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“Definitely worth a visit!”
Review of Highland Village

Highland Village
Ranked #1 of 3 things to do in Iona
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Experience the lifestyle of the Scots in Nova Scotia at the Village's Outdoor Pioneer Museum or look up your Cape Breton roots at the Genealogy and Family History Centre. The Highland Village is situated on a beautiful site overlooking the Bras d'Or Lakes and is open from May to mid October.
Reviewed 11 August 2014

It is a self-guided place but there are interpreters dressed in costumes around to answer any questions. We really enjoyed our visit - there was a music festival for that Saturday and that was a treat. Take your time to walk through the village. The person at the blacksmith was very informative about people in the blacksmith trade.

Thank mhuang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxMacDonald, Public Relations Manager at Highland Village, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2014

I'm so pleased you were able to take in the Highland Village Day Concert while you were here. This was the 53rd edition of the event. Thank you for telling us about your visit.

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179 - 183 of 265 reviews

Reviewed 5 August 2014

Although you could rush through this attraction, I don't know why you would want to. It is a real gem in a stunning setting with amazing people that are a wealth of knowledge about another way of life.

My husband and I had so thoroughly enjoyed the Fortress of Louisburg that we had no doubts that we would equally enjoy the Highland Village. It is obviously much smaller but well worth the time you can afford to spend.

The village takes you through a time travel experience starting from when the Scots were in Scotland and being offering land grants in Nova Scotia You then travel with them from the late 1700's through to 1920, visiting them in their homes and seeing how their lives changed over the decades.

Many of the characters who are "acting out" the parts are older people who have a real appreciation of their heritage and an incredible wealth of knowledge we loved tapping into. At one house, we sat and spoke with the woman for about 45 minutes and felt we had enjoyed a conversation with someone really living in a different century.

There was only one young woman in the store who wasn't talkative or particularly informative. Otherwise, everyone was amazing, thoroughly knowledgeable and happy to share. My husband, a retired medical doctor, asked all sorts of questions and was amazed at the depth of knowledge.

Our time spent, which ended up being well over 3 hours, was time well spent. We better understood the culture and history and came away with an incredible appreciation of the Gaelic history in Nova Scotia. The icing on the cake at this attraction is that the scenery is absolutely stunning. You feel like you are on top of the world and it is beyond beautiful. What a way to spend part of your day!

1  Thank Jan J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxMacDonald, Public Relations Manager at Highland Village, responded to this reviewResponded 13 August 2014

I could not have written a description of the Highland Village nearly as well as you have in the first paragraph of your comments. Thank you for taking the time to pass on your very thoughtful comments.

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Reviewed 23 July 2014

This museum is just about the right size, takes about two hours to walk around. Quite a steep climb to the start. Chronological progression aids understanding. Lots of stuff on display and very knowledgable helpful staff. I particularly enjoyed seeing how flax is processed in the first steps to making linen. It is an exposed site so if it is either raining heavily or very fierce sunlight you will need protection of umbrella or hat. If raining could be muddy and slippery. Fantastic views across the bay and of the bridge. Lots of boats sailing on the water when we went which added to the attraction. They speak Gaelic and plenty of opportunity to try it out if you aren't shy.

Thank Katie906
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxMacDonald, Public Relations Manager at Highland Village, responded to this reviewResponded 25 July 2014

Thank you for mentioning the many opportunities to try out the Gaelic language. There are many opportunities to get involved in activity at the Highland. We feel it is important to offer this but not to pressure the visitors in any way. This means that you can experience the Highland Village your way.

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Reviewed 20 July 2014

While a bit off the beaten path, this is an exceptional site to visit. Not only are there houses, but very skilled and interesting interpreters stationed within to help explain and answer questions about the Scottish culture that was transplanted to Cape Breton. It is on a hill overlooking the lakes and everywhere there is something to delight photographers. The steepness of the hill may pose some issues for those with walking issues, but the trails from house to house are quite good and there are benches to stop and sit to pace yourself.

1  Thank John H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxMacDonald, Public Relations Manager at Highland Village, responded to this reviewResponded 25 July 2014

Thank you for the kind words. We are very pleased to hear your comments on the fine work our interpreters do in relating the story of Gaelic settlement in Nova Scotia.

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Reviewed 15 July 2014

This is a wonderful place to learn about the immigration and settlement of the Scottish in Nova Scotia. As you visit the 11 buildings you'll get a chance to speak to one of the highland villagers and learn their story and watch them going about their duties. This may be weaving, cooking or working with the animals. The village is on a hillside with a beautiful view of Bras d'Or Lake. The gift shop also carries a good selection of celtic music. It's well worth the visit.

1  Thank Jennifer S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MaxMacDonald, Public Relations Manager at Highland Village, responded to this reviewResponded 18 July 2014

Thank you very much for the thoughtful comments, Jennifer. The attached photos also help others to see some of the beauty that you experienced while visiting with us.Thanks for taking the time to visit with us and sharing your thoughts about the experience.

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