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“One of the best historic sites!”

Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Welcome to the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site, a magical place on the edge of a continent where past and present come together to celebrate Canada’s diverse heritage. Please note that we have three seasons throughout the year: Low season Opportunities to experience the Fortress of Louisbourg's quiet streets during the low season allow visitors to imagine life in the toughest of conditions almost 300 years ago. While there are no services available, a low season visit may provide the best opportunity for visitors to experience the stillness of the streets, take in the beauty of the exterior architecture of the buildings, or simply enjoy the treasures that life's quietest moments may bring. For a new way to experience the site in the low season, try our Explora app. Through sound, video, photos, quizzes and text, you will hold stories about Louisbourg in your hands as you walk through both the reconstructed town and the fortress's ruins. Explora is available to download for free at the App Store and through Google Play. Shoulder season For those seeking quiet opportunities and some on-site services, visiting during the shoulder season is recommended. Visitors have the opportunity to enjoy an inspiring setting with beautiful visuals as they stand on our history-laden grounds. Several buildings with exhibits are open for you to discover. Explore the site on your own or embark on an Explora tour of the grounds. To enhance your visit you may purchase a guided tour or participate in the Time Travel program. Accessible guided tours are available as well. We recommend reserving a place on these tours in advance. By the end of June, the site will begin to fill with costumed interpreters as we ramp up for peak season. After Labour Day, the Fortress of Louisbourg winds down once again with costumed animators interpreting some buildings into September. No matter the season, be sure to find out from reception what activities and experiences may be on offer that day. Peak Season Peak season brings a different kind of magic on-site as costumed people add life to the streets and the homes. A foggy day cloaks the site in mystery and creates scenes and images not to be forgotten. A cold day with wind and rain may draw visitors to the warmth of a welcoming fire or to the cozy inn for a warming bowl of soup. A hot day shows the town and its various gardens at their brightest. On summer feast days colour and pageantry break the routine of daily life as the townspeople promenade in their finery. Chores are the order of the day on summer and fall mornings. With the rooster's crow comes bread from the ovens that supplies both soldiers and hungry visitors. Louisbourg's inhabitants are happy to share their stories, and can be found working the forge, tending the gardens and running the kitchens. The beat of drums and the chime of the garrison clock order the soldiers' day. The sound of a cannon marks midday. You can even fire a cannon or musket yourself by taking part in our 'Have a Blast' or 'Have a Ball' programs. Music might be heard from a waterfront tavern. Children play games in the streets, while the sentry at the gate challenges those who wish to enter the walled town. A public punishment gathers spectators. Sheep run through the streets, called home by the stable hand. Each hour offers something unique and real. During the peak season you can immerse yourself in an 18th century dining experience, available daily, at the Hotel de la Marine and Grandchamp House. For those who prefer a modern experience L'Epee Royale Cafe offers a cozy stop for hot and cold beverages and a variety of pastries. Groups can pre-arrange a dining experience by calling 902-733-3552. The daily fare varies with the season. Please check in advance for menu options and our ability to accommodate any special dietary requirements. Hours of Operation Low season: October 11, 2016 - May 21, 2017) Open Monday to Friday (except statutory holidays) 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Shoulder Season: May 22 2017 to June 30 2017 and September 5 2017 to October 9, 2017 Open 7 days per week 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Peak Season: July 1 - September 4 Open 7 days per week 9:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Dining Establishment Hours of Operation Grandchamp House Lower class (Less formal dining) July 1 - August 25 (Doors open at 10:30 a.m.) Hotel de la Marine Upper class (More formal dining) July 1 - August 25 (Doors open at 11 a.m.) Hotel de la Marine Lower class (Less formal dining) August 26 - October 9 2017 (Doors open at 10:30 a.m.) L'Epee Royale Cafe May 22 - October 9 2017 (Doors open at 10 a.m.) When the Fortress of Louisbourg is in low season, programs and services are provided through the Fortress Louisbourg Association after-hours programs. Whether it's the bustling street or the solitude of the shore, a visit to the Fortress of Louisbourg offers many opportunities for memorable experiences.
Reviewed November 4, 2013

Since it was October, there were not many tourists here. We had about 20 people in our tour of the historic site. The tour guide was informative and very interesting. We learned a lot about French and British history and this Mercantile town. We took both tours (one general tour that gives a foundation for your visit, and another tour of some of the buildings). We recommend taking both tours.

1  Thank doxiesmom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,103 - 1,107 of 1,630 reviews

Reviewed November 4, 2013

My husband and I (early 30s) enjoyed the Fortress. It was educational and fun. We enjoyed the actors and the exhibits. We were worried it might be too geared towards children but it wasn't. We enjoyed the genealogical search where we found a number of immigrants from France to the settlement with our surname. We were able to see the fortress in an afternoon after driving down from Ingonish. There was plenty of parking and we were happy to see picnic tables near the car parks so we could enjoy a picnic lunch before heading into the fort. If you are visiting Cape Breton I would definitely recommend visiting the Fortress of Louisbourg!

Thank Kristy31
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 23, 2013

All people visiting this Canadian area must give themselves the opportunity to experience this magnificent historic fortress with actors and people recreating the way people lived on the 18th and 19th centuries there. It's like a travel through time. You're greeted friendly by all and have the chance to take great photographs with the architecture, the animals and the people in costumes. You can also get lots of nice antique looking souvenirs.

Thank DonovanAlex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 21, 2013

Visiting the Fortress during the year of the 300th celebration of it's founding was perfect. The staff is quite well versed in it's place in history as well as the life of the people from the early 1700s. I highly recommend both the guided tour and the Time Travel tour.

The Time Travel tour gives you a glimpse into the lives of everyday people at the town at the time, from ladies to servants. The participants are well versed in their roles as well as the general history of the period. For anyone who is a history buff, you may require more than 1 day to visit the entire site as we were only able to see a good deal of the fortress in a single day.

Thank Minstral60
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 17, 2013

The attention to detail was so inspiring as well as the stories of the past. Should be on the must see list for all Canadians. We had super weather for our visit. The National Historic sites board should be proud of their accomplishment here. Plan to give yourself a whole day to do justice to the site and take one of the Time travel tours.

Thank Alreoch
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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