Traveling across Canada to cook, hike, eat and explore everything the Country has to offer with a pit stop in New York City.
Be sure to follow me on Instagram and my blog on my excursions.
Packing for a trip across Canada is something you should definitely plan ahead for and make all sorts of lists that you should check off before buckling it up and strapping it onto your back.
I didn't do anything like that so i give it 48 hours before i realize something crucial is missing.
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To get the Marine Atlantic Ferry in Port Aux Basque to Nova Scotia i would recommend leaving early in the morning and getting the 11:45pm boat across. This way you don't have to pay for accommodations that night and you can just sleep on the floor!
(Its not as bad as it sounds if you have a sleeping bag and pillow)
The key to this day trip is to pack your lunch and make sure your phone is charged. Newfoundland has very spotty service so in order to have some great jams along the way its crucial that you have access to music on your phone, some great cd's or an old school mp3 player. If you pack your lunch you start the trip off with the mentality of saving money and making your own lunches along the way is one of the best ways to do so.
We packed a sweet potato, pest, hummus, lettuce and cucumber sandwich and ate it at one of the places we stopped to fuel up.
Last time i took the Marine Atlantic i made the mistake of not bring a blanket or pillow up with me and their air conditioning was on full blast. To sum up that boat ride i was lying on the floor with tee shirts and shorts draped over me and probably slept 3 hours. I wasn't making the same mistake this time around! We got onto the ferry and brought up our sleeping bags, pillows and head phones. After a cold beer and a game of cards at the bar we set our floor beds up and called it a night. 6 hours later i was awake and refreshed; ready for the 5 hour drive ahead of me.
Once we docked in Nova Scotia and started the drive it was only a matter of seconds before i saw the signs for The Cabot Trail. Eager to spend some time outside after the long day before we turned down one of the side streets and headed for the trail called Uisge Ban Falls. It was just over 1 km and only 15 minutes off the highway so it seemed like our best bet. We were welcomed by about a foot of snow on the trails and the sad reality that i've yet to buy hiking boots. So we decided to park the car and walk on the dirt road to see where the trail started and have a coffee on a picnic table using our camping gear shown above. We walked and found this beautiful picnic table in the sun that wasn't completely covered in snow and started to set up our little camp stove. This plan would of been flawless if i remembered to bring the second half of the stove... so we packed it all up again and settled for espresso on the dirt road by the car !
Once we got to Halifax we couch surfed with a friend that was right downtown and found 24hr parking for just $9. It was 15 degrees C and sunny so we dropped off our bags, showered the boat floor away and started our food and beer adventure. With lots of recommendations from locals we decided to walk everywhere and get a snack and a beer at each place.
We started at the Black Sheep where we ordered their frites and black mayo with a pint of their Propeller Pilsner and struggled not to order more. The Black Sheep has one of the best happy hours ive ever heard of. Starting at 4:00pm a selection of drinks are $4 and as the time rises so does the prices. 5pm $5, 6pm $6 and so on. Its a little hard to find because its down a side street so make sure you keep your eyes peeled for their logo!
Next stop was the stubborn goat for a charcuterie and their Stubborn Goat IPA. It was a toss up between their pizzas and charcuteries because they had a beautiful wood fired oven in the back. But after a few questions and finding out their charcuterie was sourced locally we decided to go with that and allow room for more food later. Their apple bacon jam made it worth it.
After two stops it was time for a stroll along the board walk to make room for more food to come. The next stop was along the board walk and right next to The Bicycle Thief. The Little Oak was a pleasant surprise! We ordered the Korean beef tartar and their shrimp +pork dumplings with a collective arts IPA. Although the plates were small - they were delicious. The chili broth the dumplings swam in was the perfect spice and the sesame in the tartar was just enough.
Full but still thirsty we walked 45 minutes to the Good Robot Brewery and it was well worth the distance. Convinced we were going in the wrong direction - completely away from the downtown area - we rounded the corner and came across this building painted like the inside of a hard drive and a garden filled with people drinking beer. Because the sun was setting we decided to go inside the brewery only to find it packed on a Monday! You could tell that a lot of people there were locals and this was a favourite spot for those looking to drink beer and hangout with friends. If it wasnt for the fact weve been travelling for 2 longs days i would of stayed and tried their whole selection. But after trying their BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE! IPA - AMERICAN.