c b i s l a n d.c o m official Media Guide
Cape Breton Island has magical effects upon those who visit, it slows them down, fills them with its beauty and humanity, it is a land uncluttered by the stresses of modern life, a world apart where music,2 art and laughter flourish, where strangers are not strangers and where the things that matter, matter most. You may return home after your vacation, but your heart will never leave... Cabot Trail
Celtic Heart of North America During the first half of the 19th century, approximately 50,000 Highland Scots immigrated to Cape Breton Island. They brought their Gaelic language and rich culture. Living on an island, their culture survived and flourished. The Celtic Heart of North America is a partnership of attractions and experiences that represents this amazing Celtic and Gaelic culture, still thriving on Cape Breton Island. We celebrate and share the only living4 Celtic Culture in North America. www.celticheart.ca Gaelic CollegeLocal Celtic Musicians
Cabot Links Golf CourseGolf Cape Breton 5Golf Was Invented for Places Like This...Real golf begins with the challenge of a place. Cape Breton is Canada’s Golf MasterpieceThe first 18-hole courses in Scotland were, and home to some of Canada’s premier golfand are, wild, rugged, spectacular landscapes. courses. Cabot Links, located in Inverness, hasThe game of golf is not about equipment, received unprecedented media attention and isscores or handicaps, it is about places— Canada’s First True Links Course.the challenge, beauty and prestige of the Highlands Links in Ingonish is Stanley Thomp-course. There are approximately 35,000 golf son’s mountains and oceans masterpiece, longcourses in the world and only a selection of been recognized by publications such as Golfthese embrace the true spirit of the game— Digest, GOLF Magazine and SCOREGolf asCape Breton is one of those places. one of the best tracks to play.
6 Cabot TrailCeilidh Trail Marconi Trail The Cabot TrailBras d’Or Lake Fleur-de-Lis Trail The Lonely Planet calls the Cabot Trail Scenic Drive “one of the most scenic destinations in the world.” Winding down this 300 kilometre coastal route, you’ll quickly understand why. Named after Italian explorer John Cabot in 1497, Cape Breton’s Cabot Trail showcases the best our Island has to offer. Seasons along the Cabot Trail are marked with hiking opportunities in spring, championship golf during summer, Celtic celebrations in the fall and winter outdoor adventures in Cape Breton Highlands National Park.
The Ceilidh Trail Fleur-de-Lis TrailThe Ceilidh Trail stretches from the Canso Beginning at the Canso 7Causeway around the western shore of the Causeway, Cape Breton’sIsland through Creignish, Judique, Port Hood, beautiful Fleur-de-lis TrailMabou and Inverness to the Margarees. Along winds its way across the southeastern part of the this particular stretch of splendid Cape Island, where our French influence is Breton coastline, you will find prevalent. The region is dotted with Acadian more fiddlers, dancers, piano villages like Grande Anse, Louisdale, Martinique players and other musicians per and Arichat, where you can seemingly step square mile than any other part back in time to the 18th century. The Fleur de Lis Trail is home to many picturesque coves, of the Island (quite possibly the trails and parks, including St. Peter’s Canal and world). With all those musicians, the unforgettable Fortress of Louisbourg,there is usually not a day that goes by during the largest reconstruction in North America.summer that a ceilidh, concert or danceisn’t happening.Bras d’Or Lake Scenic Drive Marconi Trail Bras d’Or (pronounced Bra-door) This Trail is named after the derives it’s name from Cape Breton’s famous Italian inventor first European French explorers/ Guglielmo Marconi and his settlers who called it “Arms of Gold”. three historic transatlantic The Bras d’Or Lake is Canada’s 16th wireless stations. Along with its rich history, the route Biosphere Reserve, bestowed to a offers a memorable glimpsehighly attractive place where people live in of Cape Breton Island’s rugged coastline.harmony with nature. For those looking to Small waterside communities abound, andventure on water, choose from sailing, seabird travelers will find classic fishing wharves, sandytours and memorable cruises. Back on land, beaches, canoe-friendly lakes, and exceptionalthe Scenic Drive offers it own rewards - hiking vantage points for bird watching.along the shoreline, biking past farms andforests, or just meandering by car as you takein the beautiful scenery.
Welcome to the Fortress of LouisbourgNational Historic SiteThe mists of time roll back and the Fortress of Founded by the French in 1713, LouisbourgLouisbourg stands proudly before us. Its size was a major fishing centre situated on the tradeis impressive. No mere fort, our destination routes between North America and Europe.is a fortified town, alive with citizens, soldiers Today, the largest reconstruction in Northand sailors from the four corners of the world, America forms part of a historically significantwhere visitors are invited to touch, feel, smell area whose landscape varies from protectedand see glimpses of life as it was lived in the harbour shores and pristine sandy beaches to18th century. rugged rocky coasts and mossy forests, offering a wealth of experiences for visitors to enjoy. 9
For Explorers Who Choose With fields and ocean as chock-full ofTheir Stomach as the Guide ingredients as ours, great use is made of locally grown and fished foods. Chowder houses,Pride and passion are united in the lobster resorts, bakeries and village take-outs serve-upfishing communities along the shores of hearty feasts—stews, breads, chowders andCape Breton, communities where lobster comforting desserts come straight from theharvesters still follow the teachings of their spirit of our Island people and the traditions ofgrandfathers while managing the industry for our forefathers.future generations with very stringent healthand safety regulations and sustainable Cape Breton Island’s rich culinary offerings datepractices. An industry that is carefully managed back hundreds of years to the Mi’kmaq people.with seasonality to ensure only the highest Since then, French, Scottish, Irish, German,quality of lobsters are brought to market. Ukrainian, Polish and many other nations of people have left their mark on the Island’sThe romance of Cape Breton Island’s salty cuisine.sea air enhances our chefs’ creativity andour diners’ passion for food! 11
Welcome to Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Where the Mountains Meet the Sea! Adventure awaits in Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Accessible to all via the famous Cabot Trail, the Park is a vast 950 km2 region that protects majestic plateaus, deeply-cut river canyons and spectacular ocean scenery. It exemplifies Canada’s wondrous beauty. Conquer the Highlands Challenge—earn the Park’s topographic map and major bragging12 rights for a year by hiking Cape Breton Highlands National Park’s 26 trails! Get up close and personal with the complex habitat of northern Cape Breton. Ingonish Beach
Whale Watching - Pleasant Bay 13Skyline Trail Ingonish
Alexander Graham Bell See his favorite jacket, walking stick and National Historic Site personal notebook. Follow the love story of Bell and his wife, Mabel, for whom the telephone Nestled in the lakeside community of Baddeck was invented. Pick up his vacuum jacket is a tribute to one of the most influential men of (forerunner to the iron lung), model kites and the 19th and 20th centuries, Alexander Graham hydrofoils. In “The Aeronautics Laboratory” Bell. Visit the site to discover the world’s largest trace Bell’s path to flight, examining propellers, collection of artifacts, photographs and rotors, paper wing-shaped models and items personal mementos of Dr. Bell. used to build Canada¹s first airplane, the Silver Dart. Don’t miss a Canadian Tourism Commission Signature Experience. A white glove tour puts you behind the scenes to examine the private life of Dr. Bell.14
Bras d’Or Lake – unesco The World Network of Biosphere Reserves nowBiosphere Reserve numbers 580 sites in 114 countries. Cape Breton’s Bras d’Or Lake, a salt-water estuaryBiosphere Reserves are living laboratories of that constitutes a true inland sea, is one ofsustainable development, where local those sites. This estuary has uniquecommunities choose to take the challenge to oceanographic and biological characteristics asprotect biodiversity while fostering economic it contains both species typical of Arctic watersand social development. and of warm subtropical oceans, living within a few hundred meters of one another. http://blbra.ca 15 bras d’or lakeBras d’Or Lake
Our Rich Industrial Cape Breton Island’s bond with steel hasHistory resulted in hundreds of stories of the steel mill and the villages and towns that surrounded it.Steel As Cape Bretoners, we have shared these stories around the dinner table. Today, weOurs is a story of steel. Not just a story of the remember the poignancy of Sydney Steel andendless lines of rails, ingots, blooms and billets the descendent that it left behind – one of thethat were produced, but one of the steely world’s largest environmental disasters.determination of those who were responsiblefor making and selling such products. At the The legacy at Sydney Tar Ponds and Coketurn of the century, the Dominion Iron and Ovens can be found at Open Hearth Park.Steel Company called out to prospective steel It honours the stories of the steel industry, paysmakers from Cape Breton and abroad asking tribute to those who lived and workedthem to take their place here, to help build an at the site, and explains the intricacies andindustry. They answered that call and together final success of the clean-up effort.worked to create the “steel capital of16 Eastern Canada”.
Coal Canada’s total output. The last underground coal mine on Cape Breton Island closed inThe history of coal mining on Cape Breton November 2001.began almost 300 years ago. In the early 1700’s,coal was needed in Louisbourg for the French The Cape Breton Miners’ Museum pays tributeto construct its Fortress. Coal was extracted to the region’s long and rich history of coalfrom exposed seams along the cliffs and in mining. Located in Glace Bay, the Museum1720 the first coal mine was officially opened offers an underground mine tour, with retiredat Cow Bay (Port Morien). In 1873, there were miners as your guides. The famous coal minereight coal companies operating in Cape Breton. choir, the Men of the Deeps, performs on-siteThe miners were paid from 80 cents to a $1.50 in summer, and visitors can explore modernper day and boys were paid 65 cents. exhibits and an historic Village to learn aboutBy 1903, the Dominion Coal Company was the traditions of coal miners and their families.producing 3,250,000 tonnes per year. By 1912, While there, enjoy a meal at the Miner’s Villagethe company had 16 collieries in full operation Restaurant.and its production accounted for 40% of 17
Cape Breton CharmKeltic Lodge Resort & Spa Margaree River The Resort is nestled high The history of fishing on the cliffs, surrounded in Margaree is rich and by the rugged beauty of storied. The River is an angler’s paradise, Cape Breton Highlands with pools to fish all day and places to relax National Park, along the and enjoy time with friends after the sun goes world-famous Cabot Trail. down. One of the few remaining natural Atlantic Keltic Lodge Resort & Spa salmon grounds, the Margaree River is home to is truly a unique place to the Margaree Salmon Museum and fish hatchery.which families return again and again for our Beggars Banquetexceptional cuisine and hospitality. www.kelticlodge.ca Get ready for a frolicking 18th century banquet!Glenora Inn Distillery Dress in period costume and feast on lobster and crab, straight from the dock. While you18 The Gaels are reputed to having invented dine, Linda and her 18th-century style “Uisge Beatha “— musicians will entertain you with stories, lyrics “The Water of Life “ and tunes about love and life in the 1700’s. and they claim that Situated ocean-side in Louisbourg, it is the Gaelic improves the perfect companion to a visit to the Fortress. flavour of the whiskey. In Glenville, on the Ceildh Trail, you will find lots of the language and thewhiskey as its hills are home to North America’sonly single malt whiskey distiller, GlenoraDistillery. Glenora features free daily Ceildhs fromJune to October, distillerytours, a nine room Innand six highland chalets with Jacuzzis, diningroom and pub, and whisky econo-museum.www.glenoradistillery.com
Rita’s Tea Room Sydney’s Historic District 19Over the years, Rita invited many people to Sydney is alive with history! Stroll thedrop by for tea, a well-known Cape Breton charming historic district where you can visittradition. Plan to drop by her Tea Room, Cossit House, St. Patrick’s Church, Jost Houselocated in Big Pond, for home-baked goodies, and the Cape Breton Centre for Heritage anda full lunch or light dinner, browse the gift shop Science. Chat with animators to hear theand see her awards memorabilia. Even though fascinating history of Sydney and the city’sRita’s friendly smile is no longer there to founding families. Looking to be spooked?welcome you, her family and staff will make Join your guide for a spine-chilling ghost touryour visit special. through the haunted streets and graveyards of Sydney’s North End and hear legendary storiesSt. Peter’s Canal of its ghostly residents. St. Peters Canal is an Marconi National Historic 800-metre canal linking Site of Canada the Atlantic Ocean with the Bras d’Or Lake. This national historic site honours As one of only three Marconi’s role in the development points where the Bras of today’s network of global d’Or Lake meets the Atlantic communications. In 1902, theOcean, the Canal has been a busy gateway for first official wireless message wasover 140 years. Bring along a picnic lunch and sent from this site (located in Tablesavour an afternoon on the Canal. Head, Glace Bay) across the Atlantic Ocean to England. Visitors can see the Wireless Hall of Fame and walk the interpretive trail to the original transmission station.
Cape Breton CultureMi’kmaq Aboriginal Culture Gampo Abbey 21Our entire Island echoes with the whispers of the The question could be asked: what is the place forgenerations that have come before us. Here before a monastery like Gampo Abbey in the Shambhalaall of us, Mi’kmaq culture continues to thrive and world? The Abbey offers a rare opportunity toinspire. The Eskasoni First Nation on the practice and study in a thoroughly tamedBras d’ Or Lake, is the world’s largest Mi’kmaq contemplative environment that is rich with ritual.community other communities include Whether you take temporary vows or aspire toWagmatcook First Nation, Membertou First Nation, become a lifelong monastic, the monastic lifeWaycobah First Nation and Potlotek First Nation. carries the blessings of the authentic expression ofYou’ll discover music, art, humour, cuisine and the Buddha’s teachings and life example.stories that have been passed down over www.gampoabbey.orghundreds of years.www.unamakitourism.ca Colaisde na Gàidhlig The Gaelic CollegeCape Breton Centre forCraft and Design The only institution of its kind in North America, students of all ages and skill levels visit theThe Cape Breton Centre for Craft and Design College every year to study under some of theexists to promote excellence in the field of craft finest instructors in Nova Scotia Gaelic culture.and design through education, training, exhibitions Visitors to the College, located in St. Anns, mayand special events. The centre is committed enjoy daily music and dance demonstrations,to developing programs that preserve, elevate, modern exhibits and a Celtic-themed gift shop.expand, and enhance the creation of craft.www.capebretoncraft.com Highland Village Museum The Highland Village Museum is the onlyAcadian Culture outdoor living history museum that tells the story of Gaelic settlement outside of Scotland.From Belle Côte to the entrance to Cape Breton Located on a picturesque 43-acre propertyHighlands National Park is rich in Acadian history overlooking the majestic Bras d’Or Lake inand culture and a 101 other things to do. A day Iona, the Museum’s 11 historic buildings arewon’t do this area justice, try out some of the staffed by costumed animators who aremany cultural offerings and take a hike, whale passionate about sharing the Gaelic culture ofwatching tour, or browse through this unique our ancestors. Special events and programsvillage. Cheticamp still retains an old time air about are hosted throughout the year.it with narrow streets, a boardwalk by the ocean,unique architecture in its downtown core.
10 Unforgettable Hands-on Experiences Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site Explore the largest historical reconstruction in North America where military drumming, musket firing and lively townsfolk compete for your attention. The Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site turns history into humour during dinner theatre performances, streets into stages at late-night concerts, and cannons into candid vacation moments. It’s the allure of Louisbourg.22 Let the Cabot Trail amaze your senses The Cabot Trail’s magnificent world-renowned drive is an experience unlike any other. Hike the celebrated Skyline Trail in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, be moved by soulful fiddle tunes that echo off the hills near Baddeck and dine on fresh seafood in Ingonish. Plan to savour every moment, every experience. Take time to unwind and enjoy this masterpiece. Golf like no one is watching Proclaimed by Forbes magazine as ‘The Hottest Island in Golf’, our courses have long been recognized as the best in the country. Cape Breton is home to Cabot Links, Canada’s only true Links course, as well as award-winning masterpieces such as Stanley Thompson’s Highlands Links.
Observe a masterpiece in the making Coastal adventure 23You will discover every kind of artisan at work Our coastal playground will delight those whohere—makers of kilts and quilts, baskets are as comfortable afloat as afoot. Explore ourand glass, along with art created from old shores, lakes and rivers by sail, kayak or canoe.industrial labours—blacksmithing, leather and Enjoy relaxing paddles on gentle waters, or anwoodworking. Our artisans have found exciting journey over rolling swells for a closeunique methods to preserve our history encounter with some friendly whales. If you preferwhile creating one-of-a-kind treasures that to sit back and enjoy the view, take a front-rowcelebrate our Island. seat to some of the most spectacular scenery on the planet with endless coastline horizons.Kick up your heels at a ceilidh Live our vibrant cultureNorth America’s only living Celtic culturethrives here, and you can be sure we know Cape Breton is home to many beautiful cultureshow to put on a Ceilidh that will keep you on – Celtic, Aboriginal and French to name a few.your feet! With more fiddlers per capita than Our culture is also rooted in our mining andany other destination in the world, you won’t steel-making history. We hold our traditionshave to look far to find some jigs and reels. close, and love to share with visitors.Just ask a local where the party is and wecan show you a move or two! Paradise is just a hike away!Get your hands on our history With some of the world’s most celebrated landscapes, Cape Breton calls out to beDelve into the mind of a genius at the Alexander explored. Our hiking trails range from easy strollsGraham Bell National Historic Site. Read a to rugged challenges, but the terrain yields thepage from his personal notebook, take a step same result—exceptional viewscapes that willwith his walking stick, and explore the many leave you breathless.inventions created by this extraordinary man.Tour an underground coal mine with a retired Sail Canada’s largest inland seaminer as your guide at the Cape Breton Miners’Museum, and participate in a Gaelic milling Canada’s 16th Biosphere Reserve and largestfrolic at the Highland Village Museum! There’s inland sea, the Bras d’Or Lake is known forno need to search for history here - we’ve gentle, fog-free waters, beautiful anchorages,put a bit of time travel into each exit. and hundreds of coves and islands. The Lakes are an international cruising destination and offer varied boat tours, from seabird tours and ecological sailing tours to elegant cruises.
c b i s l a n d.c o mWorld Renowned.. World’s Best Islands BBC Travel, 2011Cape Breton Island one of20 Must See Places One of North America’s most CharmingNational Geographic Traveler, 2013 Fall Islands Fox News, 2011National Geographic TravelerBest of the World Edition, 2012 Cape Breton Highlands National Park #2 Park in North America#1 Island Destination in North America, National Geographic Traveler Magazine, 2006#3 in the WorldTravel & Leisure Magazine, 2011 Cape Breton Island one of Seven International ParadisesMost Romantic Place in Canada Fodor’s Online Travel Guide, 2008.Vacay.ca, 2012 Top Ten Dare To GoTen Best Island Holiday Destinations in Canada CNN.com, 2014Where.ca, 2011 For more information on Cape Breton Island,Cabot Trail is #9 in the world for visit our official website www.cbisland.comCycling Destination For media specific inquiries please contact:Lonely Planet, 2011 phone 1-902-563-4636Louisbourg voted #2 as World’s Most [email protected] Castle Towns e-mail @TourismCBmsnbc.com, 2011 Cape Breton Island twitter Cape Breton facebook youtube
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c b i s l a n d.c o m official Media Guide