Where We Be
Ceilidh Coast
As we started driving along the lake's western shore in the early morning,
grassy areas were covered in frost and the lake wreathed in rising mist
The fall foliage was nothing short of spectacular on Cape Breton Island this mid-October
The lake's shoreline is highly indented, making for small bays like this one -- home to some lucky fisherman
The views were dreamlike at times
Just for kicks we took the Little Narrows Ferry -- a shortcut one-minute ferry crossing -- to Washabuck Peninsula
This almost-island offers good water views in nearly every direction
During our counter-clockwise loop drive we came across this ready-to-fall-over-at-any-minute barn
It was an overcast day but the outstanding fall foliage added an element of cheer
This spiral spit of land in the middle of the lake looks inviting -- it would be fun to visit by kayak
As we entered the town of Iona, we came across picturesque Plaster Cove with
its pine-covered islets and a cute model church complete with mini-graveyard
Sculpted bays and fine fall colors made for a good outing even on a dreary day
We followed a marshy spit of land off Washabuck Peninsula back to the mainland
On another day we drove to the Ceilidh Coast on the northwestern shore of Nova Scotia. Glenora
Distillery was the highlight of our touring day -- and not just because of their fine aged whiskey.
For this four-day visit we stayed at Aberdeen Motel near Whycocomagh, 30 minutes south of Baddeck. Centrally located on
the western shore of Bras d'Or Lake, its rooms offer convenient features including a small fridge, microwave, and dining table.
Bright fall colors and a babbling brook make for a pretty setting
The ivy-covered building itself is quite attractive
And then there's the wine...
Baddeck Lighthouse stands sentinel over Canada's Inland Sea
Inside there is fiddle and piano music. A ceilidh (pronounced "kay-lee") is like a Celtic hoedown,
and the Ceilidh Coast is particularly famous on Cape Breton for its Celtic musical roots.
Nova Scotia -- Bras d'Or Lake
If you look on a map, you'll see that Bras d'Or
Lake is a huge, sprawling octopus of a lake that
spans more than 1,000 square kilometers. It
dominates the center of Cape Breton Island
and is definitely an attraction in its own right.
"Canada's Inland Sea" is a mix of fresh and salt
water. Washabuck Peninsula sits at its center
and more or less divides the lake into three
parts. The result is two long arms known as St.
Patricks Channel and St. Andrews Channel. It's
no small feat to drive around this lake, and we
didn’t even try. Instead we settled for a loop
around the almost-island of Washabuck. Even
that took us most of an afternoon. I'll say it
again, Nova Scotia (and Cape Breton Island) is
bigger than you might think. Approach it piece-
meal: for instance, we did Washabuck one day
and the lake's western shore on another; that
let us enjoy it without wearing ourselves out.
Baddeck is a popular base for exploring the region; we wouldn't mind staying here on a future visit
One of many scenic pauses along the shores of Bras d'Or Lake
Baddeck Lighthouse looked particularly magical in the filtered morning sunlight
Washabuck Peninsula
...And the 10-year aged whiskey...
No wonder Robin's so happy!
Pubs and live music everywhere