2022 was a great year for traveling around Nova Scotia. I explored more parts of the province then I ever had before and I enjoyed delicious and unique meals at many new to me restaurants. I tried a bunch of new craft beers, distilleries and cideries. Stayed in all different kinds of accommodations, and learned a lot on various tours. Here is my ultimate list of the very best of Nova Scotia in 2022.
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The Most Unique Place I Stayed in Nova Scotia in 2022
I am always looking for unique and different accommodations to stay in in Nova Scotia. I am also a big lover of Geodesic domes. While I did stay in a few new domes in 2022 I also stayed in a new to me kind of accommodation. An accommodation made out of a recycled shipping container.
Located in Saulnierville, Nova Scotia on the Yarmouth and Acadian Shores is Cabane d’Horizon Luxury AirB&Bs. Currently on property there are two converted shipping containers overlooking St. Mary’s Bay and the Atlantic ocean with four more coming soon. Cabane d’Horizon is operated by the owners of La Cuisine Robicheau and the tasty food truck Le Ptit Robicheau. Both of which are conveniently located right behind the containers with delicious food only steps away.
The containers have a small bedroom on one end with a full bathroom that you walk through to get to the kitchen and living area. There is a small dining table, chair and couch that can also converts into a bed. The cabane also have TVs, wifi and everything you need. Each container is beautifully decorated and the Honeymoon Suite cabane also includes an outdoor hot tub.
Another unique accommodation that I stayed in in Nova Scotia this year was an AirB&B rental made to look like a classic Nova Scotian lighthouse. Located in Five Islands Nova Scotia this unique lighthouse is one of a kind. It was built just this past year specifically to be used as an AirB&B.
The first floor features a dining area, full kitchen and bathroom. The second floor contains a washer and dryer and Queen sized bed. On the top floor a large couch that can turn into a bed and a TV. The top floor also gives you fantastic 360 degree views of the surrounding area. Outside the lighthouse also has a fire pit area, picnic table, deck and hot tub. Most of the year the lighthouse is not located overlooking the water, but every once in a while with an extreme high tide the water from the Bay of Fundy fills the small valley in front of it giving you great waterfront views.
My Favourite Domes I stayed in in 2022
In 2022 I stayed in several new Geodesic Glamping Dome properties in and one of the original properties as well. In Pleasant Bay, Cape Breton I finally had the chance to stay at the True North Destinations domes. Their property is one of the first to have glamping domes in the province. A couple of their domes are Nordic Spa Domes giving guests their own mini Nordic spa experiences featuring hot tubs, cold showers and barrel saunas. Learn more about my stay here on my post about Glamping in Nova Scotia. I loved the location and size of these domes the most, with them being the largest in Nova Scotia.
The fanciest domes that I’ve stayed in yet were definitely the domes at Nalu Retreat in Porter’s Lake, Nova Scotia. They are also the closest geodesic domes that you will find to downtown Halifax. The Nalu Retreat Domes are beautifully decorated with high quality amenities and relaxation in mind. Not only will there soon be a Nordic Spa on property but they also offer massage therapy services right in your own dome where the massage therapist comes to you. Also the views from the domes overlooking Porter’s Lake are stunning.
One of the newest geodesic dome properties in Nova Scotia is the As the River Bends Retreat. Located in Hantsport not too far from Wolfville, I was more than excited to stay in their domes this year. Currently they have two domes at their gorgeous eco conscious retreat and are working on building treehouses for their next accommodations. Their property is nestled along the Halfway River near the Glooscap First Nation. Their domes are cozy and gorgeously decorated, their bathrooms might the nicest of all of the domes in the province. Outside each dome there is a large private area, hot tub and projection screen so you can watch Netflix by the fire pit or from the hot tub. I highly recommend all of these domes.
My Favourite New Place I Visited in Nova Scotia in 2022
Before 2022 I hadn’t actually visited the far end of Nova Scotia. I had only ever been as far as Shag Harbour on the South shore and as far as Digby on the other side. I was completely missing visiting the entire Yarmouth and Acadian Shores area of the province. Because of this I also embarrassingly wasn’t that knowledgeable on our Acadian history in the province either. In 2022 however I ended up spending at least 15 nights in the area on a total of four different visits. I also learned SO much about the local Acadians and ate way too much Acadian food.
There is so much to see and do in the Yarmouth and Acadian Shores area of Nova Scotia. From climbing to the top of the Cape Forchu lighthouse, to learning about the lobster fishing industry, visiting several Acadian history museums, enjoying delicious food from Thai Chicken poutine to poutine sushi, Rappie Pie, seafood au gratin and so much more. You can find the largest and tallest wooden building in North America, see the work of local artisans at the farmers markets, visit the prettiest lobster trap buoy tree, tour the Tusket Islands, and even take the CAT Ferry to the United States. The area also has some extremely gorgeous beaches and seascapes like Mavillette beach and Smugglers Cove.
My Favourite Nova Scotian Distillery
Also located in the Yarmouth and Acadian Shores area of Nova Scotia I had the chance to visit the Boatskeg Distillery several times this year. A small distillery in Lower West Pubnico started by a friendly lobster fisherman who wanted to start making his own rum and was inspired by old stories of rum running in the area. Rum however takes a couple years to make so while they wait for it to be it’s best they started making vodka, vodka soda and hard iced tea.
Boatskeg has a Bootleg Vodka and a Salted Caramel Vodka which sells out on them constantly. The Salted Caramel Vodka is, lets just say, dangerously delicious. For the holidays in 2022 they released a Sweet Peppermint Vodka for the first time which is perfect for holiday cocktails.
Not only are their spirits great but their distillery is as well. You can visit and enjoy a tasty cocktail, snacks, and live music. They also have a great outdoor patio area overlooking Pubnico Harbour. The owners are so friendly and welcoming, that they easily became my favourite distillery in Nova Scotia that I visited this year.
My Favourite Nova Scotian Craft Beer Brewery
Once again located in the Yarmouth area my favourite craft beer brewery in 2022 was Tusket Falls Brewing. The brewery is located in Tusket, NS just a short drive from downtown Yarmouth. They produce kegs and cans at this location and if you ask nicely they might let you get a peak onto the processing floor. While visiting you can order a draft or buy cans to go from their constantly rotating menu of craft beer and a seltzer or two. You can also enjoy a delicious meal.
I visited Tusket Falls Brewing a couple times and enjoyed the arancini, spinach dip, Buffalo chicken nachos and the double BBQ smash burger. All was delicious with the smash burger being the best! The Creamsicle Sour beer was my favourite and I can’t wait for them to release it again.
Honourable mention Candid Brewing in Antigonish which I also tried for the first time this year. They are a cool spot to check out and often feature live music. My favourite of theirs was the Electro Lite Mango Sour. Also I didn’t have the chance to visit but I did try the Lazy Beer tropical seltzer and it to was a favourite.
My Favourite Tours in Nova Scotia in 2022
While traveling around Nova Scotia this year I took a lot of tours. From touring museums to wine tours, boat tours, etc. A unique new tour company in Nova Scotia is Vintage Vino Tours. They offer private wine tours of the Annapolis Valley in vintage cars like a 1947 Ford Super Deluxe and a 1952 Pontiac Chieftain. Your very own chauffeur picks you up at your accommodation anywhere within 25 minutes of Wolfville. Then depending on your tastes and the tour you book they will drive you around to several vineyards in the area for tastings. You can stop for a meal or snacks and enjoy a carefree afternoon with your own designated driver / guide. (Note: the car only holds 4 guests).
If you have more then four people in your group or you want a tour that picks you up in Halifax then check out the Grape Escapes Nova Scotia Wine Tours. Also if you book with code: NSExplorer you get 10% off!
Back to the Yarmouth and Acadian shores area of Nova Scotia, a tour I took this past summer was to the Tusket Islands. Step onboard a real lobster fishing boat with two lobster fishing brothers. While it is the off season for fishing they will show you how it is done and tell you everything you need to know about these tasty crustaceans. Once you reach the islands they take you to their family owned fishing shack where you can enjoy fresh made seafood chowder and live music. I loved taking this tour and not only getting to ride on the lobster boat but also getting to see a bit more behind the scenes of the industry by visiting the islands. To book a tour with them check out TusketIslandTours.com .
There are also several places to visit that celebrate the Acadians and share their history. Visit the Musée des Acadiens des Pubnicos and research centre, the tourist information centre museum at L’Université Sainte-Anne or the Village Historique Acadien to learn everything possible about the Acadians. I was able to take tours at each place this past summer and I was overwhelmed with great information.
My Favourite Beaches
In the fall of 2022 I did a foodie a road trip of the Northumberland Shore from Amherst to Antigonish. Along my way I visited a bunch of different spots including beaches like Melmerby Beach, Big Island Beach and Caribou Island Outer Beach. Caribou Island Outer Beach which is not far from where you get the ferry to PEI was probably my favourite. The day I visited the water was really calm, the sand was so soft and I had the beach almost entirely to myself. It was a gorgeous spot and I can’t wait to visit again in the summer months.
Another new to me and favourite beach of mine that I found in Nova Scotia this year was Mavillette Beach. Located on Cape Cove in Mavillette, Nova Scotia the beach is 1.5kms long and is surrounded by cliffs and sand dunes. At low tide there are sand flats that you can walk out on really far as they get warmed by the sun making the rising tide warmer.
My Favourite Waterfall Visited
Nova Scotia has a fair amount of waterfalls however many are incredibly hard to get to. I am not a big hiker so I often don’t come across them myself. However I found a great one on my travels this year that is easy for anyone to see. The Beulach Ban Falls, located about 20 minutes past Pleasant Bay along the Cabot Trail. You can almost drive right up to these falls as they are located just a 1 minute walk from the Aspy Trailhead parking lot. They are gorgeous wedding veil type falls that you shouldn’t miss when driving the Cabot Trail.
Favourite Lobster Roll of 2022
The Port Grocer in Port Medway used to be one of my top favourites, but they have sadly now closed. (However new owners might be reviving them again soon.) The Rhubarb will always remain in my top faves as well. However in 2022 I had some new to me lobster rolls as a judge of the Nova Scotia Lobster Crawl roll-off competition. By no means was this a traditional lobster roll but the lobster roll from Bahama Mama Delicacies was so frigging good. A tempura battered and fried lobster tail in a bun with cilantro lime sriracha sauce. Drool. They will be competing in the lobster roll competition again this year so be sure to give it a try. They have recently opened permanent location in Western Shore, Nova Scotia at 6446 Nova Scotia Trunk 3, Western Shore where you can find their delicious food year round.
New Favourite Cideries
Before this year I had no idea that there were apple orchards along the Northumberland Shore or down near Yarmouth. I assumed they were all in the Annapolis Valley amongst all of the farmland and vineyards. The Malagash Cidery can be found in Malagash, Nova Scotia far from the valley. Not only are they a cidery but they are also an apple u-pick, and have a tasting room for their delicious ciders. Be sure to visit especially in the fall during harvest season.
The other new to me cidery is the the Corberrie Cider Company located in Corberrie, Nova Scotia near Yarmouth. They are much smaller then most cideries and apple orchards but still offer tastings and apple u-picks. The owners have a lot of passion and their ciders are very delicious. They only offer three kinds at the moment, classic apple cider, cran-blueberry and strawberry rhubarb. To buy from Corberrie you can find them at local markets or call in advance to schedule a visit and tasting.
Favourite Fish and Chips
I tend to eat a lot of fish chips and being in Nova Scotia they are all pretty great. However it’s not often when I have some that it makes me go “Wow, this is delicious!”. But this fall as I drove around the Northumberland Shore I was in Tatamagouche and the whole town lost power. I went in search of food elsewhere and had remembered seeing a food truck nearby in River John. The food truck was called “What’s For Dinner” and they were so busy because many other people had the same idea as me. I wasn’t expecting much from this food truck in rural NS but I was blown away. Quite literally some of the best fish and chips I’ve had in the province. Battered just right, not too thick, served hot, topped with flaky salt and just delicious.
Favourite Place to Go Camping in Nova Scotia
I am not much of a camper, I am very much a glamper. There are some great spots to go camping in Nova Scotia though and I figured this year I needed to check some of them out. I only ended up camping at one spot though and that was of course Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site.
What drew me to Keji was the Ôasis pods, a tear drop shaped accommodation amongst the trees overlooking a lake. They are very cool pods, they have electricity, the table folds into a bed or you can sleep in the netting on the second level. Outside there are lockers, picnic tables and a fire pit. Nearby there is an outhouse and further away a full newly renovated bathroom and shower building. I didn’t sleep the best in the pod depending on just their cushions on the table. Next time I’d bring my own because they are still pretty cool accommodations.
The second night camping was in a tent in the main campground. I hadn’t realized how beautiful of a campground it actually was as I hadn’t been camping there since I was a kid. The tent sites are available with or without power and are mixed amongst the trailer and RV sites. Our site was right across from the bathroom and shower building and we had power which made it nice to charge things. The nice thing about the campground is that its amongst a bunch of tall trees and the sites don’t feel like they are on top of each other. You feel like you are still amongst nature. The only thing I didn’t love was dogs barking at all hours of the night.
Favourite Event in Nova Scotia
Nova Scotia’s South Shore Lobster Crawl will always be one of my favourite events in the province. A month long shell-ebration of lobster every February along the south shore from Peggy’s Cove to Barrington. In 2022 I also attended a few other great Nova Scotian events as well. The first was the two day Chester Creates festival with 2022’s theme being Mi’kmaq Arts and Culture Days. They had a great display of Mi’kmaq Art at the Chester Art Centre, there was a market with Mi’kmaq artisans and cultural performances as well.
2022 was also the year when events could return after a couple year hiatus, one of those being NS Summerfest. NS Summerfest is a great two day music festival in Antigonish. A family friendly event, I was more than excited to attend to see one of my favourite Canadian bands Walk Off the Earth as well as Neon Dreams and a lot of other great performances.
Another unique event was the Merry Madness shopping event in Yarmouth at the end of November. A two day event in downtown Yarmouth where a bunch of local businesses have great shopping sales, there are markets, a Christmas tree lighting, hot chocolate in Frost park, with various treats and drinks available along the way as you shop around. It’s a really fun community event where everyone is welcome as well as a great way to shop local and get your Christmas shopping started.
Favourite New Foods I Tried in Nova Scotia in 2022
I’m always up for trying new food on my travels. I plan on always trying everything at least once, because you never know what you might like or hate until you try it! Since I spent a lot of time traveling around the Acadian Shores I definitely tried a bunch of delicious and interesting Acadian food this year. The most popular Acadian food is Rappie Pie. It is grated and strained potatoes mixed with a broth, onions, butter and an added protein like chicken, beef or bar clams. It is then baked for over 3 hours. The end results in a unique dish with an interesting texture that is loved by many.
While on the Acadian Shores I also stopped by the food truck Le Ptit Robicheau. Known for delicious specialty poutines. I have had lobster poutine before, but theirs was on a whole other level. Literally the best lobster poutine I’ve ever had. Their most popular poutine however is the Thai Chicken poutine. Once served as a special of the week and then the locals demanded that it be a permanent menu option. Sweet and savoury, piled on with toppings it might sound a bit odd but is insanely good.
Following with the poutine theme at Honey Bee’s in Yarmouth I also tried poutine sushi for the first time. Honey Bee’s is known as an inclusive cultural food destination. Owner Sonia has a menu inspired from her having previously lived in South Korea, South America and Montreal. Amongst all of the other sushi they serve is the Sweet Potato Poutine roll. Sweet potato and cheese curds rolled in seaweed and rice, deep friend, flame torched and drizzled with unagi sauce. It was quite heavenly and surprisingly delectable.
Favourite Place I’ve Stayed in Nova Scotia in 2022
Aside from unique accommodations, domes, and camping I’m sure this is the section I’m sure many of you were waiting for. It is so HARD to choose one place out of all of the rest. Especially because so many different accommodations in Nova Scotia are great and all have different reasons for being the best. From amenities offered or available near by, to location, price, and more. But also so many things can affect your opinion on a place from what the weather is like when you visit, who you visit with, how you sleep, etc.
The best night of sleep that I had in 2022 was in a new treehouse at the White Point Beach Resort. Almost resembling a shipping container on the outside but beautifully decorated on the inside you need to check them out. A luxury getaway for adults only at White Point. Each treehouse features a king size bed that is insanely fluffy and soft. A propane fire place, chairs to lounge in, a bar area with mini fridge and a gorgeous bathroom. Each treehouse also has a small balcony with a view over the ocean.
During the Lobster Crawl there are South Shore accommodations offering great lobster packages. River Ridge Lodge in Mahone Bay is a great B&B getaway. In the winter months you can go snowshoeing and fat biking right from their property. They also offer deals with local Mahone Bay businesses during lobster crawl. Boulder Cove Cottages and the Seaside Cottages at Ginger Hill both offer Lobster Crawl packages that included cook your own lobster dinners. Boulder Coves included freshly baked brown bread. With Ginger Hill they included french bread, wine and lobster shaped cookies.
Other favourite spots I stayed in Nova Scotia this year were the Delta Marriott Dartmouth. I stayed there one night for work and loved it. Newly renovated, I highly recommend them for a night in the city. A great cottage rental on the Northumberland Shore is the Amherst Shore Country Inn. They also serve breakfast, have a bakery and often do dinners. Their food was fantastic. Another cottage option on the Northumberland Shore is Cambria Sands. They offer entire cottages for rent with full kitchens, a shared hot tub and are located right on the ocean.
Things I’m Excited to Try in 2023
I’m not sure where my travels in 2023 around Nova Scotia will take me. A few things I’d like to do are: Blokart wind sailing on Mavillette beach with ReWIND Adventures. I am really wanting to stay in the Tatamagouche Train Station Inn. I’d like to check out the Fox Harb’r Resort. I need to stay in more domes. There is a new ocean floor dining experience I can’t wait to share too! I’d also love to visit the Advocate Harbour area, explore more of Cape Breton and so much more! Send me your suggestions please!
Interested in having me stay at your accommodation or promote your tourism business please connect with me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
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**Some of these experiences were sponsored, gifted or in cooperations with my partners. However all opinions and views expressed as always are my own.