August 2 - 5, 2019: Belfast, Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada
We headed out of Nova Scotia, crossed into New Brunswick and then onto Prince Edward Island (PEI). To get to PEI, you cross the Confederation Bridge which links PEI and New Brunswick. The Confederation Bridge is an 8 mile bridge that crosses over the Northumberland Straight and is the world's longest bridge over ice-covered water.
As we got closer to PEI, we noticed that the shoreline was red. And...as we drove further into the island, we noticed it was very different from Nova Scotia or New Brunswick. There was a ton of agriculture. After looking this up, PEI is famous for: red sand beaches, red soil, potatoes, and the irrepressible Anne of Green Gables. It also is known as the "Birthplace of Confederation."
Our goal was to camp on the North side of the Island at Cape Tyron Lighthouse. From a few websites, we heard this was a free camping spot and we thought, how cool is that? So....once we crossed onto the island, this is where we headed...
Only to find out...it was posted as Private Property and No Camping. This is still questionable to me, because it is public land. However, we decided to play it safe and began looking for another spot to camp. As luck would have it, it was Friday night and there were a few big events in town so all of the campgrounds we called were "booked".
We got lucky and found a campground that just had a cancellation. So...we headed across to the Southeast side of the island to Lord Selkirk Campground in Belfast, PEI.
We got there just in time to set up camp and head down the beach (behind our camper) and watch the sunset.
With the red sand and green marshlands, it is absolutely gorgeous!
As we drove around the island during our stay, we felt right at home with all of the potato signs and fields. Boise is know for it's potatoes just like PEI!
We also saw many churches with amazing and unique architectural Below are pics of my favorites. I love the one with the cars that are parked right up to the headstones.
One of the days, we headed into Charlottetown which is the capital of PEI. This is where it was federated into Canada as a province in 1873. And...it was cool because my Mother's name is Charlotte!
In Charlottetown, we stopped by the Ford dealership to have our oil changed on the new truck and had the local sports team give Big Red her first bath : )
When we asked where a good spot for a "local" lunch was, they told us to try a Donair. It is the National food of Halifax, Nova Scotia and we had not tried one yet. So...off we went to Jack's. Donair's are like a gyro that is made with beef and sweet. WOW...it was awesome! And...the faces we made are our "Wow" faces : )
One thing we noticed as we were driving around is the stoplights are square vs. round. This is the first time we have seen this in any location we have visited.
When we checked into Lord Selkirk Campground, we learned two things: That weekend was the 155th Belfast Highland Games & Scottish Festival and the Belfast Highland Golf Course was attached to the campground. Score...we knew what we would be doing during some of our time!
We spent most of Saturday watching the Highland Games and had a great time. One of the competitors, Vince, was from Texas. Of course, we choose to cheer for him and sat beside his wife Julie during the event. They are spending time traveling through all of the Maritime Provinces. What a great couple that we are enjoying following their blog since we have been to most of the places they are traveling.
Some of the competitions at the event were: shot put, braemar stone, sheaf toss, bale toss, caber toss, farmers walk, highland dance competitions, and bag pipes.
That evening after the games, we headed into Charlottetown for dinner and to walk around Victoria Row which is a closed off street with restaurants, shops, and live music. What a great evening!
Since we stayed right on the golf course, we played the 9 hole one of the afternoons. Holy Cow - what a phenomenal course! I have been wanting to play golf in either Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, or PEI just because of the coastline and views. You know, I had this vision of fairways and greens on the ocean. Well, Belfast Highland Greens had it! Half of the greens were on the ocean and the other half were tucked back in the wooded forest and reminded us of golfing in McCall or Terrace Lakes, Idaho. What a great mix for a course and the grounds where is great shape. If the sun would not have been setting we would have played another 9!
Since the sun was setting, we walked back to camp, put the clubs down and then walked to the beach to watch the sunset. Gorgeous!
Right down the road from our campground was Point Prim Lighthouse. It was the first and oldest lighthouse on Prince Edward Island, built in 1845. It is also 1 of 2 lighthouses in Canada that is built out of brick, but this one is covered in shingles because the mortar couldn't withstand the elements. The other one is Fisgard Lighthouse in British Columbia.
We were able to climb all 60.7 feet of the lighthouse. Each level had a specific task (lens and wick storage), keepers quarters, and the view from the top...WOW...amazing!
We had a great time in PEI and there are still so many things we did not get a chance to see and do. That means...we need to come back again! Ha...that is the story of all our travels : ) This one I really want to come back to !