Nova Scotia, Canada: It all started with ‘HAVEN’


pristine appearance of nature. I believed it to be Maine until a friend in Nova Scotia said that it was filmed in her area and that I was welcome to come and stay, I decided then and there to buy a ticket and within a few days I was flying over the fabulous coast of Canada.

I can only say that my first sight of Nova Scotia from the plane was gorgeous even while looking out the window I felt the excitement rising as I looked down upon the coast and with only a thin strip of land between them, lake after lake amongst tall erect dark green trees. Halifax airport was a breeze, with a friendly crew and my first taste of Canadian hospitality, I soon learned that Canadians and Kiwis enjoy a special bond, with a similar attitude to life.

I stayed in Hubbards which is perched a few minutes’ walk from St Margaret’s Bay and Sawler lake many of my pictures were taken from walking the length of road to the wharf and back, often stopping to enjoy the underwater scenery as the water was so clear and the sea foliage many beautiful colours, it was like walking through a garden. On our wee journey’s I was lucky enough to see all of those beautiful chocolate box places, boat sheds in lovely reds and blues, vast waterways lined with traditional old homes and even shut Island with its castle. I was often amazed at how many people lived on these tiny islands with only a causeway to get back to the mainland.

One of my favourite times was a trip to Peggy’s cove, the hint of sadness around the plane going down into the harbour as you enter into the township didn’t detract from its history as a notoriously dangerous entrance into the harbour. I was not prepared for the incredible change in landscape; it was like entering a whole new country, acres of tufty grasses and rocks, the sea itself lined with huge smooth boulders that were shifted there by melting glaciers thousands of years ago. We stopped for lunch at the Sou’Wester restaurant right under the lighthouse; a jaunty little combination of food and souvenirs, the lobster was fabulous with fresh baked rolls and hot coffee to warm you up.

I have to say my favourite place was Chester; it was here that I would have experienced the greatest sense of awe; it was everything I ever expected Canada to be. The beautiful harbour with old well-kept yachts sitting picturesque nestled between Islands and classically styled houses. Wooden cabin launches with their lights shining gently on the water and piers jutting out adding to an air of people who live fully engaged in their environment. There are some lovely art and craft shops in Chester and it was a real pleasure to discover a little lunch spot called the Kiwi Café run by Ex Pats offering also a little traditional New Zealand product for sale. I would return again and again to Chester just to breathe it in.

We lunched in Halifax at the Stayers wharf Pub and Grill where I had my first beautifully cooked local salmon and the good fortune to be there when the glass studio opened its doors opposite to let some cooler air in. There is something naughty about having lunch and watching others work, but in this case it was beautiful to watch craftsmen blow glass into ethereal creations while sitting beside a busy harbour ferry terminal. I loved some of the paintings on buildings downtown and the quaintness of a small city that balances visual appeal with commercial practices. I would have to say the best way to describe how I experienced Canada would be to say that I was entranced from my first view to my last.

About the Author: Dorothy Holder: I love to travel and enjoy most of all meeting new people in an environment that they know well. I am based in New Zealand enjoying self employment and my life in general. Find me on my website.


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