I will confess that the first time I heard of Prince Edward Island was when I asked the waitress what are PEI mussels. So embarrassing! Oh well now PEI means so much more.
Prince Edward Island is one of eastern Canada’s maritime provinces, off New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The large island is marked by red-sand beaches, lighthouses, and fertile farmland, and is renowned for seafood like lobster, mussels and oysters. The capital is Charlottetown.
In 1864, a small group of elected officials gathered in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. They were meeting to discuss the possibility of uniting three Maritime jurisdictions, but representatives also appeared at the conference to raise a broader issue, and sow the seed of a concept to establish a larger union and create a country. This historic event of 1864 led to the founding of Canada.
The Confederation Bridge spans the Abegweit Passage of the Northumberland Strait. It links Prince Edward Island with mainland New Brunswick, Canada.
Knowing the importance of maintaining links to the mainland, the Island’s political leaders insisted that a clause requiring the federal government to establish and maintain a service to convey mail and passengers to the Island year round be enshrined in the terms of Confederation agreement.
124 years later, as complaints about the ferries increased in the 1970s and 1980s, the debate over the bridge picked up. After a lengthy campaign to convince the islanders that the structure would mean lots of tourist money without overpopulating the towns, support for a bridge passed with 59.5% of the vote in 1988. CRAZY!
We took the Harbor Hippo for a land/sea tour of Charlottetown.
Fred even got a sucker for good behavior.
But he didn’t get to go to the chip shack. Check out the menu.
On the other side of the island we stayed in Cavendish by the National Park.
There is no better way to explore the stunning landscapes of PEI’s North Shore than by cycling the Gulf Shore Way. This seaside route is a recent upgrade to PEI National Park that offers a paved, two-way trail that twins the Gulf Shore Parkway, providing cyclists with a smooth surface and a mix of flat stretches and gentle rolling slopes. Wind your way past the iconic red sandstone cliffs of Cavendish. The redness of the soil is due to the high iron-oxide (rust) content.
We took an amazing motorcycle ride through the island for lunch at the Oyster Barn, famous for their Malpeque oysters. They were the best we have ever had.
Right off the boat.
We even got some mussels to go.
My first try to make them myself.
Then back to our motor coach for a relaxing evening by the fire.
Next stop is the third Maritime Island Nova Scotia.