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Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Salisbury
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255 posts
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Halifax to Cape Breton travel

We are hoping to visit Cape Breton next summer from the Uk and would welcome any useful advice. I believe the nearest airport that we can fly into from London is Halifax. What options are there for getting from there to Cape Breton other than driving? Is there a rail link and, if so, does anyone know their website address please? (It doesn't seem to be covered by VIARAIL). Alternatively, can we fly between the two and, if so, which airline covers that route? Also, if we were coming for two weeks, would we be best advised to spend most of that time on Cape Breton (perhaps with a few days in Halifax) or should we try and take in Prince Edward Island, or somewhere else, as well? Finally, would it be best to hire a car on CB for most of our stay or is there sufficient public transport and/or tours to get around everywhere? We are in our early 60s and enjoy a mixture of exploring and relaxing - CB looks the ideal place to do both. Any advice or info would be much appreciated.

Longwood, Florida
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1. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Hello Mary ES:

Have you tried going to Sydney NS airport ? There are direct flights from Halifax and Montreal with fairly good connections from London

airports. Also CATFERRY from Maine runs in season some kind of tour to Cape Breton for I believe 5 days. You might check their website.

No matter how you go to Cape Breton, you will have a wonderful time.

Cape Breton Island...
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2. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Hello, just to start off. Get yourself the free Doers and Dreamers Guide Book. www.novascotia.com. Some websites for you to check are: www.sydneyairport.ca for flight infor. and www.halifaxairport.com. It is a little pricey from Halifax to Sydney but only takes a short time. If you rent a car in Halifax, it only takes approx. 5 hours to drive to Sydney. Places of interest are easily accessible by car. No train service to Sydney, that dicontinued years ago. You can get the Acadian Lines bus to Sydney from Halifax, just make sure you get the express one.www.smtbus.com I would suggest Enterprise Car Rental in Sydney. Someone from Halifax can suggest one from there. I personally would suggest 1 week in Halifax/surrounding area and 1 week in Cape Breton which gives you a relaxing leisurely stay without tiring yourself out. I would skip PEI. Many tours available from your hotel or B&B. Enjoy yourself and ask more questions and we will try to help you out as much as possible.

Salisbury
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3. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Many thanks for those quick and helpful responses. I'll look at all those websites and report back.

Sydney
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4. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

As with proudcaper, I would recommend spending your two weeks in Nova Scotia splitting the time between Cape Breton and mainland Nova Scotia. Where you decide to stay/base yourself depends on whether you prefer staying in one place for a week and doing day trips from there rather than packing up and moving frequently or whether you would rather move to a different place every 3 or 4 days. My wife and I operate a b&B in Sydney and find that those guests that stay at least 3 days in a place actually have a better holiday than those who move every day. They actually get to experience a bit of the area and aren't at each others throats.

To me the three best areas of the province to visit, in that order, are Cape Breton, the "south shore" from Halifax to Lunenburg and the Annapolis valley. In Cape Breton, I would recommend spending at least 3 nights in the Sydney area visiting the Fortress of Louisbourg, the Cape Breton Miners Museum in Glace Bay, the Alexander Graham Bell Museum in Baddeck and the Highland Village in Iona. I would then head around the Cabot Trail spending at least one night on the Trail in either Cape North or Cheticamp. If you want to hike, go kayaking or go whale watching you may want to extend your time around the Trail.

On mainland Nova Scotia a drive along the South Shore visiting Peggy's Cove, Chester, Mahone bay and Lunenburg is a must. I wuld recommend staying in Lunenburg where Atlantic Sojourn B&B would be a good choice. While you are there a visit to the Atlantic Fisheries Museum is interesting and if you are lucky and time your visit right you may be able to get out on a day sail on the "Bluenose, Nova Scotia's famous racing schooner based in Lunenburg.

In the Annapolis Valley a visit to the "Habitation", Samuel de Champlain's first abode in North America is historically interesting and a visit to the museum at the Grand Pre National Historic Site near Wolfville, dedicated to the story of the expulsion of the Acadians is fascinating. In the Wolfville area I would recommend staying at Carwarden B&B, a historic home built at the turn of the century for a British Army Officer convalescing in the colonies.

As proudcaper suggested, get a copy of the Doers and Dreamers Guide which has all of the accommodation in the Province along with all of the attractions etc.

Cheers

Rick Bowers

A Paradise Found B&B

Sydney
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5. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Just a short note on transportation to get around the province. The best option is to rent a car in Halifax and drive yourself around the province. You can fly into Sydney but generally the fare from Halifax to Sydney is atrocious. There are also, as one of the other responders mentioned, some flights that fly in direct from Montreal, but if you intend visiting the rest of the province anyway arriving and departing via Halifax may make sense anyway. While you cango on a variety of tours (to Louisbourg, around the Cabot Trail, etc) they tend to be costly. A tour of the Cabot Trail will cost about $200 split by the number of people on the tour. Generally there are not a lot of people doing it that way so I would suggets it would be $200 for the 2 of you. My recommendation is clearly to rent a car. If you aren't dropping it off at the same place you rented it from (eg Halifax) you may be subject to a drop-off fee.

Cheers

Rick Bowers

A Paradise Found B&B

Sydney.

Sydney
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881 posts
3 reviews
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6. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Just a short note on transportation to get around the province. The best option is to rent a car in Halifax and drive yourself around the province. You can fly into Sydney but generally the fare from Halifax to Sydney is atrocious. There are also, as one of the other responders mentioned, some flights that fly in direct from Montreal, but if you intend visiting the rest of the province anyway arriving and departing via Halifax may make sense anyway. While you cango on a variety of tours (to Louisbourg, around the Cabot Trail, etc) they tend to be costly. A tour of the Cabot Trail will cost about $200 split by the number of people on the tour. Generally there are not a lot of people doing it that way so I would suggets it would be $200 for the 2 of you. My recommendation is clearly to rent a car. If you aren't dropping it off at the same place you rented it from (eg Halifax) you may be subject to a drop-off fee.

Cheers

Rick Bowers

A Paradise Found B&B

Sydney.

Salisbury
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255 posts
8 reviews
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7. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

Many thanks for that, Pfound. All really useful stuff. We have now booked flights to and from Halifax and our working on our itinerary. Really looking forward to it as the scenery looks wonderful.

8. Re: Halifax to Cape Breton travel

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