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    September 2023
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    Scottish flavors in the Canadian Maritimes

    Hiking through spectacular views and autumn colors in Nova Scotia

    Things-to-Do-Fall-in-Nova-ScotiaFeeling a call to escape the city’s noises and distractions, I was contemplating a road trip that would get me closer to the nature and by the sea.

    In the CAA Quebec monthly automobile association magazine, I stumbled upon an article depicting the Cape Breton Trail in Nova Scotia.

    I was delighted at the sight of such marvelous landscapes and the multiple hiking and trekking trails through magnificient breathless scenery!

    It seems to me like a magical place…I imagine myself, especially in autumn,  gazing down from headlands above the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  Nova Scotia’s Cape Breton trails would keep my feet busy all day!

    Upon googling the name of the country, I ‘ve learned that ‘ the name Nova Scotia is Latin for ‘New Scotland,’ and was first given to this part of North America in 1621. Although there were occasional Scots among the early settlers, they did not come in large numbers or establish permanent communities until 1773, when emigrants from the north-western coast of Scotland arrived in Pictou.

    scotland flag with Canada flagThe Pictou Scots were Presbyterian and spoke Scottish Gaelic. Many of their descendants later moved to other parts of Canada and the United States, but Pictou continues each summer to celebrate the arrival of the ship Hector with its founding immigrants.

    A number of Scottish families, (…) arrived in the late 1700s from the Western Isles (the Hebrides). Many took up land near Antigonish, others along the Bay of Fundy near Parrsboro, and some later moved to Cape Breton Island. Around 1800, a number of other families emigrated from Barra in the Hebrides, settling along the Bras d’Or Lakes where they established communities with strong connections based on kinship and language. ‘ Source: Archives


     As the musicians hit their stride, your mind wanders to the pleasures that lie ahead on your self-paced Nova Scotia hiking tour through the Cape Breton Highlands. Galleries and craft shops, stunning coves and headlands, wildlife and walking trails.


    All worthy of anticipation—don’t get too far ahead of yourself—the night is young, the music’s just begun, and your bowl of seafood chowder is on its way.

    The band launches into a jaunty Acadian tune, and locals take to the floor for a traditional dance. Sipping a dram of house-made single malt after today’s walk in Canada’s Celtic heartland is pretty sweet. Even sweeter, the distillery-inn is your home for the night, so dinner and a cozy bed are close at hand.


    Contentment is hard to find. We usually think contentment is found in things, achievements or experiences, but what if it was available in any moment, in our ability to relax and appreciate?


    Scots in Nova Scotia have the reputation of most kind hospitality and they extend Ceud Mile Failte (‘One Hundred Thousand Welcomes’) to all visitors, particularly those who may be distant kin. Being of Scottish descent myself, I am enthusiast at the idea to visit the country soon.

    Unfortunately, frontiers are now closed due to COVID-19’s pandemic and I sincerely doubt they will re-open in 2020.

    No sweat, it’s on my bucket list! 🙂

    Until next, stay safe and strong.

    Talk soon!



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