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Halifax - a city with a
BIG town Heart!

The city of Halifax is probably one of the most interesting places to visit in Nova Scotia. It really feels like you are in a big town.

One of the many scenes along the waterfrontHalifax Waterfront

Great attractions, great music, great restaurants, great shopping, great museums and great people all await you in this big town with a big heart.

This is a port city so everything revolves around the waterfront! The waterfront is the place to be when you visit!! I can walk the waterfront for hours and always find something that I missed on my last walk.

The city, which is the capital of Nova Scotia, comes alive with great festivals every summer. There is something happening all summer long and there is something for everyone!

I really need to stress that this is a walking city. You can park your car (yes, you must pay for parking) and spend the day visiting the city. I guess I need to have a disclaimer here too! There are lots of hills so be prepared!

Dress like a tourist and you'll be fine!

One of the must-see attractions is the Citadel. The Halifax Citadel sits with pride in the middle of the city and has been protecting it since the city's founding in 1749. Actually, the current citadel is the 4th on this site.

The view of the downtown area from the citadel is not to be mssed!

Ariel View of the Halifax Citadel

A view of the Halifax Citadel & Halifax Harbour

Don't forget to check out the Town Clock! Actually, it is impossible to miss!! It is just below the citadel on Brunswick Street. The clock is a beautiful masterpiece that Haligonians are very proud of.

The Majestic Town Clock in Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Halifax Town Clock watching over the harbour.

Oops, I almost forgot! Folks from these parts call themselves 'Haligonians'!! I luv it!!

I mentioned that this is a port city, well, this means that folks who live here are very tied to the sea. All of Nova Scotia has a special connection to the sea.

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic gets to the very soul of this. It has a great location on the waterfront......a visit to this museum cannot be missed. I spent a full day there last summer and didn't see everything!

The Titanic display is very special. Many folks don't realize the role that the city played in the aftermath of this tragic event. This exhibit will tell you the story.

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Nova Scotia

A view from inside the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

You will always feel that you are close to the sea while you are here.

These maritimers are a proud bunch and they have seen sailors and soldiers come and go for almost 300 years.

Their safe return is always a celebration!

Monuments like this one of a sailor depict the immense pride of the city.

You can find this statue along the waterfront. Kids seem to love getting their picture taken along side it!!

Be sure to look for him, take a pic and send it to me for!!

Halifax Sailor Monument

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic also pays hommage to the Halifax Explosion which occurred December 1, 1917. World War I was raging in
Europe. Images of the aftermath of the explosion in the displays are haunting. The city would never forget!

A tribute to the strength of the city at this time can be found in the Hydrostone neighbourhood. This is the neighbourhood where the explosion
impact was felt the most. The area was rebuilt in a very extraordinary way. Check it is fantastic!!

The Hydrostone Market in Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Hydrostone Market

You can find the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 at the south end of the waterfront walk. Over 1 million immigrants landed in here between 1928-1971. And 500,000 military personnel departed from Pier 21 during World War II.

1 in 5 Canadians can trace their family's history to Pier 21! This is a unique and very moving place to visit.

The Old Burying Ground go back even further! It was first used in 1749 and many of the city's first citizens are buried here. I visited the grounds
and found the atmosphere to be oddly beautiful.

A nice place to take a break from the busy city which surrounds it.

The Public Gardens are also very beautiful but in a different way. This is a 17-acre formal Victorian garden founded in 1867. Complete with fountains, ponds, statues, trees, flowers and walking paths.

I found it to be a wonderful calming oasis in the middle of a modern city.

Halifax Public Gardens

The special things to see and do in Halifax are endless. If you want a bit more relaxation and nature-loving don't need to go far.

Peggy's Cove is a mere 40 km or 40 minutes from the city. You cannot miss a visit to the iconic lighthouse in Peggy's Cove.

Feel like spending the day at the beach?

Be sure to check out Crystal Crescent Beach which is only 30 km south of the city! There are actually 3 beaches complete with white sand reaching out to the Atlantic Ocean.

Maybe you want something closer to the city! Point Pleasant Park in the city's south end will meet your needs. There are 186 acres of walking and biking trails, fort ruins and towers that were once part of the city's defence system.

All at the entrance to the harbour and a stone's throw from the city centre.

Feel like going for a hike along the coast.  The Taylor Head Provincial Park offers some of the best coastal hiking anywhere in Nova Scotia.  It is only 1 hour from Halifax and offers 18 km of coastal hiking trails.

The very point at Taylor Head

Maybe you want something closer to the city! Point Pleasant Park in the city's south end will meet your needs. There are 186 acres of walking and biking trails, fort ruins and towers that were once part of the city's defence system.

All at the entrance to the harbour and a stone's throw from the city centre.

Point Pleasant Park

Getting to Halifax

You can get to the city in a couple of different ways.  My page on travelling to Nova Scotia will help you in getting to the province.  If are travelling by plane, train, cruise ship or tour bus chances are you will be brought directly into the city.

However, if you are travelling by car then you will need to know a little about the highways.  Check out the map below and use the + and - to scroll in and out.

The main highways coming into Halifax are:

Provincial highway 102 coming from Truro which is the one you will be on if you are coming to Halifax as soon as you arrive in the province or if you are coming from Cape Breton.

Provincial highway 101 if you are coming from the Bay of Fundy/Annapolis Valley tourism area.

Provincial highway 103 if you are coming from the South Shore which is where you find Lunenburg and Mahone Bay.

View Halifax & Nova Scotia, Canada in a larger map

Travel Information & Maps

There are many travel guides that you can get for the city. 

My advice is simple:  stop at the Visitor Information Centre (VIC) located on the waterfront beside the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic.

They will have a ton of information for you.

One of the first things that I picked up when I recently went to the city was a map of the downtown core. The VIC will have plenty of these but you can also get some online for FREE!

Have you heard of mobimaps? This map gives a super snapshot of downtown. You download and print a copy. There is also a mobile version which I really like.

The area's waterfront development organization also have a map of the waterfront and it is also online. This map is great because it shows you where everything is located on the waterfront. 

Where to Stay

There is a wide variety of places to stay in the city and in the surrounding areas. Check out my Accommodations page!

Where to Eat

You will find many fine restaurants here. The restaurant scene has grown a lot over the last couple of years and there is something for everyone!

Check out my Restaurants page. It is a living page so new restaurants are being added constantly. There are lots so this could take awhile!!

There is still lots to add to this page so please be sure to subscribe to my site to get all of the updates!!

Great dining on the waterfront

Return from Halifax to Your Nova Scotia Holiday

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