Halifax is the ideal location for a city break by the sea. The capital of Nova Scotia has it all, from cultural attractions to a host of thrilling activities. If you're only in the port city for a few days, check out our guide to the things you must see and do.
See Canada's most popular historic site
The 19th-century Halifax Citadel National Historic Site offers a great way to learn about Halifax's history. The city once served as a British naval station and it is in this part of town that you'll find one of the five forts that formed the Halifax Defence Complex.
Visit the soldiers' barracks to try on the famously large headgear worn by the 78th Highland Regiment, see the hourly sentry change in the Guard Room and see if you can work out the coded message displayed by the Signal Mast and its various flags. If you have time, wander around the Fortress Halifax - Warden of the North exhibition to see how Halifax's defences became the sturdy fortifications they are today after starting life as simple wooden forts.
You can either join a guided tour at the information centre or explore the site by yourself; the former is recommended if you want as educational an experience as possible!
Take in a show at the Neptune Theatre
The Neptune Theatre has been going strong for 50 years and is the biggest professional regional theatre in Atlantic Canada. Whether you're into plays, musicals, films or concerts, there's sure to be something perfect for your tastes when you visit on your Nova Scotia break.
Highlights you can look out for if you're visiting Halifax this year include a production of Hamlet in which one actor plays all 17 parts by himself, as well as the musical hit that is Sweeney Todd and a version of the Mulgrave Road Theatre's popular play Bingo!.
Explore Peggy's Cove
Nova Scotia's southern shore is just a stone's throw away from Halifax - making it extremely handy for those looking to get to know Canada's unforgettable coastline. There's much to see and do here, so make sure to plan your itinerary before you set off.
Just a few of the things you can get up to here include visiting the village of Peggy's Cove to see its iconic lighthouse and exploring Lunenberg, a UNESCO World Heritage Site regarded as the most well-preserved North American British settlement.
Foodies will want to try the fresh lobster while in this part of Nova Scotia, as the locals claim Peggy's Cove produces the best lobster dishes in the region. Other delicacies to sample include St Margaret's Bay haddock and locally-caught mussels.
Go surfing at Lawrencetown Beach
Okay, you don't necessarily have to put your wetsuit on here, but the surf is certainly one of the biggest reasons why Lawrencetown Beach is so popular. Seen as one of the best beaches on Nova Scotia's eastern shore, this stretch of sand has attracted crowds of tourists - and locals - for decades.
Surfers take to the water here in pretty much every season, while organised events relating to other sports and the local wildlife also take place year-round. Go on a guided tour to identify the plants and animals that live on and around the beach or follow the excellent mountain biking trail nearby after renting a bicycle - whatever you want to do, you can probably do it at Lawrencetown Beach!
Tour Alexander Keith's Brewery
There's more to a trip to Alexander Keith's Brewery than the beer - although that's a good place to start! Visitors flock to the attraction every year to see costumed actors use song and dance to re-enact life in Halifax in the 19th century on a guided tour, which ends with a trip to the Stag's Head Tavern to try the brewery's ales and enjoy a pub game or two.
As one of Canada's oldest breweries, the site is certainly worth a visit even if you're not that keen on alcoholic drinks. The huge granite and ironstone building was constructed in 1820, providing a fascinating insight into the architecture of the time. The taproom and the brewhouse itself also provide a feast for the eyes thanks to their detailed decor.