Halifax Journals

Halifax: Nova Scotia's Atlantic Jewel

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A travel journal to Halifax by Jim Rosenberg

Bluenose II Cafe Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia More Photos
Quote: As the cultural and commercial capital of Atlantic Canada, historic Halifax is fabulous destination for travelers of all persuasions, with plenty to offer in an exciting port city environment.

Halifax: Nova Scotia's Atlantic Jewel

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Overview

Quote:
The Halifax waterfront and its immediate vicinity offer a wide variety of shopping, dining and night life possibilities. By day, enjoy the sumptuous seafood and entertaining buskers who politely ply their trade along the waterfront with fiddles, bagpipes and an ecclectic collection of entertaining antics and gadgets for sale. In the evening, enjoy stops at the downtown pubs, where you can meet friendly locals and enjoy Atlantic Canada's well-touted and well-loved Alexander Keith's beer, a Halifax original.Quick Tips: Halifax International Airport has bus service to town, but it is a fair piece of mileage and a rental car is a handy option to explore the region -- particularly since rental c...Read More

Best Western Glengarry Hotel

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Hotel

Best Western Glengarry Hotel Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
This is a very comfortable, 90-unit hotel with a friendly staff and very good-sized, clean, comfortable rooms. We enjoyed a seafood dish in the dining room that obviously made use of fresh, local ingredients. Unlike some hotels where locals steadfastly shun the restaurant, this one is obviously part of the community where it resides. We found Truro a great place to stage day trips along the Bay of Fundy coast or up to the picturesque small community of Pictou -- a neat place to visit in its own right which also offers ferry service to Prince Edward Island.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 4, 2000

Best Western Glengarry Hotel
150 Willow Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia
(902) 893-1759

Quote:
What can you say about airport hotels? Well, in this case, we give it good marks and agree with the 3+ star rating. There is an excellent, free, 24-hour shuttle service to the airport and the staff we met was extra nice. Rates are typical for the convenience (I've expressed them in U.S. dollars). Keep in mind that Halifax International Airport is quite a distance from the city, so for late arrivals and early departures, this hotel is a good choice. In those situations, you may also choose to pick up a rental car the day after you arrive or drop off the night before departure, potentially saving a day of rental costs. There is a monitor in the lobby showing arrivals and departures for the airport...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 4, 2000

Airport Hotel Halifax
60 Bell Blvd.
Halifax, Nova Scotia
1(800) 667-3333

Holiday Inn Harbourview Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
The Holiday Inn Harbourview in Dartmouth offers ready access to the Halifax waterfront via passenger ferry service just down the hill and access to the bus system across the street. The view from the balconies of the higher floors over the harbor is a nice touch and worth calling the hotel directly to secure. There is an outdoor swimming pool and a restaurant. (We found the restaurant to be outstanding, by the way -- not your typical "frozen deep-fried" type of hotel fare at all.) We found the staff to be very friendly and helpful, but that is very typical of Maritime Canada. Get a complete listing of activities, suggested travel routes and lodgings throughout Nova Scotia by ordering the Nova...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 29, 2000

Holiday Inn Harbourview
101 Wyse Road
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia B3A 1L9
(902) 463-1100

McKelvie's

Restaurant

Quote:
If you long for a great lunch in wonderful surroundings or a more gourmet evening experience, McKelvie's is an outstanding choice. There is a full menu of excellent seafood, pastas, chowders and other selections. The building itself is a rather upscale renovation of a former firehouse, but you'd never guess that from being inside. The dining room features large windows and it is very nicely done. There is also an outdoor patio that is a very nice choice, in season. Meals are well presented and so they look as good as they taste. Our top lunch or dinner choice for those who might have trouble deciding: The 'Too Good Fish Fry', an outstanding array of fresh seafood that is excellently ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on September 29, 2000

McKelvie's
1680 Lower Water St
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3J 2Y3
+1 902 421 6161

Bluenose II Cafe

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Restaurant

Bluenose II Cafe Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
Want to eat with the locals, have a cup of coffee, read a newspaper and joke with down-home wait staff? Try this nothing-special place a block up from the Ferry Terminal up Duke Street and you'll find the Bluenose II Cafe on your left. This is not a truck stop, but it could be, if you put it on a highway with a parking lot -- right down to the cigarettes for sale at the cash register. There is a place for fine dining in travel, but there is a place for stick-to-your ribs local food with local people and a good conversation. This is one of those places -- and they didn't mind digging out a live lobster for breakfast for this appreciative traveler either.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 29, 2000

Bluenose II Cafe
1824 Hollis Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia
(902) 425-5092

North Shore, Bay of Fundy

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Restaurant

Quote:
Okay, we admit we've gone a little far afield here from Halifax, but if you're auto touring more of Nova Scotia and the Maritimes, here's a road less traveled and you'll want to bring your appetite. All along the North shore of the Bay of Fundy from Parrsboro to Truro, you will find little mom & pop seafood 'restaurants' where you can enjoy some of the finest fresh seafood imaginable at very little cost. The exteriors of these places can make you wonder; some may even be in mobile homes. Get over it and go inside. You will meet some of the friendliest people on earth serving fabulous fresh seafood! These people know how to prepare things and they have plenty to choose from: clams, scallops, ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on October 4, 2000

North Shore, Bay of Fundy
Parrsboro - Truro
Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Old Triangle

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Restaurant

Quote:
The Old Triangle is a place to put on your "A" list if you're looking for one of the best and most authentic Irish pub experiences going. It's a comfortable place with great servers and a full menu that features some of the wonderful local seafood, along with a selection of salads, chicken wings and even a few vegetarian choices. Their slogan of "Food for the body, drink for the spirit, and music for the soul" is aptly played out in their three rooms, plus two streetside terraces. In addition to outstanding beers and well-prepared pub fare, the front room is frequently the place to catch some excellent, authentic Celtic musicians. It is truly a joy to listen to the fiddles, drums, ha...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on August 5, 2004

The Old Triangle
5136 Prince Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia
(902) 492-4900

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

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Attraction

Quote:
The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is a must-see collection for those who love ships of the sea. There is a fabulous group of large-scale models, along with video programs on many historic Halifax region disasters over the years -- only one of which was the Titanic. The rich 250-year history of Halifax as a hard-working shipping port is is excellently recounted at this museum and it is background that is critical to truly understanding the significance of this important front door to Canada.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on September 29, 2000

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic
1675 Lower Water Street
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3J 1S3
(902) 424-7490

Peggy's Cove

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Attraction

Peggy's Cove Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
If you absolutely NEED to get a few shots of a picturesque-looking fishing village or a white lighthouse on a rocky outcropping, then by all means, make the jaunt down to Peggy's Cove. If you want to save time and you're not really a photo buff, you may choose to find a less-overrated place to go. There's really not much there beyond a whole lot of tourists. Nova Scotia is full of beautiful discoveries, but the over-photographed Peggy's Cove is probably not one of them. (Then again, I got some nice shots there myself.....)

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on September 29, 2000

Peggy's Cove
(45 minutes down the Halifax shoreline)
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
While it would be easy to be content with the sights, sounds and flavors of Halifax, there are many side trips that can be worked into a trip to the Maritimes. One of the most popular is Prince Edward Island, the land of 'Anne of Green Gables'. It is approximately a 3-1/2 drive from the outskirts of Halifax to Charlottetown, P.E.I and while the ferry service to the island is still intact, a new choice has been made available since 1998. It is the 8-mile long Confederation Bridge, stretching across the Northumberland Strait from Cape Tormentine, New Brunswick to Borden, P.E.I. Cost-wise, the toll for the bridge is approximately the same as taking the ferry (approximately $28 Canadian, if I recall c...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on October 3, 2000

Confederation Bridge to Prince Edward Island
Northumberland Strait
Halifax, Nova Scotia

Fresh Seafood Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
With a population of around a million combined, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island offer striking natural beauty and Maritime flavor filled with picturesque seascapes, wild salmon rivers and fresh lobsters boiling in the pots of quaint seaside restaurants in fishing villages up and down their coastlines. Around a quarter of the population of the Maritimes resides in the greater Halifax area, the economic, political and cultural center of Atlantic Canada. Paired with Dartmouth along either side of a magnificent natural harbor, Halifax cuts an impressive skyline and features an inviting waterfront. Its strategic location on the North Atlantic makes it an attra...Read More

Changing & Handling Money in Canada

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Story/Tip

Quote:
If you're coming to Canada from the U.S., your transition to Canadian money will be a simple one that does not require much advance planning. Unless you have a bank that really specializes in making Canadian currency exchanges, you are probably better off not bothering to exchange any money prior to your arrival in Canada. The reason is that many banks attach flat fees for currency exchanges and also have a spread between what they sell the currency for and what they will pay to buy it back. Spreads and fees almost invariably add up to far more than ATM fees would for similarly valued transactions and there is simply no reason to pay them if you can avoid it. ATMs are found virtually ev...Read More
Tall Ships in Halifax Photo, Halifax, Nova Scotia
Quote:
In 2000, we visited the Tall Ships celebration in Halifax, which culminated in the last day's Parade of Sail. A quarter million people watched dozens of tall ships cast off with wind-filled sails from historic Halifax Harbour on their way to their final tour destination in Amsterdam. During the visit, thousands of visitors had the opportunity to board these fabulous vessels and meet their young crew members, who are actually part of cadet leadership programs that comprise many different nations. The fine detail of these beautiful ships is difficult to describe. Their visit to this famous Maritime city will be a huge celebration (so anyone planning to visit will need to book flights...Read More