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East coast trip!

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East coast trip!

Hi, I'm from Edmonton and I'm travelling with my wife to the east coast for the first time. We are looking for the best place to start and finish. I was thinking of flying into one of the major centers in one of the Atlantic provinces and renting a car. We would then drive to see all the others? We are thinking of 10-14 days. Can anyone suggest a path we should follow. Thank you.

Jasper, Canada
Destination Expert
for Jasper, Jasper National Park, Canadian Rockies
posts: 13,132
reviews: 87
1. Re: East coast trip!

I assume this is planned for summertime - ?

In terms of air travel, the major hub (if it can be called that!) in the Maritimes is Halifax (YHZ). There are other airports, of course - Charlottetown, Moncton and Fredericton are the major ones. I am not sure if there are direct flights from YEG to YHZ, but getting to any of the others will most certainly require connecting, usually either in Toronto or Montreal.

IMO, ten to fourteen days is pretty short if you want to visit NS, NB and PEI. (By the way, Newfoundland, while part of "Atlantic Canada", is not considered part of the "Maritimes"... and you really need all of your vacation time for a visit there, imo.) I think you could easily spend that time in Nova Scotia alone. If you do want to do a whistle-stop tour of all three provinces, fly into either Halifax, Charlottetown (YYG) or Moncton (F'ton is out of the way, too far inland), picking whichever has the best flight schedule to suit you, or based on price - and do a loop including the Fundy coast in NB, PEI, Halifax, Peggy's Cove and the south shore, Cape Breton ... you can check out the official tourism websites for each province to find out what the major attractions are (and also check the destination pages and info here on TA) and figure out which ones appeal to you. To save time, you could get creative with one-way flights to save having to completely close the loop (for instance, fly into YYG, drive via Confederation Bridge through NB to NS and fly out of YHZ, or fly into YYG, take the ferry to Pictou, tour NS and then fly out of Moncton, or fly into Moncton, tour on the mainland through NS and then fly out of YYG ... or any variation thereof ... hopefully you get the idea), but of course, to find out which option would cost the least, aside from just your airfare costs, you would have to factor in any one-way charges for your rental car, and any costs to get off PEI (the ferry is more expensive than the bridge; you only pay to leave the island, not to arrive there).

Vancouver, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver
posts: 37,788
reviews: 54
2. Re: East coast trip!

Welcome to the forum, shea ~

You could take a red eye flight non stop on WestJet, then a normal morning flight to get back to Edmonton.

I would choose Halifax. When we did 12 nights for NS and PEI, it was a good location to start from. But 12 nights was not quite enough. We had 3 nights Halifax (Peggy's Cove, Lunenburg, Mahine Bay), 3 nights on Cape Breton (Fortress Louisbourg - half day), 3 nights in C'town + Cavendish, and 2 in Wolfville and 1 final night in Halifax. Another time I would want 14 nights just for Nova Scotia.

In NL we had again 12 nights and we could have used 14-16 easily, just for NL. Short on Gros Morne and short on the Northern Peninsula to St. Anthony and L'Anse aux Meadows, if that is part of NL you would like to go to. That was with flying in to St. John's and out of Deer Lake. The ferry crossings from Sydney, NS take a full day or more, depending on the route taken.

When the 2014 Doers and Dreamers Guide is available, you could request a copy. Link is here:


You might also have a look at the Trip Reports for Nova Scotia. They are pinned in first position on the list of topics for this forum. The short cut is here:


Nova Scotia
Destination Expert
for Nova Scotia
posts: 6,691
reviews: 97
3. Re: East coast trip!

Great answers from the two posters above. I can only reiterate what they say. You would be best to spend more time in fewer places.

I am confident that once you experience our hospitality and scenery, etc. you will want to come back.

Use the search feature below to get information on specific places or activities. You could also put in terms such as 10 days or 14 days to see what comes up.

When you have done a bit more research, do come back here with more questions.

Toronto, Canada
posts: 11,695
reviews: 594
4. Re: East coast trip!

I'd do Nb, PEI and NS with that time, NFLD would be better left for another trip....

Advocate Harbour...
posts: 1,520
reviews: 19
5. Re: East coast trip!

The best route for you would depend a lot of what you like to see and do on your travels. It would differ a lot from a style of travel where you just drive to the well publicized tourist highlights or to urban/historical places and events as the main aim or one where getting outdoors on the ocean and trails would be the top priority. To experience a small slice of what the east coast is about you can easily spend your entire time in Nova Scotia which, of the maritime provinces, has it all!

6. Re: East coast trip!

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