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CG Recommends
Rediscovering Halifax

Halifax Harbour
Canadian frigates in Halifax harbour
I can almost feel the cool ocean breeze and moist marine air when I think of my trip two years ago to Halifax.

My parents wanted to return to the city of my birth during a two-week summer vacation to Nova Scotia. During a day trip, I became reacquainted with the city of my childhood.

Originally established by Colonel Edward Cornwallis in 1749 as a military Garrison, Halifax became the first permanent British settlement in Canada. Since then, as a result of the amalgamation of a number of former Halifax municipalities, the seaside urban centre has flourished and developed into a mixture of big-city living with a dash of small-town culture.


I spent my time rediscovering those places I remembered from having lived in Halifax. Along the old Halifax harbourfront is a great marine museum, the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, which has many interesting exhibits on Canada's marine history. The highlight of the museum was a decommissioned navy vessel that you could board and explore.

In 1917, an explosion in the Halifax harbour destroyed all historic structures along the harbourfront, but if it is historic structures you crave, consider visiting the Citadel and adjoining commons, which are perched high above the harbour. The Citadel is one of the few remaining star-formation garrisons in Canada. Built by the British in 1856, it displays period dress and offers extensive historical information on the city.

19th Century Clock tower
The clock tower offers a bird's-eye view
of the city and harbour
Another historical highlight is the town clock, which was erected in 1803 and designed by Prince Edward, Duke of Kent. From its base, there is an excellent hilltop view of the city.

Another beautiful place to visit in the downtown area is the Public Gardens. Established in 1836, the gardens provide a relaxing place to stroll and take in a visually stunning display of colour. My day ended with a walk through the Halifax commons parkland in the heart of the city.

Halifax is an ideal location for a mixture of Canadian marine history and beautiful scenery.

Graham Lanktree, CG student intern


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