Leaving your local accommodator or cruise dock we’ll tour scenically through historic Halifax and make our way to the Annapolis Valley of Nova Scotia following the Evangeline Trail.
Our first stop will be North Mountain Ridge to the Blomidon ‘Look-Off' where, on a clear day, you can see the Bay of Fundy, Grand Pré, Wolfville and the extensive dykelands built by the Acadians. It is perhaps, one of the most scenic vistas in Nova Scotia and a great over view of where we will be touring on this day.
Continuing our drive "down the mountain" we’ll pass by many orchards.The Annapolis Valley is noted world-wide for its fruit trees, particularly apple trees although there is also pear, plum, grape, cherry, and assorted berries and vegetables farmed here as well. It is true the Acadians had apple orchards but it was horticulturalist Charles Ramage Prescott who developed the apple industry in Nova Scotia from 1811 to 1859. Mr. Prescott was responsible for introducing numerous varieties including the Ribston, Northern Spy, Baldwin, and Gravenstein. We’ll visit his former estate at Starr’s Point which is one of the finest examples of Georgian architecture in Nova Scotia. With your permission, we will include a visit to Mr. Prescott's house known as Acadia Grove, visit the hothouse and grounds - this will take approximately one hour.
We’ll make way to the village of Port Williams. Surrounded by the beauty of Minas Basin tides and dyke lands. Its history is rich with the legacy of the Mi'kmaq, Acadiansand here we will be able to learn about how the land was shaped by the Acadians with dykes and your able to walk one such French dyke if you wish or catchan amazing view of the Minas Basin and the wharf. The wharf was essential to shipping industry in Port Williams early days.
Timing allowed and based on your requests we can visit the first microbrewery to open in the Annapolis Valley the multi-Award-winning Sea-Level Brewing.
Next, we’ll make way to Wolfville, which at one time, was a prosperous agricultural community. It is a University town so there are numerous, delicious eateries to choose from for lunch. Take a stroll around Acadia campus (just named to the 2016 list of "The Most Beautiful Campuses in Canada").
We'll visit Grand Pré National Historic site. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2012, Grand Pré is a powerful monument that unites the Acadian people. You’ll will uncover the tale of Le Grand Dérangement: a tragic event in Acadian history that has shaped the vibrant culture of modern-day Acadians across the globe through its quiet but powerful renaissance. The site commemorates the Grand Pré area as a centre of Acadian settlement from 1682 to 1755 and how the Acadian peoples shaped the land utilizing the Fundy tides but most importantly the Deportation of the Acadians, which began in 1755 and continued until 1762. For many Acadians throughout the world, the site remains the heart of their ancestral homeland and the symbol of the ties that unite them to this day.
Take your time to view the various exhibits here and view the excellent and informative film showcasing this dark part of our history before setting off to the lush gardens and memorial church.
A short drive will take us to the Deportation Cross. The cross was erected in 1924 and marks the site where Acadian deportees were loaded onto row boats and taken out to the transport ships anchored in the Minas Basin. Take some time to reflect and imagine the scene in 1755.
Time and interests considered before leaving the Annapolis valley behind and making way for Halifax one must remember that we are in wine country. The Annapolis Valley is highlighted As Canada's up-and-coming wine destination, perhaps our next stop will be at the oldest winery in Nova Scotia, Domaine De Grand Pré. This gorgeous winery not only produces award winning wines but also boasts an award-winning restaurant! With the Bay of Fundy as a back drop, explore this beautiful vineyard, tour their wine museum then sit back, sip and savour the flavours of their superb wine
The private, pre-booked Land of Evangeline Tour will take approximately 6.5 hours (+/-) and is fully narrated by your driver/guide.