Located in eastern Canada and almost completely surrounded by ocean, the province of Nova Scotia is a place where you can feel your pace fall in sync with the rhythm of the sea, as the clean salt air breathes life into an afternoon. Immerse yourself in culture that ranges from traditional to avant-garde and throw away your map, and find as much freedom in the stops in-between as in the places you planned to go.
Founded in 1749, Halifax offers a tumultuous history which has sculpted the picturesque port city into Atlantic Canada’s hub for innovation, nightlife, and tourism. The city’s rich history is decorated with dozens of historical landmarks to honor the turbulent events that shaped the city into the thriving coastal metropolis it is today. From the military fort that sits atop Citadel Hill to the Bell Tower created in memory of the Halifax Explosion, the city stands proud of its past as it moves forward.
Halifax’s modest population of 400,000 swells in the summer with visits from some of the largest cruise ships in the world. Regardless of its humble size, Halifax boasts the second largest concentration of bars per capita in any Canadian city. It’s no wonder why Halifax is teeming with brilliant bartenders and intriguing cocktail bars in every corner of the city. Hiding within one of the city’s oldest buildings, Lot Six is one of the many lively haunts to enjoy some of Halifax’s award-winning cocktails.
Despite the age of the city, Halifax is driven by a youthful energy, stimulated by the massive student population and innovative architectural developments. Elements of old and new unite to create a unique atmosphere, reminiscent of the past as the city strives to reach new heights. Taking a walk down Hollis or Barrington street presents a juxtaposition of the past and future as you walk by historic properties hidden between grandiose residential and commercial developments.
Situated on the edge of Eastern Canada, Halifax offers some of the greatest scenery in the country. The best part? You can enjoy views of the ocean with a drink in your hand as you sit back on one of the bustling waterfront patios. Stop by Gahan House for craft beer and a heap of nachos or take a trip to The Bicycle Thief for a taste of fine Italian cuisine and a glass of Prosecco. The fun doesn't stop there; charming patios are scattered all throughout the city. Tucked behind busy downtown offices and sandwiched between commercial spaces, the opportunities are endless as The Barrington, above.
5. THE FESTIVALS
The best part about Halifax is that there is no bad time to visit. A trip during the springtime will have you strolling past blossoming flowers at the Public Gardens, while a visit in the fall will leave you in awe of the burnt orange leaves covering Dalhousie’s revered buildings. With festivals and events happening year round, there’s no reason to put off your vacation. Every 4th of July, the city hosts tall ships from around the world, accompanied by an influx of entertainers for the annual Busker Fest. If you happen to be in the city at the end of October, you can’t miss Nocturne, the city-wide art festival.