Known as the Birthplace of New Scotland, this seaside town charms with its waterfront cafés, island excursions and replica of an historic ship.
The Canadian town of Pictou sits on Nova Scotia’s Northumberland Shore and is where Scottish settlers first landed toward the end of the 18th century. Learn about the town's origins, explore waterfront walking trails and go on an island adventure.
Visit the Hector Heritage Quay to see Hector, a reconstruction of the three masted ship that brought Scottish settlers to the area in 1773. Walk the decks and see displays that tell the story of the ship’s historic voyage. For more history, go to the nearby Northumberland Fisheries Museum. View historical photographs and more than artifacts that cover sea heritage along the Northumberland Strait. While you are close to the waterfront, walk or cycle along one of the trails.
Explore the gift shops and galleries along Water Street and stop for lunch in a harbor side café or bistro. Be mindful that some of the premises will be closed during the winter.
Take a ferry across the Northumberland Strait to Pictou Island for its beaches and seal populations. If you want to visit Prince Edward Island, catch a ferry from the port of Caribou, a 2.4-mile (4-kilometer) drive north of Pictou town.
When you return to Caribou, head for Munroe's Island Nature Reserve at Caribou Provincial Park. Here, you may be able to spot numerous bird species including ducks, eagles and ospreys.
Pictou also draws visitors to its deCoste Center. The concert venue hosts a busy concert program that in previous years has attracted such respected performers as the Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Mamas and Papas and the Edinburgh String Quartet.
The nearest international airport is in Halifax, approximately 84 miles (135 kilometers) away, while trains stop in the nearby town of Truro. Otherwise, enter the seaside town by sailing or taking a ferry into the harbor.