a vibrant celebration of Acadian heritage within the natural beauty of Cheticamp’s region. With the arrival of June, get a taste of what it means to be Acadian by joining the events organized throughout the community during the “Roots and Boots” festival, showcasing a wonderfully unique blend of local entertainment: from concerts to savouring local flavourful foods and including storytelling, hiking, treating yourself to songwriters’ circles and enjoying the fun of a late night square dance!
Serving as the perfect embodiment of just how truly “toujours chantante” Cheticamp is (“always singing”), the DoryMan Pub’s KitchenFest is where residents of this vibrant Acadian fishing village go to enjoy “good music, good food and good times”!
Enjoy the best of local talent during the annual KitchenFest event in early July at this local favourite venue and treat yourself to an authentically local feast of the senses!
4. The Festival de l’Escaouette is an exciting colourful summer event held at the beginning of August in the heart of Cheticamp. Join local residents and share the wonderful fun of Acadian traditions and celebrations including an art exhibit, workshops, a festival race, family-fun activities, a parade, a gala, and of course, an abundance of traditional Acadian music and dance!
With multiple exciting venues showcasing all sorts of immersive cultural events and featuring fantastic local and international musical talent, get a taste of Cape Breton’s best celebrations during a magical time of year where the golden, orangey and red-hued foliage sets on the highlands. How about a musical & cultural appetizer? Listen to some of the Celtic Colours recordings available on Spotify, Deezer and on Youtube.
A festival for nature lovers! Explore the breathtaking Cape Breton’s highlands in the fall, and witness the magical colour show of reds, goldens and oranges set across the spectacular landscapes. Let the Cabot trail’s luxurious natural beauty enchant you, experience the exhilarating effect of the outdoors in this unmatched region, and let your heart be captured forever.
Treat yourself to the Acadian arts, crafts and music of Cheticamp:
In addition to festivals and year-round events, get the best of the region’s Acadian musical landscape by tuning in to 106.1 FM (or select “Live Radio”) for CKJM, Chéticamp’s French community radio station. Several times each day, they air a French segment called INFO TOURISME which lists ongoing summer activities in the area. Programming is also available online at https://www.ckjmfm.ca/.
Discover the unique and high-quality performances organized by Le Conseil des arts de Chéticamp throughout the year, which proudly showcase established and rising talents, such as the local school's young dancers of the "Swing du Suête" (a playful wink to Cheticamp's virulent winds the "suêtes"). Le Conseil des Arts de Chéticamp prides itself in offering a unique and enlightening artistic portrayal of Acadian culture to its audiences.
Unveil Cheticamp’s ancestral Rug Hooking tradition:
Discover the incredibly intricate art of the world-renowned Chéticamp Hooked Rug.
Hooked rugs were originally created for household use such as for covering floorboards and keeping feet warm during Cape Breton’s bitterly cold winter months.
The remarkable ancestral techniques have been passed down through generations and are still used today to create new hooked rug masterpieces. Let local experts introduce you to the wonders of this art, and uncover all sorts of amazing fun facts at the Elizabeth LeFort Gallery.
Feel the beautiful masterpieces work their awe-inspiring effect on you as you pause to admire Canada’s fabulous wool craft by local rug-hooking artists.
Did you know?
You can purchase hooked rugs in various sizes in three of Cheticamp's boutiques:
Make a lasting impact by purchasing a hooked rug from Cheticamp: not only will you be bringing home a locally-made souvenir from this quaint and friendly Acadian community, but you’ll also be contributing to the preservation of one of its most remarkable ancestral traditions and supporting local artists!
(Even) more things to enjoy in the Cheticamp Area:
Whether you are visiting for a day or for a much longer time, Cheticamp has such a wealth of things to see, visit and enjoy for visitors who pause to appreciate its cultural and natural splendours.
➡️ Uncover its unique Fishing Heritage:
Take a stroll on the wharves to take a closer look at the picturesque colourful fishing boats. Meet the local fishermen who are always eager to share their extraordinary sea stories and treasured memories of the good old days.
➡️ Whale Cruises
Captain Zodiac Whale Cruise in Chéticamp
Chéticamp Adventure Co - Jet Skis, Paddle Boards, Mountain Bikes/E-bikes -
Riverside Paddle Sports - E-scooters/bicycles
Keep an eye out for talented local crafters selling their handmade treasures and creations on the Quai Mathieu during the summer!
➡️ Hikes & Trails
➡️ Finding perfect unique souvenirs & gifts
La Bella Mona Lisa Gallery, 12225 Cabot Trail, in St-Joseph-du-Moine
➡️ Beach fun, fishing & chasing sunsets!
Gather sea glass, let the waves replenish your soul and energize you as you create wonderful memories along the shores of Cheticamp. Being on the Western part of Cape Breton Island, the sunsets are a show of their own, with deep oranges, pinks, reds and even violet hues, they'll leave a lasting mark on your soul!
➡️ Other activities & information:
Cheticamp Visitor Centre, located at the west entrance of the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. T: 1-902-224-2642).