Cooked lobsters
Travel Media PEI Blog A Tourism and Travel Blog for Prince Edward Island Photo Credit: SH

Travel Media PEI Blog

The Family Friendly Island

Traveling with children on a budget is not always easy but when you come to Prince Edward Island, it’s effortless! There is so much to see and do here that is kid-friendly and affordable. For all of you family oriented travelers out there, here is a typical weekend spent in P.E.I. with ongoing family fun!

Day One

Walk through Victoria Park (and boardwalk) where you will find a baseball field, swimming pool, play ground and skateboard park.

Explore historic downtown Charlottetown by walking the Victoria Row (pedestrian street) and enjoy some tasty treats, local art, or outdoor music

10808332414_60ed0b6647_zTour Downtown Charlottetown with the Confederations Players Walking Tour, a troupe of costumed, young, bilingual Canadians, trained as the Fathers and Ladies of Confederation. Join the Players for a guided walking tour or attend their historic vignette outside Province House — the site of the 1864 Charlottetown Conference.

Make your way to Peake’s Quay at the Charlottetown waterfront where you will find Cow’s Ice Cream, PEI Dirt Shirt and much more!

Spend an afternoon at The Celebration Zone – All programming is free and includes nightly performances showcasing Canadian and PEI artists, a culinary zone that offers a taste of PEI, daily food demonstrations and food tastings, an arts and heritage zone with hands-on demonstrations, and a children’s zone with interactive activities.

Day Two

Head to Cows Creamery and tour the factory of Canada’s best ice cream and learn how it’s made.

Make your way to New Glascow stopping in at the Butterfly House located within the Gardens of Hope. This is a wonderful little greenhouse that is home to imported tropical butterflies from Costa Rica from June to September. The Gardens of Hope is a serenity garden for all to enjoy on a 12 acre site.

Pop into The Toy Factory just up the street where you will find many assortments of hand-crafted toys. Children of all ages are welcome to play-test hundreds of toys in the store. They can visit the toy-making workshop too, and if they’d like, they can help make a little wooden car or magic wand to take home as a special souvenir.

14541198192_e53fc3f573_zSpend the afternoon at Brackley Beach at the PEI National Park offering miles of pristine sandy beaches and majestic dunes to help relax on Island time.

Stay at a campground in Cavendish such as Marco Polo Land with over 100 acres of PEI camping, tailoring and RV sites and has all the services you need for your Island vacation. The resort will keep you entertained with a take-out, dairy bar, store, restaurant, themed entertainment, pools and large play areas. 

Day Three

Make your way to Victoria by the Sea where you will find Beachcombers, the modern family restaurant located at the end of the wharf. Wander the colourful fishing village’s shops and galleries in the village of Victoria, tucked neatly on the south shore of the Island.

9578877374_d55d810ec9_zVisit The Bottle House located in Cape Egmont and explore the three fantasy-like buildings that create the first-ever Bottle Village on P.E.I.

Tour the PEI Potato Museum located in the community of O’Leary in the western part of PEI. It is surrounded by fertile potato growing fields where the humble potato has played an important role in the economy for many years.

Check-in at West Point Lighthouse Inn where there are 13 rooms with great views, two of which, (The Keeper’s Quarters and The Tower Room) are within a historic Lighthouse. The West Point Lighthouse stands among the Island’s most recognizable places. At 69 feet tall, it’s also one of PEI’s tallest and most unique lighthouses.

End your vacation with nothing less but a spectacular sunset on the beach over looking the Northumberland Strait.

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The Inn at Bay Fortune

If you’re looking for something out-of-the-ordinary, something that will take your breath away in both, taste, smell and feel… look no further. The Inn at Bay Fortune is not just any Inn but it is the home to a stellar destination located on 46 acres in Eastern PEI.

It is known for its beautiful scenic landscape sitting on a hill overlooking over the Bay Fortune and amazing cuisine.

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It has won numerous awards though; the most distinguished consist of the TIAPEI Operator of the year in 1995 and Hospitality in 1998, Taste Our Island award in 2012, CAA/AAA award in 2002 – 2014 and Wine Spectator award in 2008 and 2014. In saying that, the food critics are not the only ones who are raving about The Inn at Bay Fortune; but the guests as well! Fifty seven percent of Trip Advisors ratings were above average leaving over half of the Inn at Bay Fortune patrons with ‘very good’ and ‘excellent’ descriptions of their stays.

This spectacular location was not always so pristine. David Wilmer, the current Inn Keeper first walked into an early 1900’s run-down old summer home and turned it around into a 17 room Inn with covered patio dining. This particular dining room has been recognized as one of Canada’s best while incorporating vegetables fresh from their garden behind the Inn. Chef Dana Wood, the current chef at David’s restaurant goes above and beyond for his guests to assure that they are happy and enjoys embedding fresh organic herbs and vegetables into nearly every dish he serves.

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Having gone to the restaurant this past weekend, I felt at home surrounded by great views and people. The menu had provided us with a three course Table d’Hôte menu and being a meat lover I chose to split the two-person Charcuterie as well as the burger while the rest of my party all ordered the steak. This particular Charcuterie was one of the best I’ve ever had. The meats were handpicked, pickles had been pickled by the Chef himself and everything melted beautifully together. The burger and steaks were also more than noteworthy. The first thing that came out of my neighbors mouth was “that is a perfectly cooked rare steak” – words that do not often appear at a dinner table. Our desserts arrived and all of the vibrant colors on our plates were exposed. The mint green ice cream, luscious red strawberries and dark chocolates were all heavenly. Needless to say, we all left a little bit heavier but beaming from ear to ear. A definite must-do on Prince Edward Island.

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The Inn at Bay Fortune
Toll Free: 1-888-687-3745
Bay Fortune, PEI C0A 2B0
Local telephone: 902-687-3745
Innkeeper: David Wilmer

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The Island’s Fun National Parks

Looking for something to do outside this summer? Prince Edward Island’s National Park offers interpretive programs related to the local wildlife on famous beaches, lush trails, museums and heritage sites. While the parks stretch amongst 60 kilometers of the North Shore, the cost of these programs is included in the parks entry fee of $7.80 per adult while discounted for seniors, children and families.

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The season began July 2nd and runs until August 29th where you can take part in many of the fun summer programs with a Parks Canada Interpreter. Parks Canada states:  “Whether you’re on a beach or trail, or around the campfire, this could be the experience that ignites your moment of discovery.” From Sensational Sandcastles, Campground Cabaret, Discovery Dome, Beach Finds, The Greenwich Story, Night Watch and Lobster Tales, you are bound to find something that interests you.

So what are you waiting for? The National Parks of Prince Edward Island present such a great assortment of activities and fun ways to learn and explore that every age group can enjoy.

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For more information you can call the administration office at 902-672-6350 or visit their website.

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Avonlea Village awarded Certificate of Excellence for 2014

Avonlea Village in Cavendish, Prince Edward Island was awarded a Certificate of Excellence for 2014 by Trip Advisor, the world’s largest travel site. 

It is an honor to have Avonlea Village of Cavendish have received such a great award from Trip Advisor being such a prestigious award given only to those who uphold excellent customer satisfaction.

2012-05-anne-of-green-gables-bookAvonlea Village is a replica destination formed from the tale of Anne of Green Gables. This series was first published in 1908 and since publication, there has been more than 50 million copies sold and has been translated into 20 different languages. The story quickly became known world-wide and readers wondered if P.E.I. was a real place. Unlike many fiction novels, P.E.I. was in-fact a real place though; the characters and tales were fabricated by L.M. Montgomery – the author and creator of the famous tales.

Avonlea Village is a seasonal theme park that provides replicas of the town and characters of the very popular Anne of Green Gables series. It is nearly identical to the detailed town Anne lives in the stories that Anne admirers can experience for themselves. Many of the buildings and spots on the Avonlea Village site were the true structures that Montgomery was inspired by to write the books and used in the tales.

For most, this slow countryside lifestyle is out of reach and desired by many thus, experiencing such a way of life is yearned for by many readers.

Onsite Avonlea participants are able to attend school, dye wool, square dance, play musical spoons, dress in costume and so much more. The venue became a huge hit and their Certificate of Excellence is proof of that.

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In order to determine who gets this award, Trip Advisor states: “To determine Certificate of Excellence honourees, we use a proprietary algorithm that factors in a variety of user-generated content. This includes review ratings, overall rating and quantity and recency of reviews. To qualify for a Certificate of Excellence, a hospitality business must:

•Maintain an overall TripAdvisor rating of at least four out of five

•Have a minimum number of reviews

•Have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least twelve months

A property’s popularity ranking on TripAdvisor is also factored into the algorithm.”bookmark

Venues aspire to have such an award and Avonlea has done so proving to their new and old customers that nearly all of their past attendees were very satisfied with the attractions they had while prompting others to attend as well.

Avonlea Village can be found at 8779 Route #6, Cavendish, Prince Edward Island, C0A 1M0 just five minutes from many other popular attractions in Cavendish such as Shinning Waters Family Fun Park, Green Gables House (who both also received a Certificate of Excellence) the PEI Dirt Shirt Factory, Sandspit Amusement Park, The Cavendish Boardwalk, Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, Wax World of the Stars, and so much more!

 

 

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Sailing the Island

photo 3sailingeditedMotoring out of the Charlottetown Yacht Club, the engine purring below the cabin and the boat rocking slightly against the waves. The sun begins to set in the distance reflecting gloriously against the blue Atlantic water as you finally get far enough from land to set sail. Helping the skipper of the boat, pulling ropes or just watching as the large white sail unfolds from the boom and a sheet immersing onto the mast; you’re sailing!

The engine turns off and the boat lifts slightly out of the water on a heel. The sound of the small waves hitting the side of the boat replaces any motorized sound. Peaceful. The wind pushing the boat forward, tightening and loosening ropes as requested by the skipper. Sitting on the edge of the boat with your feet dangling over the side, the occasional splash of salty water touching your toes.

         photo 1sailingedited   Looking out past the water, red cliffs supporting lighthouses on the edges surround you. From the middle of the harbor looking around the boat, three separate lighthouses are visible with others just around the corner. The warm sun is gleaming down on your face as you sail past the rocky sandstone cliffs.  The chef on board then presents you with his latest scrumptious creations made fresh in the boats cabin upon departure. After having a few bites the skipper then points out to the right side of the boat where a seals head has popped up out of the water. His body bobs in the blue as he checks out his new neighbors. Behind him are two herons along the shore also enjoying their dinner while scouting for insects, perhaps even a fish if they’re lucky. 

            photo 4sailingThe sun begins to set and the boat prepares for its return back to the yacht club. As the sail lowers and the motor starts up, it is back to reality after an enchanting afternoon in Charlottetown’s memorable Northumberland Straight.         

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Canada Day In P.E.I. A Great Success!

Crowds were monumental and the vibe was overjoyed. The day began with the opening of the Celebration Zone over looking the Charlottetown Harbor at 11am followed by the opening of the Event Grounds at 2pm — it was spectacular!

photo 1For islanders and visitors, being a part of Prince Edward Island festivities this year is definitely not hard with promotions of festivals in every visible direction. It seems everyone you talk to is beaming with excitement for an event taking place this summer and P.E.I. is sticking out amongst the provinces this summer as a must-do destination! Where else are you going to be able to attend a free event every day for 70 days!?                  

photoThe idea behind it all is the ability to bring all of the provinces throughout Canada to their roots and so that all Islanders and Canadians have the chance to experience their country from one place. Each week every province will be featured at the (FREE!) Celebration Zone

There are endless event advertisements on the Islands social media followed up by printed promotions on nearly every busy street throughout the province! The sun in shinning gloriously on the big tents holding all the great festivities happening this summer.      

photo 2We are all advocates of our own country – free. We are proud to be a part of our beloved country and for that we celebrate its beginning in the place where it all began, Prince Edward Island.

The excitedment isn’t over – it’s merely just begun! See you at the Celebration Zone! #CZ2014

 

For more information see www.pei2014.ca/celebrationzone

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Canada Lights The Sky

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Looking forward to the most outstanding celebration when the Island community comes together to commemorate the beginning of our home; the place we love most, Canada. Islanders come from vast distances all over the province to one area in order to have the best sighting of the fireworks that light the sky with color and streams of sparkle. Even those who cannot call themselves an “Islander” visit to take part in the festivities.

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The streets line up with cars and the sidewalks are bursting with groups of people sporting the nations colors with pride. Coming into downtown Charlottetown it becomes easily apparent that the best venue to enjoy is over looking the Charlottetown Harbor. Getting closer to the festivities, music is playing and vendors are auctioning. What looked like tigers, cats and zebras were children laughing after having their faces painted. The excitement grew rapidly until the crowd led me to the revealing festivities happening along the waters edge.

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The echoes of the concerts bounce off the water while fans cheer in the distance. Couples holding hands and licking their ice creams before melting in the warm sun beaming down. As the day goes on the crowds thicken in anticipation for the finale of the evening. Grandparents putting out chairs for their grandkids to sit in, fathers lifting their daughters on their shoulders – everyone waiting for the sun to set.

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The barge moves out into the harbor and the streets hold still in anticipation for the largest display of fireworks in the country. Suddenly a loud shrieking noise comes from the distance and BOOM! – the dark sky lights up with dazzling sparkles and vibrant colors. One after another, the sky is decorated with lights of all different kinds and just like that, everyone’s eyes are on the sky and the beautiful luminant displays.

This is unlike any other opportunity to celebrate Canada’s birthday where everyone; no matter your age, gender or your culture can partake as we catch the night sky glimmering with light in the province where it all began.1fireworks

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Lighthouse Hunting

Being an islander it is sometimes hard to see what we take for granted from this Island of ours. The long dirt roads, the lush fields and the ocean surrounding us; these are merely a background noise to our everyday routine. As I had been away from the Island for so long, upon my return I was able to see things that I had taken for granted for so many years.

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What I always loved most about Prince Edward Island was the water encompassing this small piece of land and mingling with the sandy shoreline beneath my toes. In saying that, the water may have been what I missed but the most alluring thing about the Island that I had neglected to admire was the commonness of such beautiful lighthouses occupying the many coasts of Prince Edward Island.

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Many of the colonial lighthouses found on the Island were built before 1873 while providing a distinguishing flash pattern to early settlers when travelling by sea. These lighthouses in particular have an octagonal shape much like the Covehead lighthouse, while each one has it’s own individual day markings and flash patterns.

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Travelling across the Island, whether you’re vacationing in Cavendish, oyster shucking in Souris or even downtown Charlottetown; a lighthouse is always nearby reflecting off the adjacent Atlantic Ocean. As my admiration for the Island’s beauty grew stronger, I decided to become a tourist for a day and see this province for what it really is, disregarding the fact that I’ve seen many of these roads before – I called it “Lighthouse Hunting”.

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Any day that I had free I would travel to a coast line, unaware of any lighthouses nearby in the hopes that I would spot one. To my surprise, I have yet to travel without sighting one in the distance. Some were old and needed a little TLC while others were grand, standing tall over steep vibrant red cliffs. Looking through tourist’s eyes in my own hometown allowed me to see these marvelous sights and I am so grateful that it happened to be in beautiful Prince Edward Island.

 

 

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