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Northumberland Shore Region

The cultural roots of early Scottish settlers run deep here – names like New Glasgow give it away.  In 1773, the Hector arrived from Scotland and the first of many waves of Gaelic immigrants walked down the gangplank. Today, you can board a replica of this three-masted, fully rigged ship at the Hector Heritage Quay in the town of Pictou, and try to imagine how those 170 pioneers endured 11 arduous weeks at sea, slowed down by storms and smallpox.

Once on shore, they discovered what the Mi’kmaq First Nations people already knew – the warm blue waters of the Northumberland Strait teemed with seafood, and the lands were fertile. The settlers forged an enduring way of life, and you can still hear the skirling of bagpipes and watch caber-tossing at the Antigonish Highland Games, the oldest games of this kind outside of Scotland.

Today, visitors will be rewarded with kayaking, sailing, zip-lining, golfing, birding and hiking by day, and theatre, music, exhibits and festivals by night.

Don’t Miss Experiences

Get to know the Northumberland Shore:

Great Photo Spots

  • Tidnish Suspension Bridge, Tidnish Cross Roads
  • Balmoral Grist Mill Museum, Balmoral Mills
  • Green Hill Provincial Park Look-off, Greenhill
  • Melmerby Beach Provincial Park, Little Harbour
  • Cape George Point Lighthouse, Cape George

Northumberland Shore Communities

Pictou New Glasgow Antigonish

Sunrise Trail

Navigate through the heart of Scottish culture to the original heartbeat of industry in Nova Scotia. 
The Sunrise Trail runs from rolling farmland to coastal villages to hard-working towns – with more than a few 
lobsters and blueberries in between.