Canada’s smallest province, Prince Edward Island is our next stop and even though it is a province, it is far from being Canada’s largest island. In fact, there are 22 other islands in Canada that are larger then PEI!
To get over to PEI from New Brunswick you have to cross over the Confederation Bridge which was completed in May 1997. It crosses over the Abegweit Passage of the Northumberland Strait. The bridge also holds the record for being the World’s longest bridge over ice covered water. It is 12.9 km long and no, the water is not frozen all year long.
Our first location on the island was at Lord Selkirk Campground outside of Belfast. With its location south east of Charlottetown it gave us a good area to cycle along the red soil farmland and out to some beautiful lighthouses. There also was a beautiful 9 hole golf course at the campground which is always a nice feature for us. It is hard to get our clubs to golf courses with only our motorcycles and bicycles so when we have one in our own backyard we like to take advantage of it.
This course was beautiful, it is situated on top of the bluffs with stunning views of the Northumberland Strait and lush green fairways!
Just the other side of Belfast was a company called Belfast Mini Mills. Last summer we had the pleasure of being in Belfast,Ireland and had toured a linen mill, so we thought we had to check out the Canadian version.
We pulled into the farm that was the home to the mill and were greeted by dogs, chickens and guinea hens and finally a human named Hazel, one of the owners. They were not really open but were in the shop/store setting up, so invited us in. Their main business is actually making the milling equipment for smaller operations, hence their name mini mills. They ship these mills all over the world, it was impressive machinery.
We then met Hazel’s twin sister Linda and the 2 of them gave June an impromptu felting class and June made a nice lupin felt “picture”. After a very nice 2hr visit, and of course a purchase of a beautiful sweater, it turned into a very interesting and fun afternoon. Another bonus of this campground were the sunsets! The view from our home was nice, but if we walked over to the 9th hole, where we could look over the water, it was spectacular!!!
When tourists visit PEI a very popular destination is the Cavendish region. This is the beachy area of the island with the red sand and rugged coastline. It is also the home of Anne of Green Gables which for us, was not a draw.
With it still before the tourist season we were at the campground mostly by ourselves at least until the Victoria Day long weekend. The weather was cool, but we had some sunny days where we got to explore the area on our bicycles.
We found a nice short paved path along the coast in the National Park and then discovered some of the inner roads through potato country that were very nice, and very hilly, it felt good to have our legs tired after a cycle! Since we are in lobster country we were told we would find the best lobster dinner at the Blue Mussel Café in North Rustico, and boy were they correct!
We are not huge lobster lovers but what an amazing meal. A few days later we picked up some fresh scallops at the local fish market and fried them up at home for another awesome dinner. We also celebrated the end of our third year on the road with a beautiful sunset and a bottle of bubbly.
The first day of our 4th year we woke to sunshine, warm weather and a great day for a cycle along the coast. With our destination of Teapot Rock at Thunder Cove beach 35 km away along the coast we headed out. The route took us past the home where Lucy Maud Montgomery was born, the Canadian writer of Anne of Green Gables, lots of potato farms and a huge Cavendish french fry factory.
We explored the island not only on the bicycles but went for a long ride on the Harleys to the north west corner of the island to Skinners Pond and the home of the Stompin Tom Centre. This is where one of Canada’s best folk singers was born and went to school.
It was a long day on the Harleys and a little cooler then we wanted but, was well worth the drive – for us Stompin Tom fans anyway.
Our final day we headed into the capitol city of Charlottetown. June had a hair appointment, so I walked around to explore a little.
It was famously the site of the Charlottetown Conference in 1864, the first gathering of Canadian and Maritime statesmen to debate the proposed Maritime Union and the more persuasive British North American Union, now known as Canadian Confederation. From this, the city adopted as its motto Cunabula Foederis—”Birthplace of Confederation”.
This is also the home of Cows Ice Cream, not only has it been rated as the best ice cream in Canada but back in 2008 it was rated the best in the world!
We then left the island the way we entered it via the Confederation Bridge. When we came onto the island we had beautiful sunny skies, on the way off it was cloudy and rainy, so two totally different experiences.