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Acadia National Park: From Shoreline to Summit

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The Acadia National Park on the coast of Maine had been on my list of National Parks to visit. My original plan was just to hike, I did not plan on doing any other activities like kayaking or swimming, So I thought one day was enough to enjoy the park. However, Acadia National Park has more than 125 hiking trails and a variety of landscapes. People pretty much go to Acadia National Park to enjoy the landscape and the amazing views. I took a short hike and a scenic tour, soaking in the beautiful landscape that included shoreline, woods, lakes, ponds, and granite-domed mountain – the Cadillac mountain.



There were free shuttle buses to the park from Bar Harbor, a quintessential New England coastal town, sandwiched between the ocean and the mountains. I joined eight people on a 12-seater explorer bus. From the National Park entrance, the road climbed through a forested mountain, blanketed with green trees; maple, beech, jack pine, and other hardwood trees. Our driver pointed to the area …

Lunenburg, Nova Scotia

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Lunenburg is a place that I hadn't really heard of until I reached Halifax.  Apparently, it's another iconic town in Nova Scotia and a UNESCO World Heritage Site - one of the only two urban sites in North America. It lies on the south shore of Nova Scotia, 60 miles from Halifax. 

The coastal scenery and verdant landscape on the way to Lunenburg were pretty amazing.  Green pine Christmas trees covered the roadside. Our bus dropped us off by the harbor, in front of the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic. So, the first order of business was to visit the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic, which provides the backstory of the town and its hugely significant fishing and maritime history. Among the displays in the museum were tributes to the fishing community and the Mi’kmaq. There were also models of Lunenburg itself and the famous Bluenose. The Bluenose was not in port that day, but I gained a better understanding of what the big excitement about when I saw it in Sydney two days earli…

Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia

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I have at last made it to Peggy’s Cove, a place that I always wanted to visit and photograph. Arguably, the most iconic site in Nova Scotia, Peggy’s Cove is a small picturesque fishing village with a population of less than fifty permanent residents. It’s forty kilometers away from Halifax, the provincial capital of Nova Scotia. It features a lighthouse that is perched on a granite rock formation overlooking the Atlantic rolling waves and said to be the most photographed lighthouse in Canada. As a photo enthusiast, I too came prepared with my camera. 

We set off for Peggy's Cove early in the morning. Our guide told us about the history, rather the story of the place. One version of the story claims that when a schooner was shipwrecked in the area in the 1800’s, there was a sole survivor named Margaret. She married a fisherman from the area, settled in the village and thus became known as “Peggy of the Cove”. The present lighthouse was built in 1914 to replace the old original woo…

Scenic Cape Breton

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Having been to the beautiful places compared to Cape Bretton by the great Alexander Graham Bell, I had no choice but to see for myself the views that inspired him to say,
“I have travelled around the globe. I have seen the Canadian and American Rockies, the Andes and the Alps, and the Highlands of Scotland but for simple beauty, Cape Breton outrivals them all." After a brief introduction to Sydney, the largest city on Cape Breton Island, we followed the Trans-Canada Highway and headed to the most famous part of the drive - the Cabot Trail - to the picturesque towns of Baddeck and Ingonish. There was some amazing scenery including the incredible views of Boulanderie Island, the Seal Island Bridge, and the Great Bras d’Or Channel, St. Ann’s Bay and Kelly’s Mountain. We stopped at a few lookouts to take photos and to take in the amazing views.



Upon seeing the Cabot Trail “Welcome” sign, I told our guide that I wanted to take a few short hikes at Cabot Trail just so I could add it t…

Anne of Green Gables' Prince Edward Island

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I was walking the Balsam Hollow trail when deep in the forest, I heard bird songs in concert with the sound of rushing waters. I stopped at the tiny bridge to listen to the sound of the rushing waters and admire the streak of sunlight reflected on the water under the giant trees when a girl with long red hair and wearing a dull-grayish puff sleeve dress with a cream-colored apron came skipping through the trees. She was holding a wicker basket covered with an embroidered cloth. “I’m off to the Lake of Shining Waters,” she said. “Wait, Anne, wait,” I shouted after her, “Can I come with you.”



Ok, that was a stretch. The Anne part didn’t really happen. But where I was standing it could easily have happened. I imagined my favorite character in the book, “Anne of Green Gables” describing to me in flowery words the places and things I was seeing. With her passion for beautiful places, she would have been a great tour guide. Ever since I read the book (ok I read it more than a couple of time…