Colorful buildings are perched on the hillside above the picturesque harbour with the Bluenose II and other wooden ships from the 1800s. Lunenburg is one of Nova Scotia’s most photographed scenes. Your imagination takes you back to when this was a booming port with shipbuilding, fishing and trading.
Lunenburg is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site, one of only two urban communities in North America. The multi coloured houses and businesses that line the streets are well-preserved examples of a prosperous and bustling 18th century coastal town.
Explore the town on foot on your own, by horse drawn carriage, or with a guided walking tour. Enjoy the view while you row a dory along the waterfront, or take a sail on the Bluenose II.
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The original Bluenose was launched from Lunenburg as a Grand Banks fishing and racing schooner in 1921. The ship became a famous Nova Scotian icon and printed on the Canadian dime. The Bluenose II, replica now has its home port in Lunenburg and during the summer and fall has water tours and sails to different ports.
The Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic has fascinating stories and artifacts. Short films set the scene and helpful guides had stories of days gone by. The museum is set on 3 floors and a great view of the harbour ships and activities. The displays and interactive dioramas make you appreciate the lives and work of fisherman. An excellent gift shop is on the main floor.
There are many places to stay in the Old Town, but for my choice a perfect spot with a view of the Lunenburg town is the Top Mast Motel. The rooms are comfortable and the room patios overlook the waterfront and the Bluenose Golf Course next door. We enjoyed a lovely evening overlooking the harbour lights. The helpful manager provided a map and directions for things to do in the area and recommendations on places to eat.
Blue Rocks is a must visit – just a 20 minute drive to the east of Lunenburg. It has fascinating geology with folded sedimentary rocks with contrasting bands of blue, grey, brown, black and green are exposed along the tide line in fascinating shapes. A popular kayaking starting point, kayaks are available to rent at the General Store. The village has become a home to many artists.
- From Halifax – take Hwy 103 then 3 which is a lovely coastal drive through Chester and Mahone Bay. Both are worth a stop along the way. ( 1 hr 10 min)
- From Yarmouth take Hwy 103 through Barrington, Lockport and Liverpool.