Just like the ocean flowing through and around this area of the province, a unique and colourful lifestyle continues to flow through Pubnico, the oldest Acadian settlement in the world.
History of Pubnico, Nova Scotia
Life in Pubnico – both past and present – is very much connected to fishing. The area gets its name from the Mi’kmaq word “Pobomcoup”, meaning “a place where holes have been made through the ice to fish”. In 1653, Philippe Mius d’Entremont chose to settle in the area that would later become known as Pubnico. Today, the descendents of Philippe and his family can easily be identified by their surnames Mius and d’Entremont.
After the Expulsion of the Acadians in 1755, Acadian families began to return to the area in 1766 to find their old lands occupied by English settlers. They moved to land close by and built new homes in West Pubnico, which is now one of the many Pubnico communities that surrounds Pubnico Harbour. Over the years, the French and English settlers of Pubnico have made their living from the rich fishing grounds in its surrounding waters – a tradition that continues to this day, with the addition of lobster and scallop fishing. Today, Pubnico is the oldest Acadian village in the world and a place where you can literally meet the descendants of families who founded it.
Accommodations in Pubnico
Pubnico is a primarily rural area but one that offers numerous accommodations in its villages and around the harbour. You’ll find bed and breakfasts, as well as an inn and motel, both with restaurants, located within the Pubnicos. Find accommodations in Pubnico here.
Places to eat in Pubnico
The chefs at Ye Olde Argyler Lodge and the Red Cap Motel & Restaurant in the Pubnico area pride themselves on providing visitors with plenty of menu items featuring fresh-off-the-boat seafood, especially if you love lobster. Being the heart of old Acadia, you’ll also find mouth-watering Acadian cuisine.
Must see Attractions in Pubnico
If you have Acadian roots or are interested in learning more about Acadia’s past, Pubnico is a must-visit destination. The Historical Acadian Village of Nova Scotia takes visitors back to life as it was for Acadians over 100 years ago. Get your picture taken alongside a statue of Baron Philippe Mius d'Entremont, founder of Pubnico, see the old Abbott’s Harbour Lighthouse that once guided ships through the harbour, stroll through an accurate recreation of traditional Acadian village and search the family names among gravestones dating back to the early 1800s.
Another recommended destination for Acadian genealogical research is the Musée des Acadiens des Pubnicos et Centre de recherche (Acadian Museum of Pubnicos and Research Centre) in West Pubnico. This former Acadian homestead houses artifacts from the area’s earliest days, as well as documents and literature dating back to the 1700s. For the genealogy enthusiast, the museum’s archives will provide you with the opportunity to sit down and explore over 5,000 documents, genealogies, land grants, maps and photographs.
Things to do in Pubnico
Acadians are well known for their hospitality, and you’ll find that in the people of Pubnico. You’ll find welcoming smiles and friendly faces throughout the region. This is especially true if you visit during the Festival Acadien de Clare that takes place each summer throughout the Acadian Shores region. If you want to take in the sights, sounds and salt air of the ocean, head down to the mouth of Pubnico Harbour, where you can also watch the fishing vessels as they head out before dawn or and return in the afternoon.