Halifax – Waterfront Harbourwalk

Any visit to Halifax should include exploring the waterfront.  Free to access, the 4km (about 2.5miles) boardwalk is built dominantly for pedestrians.  While strolling the wooden platform, you will come across museums, historical buildings, periodic vendors, ambulant temporary fair, art works, memorials, murals, stores, local souvenir shops, cafes and restaurants.

Chairs and hammocks have been installed for a nicely deserved break or to simply appreciate the view.

Arts are distributed along the pathway. Murals, the Drunken Lamp Posts, statues including the one of new residents and, the most ignored sign “do not climb” next to the Wave structure is kind of funny.

At the north end of the boardwalk you will find the casino and on the south, the Halifax Seaport where you can find the Farmer’s market, the Canadian Museum of Immigration, a nice micro-brewery and art galleries, all of which extend from Pier 19 to 23.

Closer to the Casino, the Historic Properties are a group of warehouses used by privateers (“legal” pirates) to hide “treasures” for auctions during the early 19th century. Part of the store rooms are now part of a small indoor shopping area offering services and local products. Alleys between some old stone structures have been beautifully laid out with fairy lights for lively evenings and incorporates dispersed old time items such as a pillory, a horse cart, an anchor and more.

The Maritime Museum of Atlantic is between the waterfront and Upper Water Street and presents some outdoor displays on the wharf.

There are nice restaurants along the pathway with welcoming terraces for a meal or a glass of wine in solo, couple, family or group. Street fast food treats are also an option in the colorful food hut court for a piece of pizza or an ice cream.

There are actions in the port. A ferry can take you to the opposite sector of Dartmouth. It is a nice way to see the city at night.   Daily cruises for whale watching or the ferry to reach Georges Island departs from the area close to Cable Wharf.       

The Cable Wharf area gives you interesting information on the communication cable deeply installed in the ocean floor and connects Europe to Canada, 3,200km (about 2000 miles) of wire to expedite sending and receiving messages. In the early 20th century, that was a huge project.

Boats of all size can be observed in the port. Some are private, some accessible for the public to visit.

From the boardwalk, you will have a view of Georges Island which was used to imprison hundreds of Acadians who were forced to leave the region during the Great Deportation (1755-1763). It is named after King George II (Great Britain) and the Fort is named after his wife Charlotte. The fort was used as a military prison during the American War and a quarantine place at some point in history. It is possible to visit the island and it is now a National Historic Site.

A monument to commemorate the imprisoned Acadians sits on the boardwalk at Bishop’s Landing.

My final recommendation here is to look into the water. You may see a seal.