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Explore the Irish Connection to Halifax, Nova Scotia

About one in four Nova Scotians is of Irish descent, and despite being separated by an ocean, the two destinations are inextricably linked through history. The ill-fated Titanic was built in Belfast, and after it sank, the survivors and the bodies of the deceased were brought to the nearest port: Halifax, Nova Scotia.

It’s no wonder then, that Ireland is a very popular vacation spot for Nova Scotians coming to trace their heritage. Yet many people who live in Ireland and have long-lost family in Nova Scotia haven’t been to this Irish outpost.  Flights to Canada – or more specifically, to Halifax – only take about five hours. Add in the compact nature of the province and Nova Scotia becomes an excellent option for a short break from the Emerald Isle.

Accommodation in Halifax is quite reasonable. In addition to several larger chain hotels, there are dozens of smaller, historical inns and B&Bs bursting with character and available at very affordable prices.  Dining is also a good value, with farmers markets and pubs offering up a plethora of choices for just a few dollars each.

When it comes to what to do in Halifax, you’ll find plenty of variety to keep you busy for several days. You can go wine tasting, try tidal-bore rafting on the Bay of Fundy, take one of dozens of scenic coastal drives, go out whale-watching, or sample the lively nightlife of Halifax. In the city, you can visit attractions like the Immigration Museum to see how many Irish immigrants arrived in Canada, or explore the sea-faring history of the region at the Maritime Museum, which features a Titanic exhibit and several artifacts from the ship.  And to pay homage to those who lost their life on that famous ship built in Belfast, head to the Fairview Lawn cemetery, where over 100 victims were laid to rest.

Photo by joshbousel