Monday, September 27, 2010

Halifax Harbour ~ Halifax Public Gardens ~ Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

We love rv’ing and the opportunities that it gives us to see this incredible country of ours but no matter how much time we have, we just cannot see all that we’d like to see. So with that in mind, our visit to Halifax, NS was far too brief but we decided that the time we had to be there would be spent on the Halifax Harbor Boardwalk.
Piers at Halifax Harbour Boardwalk, NS
The boardwalk, said to be the world’s longest, winds through parks and open air plazas past several piers with boats and ships of all sizes. We were there on a sunny autumn day, perfect for wandering along the boardwalk and many piers to enjoy the shopping, restaurants and historic buildings.

George's Island, Halifax Harbour, NS
George’s Island can be seen in the harbor with the lighthouse standing as it has for many years.  This island played a key role in the harbor’s defense system for almost 200 years.  It isn’t open for the public now but has been named a National Historic Site and the federal heritage department is restoring it, so it will hopefully be available for viewing in the future.

View of sailboat in Halifax Harbour, NS, Canada
The boardwalk is a big attraction for pedestrian as well as marine traffic, the downtown waterfront is on the world’s second largest natural harbor.  It was exciting to see the variety of ships in that harbor.  There were tall ships, small ships, sailboats, working boats and pleasure boats, there were all kinds of boats !
Tall Ship Silva in Halifax Harbour, NS
Halifax hosted the Tall Ship Festival 2009 which saw 40 vessels arrive from 13 countries.  That would have been a wonderful sight to see.  The Tall Ship Silva is a permanent resident at the harbor and offers harbor tours and private charters.  The music carried across the water and sounded like a great time was being had by all.

HMCS Sackville, Halifax Harbour, NS

The HMCS Sackville is the last survivor of the 269 corvettes that fought the Battle of the Atlantic in 1935-1945.  This ship, preserved as Canada’s Naval Memorial, is berthed at the pier and open to the public all summer.  It is then returned to the naval dockyard for it’s annual maintenance.
Pirate Ship in Halifax Harbour, Nova Scotia
There are many opportunities to see the harbor from a ship, boat or ferry.  The pirate ship seen here offers tours and that includes the shooting of the cannons, which adds to the fun of the experience.   I am sure there were real pirate ships in the harbor’s history when you realize that this was Canada’s first British town in 1749.
Halifax, NS, on the boardwalk
The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is on the boardwalk and is the oldest and largest marine museum in Canada, celebrating their 62 anniversary this year.  It is the place to visit if you wish to learn more and immerse yourself in the rich maritime history of Nova Scotia.  Clik here for more information on this beautiful museum.

Halifax Public Gardens, Halifax, NS

We did make a short stop at the Halifax Public Garden which is a Victorian garden with many typical Victorian features.  Officially opened in 1867, it is open every day 8am to dusk from Spring to the Fall.  The Friends of the Public Gardens was formed to help preserve and protect this unique National treasure and to read more about that, clik here.

Victorian Gazebo at Halifax Public Gardens, Halifax, NS

As a very true Victorian garden, there are several statues in the gardens and no Victorian garden should be without a gazebo. This beautiful one stands near the center of the garden and has seen many wedding parties gathered here over the years. We saw two wedding parties taking pictures during our visit there.

Halifax is steeped with wonderful Maritime history including the Halifax Citadel which is a National Historic Park. There are tours for the park and city available that will take you back in time, that tell stories that have made this city what it has become over the past hundreds of years.


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