Prince Edward Island – A gem all on its own

As the smallest Canadian province and one of the three Canadian Maritimes, Prince Edward Island (PEI) deserves a blog post of its own.   Arriving by plane, ferry, or driving over the 12 km (7.5 miles) Confederation Bridge from New Brunswick, PEI has something for everyone.    If any of these activities pique your interest:   hiking, cycling, beach combing, camping, fishing, shopping, dining (and eating ice cream), wine/spirits tasting, perusing art galleries, attending musicals or just relaxing, PEI is for you!    I understand why so many Canadians (and others like us) vacation in PEI.

The first stop on my list was to visit the Anne of Green Gables Heritage Place.  I must confess, I had not previously read Anne of Green Gables, the classic novel published in 1908 by L.M. Montgomery.  Although dubbed a children’s book, it can be enjoyed by any age, as I can attest just recently reading it before arriving in PEI.  However, I didn’t realize it was the first of 8 books in a series.   Oh well, I read the first two books before arriving and thoroughly enjoyed them.  And if you are thinking, hasn’t she seen the movie, either of the two Anne of Green Gables mini-series, or the Netflix “Anne with an E”, the answer is no.  I’m not sure why not and I will be indulging in some screen time soon. 

The Anne of Green Gables Heritage Place was Dave and my first “tourist” stop and I thoroughly enjoyed seeing how the author drew inspiration from the farmstead and the woodland pathways in Avonlea, PEI. I felt just like Anne walking through the haunted wood trail.

Next, we entered the Prince Edward Island National Park and stopped at the first of three separate regions– the Cavendish Region.  Between April and October, dogs aren’t allowed on the park beaches, but they are welcome on all other PEI beaches.  Instead of beach combing, we chose to hike several of the trails near the beaches so Murphy could join us.  The beaches were all beautiful, many having red sand due to a high iron content. 

 On our way to the second region, we stopped for lunch at North Rustico, a quant fishing village with fresh seafood.  We enjoyed a delicious lobster roll and sweet steamed mussels (and a yummy chocolate peanut butter scrumptious dessert).  I must confess, we had the exact same main courses the night before.   The restaurant in Charlottetown, PEI’s capital, had won the 2021 Lobster Roll competition so we had to try it.  So, which did we think was better?  Dave liked the second lobster roll better (more of a lobster salad) and I like the first one (just lobster and a bit of mayo).  The mussels were tender and sweet at both locations.  So yummy.

Our next stop of the day was the second National park region:  Brackley Beach, hiking the Robinsons Island trail.  This multi-use trail had mountain bikers riding clockwise and hikers hiking counter clockwise so we could see each other.  It worked great!

The island was once the farmstead of the Robinson, potato farmers, established in the 1940’s.  Fun fact:  Potatoes are the largest cash crop for PEI, producing more than any other province.  The potato industry is worth over $1 billion to PEI’s economy each year.    PEI’s climate and unique iron-rich red soil provides for such profitable harvests.   I saw huge 50 lb bags of potatoes in the grocery store.  I guess that could hold you over for a winter, eh?

The last region of PEI’s National Park was Greenwich beach.  This area had 3 separate hikes.  We went on the most popular, which includes a floating boardwalk over a pond before the dunes and the beach. More stunning views.   On a side note:  On the drive back to our RV from our first day of exploring we went through at least 10 traffic circles within a 15-mile drive.  PEI loves traffic circles. 

It was quite rainy on our last day but we managed to sneak in a stop at The Chip Shack for the “best fries in PEI”.   The shack had just opened when we arrived and we enjoyed freshly made hand-cut “chips” (aka french fries) made from recently harvested PEI potatoes, along with deep fried cheese curds with tasty garlic butter dipping sauce.  I first tried cheese curds in Wisconsin last year on the Great Loop and loved them!

Our last stop on our PEI whirlwind itinerary was Thunder Cove beach to view the “teacup” rock formation.  Unfortunately, due to high winds, even at low tide we couldn’t walk around the cliffs to get to the tea cup formation, but we could view it from the top of the cliffs.     A mother nature spectacular sight.

Murphy update:   Murphy loved PEI.  He did tons of hiking with so much to smell!  He accumulated 43,000 steps on our first day!  And, our campground not had only an off-leash dog walk area so he could romp with new friends but also a beach where he could swim, swim, and swim.  Only his dad didn’t like it too much when Murphy arrived back from his morning walk, very wet and jumped on the bed to give morning slobbery kisses.

We do hope to return to PEI one day and cycle the 170 km (106 miles) Confederation Trail, running along its gulf coast.

Thanks for following along on our summer RV travels,

PEI captivated Brenda with awesome travel buddy and chauffeur Dave and Magnificent Murphy

1 thought on “Prince Edward Island – A gem all on its own”

  1. Wow, so many good memories revived, – thanks.
    I had to put on a bib to view all the great food pics 😉
    I’m glad to see that Mr. Murphy is letting you guys share in his adventures!

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