Category Archives: Restaurants

Judique Cape Breton Noon Ceilidh

You know you are in Cape Breton when you take in a lunch time Ceilidh and enjoy a delicious seafood chowder. 

Just 20 minutes from the Canso Causeway along Highway 19 – the Ceilidh Trail is the village of Judique and the Celtic Music Interpretive Centre.  Local musicians perform fiddle and piano in Cape Breton style Scottish music at the Lunchtime Ceilidh. 

On our recent visit Donna DeWolfe on fiddle and Allan Dewar on piano entertained.  A guest piper from Antigonish, Heather MacIsaac added her talents on the small pipes. Listen to a brief clip on the link.

https://www.facebook.com/Outandaboutnovascotia/posts/2601290016630657

The chowder was delicious and the desert of warm Blueberry Bread Pudding was memorable.

Learn about the history of the area, the musicians and Scottish music.  Pickup a few steps on the video tutorial on step dancing.  The gift shop has a selection of books, CDs and gifts. 

Next to the center the Alexander trail is a cool and shady forest trail leading down to the Celtic Shores Coastal Trail – the 70 KM trail from the Causeway to Inverness.  Bikers and walkers enjoy this trail along the coastline with access to side trails leading to accommodations and food.  Cape Breton’s Musical Coast is a pleasure with changing vistas of ocean and a variety of topography.  Wild apples, berries, flowers changing with the seasons, small streams and bridges and coastal grasses.  Good opportunity for bird watching and chance sightings of fox or deer along the way.

More Information

Celtic Shores Coastal Trail

Celtic Music Interpretive Centre

Fish and Chips and a Drive? Ballantyne’s Cove

What about an afternoon drive out to Ballantyne’s Cove.  Heading out on Hwy 337N from Antigonish, past the Hospital from the end of Main Street you pass through luscious farmlands with views of the ocean.  Then up hill and down dale with wildflowers along the roadside and occasional views of the Northumberland shore.  Just as you reach Ballantyne’s Cove stop at the lookout for a spectacular view of the cove, St. George’s Bay and Cape George beyond.  You can use the map there to identify some of the places that you see including Cape Breton on the horizon.

Stroll around the marina and look at the Tuna fishing boats and pleasure boats.  Learn about Tuna and Tuna fishing at the Tuna Interpretive Centre.  Find some amazing facts about Tuna that have been caught in the area, the largest was over 1400 pounds.  The Tuna season runs from August through October.  Several tuna sport fishing charters are based here.

Behind the Interpretive Centre take a short walk to a crescent pebble beach perfect for dabbling your toes in the warm waters of St. George’s Bay, sunbathing and beach combing.

Enjoy a feed of Fish and Chips from Fish ‘N Ships.  Or select one of their burgers or an ice cream.

More Information

Fortress of Louisbourg

7 Fun Things to do in Louisbourg

 

 

There is so much to see and enjoy in Louisbourg plan on staying for 2-3 days if possible. Some of these suggestions are seasonal. Please check the website links for details of hours and specifics.

  1. Fortress of Louisbourg

Of course the Fortress of Louisbourg is the main attraction in Louisbourg. Give yourself at least 4-5 hours. There is so much to explore in the various houses and buildings. Talk to the people in their period costumes. You will hear stories and recounting of events and how people lived in 1744. Take one of their mini tours – check on the website or at the desk for what is available on the day you are there. The rebuilt fortress covers a large area so wear good walking shoes and bring your water bottle. Each season of the year has different types of activities. The “shoulder season” in the fall is a great time to visit with fewer crowds and more chance to ask questions. Parks Canada Website – National Historic Site Fortress of Louisbourg http://www.pc.gc.ca/eng/lhn-nhs/ns/louisbourg/visit.aspx

  1. Hike the Lighthouse Trail

The Louisbourg Lighthouse is the first lighthouse in Canada and the 2nd in all of North America. The trail is in various lengths and winds along the coast with terrific views of cliffs, cormorants, waves and a variety of vegetation and geology. The path is well maintained and just a few ups and downs. There are several hiking trails around Louisbourg https://www.facebook.com/pages/Louisbourg-Lighthouse-Coastal-Trail/573458949340263

  1. Eat Lobster

The Lobster Kettle restaurant in down town Louisbourg serves a whole lobster in a cute presentation. The lobster is delicious and a lovely setting on the deck overlooking the harbour. There is also inside seating if the weather is not great and other choices on the menu. http://www.lobsterkettle.com/

  1. Railroad Museum

The Sydney & Louisburg Railway Museum is on your right just as you are driving into town. Learn more about the relationship of the railway and marine trade and transport in 1895 hauling coal. Train buffs will love this and it brings the era to life through models, photos and artifacts. http://www.novascotiarailwayheritage.com/louisbourg.htm

  1. Louisbourg Playhouse

This performing arts center offers a variety of entertainers, musicians, plays. Check for programme details http://louisbourgplayhouse.ca/

  1. Beach trip

This beach is worth the 25 minute drive from Louisbourg along the Marconi Trail. I was really taken with the beach at Main A Dieu – a network of boardwalks through the seagrass and then a beautiful wide and long sandy beach. http://www.whatsgoinon.ca/cape-breton-beach-bum-adventures-main-a-dieu-beach/#.VCHXaRbP_sk

  1. Historical Dinner – The Beggar’s Banquet

Dine in 18th Century Style with delicious selection of lobster, crab, fish or chicken. This is an experience – not just a dinner. Dining room of Point of View Suites http://www.louisbourgpointofview.com/dining/

More Photos

 

Where to Stay

  • Point of View Suites. Beautiful location right on the coast with a view from the Fortress and across the bay to the Louisbourg Lighthouse. Spacious suites most furnished with a kitchen which makes it easy to stay a while and enjoy the area. http://www.louisbourgpointofview.com/
  • Cranberry Cove Inn. Easy to spot this place with its beautiful cranberry color and heritage house look. http://www.cranberrycoveinn.com
  • RV Park & Campground. On the main street of Louisbourg close to the boardwalk.  http://louisbourg.com/motorhomepark/
  • More Louisbourg accommodations on Trip Advisor http://www.tripadvisor.ca/Tourism-g499217-Louisbourg_Cape_Breton_Island_Nova_Scotia-Vacations.html

More Information (Links)

 

 

 

Enjoy an Acadian Lunch in Pomquet

 

 

Pockets of Acadian life are found throughout Nova Scotia. Pomquet is a small village just 20 min from Antigonish and just off the Trans Canada. It has a strong community spirit and beautiful setting.

You can enjoy an authentic Acadian Lunch at Chez DesLauriers in Pomquet village during the summer months. Every week has a different menu which you can find posted on their website. http://www.pomquet.net/en/chezdeslauriers.html

The setting is spectacular with Chez DesLauriers, a white heritage home on Monk’s Head having a view over St. George’s Bay and Pomquet Beach with a view to Cape Breton. Old photographs and antique home items provide the décor in the tea room. There is lively atmosphere from visitors and locals enjoying the food and company.   We enjoyed a great lunch of Fricot or Pate’ – both traditional Acadian dishes that I remember from my childhood.

Next door the Interpretive Centre describes the history, geology and formation of the area and the people who have lived here and their way of life.   In the area behind the house the Pomquet Acadian Walking Trails are well marked and take you across the grassy cliffs with views of the ocean, wending through the forest, or down along the beach.

In August there are two special Lobster Roll dinners to look forward to.

A Nova Scotia Lobster Feast

 

My daughter visited us in Nova Scotia recently from Vancouver and top of her wish list was to have a lobster.  It isn’t the lobster season in our area and although we could have a lobster dinner in a restaurant, or buy a lobster from a big chain grocery store that wasn’t the experience I wanted for her.  I grew up eating lobsters fresh from the pound and boiled on the beach – or a feed of lobster on the back yard picnic table. No fancy dinner just butter for dipping and lots of newspaper and dripping juicy lobster.

On a tip from my sister we found a great place that gave the real experience.  Ryer Lobsters is just 2 KM past Peggy’s Cove when you are heading from the Halifax side, in the village of Indian Harbour.  It would be easy to miss it but watch on the water side.  On first site it just looks like a big shed.  However this is a lobster pound with the fresh seawater flowing through a huge tank of live lobsters.  We ordered our lobsters, weighed them out and Ryan popped them into the cauldron of boiling water.  While we waited our 20 minutes we enjoyed delicious oysters on the half shell with tabasco and fresh lemon.

What a feast!  Around the back there are picnic tables with a fantastic view of the harbour.  The lobsters came fully cracked and easy to open but still all in a piece.  Lobster bibs, picking tools and an incredible sweet taste of fresh lobster.  This was the real thing!  Just as good as at home in the backyard or on the beach.   Unfortunately no license so if you want a beer you can take them home with you or to your picnic spot.

Ryer Lobsters is open year round.  So if you are craving a lobster feast on your Nova Scotia travels head there for the real thing.

Antigonish Beaches along Saint George’s Bay

Antigonish is blessed with a variety of beaches within a half hour drive all along the St George’s Bay coastline.  This posting is about the beaches along Highway 337 going north along the coast from Antigonish.  I enjoy hunting for colorful stones and shells, breathing the fresh sea air and beach walks.

The Sunrise Trail

Traveling from the East end of Antigonish you have the beaches and coves along the Sunrise Trail (HWY 337) – Mahoneys Beach, Jimtown, Cribbons, Crystal Cliffs, Balantyne’s Cove and Cape George.   Each of these has its own charm and atmosphere.  As the name “Sunrise Trail” suggests, these beaches are facing to the East and a good place to see the sunrise.    Head out of town on Hwy 337 past the Museum and railway tracks and up past the hospital.

The first beach you come to is Mahoney’s Beach. it’s great for a long walk along the ocean or lagoon side.  I saw 6 blue herons here the other day standing in the still water of the lagoon at sunset.   You will often see paddlers and Kayaks exploring the area – the outlet from Antigonish Harbour is here.  This is a pebble beach with some sand on the lagoon side.   It’s a great place for a beach campfire.

Jim Town Beach is a stretch of sandy beach with Ogden Pond on the inland side.  At low tide you can walk towards Mahoneys Beach.   Watch for the currents at this beach as the fresh water runs out into the ocean at this point.  This is a good beach for watching sea birds, beach combing and beautiful views of the hills and homes surrounding this tiny beach.  Stop and see the tiny white country church along the access road.

Cribbons Point comes next.  This is not a beach but I am including it because during the summer season you will find Boyd’s Seafood Galley with a delicious selection of fish and chips, lobster, calamari, shrimp, scallops and burgers for the non-seafood eater.  Fresh salads and ice cream top off their menu.  The restaurant is perched above the harbour with a good view of the fishing boats and pleasure crafts.  Eat in the gazebo, patio area, inside or take-out and explore the wharf area.  This is only 20 minutes from Antigonish so head here for a great seafood dinner any night of the week.

Ballantyne’s Cove is a working fishing wharf.  The Tuna Interpretive Center is worth exploring and if you are a big game fisherman you would be interested in the tuna charters that head out on angling expeditions.  Just behind the Tuna Center take the path to the beach.

As you travel a bit further up the coast explore the Cape George Lighthouse and trails.  This is the Northern tip of the St. George’s Bay.  No beach here but gorgeous views of the entire Bay and over to Cape Breton Island.  At this point you can retrace your drive to Antigonish or continue on to Arisaig and come back by the land route returning onto Hawthorne Street in Antigonish.

Future posts will explore the beaches on the Northumberland shore towards Arisaig, and another along  Hwy 104 heading towards Cape Breton

Map

Antigonish to Cape George

Be Prepared

Take water, sunscreen, a jacket, hat, snacks, beach shoes.  There is little or no shade on these beaches so take what you need to be comfortable.

For More Information

The Prissy Pig Café and Deli

 

 

For a tasty meal in attractive surroundings and enjoy local produce – head to the Prissy Pig Café and Deli on St. Andrew’s Street  at the corner of Main Street, Antigonish.

The Prissy Pig Cafe' and Deli

The Prissy Pig Cafe' and Deli

According to the General Manager, “The restaurant has evolved over the past eight months in response to the market.    The Prissy Pig was started and is owned by a number of local farmers in the area who are shareholders.   We attempt to use local products in a 100 mile radius from Antigonish.  We believe in sustainable development and the importance of using and supporting local producers. “

“Breakfast is a popular meal here for a healthy start to the day and a great value.

Prissy Pig Daily Menu Specials

Prissy Pig Daily Menu Specials

Lunch and brunch is also busy with different menu items featured daily depending on the chef and local produce.   We always have vegetarian selections and if you don’t see a vegan option ask the chef to produce something fresh.”   On Sunday we often have live music from a local musician.

I really enjoyed the “Pulled Pork” sandwich – a very generous serving with delicious and tender meat.  The

Prissy Pig Deli

Prissy Pig Deli

apple cider glazed meatballs were a delicious evening selection.   The paté from the deli was a great treat.   The chef, Mary Gillis leads the staff in preparation of new recipes for sandwiches, wraps, soups, pasta bar, hickory ribs and luscious desserts.   The home-cooked meals are tasty and there is an attractive selection from the salad and pasta bar.

The décor is bright and cheery with windows on three sides and bright designs on the walls which feature an art gallery with rotating exhibitions planned.

Enjoying a coffee with friends

Enjoying a coffee with friends

The plush leather chairs and coffee tables in the corners give a relaxed and welcoming place to sit with your friends for a cup of coffee or a snack.  Several of the diners remarked that they come in often and enjoy meeting friends in the friendly atmosphere.

Comfortable homey setting

Comfortable homey setting

The management is concerned with being environmentally conscious and in fair trade. The Prissy Pig Café & Deli serves “Just Us” Coffee and organic teas. Management is constantly looking for ways to lessen environmental impact, from being energy efficient, to using packaging and containers that have a lesser impact on the environment.

Future plans include landscaping, improvements to the façade, opening for dinner (evenings) and a license for beer and wine.

Local suppliers of baked goods, deserts, farm produce and other local products are encouraged to contact management for possible collaboration.  Local musicians and artists are also welcome.

Prissy Pig Cafe' and Deli

Prissy Pig Cafe' and Deli

The Prissy Pig caters to events and parties.  They supply everything including pickup and delivery for catered events to make your life easy.   Or you can host your business party or meeting on location in their lounge style setting.

The deli / retail area features Tony’s meats with a delicious selection of sausages, pate’, ham  and sliced meats; local cheese from Knoydart Farms; Haveracres Maple Syrup and Lo Dolce Terra Honey.

For a tasty meal in attractive surroundings and to support local farmers – head to the Prissy Pig on Main Street Antigonish.  This is a great new addition in town.  Be sure to drop in.   Students with ID get a discount.   20 St. Andrews Street, Antingonish, NS B2G 2H1.  Hours Monday to Saturday 7AM to 7 PM. Sunday 7AM to 4PM.

Check out their Facebook Group for daily specials:  http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=128315050521433