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Find your Celtic heart


Find your Celtic heart

Centuries ago, Irish and Scottish Gaels began settling in Cape Breton and in pockets across Nova Scotia. With them came the vibrant Celtic culture that helped shape our province’s identity. This culture of song, dance, music, and craft, not only survives here – but flourishes. Hit the road and follow the sounds of celebration.


Highland Village Museum

The Highland Village Museum, or An Clachan Gàidhealach, brings to life Nova Scotia’s Gaelic culture, heritage, and hospitality. The living history museum and folk-life centre are located in the heart of Cape Breton, overlooking the beautiful Bras d’Or Lakes.

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Take in a Ceilidh

As you wind your way along the Ceilidh Trail, make sure to drop in to one of the local church halls for a traditional ceilidh. Baddeck hosts many ceilidhs throughout the year – just ask a friendly local for directions or look out for signs boasting, “Ceilidh here tonight!”

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Red Shoe Pub

This quaint traditional pub was named for a famous reel written about a woman who loved to highland step-dance in shoes stained with crimson paint. Owned by the famous musical Rankin family, the Red Shoe Pub features live performances every day of the week. The kitchen offers up fresh local mussels, steaming seafood chowder, rich salmon cakes, and mouth-watering hot pub pies.

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Dancing Goat Bakery

Hungry Cabot Trail travelers will be happy to encounter the Dancing Goat Bakery. This stylish café and bakery is the place to sip a cup of fair trade organic coffee, enjoy locally sourced cuisine, and fill up on fresh baked goods. Be sure to try the delicious Porage Bread, a traditional Celtic favourite.

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Celtic Music Interpretive Centre

Celtic music may have been born on another continent but its adopted home is in Cape Breton. The Celtic Music Interpretive Centre is dedicated preserving the music through education and performance. Here you’ll learn about the music’s history through exhibits featuring interviews, stories, and archives of vintage recordings. Workshops are available to bring out your inner Gael, and you won’t want to miss out on one of the lively luncheon ceilidhs.

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Glenora Distillery

Whisky lovers and teetotallers alike will find much to love at Glenora Distillery, Canada’s only distiller of single-malt whisky. Tour the distillery, stroll the scenic grounds, and relax by the brook from which the water is drawn to produce the award winning whisky. After you’ve worked up an appetite, enjoy a meal in the dining room and then retire to a mountainside chalet overlooking the incredible Margaree Valley.

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Big Fiddle

A famous Sydney landmark and a great photo opportunity. You can’t miss the world’s largest fiddle, built in recognition of Cape Breton’s musical talent and deep Celtic roots. You’ll find the 60’ foot tribute outside the cruise pavilion on the Sydney waterfront.

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