Seafaring History

Seafaring History

From the traditional routes of the Mi’kmaq to fishermen tough enough to ply the waters, from celebrated ship-builders to rum-soaked sailors of early Halifax, our history and our culture has been shaped by the sea. 

You’re never too far from the ocean in Nova Scotia, or from a salty tale – and some of them are even true. Learn about those stories at the many museums that highlight how our way of life has been both challenged and inspired by the deep Atlantic.

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Seafaring Life

Explore life at sea first-hand at the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic in the UNESCO World Heritage Town of Lunenburg. And by first-hand we mean you can actually feel marine creatures such as starfish in the museum’s touch tank. An aquarium is home to more sea-life such as lobsters, flounders and codfish.

Learn about rum-running, whales and August gales. Hear from the ‘old salts’ who fished the North Atlantic, and learn about the famous Bluenose schooner. Walk the docks that front the brightly painted red buildings, board the wharf-side vessels, and search for ghost ships in the fog.

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Living Histories

The past becomes a full-on sensory experience at any of our 10 living history museums and historic sites. Cannons blast and blacksmiths forge as costumed interpreters get in character to make history something you can feel.

Many living museums connect to our seafaring history, including the 200-year-old restored fishing village at Fisherman’s Cove on the Eastern Shore.

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Lighthouses

For centuries Nova Scotia’s lighthouses have helped protect people who make their living from the sea, and visitors who arrive by water. There are still many lighthouses in Nova Scotia, weather-battered but proudly standing guard, including the much-photographed signal tower in Peggy’s Cove.

These beacons help shine a light on Nova Scotia’s maritime history, and maritime spirit.

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