The city of Halifax is gorgeous to visit; and in lots of ways is the gateway to exploring Nova Scotia’s beautiful places. That being said, it’s also got a charm and history that’s totally worth spending a few days exploring. This is especially true with all the best things to do in Halifax that are easy to reach on foot.
Not only that, the city is a totally great base if you’re wanting to explore some of the eastern Nova Scotian shorelines on day trips, too. We loved popping over to the iconic Peggy’s Cove and driving down to the pretty town of Lunenburg.
Heck, we loved it all!
So, to help you get the most out of your time, I wanted to share some of the best things to do in Halifax once you arrive in Nova Scotia. Have the most amazing time exploring Atlantic Canada; it’s such a special region.
1.) Halifax Harbourfront
Strolling the harbourfront is easily one of the best things to do in Halifax once you first arrive in Nova Scotia. In my opinion, it allows you to get a ‘feel’ for the city and understand Halifax that bit more.
Plus, it’s totally gorgeous so you can’t really miss it.
On a sunny day, it’s so beautiful to just chill and stroll the front. Even though it doesn’t sound like the most ‘active’ plan, strolling the boardwalk is just great.
Once here, hop inside the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic and learn more about the naval history of the region. It’s totally interesting, even if you’re not the biggest seafarer.
Fancy a little fun. but want a good tour of the Nova Scotian gem of Halifax? Then book these tickets for a Halifax segway tour. It’s such a fun way to see Halifax. Plus, you get a little lesson on driving your segway beforehand!
2.) Peggy’s Cove
Yes, I know! It’s not technically Halifax at all but you can’t visit Nova Scotia and not visit Peggy’s Cove. It’s as quaint as it is beautiful.
Honestly, it’s one of the best things to do in Halifax if you want a day trip from the city. Or, if you prefer, as part of a wider Nova Scotia road trip.
After arriving, via Prospect Road (333), park here and wander around the historic fishing village that looks like something out of the movies.
Best of all, if you don’t fancy driving, book this Peggy’s Cove tour from Halifax. It takes all the stress of driving but with all the fun of exploring wider Nova Scotia.
Just be sure to book this Peggy’s Cove tour in advance. Tickets can sell out during peak months.
3.) Halifax Public Gardens
On a sunny Nova Scotian day, Halifax Public Gardens is one lovely place to visit. In fact, I’d go as far as saying it’s a stunner of a spot to just chill and relax if you’re wanting a slower pace.
Best of all, there are free horticultural and historical tours that run in Halifax Public Gardens. These one-hour tours are a great way to learn more about the local history.
Looking for a place to stay? Check into The Halliburton. We loved staying in this historic property and the rooms are so homely and nice.
4.) Take the Harbor Cruise
Easily, hopping onboard a harbour cruise is one of the best things to do in Halifax if you want to get your seafaring legs!
It’s a chance to explore wider Halifax whilst also learning so much more about this historic area of Atlantic Canada.
Tour the harbour, which we loved on a sunny afternoon. Best of all, the tours follow different scenic views, share various historical stories or enjoy a bite to eat on a Halifax dinner cruise.
The view of the sunset across the ocean is spectacular.
5.) Explore the McNabs and Lawlor Island Provincial Park
Fancy heading out from the city streets of Halifax? Then get yourself over to McNabs and Lawlor Island Provincial Park.
Located near Halifax Harbour, it’s a nice area to go hiking (especially on the Timmonds Cove Trail), learn about history, and relax on the sandy beaches. You might even spot some local wildlife, too.
To get here, you will need to hop on a charter boat or water taxi. It’s usually pretty easy but you do need to plan your visit.
Oh, and don’t forget to bring a camera! You’ll also get to see Maugers Beach Lighthouse and other buildings of notorious heritage.
6.) Go Over to Point Pleasant Park
If you love a good stroll and the Provincial Park, head over to Point Pleasant Park. It’s one of the best things to do in Halifax if you’re wanting an escape from the city streets.
With gorgeous views, it is the best area to take a stroll and stop by some of the sights to see along the way. Make sure to spot the Prince of Wales Tower, and head to Black Rock Beach and Point Pleasant Battery.
7.) Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
If you’re fancying a day inside and love art, then you’ve got to visit the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. Inside is a huge mix of art and exhibits that spans centuries. They have tens of thousands of items and i’ts well worth taking a gander.
Not only that, they have the most amazing seasonal and temporary exhibits that change each year. So, there’s always something new and exciting inside.
Afterwards, visit Province House and head on a tour through Novia Scotia’s Parliaments which dates back to 1758.
Filled with a library of books, two grand staircases, and other historical venues, the Province house is not to be missed.
Afterwards, if you don’t go for the dinner cruise, head over to The Five Fisherman for a tasty bite. Their seafood selection is so good. We ended up staying all night and loved it.
8.) Stop at Pier 21 National Historical Site
Love museums? Then heading over to Pier 21 is one of the best things to do in Halifax. You see, the Pier 21 National Historic Site is a great area to learn about immigration to Canada and the wider historical periods from 1928-1971.
Book these tickets to get inside and learn so much more about Canada’s history. It’s well worth taking a little trip right on the waterfront.
9.) Make a Trip to Halifax Citadel National Historic Site
Love a good bit of history? Then you have to get yourself over to the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. Dating all the way back to the 1700s, it’s a great place to learn more about the English heritage of the area.
Make sure to check out the Army Museum and listen out for the daily ‘Noon Gun’ that’s fired every day at, you guessed it, noon. It’s been fired every single day since 1857!
Afterwards, head over to Argyle Street for some of the bars and foodie spots. Antojo Tacos are so good!
10.) Old Town Clock
The Old Town Clock is just shy of the Halifax Citadel and totally easy to see whilst exploring this area of the city. The Old Clock Tower is one of the most recognizable landmarks across Halifax and you kinda can’t miss it.
Just be sure to take layers if you’re walking around Halifax. The wind can pick up and it’s always worth having some extra layers as you stroll the area.
Afterwards, make sure to check out Saint Paul’s Church that’s steeped in history. It’s been around for centuries and totally easy to visit when you’re near the Citadel.
Plus, it’s one of the best things to do in Halifax if you want to see more of the history of the city.
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