Particularly popular during the summer months, there’s always something happening along Halifax’s waterfront. Lined with bars, restaurants, food stalls, souvenir shops and adirondack chairs, there’s plenty to keep you occupied on a leisurely stroll along its 2.5-mi (4-km) boardwalk. This area is also home to two of the city’s must-visit museums – the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 and the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. Popular dining spots include The Bicycle Thief – serving up Italian cuisine, and the Lower Deck Pub – the perfect spot for a casual afternoon beer.
A calm oasis in the heart of the city, the Halifax Public Gardens is a great spot to relax, people-watch and enjoy a treat from the on-site cafe, Uncommon Grounds. Having been open to the public since Canada achieved confederation in 1867, it’s one of the oldest Victorian gardens in North America and its immaculately manicured lawns and gardens frequently act as backdrops for weddings and photo shoots. Flowers and plants from a range of climates line the walkways here. Expect to see a variety of flora, including sweet-smelling roses, towering trees and desert cactus.
Take a day trip out to McNabs Island and discover the wildlife, nature and history of Halifax Harbour’s largest island, which is part of the McNabs and Lawlor Islands Provincial Park. After being settled by Peter McNab in the 1780s, the island has been abandoned since World War II and is now home to the likes of three abandoned military forts and a soda pop factory that ran bootleg booze during prohibition. From Downtown Halifax, the trip takes about 25 minutes. Tours are available through Friends of McNabs Island.