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7 Reasons to Visit Halifax, Nova Scotia

©istockphoto/garett_mosher

©istockphoto/garett_mosher

There’s something special about Halifax that’s hard to pinpoint. It’s a city steeped in history, yet it feels impossibly young—thanks, partly, to the many universities with campuses situated around town.

The fusion of new and old makes Halifax, Nova Scotia, an incredible place to visit. Its relatively small size (just over 100 square miles) means it’s easy to explore, and the mix of culture, delectable food, and natural attractions (the perks of being a seaside town) make it a Maritime must-visit. Here are 7 reasons to add Halifax to the ever-growing travel bucket list.

Have Fun Learning—Really
Stuffy museums can make historical events and artifacts feel dreadfully boring—but the Halifax Citadel is the total opposite: it brings history to life in an outrageously fun way.

The Halifax Citadel National Historic Site of Canada takes you back in time: costumed staff and old-fashioned activities will have you questioning what century you’re actually in. From ghost tours to the “soldier for a day” program, a day checking out the interactive experiences at the Halifax Citadel will give you a newfound appreciation for the area’s history.

See a City on the Sea
Oceanside cities have a tendency to be breathtakingly beautiful, and Halifax is certainly no exception. The Halifax Boardwalk lets you explore the waterfront by foot, checking out the shops, boats, markets, historic properties, and many other sites and attractions along the route. Sometimes, the best way to see a city is simply by wandering through it.

Drink and Be Merry
Haligonians (yup, that’s what the locals are called) know a good brew when they see one. Experience Halifax’s delicious beers firsthand by checking out one of the eight breweries in town. They’ve got both macrobreweries (check out Alexander Keiths, which has been in town since the 1820s) to microbreweries (Propeller, Garrison, Keltic, and Rudder’s are all worth sampling).

Get Nocturnal
Halifax might be small, but it’s a happening place. The city’s youthful vibe means that there’s pretty much always going on.

Case in point: Nocturne. Nocturne is an after-dark art event that sweeps through the city every fall, showcasing the incredible arts scene in town, ranging from independent exhibits to commercial galleries to artist-run centers.

See the Titanic in a New Light
You know the story of the Titanic, but it will take on a whole new meaning after a visit to the Fairview Lawn Cemetery.

The first vessels to collect the bodies of the victims of the Titanic back in 1912 were from Halifax. More than 100 people who died on the Titanic and buried here, including many who were never identified. It is well worth taking some time on your trip to wander through the ceremony to pay your respects.

Get Your Surf On
Hop on the ferry and head past Dartmouth to Lawrencetown Beach, one of Nova Scotia’s best-kept secrets. Surfers, grab your wet suits and hit the mile-long stretch of beach to take is some perfectly palatable East Coast waves.

The World is Your Oyster
Being next to the ocean offers a multitude of perks, one of which is impossibly fresh shellfish. Halifax has some might fine oyster bars, offering some of the finest and freshest local catches. There’s even an entire festival dedicated to oysters taking place every spring. You can’t get the full Halifax experience without throwing down an oyster (or 12).

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