12 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Halifax

Written by Chloë Ernst & Barbara Radcliffe Rogers Updated Dec 27, 2023 We may earn a commission from affiliate links ( )

Despite the skyscrapers of more recent times, Halifax is still dominated by a star-shaped, hilltop citadel. The city is not just the capital of Nova Scotia , it is also the commercial hub of Canada's Maritime provinces, as well as an important center for research, with no fewer than six universities and colleges.

Sunrise in Halifax

Its fine natural harbor cuts deeply into the Atlantic coastline, with docks, piers, parks, and industry along its entire length. The harbor and its seafaring history still shape life in the city, and you'll find many of the things to do in Halifax — from its rollicking entertainment scene, infused with maritime music, to its museums and tourist attractions — relate in some way to its close relationship with the sea.

During both world wars, Halifax was a collection point for convoys — a strategy for ships to cross the Atlantic in greater safety and protect themselves against attack from German U-boats. In 1917, the French munitions ship, "Mont-Blanc," which had arrived to join one such convoy, collided with the Belgian "Imo," causing the world's worst explosion prior to the dropping of the atom bomb on Hiroshima in 1945. The whole of the northern end of Halifax was razed to the ground, killing 1,400 people outright and injuring about 9,000. Windows were shattered as far away as Truro, some 100 kilometers away.

Halifax has more sea and shipping connections: as a major point of entry for immigrants arriving from Europe, and as the port closest to the Titanic disaster. You'll find reminders of both as you tour the city, but you'll find its lively present just as much fun to explore as its past. You can find the best places to visit with this list of the top tourist attractions and things to do in Halifax.

1. Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

2. halifax harbourfront, 3. pier 21 national historic site, 4. take a day trip to peggy's cove, 5. maritime museum of the atlantic, 6. css acadia and hmcs sackville, 7. stroll through halifax public gardens, 8. province house, 9. take a harbor cruise, 10. walk in point pleasant park, 11. art gallery of nova scotia, 12. take a ferry to mcnabs and lawlor island provincial park, where to stay in halifax for sightseeing, map of attractions & things to do in halifax.

Aerial view of the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Standing above the city's downtown, Halifax Citadel National Historic Site encompasses the 1856 fortress. Although it never actually saw battle (and perhaps because of that), it is an excellent and intact example of a 19th-century British fort. In the summer, interpreters wear red British uniforms and interact with visitors to show what life was like here for the 78th Highlanders and the 3rd Brigade Royal Artillery and their families.

Kids love Citadel Adventures, where they can try using the drums, march in a drill, and spy on the enemy. After dark, tours relate some of the Citadel's several ghost legends.

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

A road cuts up the hillside to the fortress, with stops for excellent views of the city, the harbor, Dartmouth, little Georges Island, and the Angus L. Macdonald Bridge. The Old Town Clock , which has become the symbol of Halifax, also sits on the hillside. Prince Edward originally commissioned it in 1803. It has four clockfaces and chimes and is an enduring memorial to the punctuality of a strict disciplinarian.

For the full experience, try to time your visit to coincide with the Changing of the 78th Highlander Sentinel guard ceremonies and the firing of the traditional noon gun.

Address: 5425 Sackville Street, Halifax

Halifax Harbourfront

Much of the downtown waterfront in Halifax has a boardwalk along its length, where heritage vessels, small sailboats, tugs, and ferries come and go. The "Historic Properties" area has been refurbished as an attractive pedestrian precinct of 19th-century stone warehouses and old wharf buildings, now serving as bright shops, artists' studios, and restaurants with terraces overlooking the harbor.

The streets are closed to normal traffic. The square between two warehouses has been roofed over to make an equally attractive mall. During the day there are boats to tour, shops to browse, and restaurants serving fresh seafood; on a summer night, the harbor becomes a romantic place to stroll, with outdoor cafes and lively maritime music in the air.

Pier 21 National Historic Site

In the years from 1928 to 1971, when it served as the immigration shed, Pier 21 saw more than one million immigrants enter Canada. The interpretive center has exhibits that explore the immigration experience, from the homeland departure to being assimilated in a new country.

Interactive exhibits engage all ages in the personal stories of immigrants from all over the world, as they left their homes and arrived to make new lives in Canada . Children can dress in period clothes, imagine crossing the Atlantic inside a replica ship's cabin, and sit in a railcar that carried immigrants to new homes in the West. From the windows, there are good views out to the lighthouse on Georges Island.

Just a short walk away, the Halifax Seaport Farmers' Market is one of the city's most popular places to visit, loaded with local goodies. It's open daily, and there's a rooftop picnic area.

Address: 1055 Marginal Road, Halifax

Peggy's Cove

Peggy's Cove is a delightful little bay on the rugged Atlantic coast, 43 kilometers southwest of Halifax. Colorful houses perch on the granite rocks along a narrow inlet, washed by crashing surf. Even on a calm sunny day, the waters here are dangerous, and subject to rogue waves. So pay attention to the signs, and stay off the wet rocks.

Above the village, Peggy's Cove Lighthouse completes the scenic ensemble, one of Nova Scotia's iconic landmarks and likely the most photographed lighthouse in Canada. Because of its popularity, you can expect to find the scene crowded with tourists; try visiting early in the day or late in the afternoon, when the inevitable tour buses have left.

Despite its fame as a must-see attraction, Peggy's Cove is an active little fishing village and a pleasant afternoon getaway. An easy way to get there is on a Peggy's Cove Day Trip from Halifax , or you can combine Peggy's Cove with the lovely historic towns of Lunenburg and Mahone Bay on a tour along Nova Scotia's scenic southwest coast.

Peggy's Cove achieved sad notoriety in September 1998, when a Swissair plane crashed into the sea killing 229 people. A memorial marks the event.

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic has a view over Halifax harbor and brings the sea indoors with its collection of small craft, model ships, photographs, and curiosities of maritime history. One of its most popular exhibits concerns the Titanic disaster and Halifax's role as the port where the survivors were brought.

Exhibits are devoted to sea life and historic vessels, small craft boatbuilding, World War Convoys, the Days of Sail to the Age of Steam, plus historic events like the monumental Halifax Explosion in 1917 that devasted the city. The museum is not all static exhibits, with a number of hands-on activities, art programs, and performances.

Those especially interested in the Titanic should visit the Fairview Lawn Cemetery, where simple granite stones mark the resting places of those who died in the disaster. A larger monument marks the place of one victim, labeled Unknown Child, paid for by the sailors of the rescue vessel that recovered him from the sea. It wasn't until 1912 that the boy was finally identified.

Address: 1675 Lower Water Street, Halifax

CSS Acadia

The Canadian Scientific Ship CSS Acadia , berthed at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, was built for the Canadian hydrographic service in 1913, the first vessel specifically designed to survey Canada's northern waters. But her career extended long beyond surveying ice-infested waters of Hudson Bay.

As a guard ship in Halifax Harbor , Acadia was damaged in the Halifax Explosion in 1917, and is the only vessel still afloat today to have survived the disaster. Acadia was recommissioned as a warship in 1939, serving as a patrol vessel and training ship through the war, and is the only surviving ship to have served the Royal Canadian Navy during both world wars.

Not part of the museum, but berthed just outside and appealing to anyone interested in ships or naval history is the HMCS Sackville , the last remaining Flower Class corvette in the world. Restored to her wartime configuration as a Canadian Naval Memorial, the Sackville is both a museum and memorial to those lost during the Battle of the Atlantic.

One of many convoy escort vessels built in Canada and the United Kingdom during World War II, this is Canada's oldest fighting warship. Halifax is a fitting location, as it was an important assembly point for the convoys.

Halifax Public Gardens

The Halifax Public Gardens sit in a seven-hectare park and opened to the public in 1867. The gardens are a good example of Victorian horticulture, with an ornamental bandstand, fountains, statues, and formal flower beds.

Ducks and other waterfowl make a home in the garden ponds. Weekly free tours explore the garden's history and its plants, and on Sunday afternoons from mid-June to mid-September, there are afternoon concerts at the bandstand. Heavy iron gates mark the entrance on Spring Garden Road.

Address: 5665 Spring Garden Road, Halifax

Province House

This Georgian sandstone building known as Province House , completed in 1819, is the seat of Nova Scotia's Parliament, in existence since 1758. The guided tour includes the "Red Chamber" where the Council used to meet, as well as the parliament chamber and the library that, with its two grand staircases, was once the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia.

This is where, in 1835, Joseph Howe defended himself against the charge of defamation. His acquittal is regarded as the beginning of a free press in Nova Scotia. He later went into politics and led the campaign against confederation, but ultimately joined the dominion government in Ottawa.

Address: 1726 Hollis Street, Halifax

Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry

It would be a shame to visit Halifax and not see it as so many first laid eyes on it, approaching from the sea, with the Citadel's ramparts rising above the historic waterfront. There are several ways of enjoying this water view. You can take a harbor tour on the tugboat Theodore or cruise it under sail, which you can help hoist, aboard the 40-meter Tall Ship Silva .

The oldest saltwater ferry in North America, the Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry is also the second oldest in the world, after the Mersey Ferry in Liverpool, England. Once the only way to get between Halifax and the town of Dartmouth, at the other side of the harbor, it is still the fastest route.

While in Dartmouth, you can visit Quaker House , the only surviving home of the Quaker whalers, who settled in Dartmouth in 1785, and the Shearwater Museum of Aviation , filled with beautifully restored vintage aircraft, flight memorabilia, and a flight simulator where you can try out your piloting skills.

If you prefer to take a guided tour of the harbor, you can help hoist the sails and even take a turn at the helm on a Tall Ship Silva Sailing Cruise aboard a 130-foot schooner. Or just sit and enjoy the experience as you learn about the maritime history of Halifax as you sail past Harbour Bridge, Fort George, McNab's Island, and Point Pleasant Park.

For a unique way to see the sights, consider the Halifax Harbour Hopper Tour , which takes you around the top attractions on land and sea in an amphibious Vietnam War vehicle.

Fall colors in Point Pleasant Park

One of the most splendid places to stroll in Halifax is Point Pleasant Park , on the southernmost point of the city peninsula. This natural area features towering trees, winding footpaths, and great views out over Halifax Harbour and the North West Arm. It is closed to vehicles.

Within the park are many historical monuments and remnants of wartime. The Prince of Wales Tower is a round stone tower that was built by Prince Edward in 1796. It was the first of its kind in North America, the prototype "Martello Tower."

The basic idea was to combine soldiers' accommodation, a storehouse, and cannon mountings in a unit capable of defending itself, surrounded by immensely thick stone walls, with access only by a retractable ladder to the first floor.

Address: 5718 Point Pleasant Drive, Halifax

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

In downtown Halifax, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is the largest art museum in the Atlantic provinces . The museum features a permanent collection of visual arts from the Maritimes and around the world, numbering more than 13,000 pieces.

An entire exhibit centers on the work of Nova Scotian folk artist, Maud Lewis, and part of the gallery's collection includes her shed-sized house, which is decorated with vibrant paintings. The gallery also features excellent temporary exhibitions, which explore topics as diverse as artists' greeting cards or the work of the province's new voices in art.

Address: 1723 Hollis Street, Halifax

McNabs and Lawlor Island Provincial Park

McNabs and Lawlor Island Provincial Park is located at the mouth of Halifax Harbour. Ferry boats take visitors to this natural area to enjoy bird watching, hiking, or a little history. While Lawlor Island is not open to the public, McNab Island features 400 acres of woodlands along with Fort McNab, a national historic site.

Other heritage buildings include summer homes, Maugers Beach Lighthouse, and a long-closed teahouse that is undergoing restoration to become the island's center for outdoor education and community activities.

The best place to stay in Halifax is right downtown near the stunning harbor and historical district. The area is compact and easily walkable to key attractions, including the Maritime Museum, Province House, and Pier 21 National Historic Site. Just behind is the famous Citadel Hill. The following are some highly rated hotels in great locations:

Luxury Hotels :

  • Downtown, just one block from the stairs to Citadel Hill, the posh Prince George Hotel offers exceptional service and well-appointed rooms, some with views of the harbor. The only hotel directly on Halifax's waterfront is the Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel . This property has rooms with amazing views out over the harbor and is directly on the harbor walk.
  • Next to the train station and close to the waterfront is the recently renovated, charming Westin Nova Scotian , originally built in the 1930s.

Mid-Range Hotels :

  • The 4-star, but moderately priced, Lord Nelson Hotel is a landmark property that has overlooked the Halifax Public Garden since 1928. A short walk from the main attractions and shopping streets, the hotel has on-site parking.
  • The Homewood Suites by Hilton Halifax-Downtown features suites with full kitchens, separate sitting areas, good views, and a complimentary breakfast.
  • The Hollis Halifax - a DoubleTree Suites by Hilton is one block off the waterfront and has oversized suites and a large indoor pool.
  • For a boutique hotel, the Halliburton is an excellent choice. The hotel consists of three heritage townhouses that have been converted into 29 charming rooms, some with fireplaces.

Budget Hotels :

  • The best budget options are just outside the city center. About 10 minutes from downtown, in the Bayer's Lake area, is the Coastal Inn , with large, bright rooms and a good variety of restaurants in the nearby area.
  • Also a short drive out of downtown is the Comfort Inn . This hotel offers a great view out over Bedford Basin and has an indoor pool. A hiking trail leaves from the back of the hotel and winds its way through Hemlock Ravine Park.

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Where to Go from Halifax : Because of its location near the center of the province, it's easy to reach other highlights of Nova Scotia on day trips from Halifax. Along the south coast are the historic towns of Lunenburg and Mahone Bay , and to the north is the beautiful farming region of the Annapolis Valley , home of the Acadians.


More Things to Do in Atlantic Canada: At the far eastern end of the province is Cape Breton Island , with the reconstructed French Fortress of Louisbourg and the spectacular Cape Breton National Park. Nova Scotia joins the other Maritime Provinces to make one of Canada's great itineraries . A short ferry ride from the north coast takes you to Prince Edward Island , and a ferry from Digby, on Nova Scotia's west coast, crosses the Bay of Fundy to New Brunswick .

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19 Best Things To Do in Halifax

Updated August 2, 2023

Halifax is steeped in history, much of which centers around the sea. For an in-depth look at the city's watery past, reserve a few hours for the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic . Another must-see historic site is the towering Citadel , a fortress

  • All Things To Do

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Halifax Citadel National Historic Site Halifax Citadel National Historic Site free

Towering over downtown Halifax, the Citadel is a testament to the city's military past. Four forts have occupied this hilltop since 1749, when Edward Cornwallis, a career British military officer, governed the region; the fort that stands today dates back to 1856. Visitors can wander the Citadel's corridors and learn about Halifax's involvement in major wars, such as the American Revolution, the American Civil War and both World Wars. The on-site Army Museum offers a closer look at the fortress's history. And to truly feel what it was like to be on the hill back in its heyday, make sure to come at lunchtime, when reenactors of the Royal Artillery fire the traditional noon gun.

You can also interact with members of the 78th Highland Regiment. From May through October, these kilted reenactors offer free guided tours of the fort and provide insight on what it was like to be a soldier there. You can even learn to shoot a 19th-century rifle from one of these reenactors (for an extra fee and age restrictions apply).  

top tourist attractions halifax

Halifax Public Gardens Halifax Public Gardens free

The Public Gardens are a living testament to the Victorian era. And visitors welcome the respite from the urban atmosphere. Opened in 1867, this 16-acre public space – marked by an ornate metal entryway – houses manicured flower beds, quiet walkways, a picturesque gazebo and plenty of perfect picnic spots. Locals and visitors alike praise the beauty of the park and love the peace and quiet it affords in the center of the city. The Friends of the Public Gardens runs tours of the grounds during the summer. You can request a tour and check out the latest tour schedule on the organization's website .

The Halifax Public Gardens are open every day from 7 a.m. to one hour before sunset. Admission is free. The gardens are located kitty-corner to the Citadel . You can learn more about the Public Gardens by perusing the park's website .

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Halifax Seaport Farmers Market Halifax Seaport Farmers Market free

The Halifax Seaport Farmers Market was established by royal decree in 1750, a year after the establishment of Halifax itself. Since opening nearly 300 years ago, travelers and locals alike visit the market to purchase a range of goods. On any given day, you'll be able to buy soaps, baked treats, fresh produce, fish, jewelry and more from nearly 100 vendors. Recent visitors praised the variety of wares (both food and craft) sold by dealers and say it is a great place to browse.

The market, located on the waterfront, is about a 5-minute walk from the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 . It's is free to peruse the market. Hours vary slightly by season, but you can expect to visit the market from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays to Fridays, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sundays. The market is open on Mondays in the summer only. For more information, visit the market’s website .

top tourist attractions halifax

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

It makes sense that Canada's oldest and most substantial maritime museum is located in Halifax: The city's history drips with stories from the sea. By displaying artifacts and providing interactive exhibits, this specialty museum recounts the numerous shipwrecks off Nova Scotia's shores, the city's days as a commercial shipping hub and its role as a military player in World Wars I and II. But the exhibit detailing Halifax's response to the 1912 sinking of the Titanic is, for many, the highlight of the museum. The display includes artifacts from the "unsinkable ship" and recounts local efforts to recover lost passengers and remaining parts of the ship. In fact, it was at this museum that director James Cameron saw the carved panel that inspired Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet's raft in the 1997 film, "Titanic." (You can also find many Titanic victims buried in Halifax's cemeteries. )

While examining the Titanic artifacts is the biggest draw, previous visitors say that you should make time for the other displays. Recent museumgoers say you should budget about two hours to take in all the maritime history.

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Dartmouth Dartmouth free

Sitting across the harbor from Halifax is Dartmouth, a small town that has been around since 1750. There are two primary reasons to visit this Nova Scotia town (aside from the scenic ferry ride across the harbor): First, to enjoy its natural landscape; and second, to take in its history. Known as "The City of Lakes," Dartmouth is peppered with 23 individual ponds, many of which are surrounded by public parkland and ideal for a picnic. Another scenic stomping ground is the Shubenacadie Canal, which was created in the early 1800s to connect Halifax Harbor to Shubenacadie Grand Lake and ultimately the Bay of Fundy near Nova Scotia's interior. Walking on the trails at Shubenacadie is a favorite activity for many recent visitors.

You should spend an hour or two exploring Dartmouth's harbor, where you'll find a cluster of historic buildings that now house cute shops and cozy restaurants. The area is also adorned with different street art, making the walk between boutiques and eateries entertaining.

top tourist attractions halifax

Halifax Waterfront Halifax Waterfront free

The Halifax Waterfront is a fun-filled spot packed with cafes, restaurants, bars, breweries, shops, historic ships, boat tours and ferries, not to mention buskers and other street performers. It's here that you'll find many of the area's top attractions that detail the city's maritime heritage and its history as an immigration port . It's also a premier photo stop for tourists, as the harbor views, art installations and bright orange hammocks (ideal for relaxing) provide the perfect backdrop. Recent visitors say the lively area is fun to explore, with lots of options for eating, drinking and shopping, in addition to simply enjoying the views.

The waterfront is located downtown. It has a 2-mile boardwalk that can be accessed at various points. The boardwalk is accessible 24/7, but individual shops and restaurants have their own hours of operation. Visit the Discover Halifax website for more information.

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St. Paul's Church St. Paul's Church free

Founded in 1749 by Britain's King George II, St. Paul's is Canada's oldest Anglican Church. The building may look simple at first, but architecture buffs and historians alike will appreciate its construction. The church was modeled after London 's St. Peter's Church (designed in 1722). Its timbers were imported from Maine and other building materials, like the church's bricks, were made near Halifax.

If you want an in-depth explanation of the church's history, attend one of its tours. Guided tours operate from mid-June through October and self-guided tours run from November through June. Tour times vary by season, so call ahead to determine times. Recent visitors expressed that the church offers an interesting piece of history and say the church staff are friendly and informative.

top tourist attractions halifax

HMCS Sackville HMCS Sackville

HMCS Sackville, now a National Historic Site, is Canada’s oldest warship. The warship is also the last of Canada's 123 corvettes, one of many convoy escort vessels built in Canada during World War II. Following the ship's war service during the Battle of the Atlantic (1939-1945), the Sackville was used as a research vessel until 1982. The ship was then restored to its wartime glory in 1983 and has since served as a naval memorial. As visitors travel through the preserved areas of the ship, which include a mess hall, a gun deck and boiler rooms, they'll learn about the daily routine and challenge sailors faced during the battle.

For many recent patrons, this site was a highlight of their trip. They say the ship has a fascinating history and is in pristine condition. Though many remark it's a small ship, they confirm there is plenty to see.

top tourist attractions halifax

Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

Between 1928 and 1971, 1 million immigrants passed through the doors of Pier 21 and became full-fledged members of the Canadian community. This large ocean liner terminal – sometimes referred to as the Ellis Island of Canada – has since become a National Historic Site of Canada and the country's National Museum of Immigration. Visitors can wander the halls that once led immigrants to a new life. And they'll also learn the stories of some of the immigrants who passed through. And who knows: You might learn a little more about yourself while here. Recent visitors who looked up their ancestors' journeys found it rewarding and fascinating.

Pier 21 overlooks Halifax Harbor from its seat just a few blocks south of Alexander Keith's Brewery . During the summer, the museum is open every day from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; hours are more limited between December and April. Admission is roughly CA$13 for adults (about $9.25) and CA$8 (about $5.50) for children ages 6 to 16. To learn more about the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, visit its website .

top tourist attractions halifax

Alexander Keith's Brewery Alexander Keith's Brewery

Founded in 1820, Alexander Keith's Brewery is one of the oldest commercial breweries in North America. The brewery is named for a Scottish immigrant who devoted his life to brewing his beer. Today, the institution still runs on Keith's values, creating flavorful ales and generously providing visitors with a relaxed, social experience.

The brewery offers booze enthusiasts hourlong guided tours of the facility (even kids will be entertained). Once the tour is over, you're welcome to sample some of Keith's most popular brews, such as the India pale ale at the on-site tavern. Recent visitors loved the interactive aspect to the tour and the friendly, entertaining guides.

top tourist attractions halifax

Crystal Crescent Beach Provincial Park Crystal Crescent Beach Provincial Park free

Less than an hour by car from downtown Halifax, Crystal Crescent Beach offers an outdoor respite from the busy city. Here, you'll find three white sand beaches, a 6-mile hiking trail and ample opportunities to view wildlife. In the distance, you can see the Sambro Island Lighthouse, which was built in 1759.

Recent visitors praised the beauty of the beach and the clear waters. They also noted that one of the beaches welcomes nude bathing.  

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Province House Province House free

This three-story Palladian building in the heart of Halifax has provided a meeting ground for the Nova Scotia House of Assembly since 1819, making it the oldest house of government in Canada and a National Historic Site. Although it still functions as a legislative building, visitors are welcome to a self-guided tour of the building year-round or to partake in a guided tour in July or August. You can also sit in on assembly gatherings (when they're in session).

Recent visitors recommended taking the guided tour, which they say are informative and comprehensive.

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Fairview Lawn Cemetery Fairview Lawn Cemetery free

After learning about the tragic sinking of the Titanic at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic , visit this cemetery for another sobering experience. The Fairview Lawn Cemetery is the final resting place for more than 100 victims of the Titanic disaster and visitors regularly come to pay their respects. In addition to the Titanic victims, you can also visit the graves of fallen soldiers from both World War I and II. Recent travelers said visiting the graveyard is a must-do for those interested in the Titanic. They also remark it is a somber, albeit interesting experience, and that there are plenty of signs to find the Titanic victims' graves.

The cemetery is located about 3 miles northwest of downtown Halifax. You can get to the cemetery by car or taking the Nos. 2, 4, 29 or 90 bus routes. Grounds are open daily for free visitation from sunrise to sunset. Check out the cemetery's official website for more details.

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Halifax Central Library Halifax Central Library free

Visiting a library while on vacation may not be at the top of your list, but hear us out about this branch. In addition to its enormous collection of books and other materials, the Halifax Central Library has a sunroom gallery space, two cafes, a rooftop patio, video game systems and a 300-seat auditorium that hosts shows, author talks and lectures.

Visitors can explore several exhibits at the library. Informative installations detail the First Nations culture, African Nova Scotians and the region's Acadian and French heritage. There's also a room with books solely about Nova Scotia history as well as a display that honors Halifax County's military men and women who have lost their lives since World War I. Many past visitors were in awe of the contemporary space and especially enjoyed the on-site cafes.

top tourist attractions halifax

Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History

Tackling everything from geology to marine life to weather, the Museum of Natural History is a place for the curious. With a visit here, you can learn all about Nova Scotia's forests, see live animals like frogs, snakes and salamanders, and admire artifacts from bands of the Mi'kmaq First Nation. 

The museum also hosts traveling exhibits (which may cost extra), which have explored everything from Egyptian mummies to art. There are also nature talks, walks and children's programs. It's a great place for families to spend time, but recent visitors say all ages will most likely enjoy it.

top tourist attractions halifax

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

This provincial art gallery, housed in an Italianate building downtown, has a permanent collection of more than 17,000 works. It emphasizes the creations of Canadian visual artists as well as those who work on the Atlantic Coast. The collection and its exhibits feature everything from sculpture to painting to handicrafts to prints. Next door in the Provincial Building (an annex of the gallery), you’ll find the actual home of the late painter Maud Lewis, a wildly popular and beloved Canadian folk artist. The small home, which is adorned with whimsical and colorful paintings created by Maud and her husband, has been lovingly preserved by the museum since 1984. Many reviewers said Lewis' home was a highlight of their visit.

Admission for adults is CA$12 (about $8.50) and CA$5 (around $3.50) for children ages 6 to 17. A guided tour of the collection is given Tuesday through Sunday at 2 p.m., with an extra one on Thursday at 7 p.m. Tours are included in the admission price. Operating hours vary, be sure to check the museum's website before your trip.

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Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame free

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Halifax Distilling Company Halifax Distilling Company free

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Peggy's Cove Peggy's Cove free

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The 15 Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is a crown jewel of the beautiful Canadian Maritimes. These eastern provinces all border the Atlantic Ocean and are remarkable for their coastal cities, which are sparse across most of Canada . Historic Halifax is the perfect destination if you want to explore this unique part of Canada!

As the capital city of Nova Scotia , Halifax possesses a rich history, which plays out in its many cultural establishments and beautiful architecture. It’s also surrounded by gorgeous fishing villages, islands, and lakes. Peggy’s Point Lighthouse is a major attraction just south of the city, while you’ve got green spaces, historic neighborhoods and avenues, and many museums and galleries dedicated to promoting the culture of the Maritimes right downtown.

With so many things to see and do, you might not know where to begin. So, we’ve compiled our list of the absolute best things to do in Halifax for you. Stick to these fun and unique Halifax bucket list recommendations, and there’s no doubt you’ll have an amazing time exploring this gorgeous part of the Canadian Maritimes!

Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase or booking through one of our links we may earn a small commission (don’t worry, it’s at no extra cost to you).

1. Visit the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

One of the oldest institutions in Halifax, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia has a history going back as far as 1908, with the current space having opened in 1988. One of the best things to do in Halifax for art lovers, this gallery is now home to a signature collection of Maud Lewis’s works, alongside beautiful works by Indigenous artists and maritime locals.

You’ll find the most complete collection of Maud Lewis’s works here, including her cottage home, which she painstakingly hand-painted and decorated. It’s now preserved as part of her legacy. 

Other permanent pieces include iconic works by Kent Monkman, alongside various local artists. While the focus is definitely on regional artistry, the exhibition feels large in its historical and stylistic scale.

If you want to see everything, the gallery will take up to four hours to fully enjoy, so plan accordingly! Make sure to swing by the gift shop and pick up a few of the lovely prints, souvenirs, and postcards for the art lovers in your life.

2. Stroll the Halifax Harbour Boardwalk

Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Halifax Harbour Boardwalk

The iconic Halifax Harbour Boardwalk is a mainstay bucket list item for visitors to Nova Scotia. This historic waterfront exudes the charm and beauty the Maritimes are known for. 

If you’re looking for unique Halifax activities, head to the boardwalk and you might come across dancers practicing their routines by the ocean, buskers of all kinds, and fishermen casting lines over the pier.

You’ll find plenty of seaside boutiques to pick up a gift or memento at, alongside restaurant patios, museums, and outdoor exhibits. Don’t miss the Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market , and if you have time, why not stop at a café during your visit?

The harbor is also the site of Pier 21, a safe haven for millions of immigrants to Canada for much of the 20th century. This historic site has been memorialized with the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 , dedicated to preserving its stories.

Also keep an eye out for classic Canadian treats like Beaver Tail pastries, cheese curd-laden poutine, and the seafood Halifax is known for. A trip to the boardwalk is the perfect place to indulge in decadent treats. All in all, the pier is a must on any Halifax bucket list, whether you’re in town for a romantic getaway, exploring with the family, or simply interested in the history of the Maritime provinces.

3. Surf at Lawrencetown Beach

Fun Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Lawrencetown Beach

The beautiful Lawrencetown Beach is located just outside the city of Halifax, but it’s worth the trip. The beach is known for being an amazing surfing destination on Canada’s east coast.

The Atlantic Ocean swells are ideal because of the shape of Nova Scotia itself – with the varying winds and movements of the waves, you’ll be able to find your ideal surf spot.

Cool Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Lawrencetown Beach

The best time of year to go surfing in Lawrencetown ranges from September through November. In the winter months, just pack a thick wet suit. The beaches will be empty and the waves will be incredible.

Meanwhile, the summers tend to be less predictable, while the waters are more temperate. If you’re not a surfing aficionado, beginners can hone their skills with lessons from a local surf shop, like the East Coast Surf School .

Even if you’re not a surfer, Lawrencetown Beach is a beautiful destination for an oceanside picnic or a midday dip (if you’re comfortable in strong currents). The beach is quieter than others nearer the city, with crystal-clear waters and full amenities. Just keep in mind that it is a little rocky, so bring your sandals.

4. Indulge in the Nova Scotia Lobster Trail

Halifax, Nova Scotia Bucket List: Nova Scotia Lobster Trail

Nova Scotia is an international hub for lobster fishing, which takes place year-round off its shores. If you’re looking for delicious things to do in Halifax, you’ll be able to partake in some of the freshest lobster in the world via the Nova Scotia Lobster Trail !

Destinations in and around Halifax include the beautiful waterfront Cable Wharf restaurant, the Sou’Wester at Peggy’s Cove, and Evan’s Fresh Seafoods in Dartmouth.

Must do things in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Nova Scotia Lobster Trail

The Lobster Trail is a fun way to visit some of Nova Scotia’s best restaurants. For every stop you make on the trail, you’ll receive a stamp. Collect enough and you might even win a few prizes.

The culinary explorers among us should definitely check out the Good Cheer Trail , laden with local breweries, wineries, and distilleries, and the Nova Scotia Chowder Trail .

If you’re a real lobster aficionado, visit during February and head to Barrington, Nova Scotia, for the annual Lobster Crawl festival. Nova Scotia’s South Shore is the best place on the island to find seafood, and that’s peak lobster season.

5. Enjoy the Halifax Public Gardens

Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Halifax Public Gardens

Nestled in the heart of town, the Public Gardens hold a timeless allure, and visiting them is one of the top Halifax activities. Victorian aesthetics and flourishing flora complement the city’s historic downtown buildings.

Strolling through the ornate iron gates at the entrance, you’ll encounter a symphony of colors, fragrances, and beautiful garden architecture. The meticulously maintained grounds are a testament to horticultural artistry. 

Halifax, Nova Scotia Things to do: Halifax Public Gardens

Marvel at the geometric flowerbeds, the charming gazebos, and the serene ponds and bridges. This is the perfect place for an afternoon stroll, where you can enjoy a peaceful moment or a carefree picnic among the blooms.

The beautiful Horticultural Hall Plaza is the centerpiece of the gardens, containing a beautiful swan fountain and trellised side buildings. Informative plaques dotted throughout the park provide fascinating insights into the gardens’ rich history and the significance of various plant species.

Whether you’re an avid gardener, a nature lover, or simply someone who appreciates the simple pleasure of a leisurely stroll, these gardens are a haven of natural beauty and tranquility in Halifax’s vibrant downtown.

6. Kayak around Georges Island

Cool Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Georges Island

Halifax’s stunning coastline is a playground for outdoor enthusiasts, and kayaking is an immersive way to soak in its natural beauty. If you’re looking for adventurous things to do in Halifax, you can even embark on expeditions from the Halifax Harbour to the beautiful Georges Island.

Harbour Watercraft Tours & Adventures operates kayaking, Sea-Doo, and boat tours. We love the curated experiences they offer, many of them going all the way to Georges Island and around the most picturesque parts of the waterfront.

Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Georges Island

Georges Island is a history-lover’s dream and one of the top Halifax attractions. It’s home to Fort Warren, an incredible historic site that dates back to the American Civil War. 

The fort was a staple of Canada’s coastal defense network, and the stone and granite structure was built to last. While the fort is no longer operational in its original capacity, it welcomes curious visitors into its sprawling bakery, grounds, and the underground tunnels. 

Whether you decide to boat, kayak, or take the ferry out to the island, there’s much to enjoy out on the water. Fisherman’s Cove is also an amazing spot to check out if you’ll be exploring Halifax’s waterways. It’s a charming village laden with colorful clapboard houses and a boardwalk. McNab’s Island is also nearby, if you’re doing a day trip!

7. Explore the Citadel National Historic Site

Fun Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Citadel National Historic Site

The Citadel National Historic Site is another one of the most iconic Halifax attractions that offers a captivating journey into the city’s past. Be transported to a different era as you explore this impressive fortress.

Encounter costumed interpreters who bring history to life with their stories and reenactments. Get fascinating insights into daily life for soldiers stationed here and the role the citadel played in the city’s development.

Make use of the higher elevation of the hill and fortress to see panoramic views of the downtown that has sprouted up around it. There’s nothing quite like standing on top of the ramparts of the Citadel National Historic Site!

The interactive exhibits, guided tours, and engaging demonstrations make this an excellent place to visit for history enthusiasts, families, and anyone curious about Canada’s past.

8. Shop in the Historic Hydrostone District

This gorgeous northern Halifax neighborhood is a hub for unique eateries and boutiques. If you’re looking for things to do in Halifax, wide avenues, plenty of greenery, and cultivated gardens make this a lovely place to stroll, dine, and shop.

Named for the fire-resistant stone many of the buildings are constructed from, this European-style neighborhood is filled with historic row houses and heritage charm. It’s the perfect place to visit if you want to get away from downtown Halifax.

The Hydrostone Market is the neighborhood’s primary commercial area. Check out cool shops like Lady Luck Boutique or The Lemonade General Store & Co. for one-of-a-kind gifts, home decor, and other interesting finds.

You’ll also want to check out the pastry shops around the market – Julien’s Patisserie serves up artisanal baked goods and locally roasted coffee in a Parisian-style interior. And if you want a sommelier-worthy wine list, just walk over to The Ostrich Club !

9. Ride on the Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry

Must do things in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Dartmouth Ferry

Dartmouth is a city located right across the harbor from downtown Halifax. Known as the City of Lakes, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to kayak, swim, or canoe when you visit!

Getting to Dartmouth is easy. The Alderney ferry leaves right from Halifax Harbour, and it takes only 15 minutes to reach downtown Dartmouth.

Halifax, Nova Scotia Bucket List: Dartmouth Ferry

Once you land, consider taking the Dartmouth Harbourwalk Trail, which connects the Dartmouth and Woodside ferry terminals and intersects plenty of other trails as well. Cycling the trails on Dartmouth is a lovely way to spend a sunny afternoon.

Visiting on a Wednesday or over the weekend is ideal, since the famed Alderney Landing Market is only open a few days a week. Depending on the season, operating times might change, too. But the market is one of the must-do things in Halifax if you’re looking for special gifts, local produce, or other artisanal treats.

10. Relax in the Halifax Central Library

What to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Central Library

If you’re searching for relaxing Halifax activities, there’s no place quite like a library to stay and rest a while. The Halifax Central Library is conveniently located in the downtown core, and its striking architecture will probably capture you long before you step through its doors.

As one of Halifax downtown’s most iconic landmarks, it’s worth stopping by just to snap a few photos. Step inside, and you’ll find great places to lounge – plush contemporary chairs, study nooks, and spaces for public readings.

Soaring floor-to-ceiling windows line the library’s entry hall, while bridges crisscross the upper stories, making for fascinating angles to peer at and easy navigation through the stacks.

While the building itself is a work of art, there is also plenty of art thoughtfully placed throughout the library, mostly by local artists. The Halifax Central Library is definitely worth a visit while you’re downtown – especially if you’re interested in the culture of the Canadian Maritimes.

11. Take a Ghost Walk through Downtown Halifax

Halifax, Nova Scotia Things to do: Ghost Walk

There’s nothing quite like a ghost walk to get acquainted with a city on an entirely different level – and Halifax is no exception. With a history strewn with drowned sailors, mysterious ghosts, and tricky devils, embarking on a ghost walk is easily one of the most unique things to do in Halifax.

The Halifax Ghost Walk is a guided tour that will immerse you in chilling stories of haunted landmarks, ghostly apparitions, and unexplained phenomena. It’s an immersive experience that delves into the city’s rich past, replete with vivid accounts of the macabre. From haunted graveyards to eerie alleys, each stop on the tour is infused with an aura of suspense and intrigue.

Tours are a good length, at an hour and 45 minutes, and start at 8:30 pm, making them a great post-dinner outing. Plus, you’ll still have time for a nightcap afterward to settle the nerves!

This particular tour is hosted by a skilled individual guide. Keep in mind that advance reservations are required, and tour dates may not always be available. All that means is that this unique experience definitely belongs on your Halifax bucket list.

12. Check Out the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

While you’re exploring the beautiful Halifax waterfront, stop by the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 . This immersive museum commemorates the port of entry for almost one million immigrants to Canada during the 20th century.

This national museum is located on Pier 21, a historic site in itself. The immigration facility was in operation from the 1920s through 1971, and after its closure, efforts began to memorialize the site, which finally reopened as the museum you see today in 1999.

Cool Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

During your visit, you’ll encounter rich first-person accounts of people’s journeys to Canada, set alongside artifacts like archival photographs and keepsakes. The museum also addresses darker moments in Canada’s history and immigration policy.

Special exhibits capture particular immigration stories, often focusing on a time period or group. Others are more focused on art installations that touch upon related themes. A visit to this museum is absolutely one of the best things to do in Halifax if you’re interested in Canadian history, diversity, or culture in general.

13. Ice Skate in the Halifax Oval

Fun Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Halifax Oval

The Halifax Oval is one of the best places to skate in all the Maritime provinces. This outdoor rink is bigger than three NHL hockey rinks, large enough for over 1,000 skaters to enjoy at the same time.

What makes this rink extra-special is that it’s refrigerated, meaning you’re even able to ice skate in temperatures as high as 10°C (50°F), meaning you can enjoy outdoor ice skating on sunny, breezy days in the fall and early spring, rather than only in winter. During the summer months, the rink is still open to rollerblading and cycling, so it’s definitely still worth a visit if you’re feeling outdoorsy.

Unique Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Halifax Oval

If you’re looking for family-friendly Halifax attractions, special events are held in the rink during every season. You’ll find that the rink is liveliest during the prime skating season around Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so if you’re visiting for the holidays, put this on your Halifax bucket list!

14. See the Titanic Exhibit

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is a great stop if you’re interested in Halifax’s nautical history. The most well-known exhibit here features the Titanic, as Halifax is where the victims of the tragedy were laid to rest after being recovered from the site.

The “Titanic: The Unsinkable Ship and Halifax” exhibition covers what staying on the Titanic was like and includes artifacts like deck chairs, letters, and other flotsam collected from the site, so you can truly envision the space, from the captain’s quarters to first-class. If you’re interested in other bits of Titanic history, many of the victims were buried in Fairview Lawn Cemetery, so you might plan a visit there as well.

“Explosion in the Narrows” is another noteworthy exhibit that reveals the devastation of the 1917 Halifax explosion, which decimated the city and spurred decades of rebuilding and redesigning the Halifax we know today. You might also look for “Ta’n me’j Tel-keknuo’ltiek,” which focuses on the Mi’kmaw people of the Maritimes.

15. Snap a Photo at Peggy’s Point Lighthouse

Halifax, Nova Scotia Bucket List: Peggy's Point Lighthouse

A short drive from Halifax, you’ll find one of Canada’s most famous lighthouses and one of the top Halifax attractions: Peggy’s Point Lighthouse. You’ll also find the village of Peggy’s Cove nestled on that same bit of shoreline, bursting with fishing town charm.

Peggy’s Cove is a picturesque escape where Maritime traditions thrive against a backdrop of craggy granite cliffs and rolling waves. The lighthouse, with its stark white and red exterior, stands out amidst the endless blue of the ocean and the skies, making for postcard-worthy snaps.

Must do things in Halifax, Nova Scotia: Peggy's Point Lighthouse

In the Peggy’s Cove Preservation Area, you’ll find beautiful, undeveloped coastal barrens strewn with the massive boulders that ancient receding glaciers left behind. This is a must-see if you love untouched natural landscapes.

Other local attractions in Peggy’s Cove include the Coastal Heritage Trail, which will guide you through some of the most beautiful areas on the coast, and the William deGarthe Gallery and Museum , where you’ll find the artist’s collection of paintings heralding a bygone era of Nova Scotia’s history.

There you have it! The 15 best things to do in Halifax. What’s your favorite thing to do in Halifax?

Planning a trip to Canada? Check out our favorite books and travel guides!

Canada Travel Guide by Lonely Planet


Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

About the Author:

Valerie Wheatley

Val grew up in Portland, Oregon but moved to Oahu on a whim back in 2013. She sold her house and all of her belongings and bought a one-way ticket. Since then she’s taken two around-the-world trips and has visited 60-ish countries while living out of a duffel bag. Val started documenting the Wandering Wheatleys travels back in 2013 as a way to update friends and family about her whereabouts and to relay humorous daily interactions. The only readers were her mom and her mother-in-law but that didn’t stop her! These days you’ll find Val dreaming up future trips, creating new travel content, managing a team of amazing travel enthusiasts, and chasing around her two adorable but naughty kids.

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12 Awesome Things to Do in Halifax, Canada

Lindsay Harvey

  • Last Updated: February 5, 2024

Make the most of your next trip to the Maritimes with this awesome guide to the best things to do in Halifax, Canada!

As the capital city of Nova Scotia, Halifax is packed with interesting tourist attractions and cool things to see and do.

Halifax boasts the world’s second-largest ice-free natural harbour, making it an economically important seaport for Eastern Canada.

It sits centrally on the east coast of Nova Scotia and was given the nickname “Warden of the North” because of its strong military presence.

There is a very strong maritime influence and culture in Halifax, and on the city’s many beaches pirates were hung until 1844. 

The city was established by the British in 1749 when Edward Cornwallis arrived and brought 2,500 settlers.

The British were lured there by the large port and hopes of great fishing. Halifax was aptly named after the 2nd Earl of Halifax and then became the capital of Nova Scotia. 

Winters are mild and summers are cool due to the gulf stream currents in the Atlantic Ocean.

Year-round precipitation is high and most days the city is covered in coastal fog.

But don’t let that keep you from visiting this beautiful city in Nova Scotia!

READ MORE: Check out our Canada travel guide to help you make the most of your visit to the Great White North.

Halifax is a very unique city and although one of the lesser travelled to cities in Canada, it shouldn’t be left out!

It has a multicultural population, a median age of 39, and a huge college scene.

The nightlife is plentiful, the music scene is abundant, and Halifax has more pubs per capita than any city in Canada.

You will find plenty of things to see and do for all ages.

From museums rich in maritime history and immigration, the friendly Haligonians who welcome you, to the historic landmarks and beautiful waterfront.

Table of Contents

1. Go on a Free Walking Tour of the City Along the Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk

2.  spend time in the maritime museum of the atlantic, canada’s oldest and largest maritime museum , 3. visit the halifax citadel national historic site, 4. stroll through the halifax public gardens, 5. enjoy alexander keith’s brewery tour , 6. wander through the halifax seaport farmers market, 7. take in scenic views of the halifax waterfront while riding the halifax harbour ferry to dartmouth , 8. check out the canadian museum of immigration at pier 21, 9. ice skate at emera oval, 10. pay respects in st. paul’s church, 11. watch a shakespearean play on the water at point pleasant park, 12. observe the views from peggy’s cove, the best hostel in halifax nova scotia – hi-halifax heritage house hostel, best budget accommodation for couples – atlantica hotel halifax, best mid-range hotel in halifax – barrington hotel, best luxury hotel in halifax – prince george hotel, stories fine dining, the 12 best things to do in halifax nova scotia.

Just a short trip away from all the top-visited attractions in Nova Scotia, like Peggy’s Cove and the Bay of Fundy, Halifax is the perfect resting place between day trips to these spectacular destinations in Nova Scotia.

Some of the best attractions are right on the Halifax waterfront boardwalk. There are strategically placed forts in several of Halifax’s city parks. 

Regardless of your interests, plan to build out a great itinerary from our list of what to do in Halifax Nova Scotia.

The best way to get acquainted with what to do in Halifax Nova Scotia is to go on the free walking tour offered by the city! 

Learn about the history and culture of Halifax while seeing a few of the best sites the city has to offer.

You will start at the entrance to the famous National Historic Citadel , a fort built to protect the city.

From there you will see the city’s iconic three-story-tall clock tower that was built in the 1800s.

Heading towards the coast, you will walk along the Halifax waterfront, one of the longest waterfront boardwalks in the world.

No doubt one of the best things to do in Halifax is strolling around its beautiful waterfront!

Be on the lookout for the vibrant art murals and the beloved drunken lampposts. The boardwalk is lined with many shops, cafes, patios, restaurants and beer gardens.

You will be sure to find something to visit or do later on your trip!

The tour lasts around 60 mins and covers all the highlights of downtown Halifax. 

Halifax Harbour

Explore many maritime exhibits and view over 30,000 artifacts at Halifax’s most popular museum: The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic inside the Nova Scotia Museum.

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic was conceived by several Canadian Royal Navy officers. They wanted a place to preserve navy artifacts and share its history.

The museum plays host to a variety of model ships and portraits throughout maritime history.

One of the more popular exhibits is the Shipwreck Treasures of Nova Scotia .

There you can find many artifacts recovered from the RMS Titanic.

Nova Scotia played a major role in helping recover bodies from the sinking of the famous ship. Also visit the Fairview Lawn Cemetery, a memorial to those who died in the Titanic.

If you are into history, this museum in downtown Halifax is definitely worth a visit. You could easily spend a few hours browsing the several exhibits.

You will gain an understanding of Nova Scotia’s maritime heritage, and how events and the sea played a part in shaping the culture of this amazing city!

Memorial To The Titanic Nova Scotia Canada

When you climb Citadel Hill and walk through the gates of the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, you will see why the fort was built here to protect the city.

The expansive views of the city and the Halifax Harbour from Citadel Hill will take your breath away!

Though it never saw a battle, the fort was still strategically important to the city and its people and holds plenty of Halifax history behind its walls.

Go at noon to watch the changing of the guards and hear the blast of the cannons.

Along with barracks, period rooms and watching 78th Highlanders in their uniforms, there is also a museum to explore at the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site! 

READ MORE: Don’t miss our list of what to do in Winnipeg !

Take a break from the hustle and bustle of the boardwalk and revel in the beauty of Halifax’s national historic Victorian Gardens.

Located on Spring Garden Road, the gardens are a favourite Halifax attraction by both locals and tourists.

Enclosed by an ornate wrought iron fence, the gardens span 16 acres in the middle of the city.

Wander over beautiful bridges, through hundreds of trees, past ponds and lush colourful flower beds.

The gardens are definitely one of the prettiest spots in downtown Halifax! Other attractions are just nearby as well, like the Halifax Central Library and the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site.

Halifax Public Gardens

Would you like a little history to go along with your beer? If so, you can’t miss grabbing a pint at Alexander Keith’s Brewery in Halifax Nova Scotia!

Founded in 1820 by the Scottish Alexander Keith himself, it is one of the oldest breweries in North America.

Go on an unforgettable tour where you will be led along by a guide dressed in 1820’s attire and taught the history and brewing process of the company.

You will also witness musical storytelling and are guaranteed a Nova Scotian good time! Of course with plentiful amounts of ale.

Alexander Keith’s Brewery is definitely one of the top Halifax attractions!

Right on the waterfront, you will find the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market, North America’s longest-running farmer’s market.

Originally started as a meat and cattle market in 1750, it now hosts over 250 vendors and has a variety of crafts, flowers, seafood, meat and locally grown produce.

There are even celebrations held there, like the Canada Day Kitchen Day , and live music!

If you are looking for a cheap lunch when visiting Halifax, the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market is the place!

Grab some tasty local fare like a donair or a mouth-watering lobster roll while browsing the different vendors.

Hop on the longest-running saltwater ferry in North America and cross the beautiful Halifax harbour to Dartmouth.

There are two different ferry routes and at just $2.50 each way, and a ferry ride is the best way to see the harbour and it’s easy on the wallet.

If you want to explore further, ask for a free bus transfer and take the bus from Dartmouth to the historic Fisherman’s Cove .

When you decide to return, hop on a different ferry to complete a full loop of the harbour.

The public ferry is the best cheap way to see the Halifax waterfront!

Visit the website for more info on the Halifax Dartmouth Ferry schedules and prices.

Ferry In Halifax Canada

Similar to New York’s famous Ellis Island , Pier 21 was once the ocean liner terminal where over one million immigrants passed through from 1928 to 1971.

A National Historic Site, it is now home to the Canadian Museum of Immigration .

Established in 1999, the museum was started to celebrate the 1.5 million immigrants who passed through its gates into Canada.

When you step inside the museum, you will go on a journey through different halls and experience what it was like to immigrate to Canada through Pier 21.

There are thousands of artifacts and stories to be seen and read at the Canadian Museum of Immigration.

There are also interactive exhibits for young and old to enjoy! 

Skating at the Emera Oval is one of the most fun things to do when visiting Halifax during any season.

And best of all it’s entirely free!

The oval is an outdoor skating rink that is as large as 3 NHL hockey rinks.

In the summertime, rollerblading/skating and bike riding are popular activities.

In the winter the oval is frozen and you can go ice skating.

Free rentals include everything you would need like helmets, bikes, skates, scooters and even sleds!

All you have to bring is yourself and a government-issued ID to get in on all the fun! Visit the Halifax Oval website for more info about events and skate times.

Certainly one of the best things to see in Halifax is St. Paul’s Church.

Dating back to 1749, the church is the oldest building in Halifax. And it is the oldest Protestant church in Canada!

The church has a simple appearance, but it was actually modelled after the St. Peter’s Church in London.

When you tour the church you will notice some interesting details.

There is a metal shard embedded in one of the walls and if you look closely at one of the stained glass windows you will see a silhouette of a man, all remnants of the famous Halifax Explosion of 1917 .

It’s creepy yet definitely worth taking a look at when sightseeing in downtown Halifax. 

READ MORE: 17 reasons to plan to visit Quebec City !

Want to enjoy a local outdoor event? Then grab a blanket or chair and head on down to Point Pleasant Park in downtown Halifax Nova Scotia.

Every day (except Monday) in the summer you can catch a live Shakespearean play or another popular classic.

Go for a hike in the park in the morning and then settle down for a matinee performance that will be sure to delight you.

Shakespeare by the Sea Theatre Society is a not-for-profit organization that started in 1994 with hopes of providing classic Shakespearean entertainment to audiences at Point Pleasant Park.

They are also committed to the development of Canadian theatre artists.

The plays are free, but they will gladly accept donations; it goes to a good cause!

Peggy’s Cove can’t be passed by when you’re just a short drive away.

One of the most visited destinations in Nova Scotia, the famous red and white lighthouse in Peggy’s Cove is still in use today by the Canadian Coast Guard.

Peggy’s Point Lighthouse, built in 1915, has become one of the most photographed lighthouses in the world!

Local folklore says Peggy’s Cove was named after a young shipwreck survivor who was adopted by a family who had settled there.

The little girl was too young to remember her name so the family decided to call her Peggy. She then became known as “Peggy of the Cove”.

The tiny fishing village of Peggy’s Cove is a must-see from the rustic houses and buildings that line the cove to the colourful fishing boats bobbing in the harbour.

And you can’t leave before capturing the iconic photo of Peggy’s Point Lighthouse!

Peggys Cove Nova Scotia Canada

Halifax Nova Scotia Travel Guide

Now that you know what to do in Halifax, we want to help you make your other plans as well by sharing the best accommodation and places to eat in the city.

Best Accommodation – Where to Stay in Halifax Nova Scotia

Depending on your travel style, taste and budget you can find any number of hostels, hotels and bed and breakfasts that offer a variety of amenities.

While not as cheap as travelling in a third world country, Halifax is one of the cheaper Canadian cities for accommodations. 

If you are a budget-savvy traveller you will find a few traditional hostels in the area or you can even rent an empty dorm room at a local university.

If you don’t mind splurging on a nicer hotel, you will find many options right in the middle of downtown Halifax or one with an expansive harbour view. 

With that said, these are a few of the best options you will have as you spend time in Halifax sightseeing and exploring the city. 

Stay right in the middle of the hustle and bustle of the city in a historic old house!

HI-Halifax Heritage House Hostel is one of the best hostels to stay at because of its proximity to both the bus and train stations and the top things to do in Halifax are literally just a short walk down the road!

HI Halifax offers both private and dorm-style rooms. Dorm choices are for either male/female or mixed dorms with at most 6 beds.

The amenities offered are top-notch, with key points being a large well-equipped kitchen that is self-catered, free wifi, a tidy common area, coin-operated laundry and security lockers.

Rated high for location, value, security and cleanliness, HI-Halifax is the perfect hostel for the outgoing traveller looking to be close to all Halifax has to offer. 

With rooms starting at USD$26 for a 6 person mixed/male/female dorms, you can expect great value considering all the amenities HI-Halifax has to offer.

An exceptional value for its location and amenities offered, the Atlantica Hotel Halifax is a great option for any couple seeking both comfort and accessibility during their stay in Halifax.

There is a variety of room selection, ranging from a superior king room or two double beds.

Amenities include an indoor swimming pool and hot tub, free wifi in rooms and common areas and a breakfast buffet.

And a bonus is that the hotel is pet-friendly so if you are travelling with your fur baby you can plan to stay here without worrying about sneaking him or her in!

There is a bar on-site where you can grab a drink before heading out for a night on the town.

When you stay at the Atlantica you are within walking distance to key attractions such as the Citadel, Halifax public gardens and the Museum of Natural History.

Or hop on a city bus or request a taxi or Uber ride to take you to nearby sites. With rates starting around USD$68 you won’t be able to beat the value for the location.

For those looking for a great value while exploring the best Halifax activities, the Barrington Hotel is everything you could need or want.

Rated high for its historic charm, location, comfort and friendly service there is very little more that you could ask for. 

All rooms are clean and well furnished, with free WiFi, flat-screen tv, large ensuite bathroom and comfy beds.

There is also a swimming pool, spa, and fitness center for those who want to treat themselves.

If you want to feel like royalty during your stay in Halifax, the Prince George Hotel gives you the opportunity to splurge a little without breaking the bank.

Exceptionally rated for room comfort, cleanliness, amenities and location.

Situated near Halifax Harbor in the city centre, the top things to do in Halifax Nova Scotia are literally right outside your front door. 

But if you’d like to stay at the hotel and relax, this is one of the best options you have.

With a hot tub and an indoor heated pool within the hotel, you can expect to set back and enjoy your stay.

And if you’d like to throw in a little exercise, there’s a fitness centre as well. 

The Prince George Hotel features a great restaurant and bar.

There is also room service if you aren’t in the mood to go out or want to relax in your room watching television after a long day of Halifax sightseeing. 

Rooms start around USD$130 and offer you the opportunity to book a deluxe queen room, king or double beds.

You can also upgrade to a king suite if you’re feeling particularly luxurious while staying in Nova Scotia’s capital city! 

Best Restaurants in Halifax Nova Scotia

Halifax is full of delicious options for places to eat while you enjoy your stay in the city.

From casual quick bites to luxurious fine dining experiences you can expect a range of dining atmospheres. 

Halifax is of course known for its delicious seafood.

And you can’t leave the city before trying a famous lobster roll or a tasty plateful of haddock fish and chips.

There is also another famous food stable in the city called a donair. 

It’s possible to make Halifax a destination for the food alone! 

Here are a few of our favourite places to eat in Halifax Nova Scotia. 

You can’t say you’ve visited Halifax Nova Scotia without trying the city’s official snack, the Halifax donair!

King of Donairs was the first restaurant in Halifax to offer the delicacy in 1973 and it’s still located in the same building today. The sandwich closely resembles a gyro, but without the lamb and tzatziki sauce.

Instead, its shaved spit-roasted beef with a sweet yet garlicky sauce. Perfect hangover food!

One of the top-rated restaurants in Halifax Nova Scotia, Edna is sure to offer up tasty Canadian fare with great ambiance. Try some local seafood like the steamed mussels or seared scallops.

If you’re not in the mood for seafood, their pork chops come highly recommended! Pair the meal with a delicious cocktail or beer and your tastebuds will definitely be delighted.

Prices start at $10 for an appetizer to $38 for a large ribeye. 

Stories Fine Dining has consistently rated the #1 restaurant in Halifax Nova Scotia for good reason!

With specialties such as ahi tuna and sea scallops, duck, and beef striploin you can embark on an excellent fine dining experience.

You will certainly be paying top dollar for what you get. But if you are looking for a fantastic dinner with exceptional service in a great atmosphere, you won’t be disappointed here.

Lindsay Harvey

Lindsay Harvey

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Thanks for this! As an Australian whose travel agent tells me that Nova Scotia is obviously my spiritual home, I despair of finding write ups of anything Nova Scotia outside of North America. Here in Australia, travel ‘writers’ don’t seem to know that anywhere outside of Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Calgary & Whistler actually exists! I have four days in Halifax and really want to make the most of it. Previous visits never seem to get me past the Maritime Museum of the Atlantics! (Mostly, I hang out up the NW corner – Springhill, Pugwash and the golf course!)

Have a wonderful trip Mary. Halifax is a great city to explore. 🙂

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Must Do Canada

The Best Things to Do in Canada

The BEST Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

February 19, 2019 By Matthew G. Bailey 13 Comments

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Updated: March 10th, 2022

When it comes to the charming Maritimes, there’s no better city than Halifax, Nova Scotia. Not only is it Nova Scotia’s capital city, but it’s also the largest city in the Atlantic provinces. While it started off as one of Canada’s important ports, it now also has a thriving tourism scene thanks in part to its manicured parks and gardens, heritage buildings, a thriving arts scene, a variety of pubs and craft breweries, a lively music scene, and a nice steady flow of sea breezes.

Thanks to the major airport, it has also become the gateway to the Maritimes and has something to offer people of all ages. Whether you decide to stroll the beautiful waterfront, catch one of the many events that happen throughout the summer, watch some live music at one of the many Celtic pubs, or visit one of the many wonderful museums and parks, Halifax is a great place for an East Coast vacation.

Halifax Harbour, Nova Scotia

Table of Contents

What to Do In Halifax

We’ve been to Halifax many times, usually on an epic Canada road trip . In 2013, we jumped in the car with my parents and drove from Alberta to Newfoundland, taking time along the way to explore both Halifax and the Maritimes. Then in 2017, we completed the biggest road trip of our lives, flying into St. John’s, Newfoundland , buying an SUV, and then driving across the country for 150 days, spending four nights in Halifax. 

Halifax has always been one of our highlights of Canada and we love exploring the city every time we find ourselves in this charming little slice of the country. So, whether you’re visiting for a weekend or spending your entire vacation in Halifax and the surrounding area, we’ve listed some of the best Halifax attractions below.

things to do in halifax

Halifax Waterfront 

When I think of Halifax, the waterfront immediately comes to mind. Not only is it very scenic, but it’s also in the heart of downtown Halifax, walking distance to many of the top things to do in the city. The Harbourwalk is a four-kilometre boardwalk that snakes its way along the waterfront. You can start from anywhere, but if you want to do it in one straight line, start off by the Historic Properties , which is a great place to see beautifully restored Victorian-era buildings.

Along the wharf, you’ll also find the information centre, a variety of beautiful boats, whale-watching tours, and the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, which we’ll talk about below. There’s also some cool artwork along the way and you’ll eventually end at the Farmers’ Market and the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, which is one of the top things to do in Halifax.

If you’re hungry or thirsty, don’t worry! You’ll find dozens of restaurants and pubs along the waterfront.

things to do in Halifax harbour

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

For those interested in Maritime artifacts, history, the RMS Titanic, and the Halifax explosion, this is the place to go. Part of the museum used to be a chandlery, which is where all the gear needed to outfit a vessel was sold. In fact, you can still smell the charred ropes, cured to protect them from the saltwater. There’s also a cool display about the Titanic, which sank fairly close to Halifax. You’ll also find a variety of extremely detailed boat models. When we were there, we even got to try our hand at Morse code. Outside, you’ll find Canada’s official Naval Memorial, the HMCS Sackville, docked outside and staffed by the Canadian Navy.

fun things to do in halifax

Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

Between 1928 and 1971, more than one million immigrants entered Canada at this port. Their stories and the history of it all are displayed beautifully at the museum, a heartwarming place to experience one of the things that have made Canada what it is today. You’ll find photos, artifacts, and first-person accounts of what it was like to arrive in Canada and what their first day was like. For Karla, it was an emotional place, as she connected with the stories of people moving to a new country.

Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery

Also located not too far from the Halifax waterfront is Alexander Keith’s Brewery. Founded in 1820 by the then Halifax mayor Alexander Keith, this brewery is one of the oldest in North America. While production is now done from a larger site, Alexander Keith’s Brewery tour is truly one of a kind, which is why it’s now one of the most popular Halifax tourist attractions. Guided by actors in period costumes, guests are taken throughout the historic property while learning about the company’s history, the brewing process, and a delicious beer tasting. In true east coast fashion, the beer tasting is done in the basement, combined with live musical entertainment and stories. We had a blast here.

Halifax Citadel

With so many historical sites across Canada, there must be a reason why this is the most visited. This star-shaped Citadel is strategically positioned atop Halifax’s Citadel Hill, which offers beautiful views of Halifax. Construction began in 1749, although the current fort was built between 1818 to 1861. Guests can walk around at their own pace or take one of the awesome guided tours, which explain the fort’s shape and history. While the exhibits are not always open, the grounds inside are open year-round. During the busy season, you can even sign up to fire an old-fashion gun.

things to do in halifax this weekend - halifax citadel

Halifax Public Gardens

If you’re looking for a scenic place to go for a relaxing stroll, you may want to check out the 16-acre Halifax Public Gardens. Established in 1867 in celebration of Canada’s Confederation, these gardens are often considered to be the finest Victorian city gardens in all of North America. Entering through a wrought iron gate, you’ll then find many pathways, water fountains, 140 different species of trees, vibrant flowers, and a variety of statues. They’re also popular with locals, home to families taking a stroll, live music, tai chi practitioners, and people playing board games.

Fairview Lawn Cemetery 

Everyone knows the story of the infamous Titanic, which sank about 400 miles off the coast of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. The luxury liner, which was bound for New York, sunk after hitting the corner of an iceberg, killing many of the people on board. Of the bodies recovered, 121 are buried at Fairview Lawn Cemetery. It’s quite a sad place to visit, and 1/3 of the remains have never been identified. What’s made this into a little bit of an attraction is the graveyard reading J. Dawson. With the success of the movie Titanic, people think this is the Jack Dawson portrayed in the film. It is merely a coincidence. Nonetheless, if the Titanic left a mark on you, this might be a place to visit.

Ride a Bike around Halifax

If walking is just too much, you might want to consider renting a bike and peddling around the maritime city. Located next to the Halifax harbour is a bike rental shop called I Heart Bikes. They’ll get you set up so you can ride along the harbour or ride into the city. Plus, you can save 10% with the Must Do Canada Saver Card.

best things to do in nova scotia

Take a Photo Tour in Halifax

If you’re looking to get some amazing photos of Halifax and the surrounding areas but aren’t sure where to go and how to get those “award-winning” shots, you may want to take a photo tour with Picture Perfect Tours . Georgie will pick you up and drive you to areas of interest such as Peggy’s Cove while showing you how to get a shot, or many shots, that you’re proud of. You’ll also learn some history about the areas you visit and of course, lots of photography tips!

Go on a Secret Tour of Halifax

If you’re looking for a unique way to explore Halifax on your own, consider taking a self-guided tour with Secret Tours. You get to choose the challenge and your phone becomes your guide. With each clue you’re given, you’ll explore a secret side of the city!

Go on a Winery Tour in Wolfville

Not many people know that Nova Scotia is home to a wonderful wine region called the Annapolis Valley. This region is located in the western part of the Nova Scotia peninsula, squeezed in between two parallel mountain ranges along the shore of the Bay of Fundy. Thanks to the shelter provided by these two mountain regions, there’s a “micro-climate” that produces relatively mild temperatures. Toss in fertile glacial sedimentary soils and you have a great place for producing wine! At 126 kilometres (78 miles) in length, there are a lot of areas to explore with one of the most popular being the wineries of Wolfville.

what to do in halifax - busker festival

Experience Halifax Events

If you happen to be in Halifax during the summer, you might be in for a real surprise. One of our favourite events is the Busker Festival . It’s one of the biggest in Canada and it’s free to attend. You’ll find fire breathers, acrobatics, comedians, magicians, and all sorts of talented souls. Plus, it’s all along the waterfront! The festival runs for six days over Nova Scotia’s Natal Day long weekend. There are over 300 shows over those six days and no shortage of food, clothing, jewelry, and more.

Halifax Tourism

As Atlantic Canada’s biggest city, there’s no shortage of fun things to do in Halifax. Whether you’re looking for things to do in Halifax today, things to do in Halifax this weekend, or things to do on your next Maritime vacation, this list above is just some of the best things to do within the city of Halifax. Depending on the time you visit, there are also a lot of Halifax activities to partake in, such as kayaking, fishing, biking, and even surfing! When you’re done with the city, there are a number of things to do in the surrounding area as well.

For more cool things to do in Atlantic Canada, check out these articles below:

  • Things to Do in Nova Scotia
  • Things to Do in New Brunswick
  • Things to Do in PEI
  • Things to Do in Newfoundland


Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

About Matthew G. Bailey

Matthew G. Bailey is the founder and editor-in-chief of Must Do Canada. Growing up in Alberta to a mother from Quebec and a father from Newfoundland, Matt spent his childhood playing hockey under the Northern Lights and hanging out in the forest before moving to Calgary and travelling to more than 250 cities spanning 42 countries and 6 continents. He loves travel, learning new things, playing sports, writing, making videos, photography, and scuba diving. You can also find him at .

Reader Interactions

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March 5, 2019 at 12:38 pm

This year our company is organizing unique event “Vaisakhi Mela 2019 & Canada India International Expo 2019 April 20, 2019 – April 21, 2019 which shall take place at Genesis Community Wellness Centre NE, Calgary Canada and we would like to know if your company would be interested in Sponsorship.


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Venue: Genesis Centre Feature Gymnasium 7555 Falconridge Boulevard NE, Calgary

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CII EXPO 2019 Performance

Event Timings: April 20, 2019 – April 21, 2019 10 am to 06 pm

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Event Timings: April 20, 2019 – April 21, 2019 02 Pm to 06 pm

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The event anticipates attracting participants of International & Local Exhibitors to expand their network in Local Communities and Businesses with the footprint more than 150,000 South East Asians along with various Canadian Communities. We are also engaging the Government Officials, Bureaucrats and Political Leaders at Local, Provincial and Federal levels. It would be an excellent opportunity for your company to interact with audiences and celebrate the joy of Cultural International Expo in a pure traditional culture way and build new and long term relationships.

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April 2, 2021 at 10:05 pm

I have always wanted to visit Halifax and see all the historic sites and the waterfront. Especially now that I just found out my mum was born there. Would love to look up so family history as well.

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April 3, 2021 at 11:08 am

Oh wow, why did you just find that out?

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April 30, 2021 at 4:43 pm

Great Article!

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May 12, 2021 at 6:33 am

Halifax really is a great little city by the sea with everything you could want for a mini-break or a longer vacation, well worth the visit! Check it out as soon as travel restrictions ease (hopefully sooner than later!)

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May 12, 2021 at 1:21 pm

Hoping to visit this summer!!

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May 12, 2021 at 2:19 pm

Hoping for travel restrictions to lift. Halifax is a great city to live in, and to visit.

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May 24, 2021 at 5:02 am

Had hoped to visit this summer. Very keen on visiting the immigration museum because my British relatives arrived via Halifax.

May 24, 2021 at 10:14 am

Interesting. I only know on my moms side, Irish, they came through Quebec City

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June 9, 2021 at 2:11 pm

I live in Halifax and this is still super helpful! I’m always looking for more things to do! Thank you!

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March 10, 2022 at 3:51 pm

Stroll around Scotia Square Mall, there are lots of boutiques and wonderful shops that aren’t out of price range of just about anyone, you can find souveniers or clothing or just about anything you might want for a special someone to remind you of your visit here!

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March 12, 2022 at 3:10 pm

Lots more to see and do in Halifax – a tour of the downtown area on the Harbour Hopper is a must. A stop at Flynn’s Convenience store for an extraordinary milkshake is always fun and close to the downtown area, as are several great restaurants, including The Bicycle Thief and A Manos. Many great shops too. Ghost tours are always a big hit. York Redoubt is another great spot to visit, especially in the summer with kids (historic fort).

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September 2, 2022 at 6:06 am

Nova Scotia is on the bucket list since moving to Canada. This is incredibly useful!

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The Planet D: Adventure Travel Blog

The Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Written By: The Planet D

Updated On: February 8, 2024

Halifax just might be Canada’s coolest city. With a beautiful waterfront, an easy-to-navigate downtown, and rumored to have the most bars per capita of any city in Canada, it’s difficult to compete with Halifax. Halifax has a small-town vibe with all the amenities of a big city. If you need convincing to visit this waterfront city check out these top things to do in Halifax to get you started.

Table of Contents

Things to do in Halifax Nova Scotia

things to do in halifax nova scotia

With summer just around the corner, windows opening up to let fresh air in, and vaccines finally in full swing, we may all be able to travel again. There’s no better place to travel than within our home and native land, so how about taking a road trip out to Halifax Nova Scotia, one of the most exciting destinations in Canada.

  • Planning to see more in Nova Scotia, Canada? Read our Best Things to do in Nova Scotia – The Ultimate Travel Guide

1. Alexander Keith ’ s Brewery Tour

things to do in halifax alexander keith's brewery tour

One of our favourite things to do in Halifax was to take the Alexander Keith ’ s Brewery tour. As Dave said during our tour, “Alexander Keith’s is a is a gathering of good people, great beer and great music.” Enjoy a beer as you learn about the man behind the beer, Alexander Keith, and see how it is made as your guide shares stories and lots of laughs. It is one of the oldest breweries in North America and it is not to be missed on your Halifax itinerary.

what to do in halifax nova scotia - brewery tour

Nova Scotians know how to have a good time, and this tour offers a lot of tastings to keep you happy. The tour starts off right with a serving of beer and then they offer samples of red, pale, Edinburgh ale throughout. At the end of the tour everyone joins in a free Ceilidh.

2. Halifax Distilling Company

distillery tour in halifax Halifax distillery rums

If beer isn’t your thing, well what’s wrong with you? But seriously, another great alcohol-themed attraction outside Alexander Keith’s Brewery is to enjoy some genuine Halifax rum. The Halifax Distilling Company takes you on a behind-the-scenes tour of this privately-owned distillery.

halifax distillery cocktails

But that’s not all, once you have learned how the rum is distilled enjoy cocktails in the chic cocktail lounge. It is certainly one of the most fun things to do in Halifax.

3. Stroll Along the Halifax Waterfront

halifax waterfront

Sure, many cities have a waterfront, but Halifax Harbour is something special. A walk along the Halifax Harbour is one of our favourite things to do in Halifax to get acquainted with the city. Many of the top attractions in Halifax are located along this 4km (2.4 mile) boardwalk and when summer is in full swing it is packed with people checking out the views and enjoying the many eateries.

sign of halifax attractions

We stayed at the Hotel Halifax during one of our stays in Halifax making for the perfect walking tour of Halifax. Located downtown Halifax, it was walking distance to the waterfront making for a great base. So what can you see along the waterfront? Read on.

4. Take a Halifax Harbour Boat Tour

halifax schooner

Travelers rate a boat tour as one of the best things to do in Halifax at sunset. Take a boat tour of the Halifax Harbour to take in the views of the beautiful waterfront. Many of the top things to do in Halifax are located within the harboour or waterfront, and you can get a waters edge view from the Harbour Boat Tour.

On this tour you’ll see George’s Island, a National Historic Site which was a strategic military point for defending Canada.

5. The Harbour Hopper Tour

George's Island Halifax Harbour

The Harbour Hopper boat tour in Halifax offers a unique and engaging way to explore the city and its waterfront and is one of the most popular tours for families. One of the standout features of the Harbour Hopper is that it’s an amphibious vehicle. This means the tour starts on land, navigating through downtown Halifax, and then transitions into the water, offering a boat tour of the harbor. The transition from land to water itself is an exciting experience, especially for first-timers.

Why should you take this tour? The Harbour Hopper provides a comprehensive overview of Halifax’s key landmarks, both on land and from the water. It offers a condensed way to see many of Halifax’s main attractions in a single tour, providing both a land and sea perspective in. aunique and fun way.

6. Take the Ferry Across the Harbor

ferry to dartmouth from halifax

If a boat tour isn’t on your list, take the ferry across the harbor to Dartmouth Nova Scotia. The ferry is one of the best ways to travel between Halifax and Dartmouth. It provides fantastic views of both cities and the harbor. It’s also the oldest continuously operated saltwater ferry service in North America. It gives you the chance to see another city in Canada while getting a boat tour to boot.

The ferry takes only 10 – 12 minutes from downtown Halifax to Downtown Dartmouth. It’s a quick and affordable way to see views of Halifax. With 23 ponds, Dartmouth is known as The City of Lakes. Located on the eastern shore of Halifax Harbour, it is a part of the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) and is directly across the harbour from Halifax.

Dating back to its founding by the British in 1750. Over the years, it played a significant role in the maritime and military history of the region.

7. Historic Properties

heading into historic properties in halifax

Historic Properties date back to the 1800s when Privateers ruled the seas and schooners stopped in at the port of Halifax. This collection of warehouses has been fully restored in 1963 and was declared an area of national historic importance in Canada.

privateers sign halifax nota scotia

Today the properties blend a mix of history with contemporary as the facades look and feel like life in the 1800s, but inside you’ll find boutique shops and popular restaurants. This is an excellent stop on any Halifax itinerary.

halifa historic properties facades

Be sure to try the lobster at Salty’s followed by a pint of beer at the Lower Deck. Checking out Historic properties is very best things to do in Halifax. You’ll be able to eat, drink, sightsee and relax. Seriously, one of the best things to do in Halifax, is to have a lobster on the waterfront. You feel like a tru maritimer.

8. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Halifax Nova Scotia

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is a great stop on your day tour of Halifax, Nova Scotia. We really enjoyed learning of the maritime history of Canada at this museum that showcases the marine heritage of Halifax, Nova Scotia. If you love maritime history, put this at the top of your things to do in the Halifax list.

maritime museum of the atlantic

It tells the history of life on the seas from the 1800s to today. There are several artifacts on display and there are sections dedicated to the Titanic victims where and the victims of the Halifax Explosion of 1917.

9. CSS Acadia

CSS Acadia in Nova Scotia

When looking for things to do in Halifax, there is no shortage of interesting museums and historic sites. The CSS Acadia is a part of the museum and visitors can step inside this floating museum. It is the only only surviving ship to have served the Royal Canadian Navy during both world wars.

10. Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

candian museum of immigration pier 21

At the opposite end of Halifax Harbour from Historic Properties, you’ll find one of the best things to do in Halifax, the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. This museum is not to be missed when visiting Atlantic Canada and is filled with interactive exhibits, and information about the immigrants who settled in Canada.

Between 1928 and 1971, Pier 21 was the first point of entry for many immigrants to Canada. It has now been turned into a museum. You can explore your own family history and hear first hand accounts from immigrants to Canada about their journeys.

Canadian Museum of Immigration in Nova Scotia

The Canadian Museum of Immigration lets you immerse in what it was like crossing the Atlantic in tight quarters, where you can try on period garb or see how immigrants coming to Canada packed their entire lives into one small trunk.

There is an interesting Titanic display with artifacts from the ship. To see more about the Titanic disaster, you can visit the Fairview Lawn Cemetery. Halifax was the closest harbour when the Titanic sank and many of its remains were brought to Halifax. The Fairview Lawn Cemetery is the final resting place for 121 of the Titanic victims.

11. Halifax Seaport Farmers ‘  Market

halifax waterfront at sunset

After you’ve finished up on the Halifax waterfront, pop into the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market to grab everything you need for a picnic. Even if you are not shopping, it is not to be missed. The Halifax Seaport Farmers Market is the one of the oldest continuously operating farmers markets in North America.

During that time it has changed locations regularly, and in 2021, the Halifax Farmers Market moved down the street to offer an outdoor shopping experience during the summer months with indoor vendors at Pavilion 22.

The market sells everything from local craft and jewelry to fresh fish and local produce. Wether you are shopping or simply browsing this is not to be missed.

12. Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Art lovers will enjoy the Art Gallery of Halifax, Nova Scotia the largest art museum on the East Coast of Canada. It features permanent collections of Nova Scotia artists most notably, the folk art collection of Maud Lewis House. Maud Lewis was a painter in Nova Scotia who spent 40 years painting her small home with colourful scenes of Nova Scotia. Several years after her death, the Art Gallery of Halifax moved her home to become a part of its permanent collection crearting an immersive experience. .

The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (AGNS) is located in the heart of downtown Halifax and stands as the primary provincial art gallery for Nova Scotia. As the most prominent art museum in Atlantic Canada, it serves as a pivotal cultural institution in the region.

Situated on Hollis Street in Halifax, with an additional branch in Yarmouth, the gallery offers a vast collection. This collection emphasizes visual arts from Nova Scotia and the Atlantic region, spanning a wide array of mediums from paintings to sculptures, photographs, and drawings.

13. Halifax Public Gardens

halifax public gardens

If you have a picnic in hand, make your way to the Halifax Public Gardens. The Victorian Gardens date back to 1867, spanning 16 acres with flower beds, fountains and manicured gardens to enjoy.

The public gardens is a lovely place to find a quiet space as you stroll through its garden paths admiring its carpet beds of flowers and historic statues. There is also a bandstand, a Victorian era greenhouse.

There are events that happen within the public gardens, you can check out their website here. If you are looking to get away from the hustle and bustle, a stroll through the Halifax Public Gardens is one of the best things to do in the city.

14. Point Pleasant Park

Another green space to visit in Halifax is Point Pleasant Park. It covers approximately 190 acres (75 hectares) at the southern tip of the Halifax peninsula and offers a mix of forested trails, historical sites, coastal ecosystems, and recreational facilities.

The park has several historic sites, particularly related to the defense of Halifax. The remains of several fortifications can be found within the park, most notably the Prince of Wales Tower, which is one of the oldest Martello towers in North America. Every summer, the park hosts “Shakespeare by the Sea,” a theater festival that presents classic plays in an outdoor setting.

15. Halifax Central Library

halifax central library

One of the coolest pieces of architecture in Halifax is the Halifax Central Library. It was created as a community gathering place and even visitors to the city will want to go inside. If you are into architectural design when traveling, you’ll love the library, it was awarded Governor General’s Medal for its outstanding new civic building design. Make sure to go up to the rooftop terrace, it is a great place to take in panoramic views of downtown Halifax and the harbour. If you are looking for things to do in Halifax that the locals love, this is it.

16. Hang out at Spring Garden Road

The Halifax Public Gardens and Halifax Central Library are both located in the Spring Garden Road area of Halifax. It is one of the trendiest areas in the city with bars, restaurants, and the main shopping hub. After you’ve done some shopping, head to one of the hip bars for a cocktail. This is a great way to experience the local vibe of halifax.

17. Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

halifax citadel

One of the not-to-miss things to do in Halifax is to make your way up to the Halifax Citadel. The Halifax Citadel was a fortification that stood guard over the city. This national historic site is a star-shaped fort (Also known as Fort George) that will take you back in time from its origin in 1856 through World War II and today.

Watch the changing of the guard and see a reenactment of the 78th Highlanders march through the grounds. You can even be a soldier for a day and dress up in the Highlanders uniform complete with kilt! Don’t miss the Royal Artillery firing the noon gun, one of the oldest traditions in the world.

18. Citadel Hill

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Going up Citadel Hill is a great place to catch the sunset over Halifax. The Old Town Clock is a classified federal Heritage building that stands proud over the city.

Looking down over the Historic Town Clock makes for a serene view of downtown Halifax and the harborfront. Or you can join a ghost tour from the Old Clock Tower. Its claim to fame is the oldest ghost tour in North America.

19. Ghosts of St. Paul’s Church

ghost in the window of Halifax

While strolling downtown Halifax, keep an eye out for the ghost of St. Paul’s Church. It is the oldest building in Halifax surviving the Halifax explosion that left the mark of a face in its glass. After the explosion a silhouette of a head was forever etched into its glass. Is it the ghost of a reverend, the pipe organist or a sailor who died in the blast. We’ll never know, but this head has fascinated visitors for more than a decade.

20. Go Skating at Halifax Emera Oval

Built for the 2011 Canada Games, the Emera Oval is a skating rink that is free during the winter and free rollerblade, bike, and scooter rentals in the summer. So strap on your ice skates in the winter and roller blades in the summer and get outside.

One of the unique features of the Emera Oval is its year-round accessibility. During winter months, it operates as a long-track speed skating rink, which is the largest artificial ice surface east of Quebec in Canada. In the warmer months, it transitions into a roller-skating and biking venue.

The Emera Oval is located on the Halifax North Common at the corner of North Park Street and Cogswell Street.

21. Nightlife on Argyle Street

argyle street halifax

If you are looking for a night out in Halifax, look no further than Argyle Street. It has three things that we love. Pubs, patios, and food. Located in the heart of downtown Halifax, Argyle Street is a lively place day or night lined with restaurants and live music venues. For things to do in Halifax at night, Argyle Street is the place to be.

nova scotia scallops

We recommend dinner at the Five Fishermem Restaurant for authentic Nova Scotia Seafood. It’s been rated the #1 Restaurant in Halifax for best service, ambiance, value and food!

22. Halifax Donair

After a night of drinking and dancing, a late night Donair will help with the hangover. The Donair is the “unofficial” official food of Halifax. A meat-filled wrap of tomato and onions reminds you of a doner kebab or gyro, but it is neither. It is distinctly Nova Scotians. One of the best places to enjoy a donair is The King of Donair. Its the original where founder Peter Gamoulako wanted to introduce the gyro to Canadians putting his own twist on it.

23. Try Some Fish and Chips

Plenty of places in Halifax claim to have the best fish and chips in Canada and for good reason. Atlantic Canada. isall about the fishing culture and here you will enjoy fresh local haddock. Some of the best places for fish and chips in halifax include John’s Lunch which has been serving up fish and chips since 1969, The Five Fishermen for a more upscale dining experience, snf Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House ehivh id s no-frills spot that locals love. It’s known for its generous portions and crispy battered haddock.

When choosing a spot for fish and chips in Halifax, it largely depends on the atmosphere you’re looking for, whether it’s a casual takeaway, a sit-down restaurant, or a scenic spot on the waterfront. Remember that the freshest seafood is a hallmark of many Nova Scotian eateries, so you’re likely in for a treat wherever you decide to go.

Top things to do in Halifax with kids

Before we get into where to stay and day trips from Halifax, let’s look at some of the Halifax attractions dedicated to the whole family.

The Discovery Centre is a hands-on science center offers interactive exhibits, live science shows, and a featured exhibit gallery that changes regularly. Kids of all ages will be entertained while learning.

Hatfield Farm : A short drive from Halifax, this farm offers horseback riding, wagon rides, a petting zoo, and more, making it a perfect family outing.

Bayers Lake Mystery Walls : For families who enjoy a little outdoor exploration, these mysterious ruins offer a mini-adventure. The origin of these walls remains a mystery, sparking imagination and curiosity.

Shubenacadie Wildlife Park : Located in nearby Dartmouth, this wildlife park showcases mainly native animals and is a hit with kids. They can see animals like moose, bears, and deer in relatively natural habitats.

Visit the Beaches : Halifax and the surrounding areas are home to several beautiful beaches. Whether you’re looking for a place to swim, build sandcastles, or explore tidal pools, there’s a beach for you.

Take a Harbour Cruise : Several companies offer harbor cruises, some tailored for kids with themes like pirate adventures.

Where to Stay in Halifax

halifax downtown

The Haliburton  is a lovely boutique hotel close to downtown and the waterfront that travelers love.

Hotel Halifax  was our favourite hotel in Halifax as it was close to the harbourfront and citadel and is walking distance to many top Halifax attractions. It has a pool, bar, restaurant and fitness centre.

Lord Nelson   is a historic hotel in Halifax dating back to 1928. We didn’t mind staying here, but it’s a bit dated and the service wasn’t the best. But if you like those grand old hotels like the Chateau Frontenac or Chateau Laurier, this is for you.

Quick Day Trips from Halifax, Nova Scotia

dave and deb halifax nova scotia

If you are just visiting Nova Scotia for a short time, you may only have time for a few day trips from Halifax. We have an entire article about the best things to do in Nova Scotia , but here are a few easy day trips from Halifax, Canada.

Peggy’s Cove

Peggy's cove Boat Tour in Nova Scotia

Peggy’s Cove is a must visit when exploring Halifax. It is Nova Scotia’s most popular attraction and with good reason. Located just 30 minutes from downtown Halifax, its an easy day trip.

There are tour busses and tours that leave from Halifax to Peggy’s Cove, but we suggest renting a car for a day to really explore all the things to do in and around Peggy’s Cove. Leave before sunrise to be able to watch it from Peggy’s Cove Lighthouse. You’ll be free from crowds and it’s a beautiful view. Read all about our time at Peggy’s Cove here.

Bay of Fundy

Burnthead Coat National Park in Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia’s famous for being home to the world’s highest tides and no trip to Nova Scotia would be complete without visiting the Bay of Fundy. Luckily, Burntcoat Head Park is only an hour away from Halifax and is one of the provinces most popular attractions. It is here that you can walk on the ocean floor for three hours on either side of the tides that move 100 billion tons of water every six hours. That is more than every river in the world combined! Read more about the bay of Fundy here.

things to do in lunenburg nova scotia waterfront

Lunenberg is a bit of a long drive from Halifax at 2 and a half hours, but if you have a short time in the province, it is not to be missed. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this is Canada’s prettiest town with colourful buildings lining the waterfront. The historic Blue Nose tall ship makes its base in Lunenberg and you can visit the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic. There are mircorbreweries, fine dining and plenty of shopping. If you have more than a day, make sure to visit Lunenberg. Read more: 20 Best Things to do in Lunenburg Nova Scotia – Top Activities

Mahone Bay in Nova Scotia

While you are making your way to Lunenberg, make sure to stop at Mahone Bay. Just a 10-minute drive from Lunenburg, Mahone Bay is a great stop on your Lunenburg Itinerary. Founded in 1745, Mahone Bay was named one of Canada’s best small towns. It’s famous for The Three Churches that line the waterfront and this scene is one of the most photographed places in Nova Scotia.

How to Get to Halifax

historic halifax sign rum-runners

Halifax Stanfield International Airport (YHZ) is the major international airport serving Halifax and the surrounding Maritime provinces. It’s located in Enfield, about 35 km north of Halifax. The airport has several direct flights from major cities in Canada, the United States, and Europe, as well as seasonal flights from other destinations. Once you arrive, you can take a car rental, taxi, or shuttle to reach downtown Halifax.

VIA Rail Canada : The Ocean is VIA Rail’s passenger train service that runs between Montreal and Halifax. It’s a scenic route, operating three days a week, offering a unique view of the eastern seaboard landscapes, including the Matapedia Valley and the Baie des Chaleurs.

Canada : If you’re coming from central or western Canada, you’d follow the Trans-Canada Highway eastbound which will lead you through Quebec and New Brunswick and then into Nova Scotia.

From the US : If you’re driving from the northeastern United States, you’ll likely cross into Canada at the Calais, Maine / St. Stephen, New Brunswick border. From there, you’d follow the Trans-Canada Highway (NB Route 1 which becomes NS Route 104) east through New Brunswick and into Nova Scotia. This route will take you to Truro, where you’ll follow NS Route 102 directly to Halifax.

When planning your trip to Halifax, it’s essential to consider the season, as winter can sometimes present travel challenges, especially if you’re driving. Always check the schedules and availability ahead of time, especially given the potential changes in services or routes.

And these are our favourite things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia. There is so much more to see and do, and we can’t wait to get back to the Halifax to experience that east coast hospitality, beautiful scenery and gorgeous coast. Have you been to Halifax?

Our trips to Halifax were courtesy of Tourism Nova Scotia. Like everything here on ThePlanetD all opinions are our own. To check out more things to do in Halifax and Nova Scotia, visit their website.

  • Best Things to do in Nova Scotia – The Ultimate Travel Guide
  • The Ultimate Nova Scotia Road Trip Itinerary
  • 14 Gorgeous Stops on the Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia

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Must-see attractions in Halifax

500px Photo ID: 67163147 - Halifax Town Clock on Citadel Hill

Citadel Hill National Historic Site

Perched atop the grassy hillock looming over town, this star-shaped fort played a key role in Halifax's founding. Construction began in 1749; the current…

top tourist attractions halifax

Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

There's an argument that this dockside museum is Canada's most important institution. Between 1928 and 1971, Pier 21 was the Canadian version of the USA's…

Halifax Central Library

Built on a former parking lot, this stunning modern library, composed of glass boxes stacked artfully on top of each other, was opened in 2014 and has…

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

The province's premier art institution is a must-see. It has a strong collection of local art, particularly the work of folk artist Maud Lewis, including…

Halifax Public Gardens

Established in 1867 to mark Confederation, but formally opened to the public in 1875, Halifax's delightful 6.5-hectare public gardens are a fine example…

Fairview Lawn Cemetery

When the RMS Titanic sank, the bodies of those not lost at sea were brought to Halifax. Among other sites, there are 19 graves at Mt Olivet Catholic…

Crystal Crescent Beach Provincial Park

Eighteen kilometers south of Halifax, near the village of Sambro, this gorgeous provincial park boasts three distinct beaches in separate coves; the third…

St Paul's Church

The oldest surviving building in Halifax is also the oldest Protestant place of worship in Canada. Established in 1749 with the founding of Halifax, St…

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Sea dogs will love this briny museum on the waterfront, which houses a huge collection of maritime memorabilia relating to Atlantic Canada's many nautical…

HMCS Sackville

Commissioned in 1941, HMCS Sackville is the last survivor of the 123 Canadian corvettes tasked with escorting Allied convoys during the perilous Battle of…

Africville Heritage Trust Museum

Learn the story of Africville, Halifax's predominantly African suburb, the residents of which were evicted and their homes razed in what became the local…

Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery

Brewing the good stuff since 1820, this is one of the oldest breweries in North America. Now part of a complex of shops, bars, gift stores and the…

Museum of Natural History

Natural history with a Nova Scotian bent is the modus operandi of this interesting museum, where informative exhibits cover everything from the gold rush…

Halifax Town Clock

Atop Citadel Hill, Halifax's Palladian-style town clock looks as though it would be more at home in a Venetian lane, but it has been faithfully keeping…

Little Dutch Church

Tours of the 1756 Little Dutch Church, the second-oldest building in Halifax, can be arranged through St George's Round Church.

Maritime Command Museum

The admiral of the British navy for all of North America was based in Halifax until 1819 and threw grand parties at Admiralty House, now the Maritime…

Completed in 1890, Halifax's grand late-Victorian Second Empire–style town hall features a seven-story clock tower. The time on its north clock face is…

Anna Leonowens Gallery

Off the pedestrian area on Granville St, this gallery shows work by students and faculty of the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design. The gallery is named…

Mt Olivet Catholic Cemetery

In addition to being a primary burial ground for victims of the Halifax Explosion, this cemetery is the final resting place of 19 people who perished in…

St George's Round Church

Built in 1800, this church is a rare example of a circular church built in the Palladian style, with a main rotunda 18m in diameter. Tours here, and of…

Cornwallis Street Baptist Church

The Cornwallis Street Baptist Church has been serving African Nova Scotians since the 1830s. Walk by on Sunday morning and hear the gospel music flow…

St Mary's Cathedral Basilica

You can't miss Halifax's most ornate cathedral, which has the largest freestanding granite spire in North America.

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12 Best Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

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The capital of Nova Scotia, the seaside city of Halifax, lies on a huge harbor of the same name and is an important economic and cultural center for Atlantic Canada. This was the first port of call for most European immigrants to the country in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Stretching three kilometers in length, its waterfront is home to historic wharves and warehouses, markets and museums. Despite its smallish size, there are many things to do in Halifax. Besides delving into the city’s seafaring past, you can also explore the peninsula’s parks and gardens, excellent art galleries and beautiful old buildings. There are also many tourist attractions relating to its rich maritime history and heritage.

12. Seaport Farmers’ Market

Seaport Farmers' Market

Set along the city’s waterfront is the Seaport Farmers’ Market which is, remarkably, the oldest continually operating market of its kind in North America. Founded in 1750, its countless stands and stalls have fish, fresh produce and baked goods to buy with the market open almost every day of the year.

Over the years, the historic farmers market has been held in many locations. Many of its vast array of vendors moved to the vibrant arts and cultural district of Halifax Seaport in 2011. Here you can sample some local Canadian staples, shop for souvenirs, or stop off for a bite to eat or a coffee at one of its stalls.

11. Fairview Lawn Cemetery

Fairview Lawn Cemetery

Located around ten minutes’ drive to the northwest of the city center is the peaceful and picturesque Fairview Lawn Cemetery. Mostly known for being the final resting place for over a hundred victims of the infamous sinking of the RMS Titanic, its paths take you past rows of sombre graves and memorials and monuments to the maritime tragedy.

In total 121 of the sunken ship’s crew and passengers are interred here with many of the gray granite markers inscribed with their name and date of death. Among the most popular are those of William Denton Cox and The Unknown Child; both of which have interesting and informative plaques on the unfortunate victims.

10. Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Another of Halifax’s standout tourist attractions is the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, situated a stone’s throw from the waterfront in downtown Halifax. Now located in Dominion Building, the museum was opened in 1908 with further floors to be found in the adjacent Provincial Building.

While its collection of 18,000 photos, paintings and sculptures mainly focus on local Nova Scotian and Canadian artists, its exhibits also include plenty of works by international artists.

Its galleries house more than fifty works by the folk artist Maud Lewis, as well as artworks by several First Nations artists. With images from famous Canadian artists such as Maud Lewis next to portraits of numerous Nova Scotia notables, the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is not to be missed.

9. Discovery Centre

Discovery Centre

Full of incredible exhibits and interactive experiences and activities, the Discovery Centre is sure to educate and entertain both adults and children alike. Since opening in 1990, the science museum has stimulated an interest in science and technology for countless generations of locals and tourists.

Set next to the Seaport Farmers’ Market, its interactive, hands-on exhibits explore everything from energy and the ocean to space and flight. The state-of-the-art center also has exciting experiments and science shows for visitors to watch which explain and highlight how the world works.

Also, the fun and family-friendly museum’s on-site cinema shows educational films with discovery days, science lectures, and technology workshops regularly taking place.

8. Point Pleasant Park

Point Pleasant Park

Occupying the southernmost tip of the Halifax Peninsula is Point Pleasant Park which lies just ten minutes’ drive from the city center. Besides boasting some interesting historic sights, it also has great outdoor activities to try and commanding views out over Halifax Harbour.

Dotted about its scenic and sprawling confines are the Sailor’s Memorial and Prince of Wales Tower, the oldest remaining Martello tower in North America. Once home to numerous batteries, the park now has thirty or so kilometers of trails to hike, run or cycle along amidst its verdant forests.

During the summer months, it also hosts Shakespeare by the Sea when numerous outdoor plays and productions take place.

7. Halifax Harbour Ferry

Halifax Harbour Ferry

When in town, a great thing to do in Halifax is go for a ride on the Harbour Ferry which is the longest-running ferry service in North America. Since 1752, boats have ferried both passengers and goods across the massive expanse of water, with trips from Halifax to Dartmouth now only taking fifteen minutes.

From the Halifax Ferry Terminal, visitors can either take a ferry to Alderney Landing or Woodside, both of which are located in Dartmouth. Once powered by horses and then by steam, the fast ferries now whisk you to Dartmouth’s growing arts and dining scenes in no time at all.

On the way, you can enjoy divine views of Halifax Harbour and snap photos of the city’s scenic shores and skyline.

6. Halifax Central Library

Halifax Central Library

As it boasts some of the most attractive and unique architecture in the city, Halifax Central Library is certainly worth stopping by.

Since opening in 2014, the library has been a firm favorite with both locals and tourists alike and regularly hosts talks, cultural events and shows. Besides its huge collection of books, it also has art installations and an auditorium on offer alongside cosy cafes and community rooms.

Said to resemble a stack of books, the distinctive design of the five-story structure has earned lots of plaudits with the interior of the modern building being just as striking. This is because its sun-filled central atrium is crisscrossed by stairways which lead up to a sunroom gallery space and rooftop cafe and terrace.

5. Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

Canadian Museum of Immigration

Situated on the Halifax Waterfront is the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, one of the nation’s most important museums. As over a million immigrants passed through the former ocean liner terminal between 1928 and 1971, it is often compared to Ellis Island in the States.

Founded in 1999, the museum shows visitors what it was like to immigrate through Pier 21 in the past. As well as exploring the ocean immigration shed’s artifacts and exhibits, there are oral history interviews to listen to and short videos to watch. The museum is also home to a moving memorial and a lovely wall of service, honour and tribute to all those who contributed to Canada as a nation.

4. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Looking out over Halifax Harbour is the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic which offers a fascinating look into the city’s seafaring heritage and culture. One of the most popular places to visit in town, it has a huge collection of over 30,000 items to explore, with its artifacts and exhibits relating to the sinking of the RMS Titanic being one of its main attractions.

First opened in 1948, the museum is home to everything, from charts and small crafts to models of ships and the CSS Acadia; a steam-powered survey ship. While some galleries look at the history of sailing or the age of steam, others focus instead on events such as the sinking of the Titanic or the devastating Halifax Explosion of 1917.

3. Halifax Citadel

Halifax Citadel

Set in the center of the city is the star-shaped Halifax Citadel which looms over downtown from atop of its prominent hilltop. Such is its strategic position that four forts have been built in the same spot since 1749 with the current citadel having been completed in 1856.

Besides wandering around the grounds and fortifications of the National Historic Site, visitors can also stop by its on-site Army Museum. As well as weapons and uniforms, it has interesting exhibits on the fort which was used during the American Revolution, American Civil War, and both World Wars, amongst others. A popular time to visit is at midday when reenactors fire the traditional noon-gun which acts as a reminder of the fort’s role in Halifax’s history.

2. Halifax Public Gardens

Halifax Public Gardens

Just to the southwest of the citadel, you can find the Halifax Public Gardens which were first opened in 1875. One of the finest Victorian-era gardens in North America, its gorgeous grounds have paths and ponds to amble past with flower beds, fountains, and sculptures also dotted about.

Enclosed within its intricate wrought-iron gate, you can find a huge variety of trees, plants and shrubs with the gardens having been created out of two older pre-existing parks. At its heart lies a beautiful old bandstand which sometimes hosts concerts, ceremonies and celebrations in the summer months. Due to its scenic splendour, the gardens are a very popular place to picnic or take wedding and prom photos.

1. Waterfront Boardwalk

Waterfront Boardwalk

The undoubted highlight of any visit to Halifax is going for a stroll along the Waterfront Boardwalk, home to most of the city’s main sights. The boardwalk stretches three kilometres in total, and as well as historic buildings and heritage vessels, has museums, markets and monuments to visit.

As it lines the edge of Halifax Harbour and offers some epic views, wandering along the waterfront is certainly one of the best city walks in Canada. Besides all its attractions, there are countless shops and restaurants to visit, with art galleries and studios occupying its wharves and warehouses.

From the Waterfront Boardwalk you can also take some great ferry rides and boat tours which again highlight the city’s maritime history and heritage.

Map of Things to Do in Halifax

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Welcome to Halifax

P'jilita'q wla kjipuktuk.

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Halifax is in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq people. The people of the Mi’kmaw Nation have lived on this territory for millennia, and we acknowledge them as the past, present and future caretakers of this land.  Historically, a land acknowledgment is a traditional practice shared amongst Indigenous groups to recognize the Indigenous land and territory they are visiting. Today a land acknowledgement remains a way to express one’s gratitude to the Indigenous people for being stewards of the land that we live and work on.

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Must-Visit Attractions in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax Town Clock was built in 1803 and is a prominent feature in the skyline of the city

With the world’s second-largest natural harbor and being the lively hub of Atlantic Canada , Halifax is best known for its historical charm, community spirit, fresh seafood and incredible natural landscapes. Make the most of your visit with these must-visit attractions.

1. canadian museum of immigration at pier 21.

Pier 21

2. Halifax Waterfront

Architectural Landmark

Particularly popular during the summer months, there’s always something happening along Halifax’s waterfront. Lined with bars, restaurants, food stalls, souvenir shops and adirondack chairs, there’s plenty to keep you occupied on a leisurely stroll along its 2.5-mi (4-km) boardwalk. This area is also home to two of the city’s must-visit museums – the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 and the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic. Popular dining spots include The Bicycle Thief – serving up Italian cuisine, and the Lower Deck Pub – the perfect spot for a casual afternoon beer.

3. Halifax Public Gardens

Botanical Garden

A calm oasis in the heart of the city, the Halifax Public Gardens is a great spot to relax, people-watch and enjoy a treat from the on-site cafe, Uncommon Grounds. Having been open to the public since Canada achieved confederation in 1867, it’s one of the oldest Victorian gardens in North America and its immaculately manicured lawns and gardens frequently act as backdrops for weddings and photo shoots. Flowers and plants from a range of climates line the walkways here. Expect to see a variety of flora, including sweet-smelling roses, towering trees and desert cactus.

5. McNabs Island

Natural Feature

HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA - Sailboat passes lighthouse on McNabs Island in Halifax seaport harbor.

Take a day trip out to McNabs Island and discover the wildlife, nature and history of Halifax Harbour’s largest island, which is part of the McNabs and Lawlor Islands Provincial Park. After being settled by Peter McNab in the 1780s, the island has been abandoned since World War II and is now home to the likes of three abandoned military forts and a soda pop factory that ran bootleg booze during prohibition. From Downtown Halifax, the trip takes about 25 minutes. Tours are available through Friends of McNabs Island.

6. Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Art Gallery

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

7. Emera Oval

Park, Sports Center

Originally built for the Canada Games in 2011, Haligonians were so in love with their new ice-skating rink at the Halifax Commons that they voted to make it permanent. In the winter, you can enjoy the rink while listening to music, before warming up with a hot chocolate and famous Beaver Tail . In summer, take to the rink on roller skates or rent a bike. The Oval is open year-round. Free public skating is offered at specific times of the day and evening, so it’s recommended you check online before visiting.

8. Point Pleasant Park

Situated in Halifax’s south end, Point Pleasant is always buzzing with locals walking their dogs, having picnics and enjoying the ocean views. Visitors can experience a variety of coastal ecosystems, take a self-guided cultural walking tour, go for a swim at the beach or watch a performance by the Shakespeare by the Sea theater group. The park stretches over 190 acres (77ha) and is home to 24mi (39km) of winding trails and wide paths, many of which are wheelchair accessible. Those biking can ride designated cycle trails on weekends and during holidays. Washroom facilities are available.

9. St. Paul’s Anglican Church

Canada, Nova Scotia, Halifax, St. Pauls Anglican Chruch, b. 1749, interior

St. Paul’s Church, founded in 1749, was the first building in Halifax. While it’s still a place of weekly worship, it’s most frequently visited by outsiders for its famous Face in the Window – a ghost-like silhouette caused by the Halifax Explosion in 1917. Legend has it that as a result of the intense light and heat generated by the explosion, the profile of one of the church’s deacons was etched into one of the windows forever. The church is also home to an impressive archive and welcomes history buffs keen to do more research to make an appointment.

10. Halifax Seaport Farmers' Market

Farmers' Market, Market, Canadian

11. Neptune Theatre

With a history dating back to 1915, Neptune Theatre is the largest professional theater in Atlantic Canada. Boasting two stages, the theater hosts a variety of productions, including local and Canadian-made plays and musical-theater favorites. The season runs from mid-September to the end of May, but often carries on well into July. Previous productions include Cats , West Side Story , Beauty and the Beast , Shrek , and Mary Poppins . Ticket prices vary, with the theater often offering a ‘pay what you can’ scheme to make performances more widely available to the community.

12. Halifax Harbour Ferry

For a quick escape from the city, hop across the harbor to Dartmouth onboard the Halifax Harbour Ferry. Known as the City of Lakes, this vibrant community is bursting with attractions, such as the Harbourfront Trail and the popular Alderney Landing Farmers’ Market. Be sure to head to the Two If By Sea Cafe for giant croissants and locally roasted coffee. The Crobster Rolls at The Canteen and the cider at Lake City Cider on Portland Street also come highly recommended. The ferry service runs every 30 minutes.

13. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada

Discover the city’s extensive maritime history at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, situated in the heart of Halifax Waterfront. During your visit, you’ll have the chance to learn about the 1917 Halifax Explosion, the city’s ship-building past and its role in the aftermath of the sinking of the Titanic. The Titanic exhibition, in particular, is highly regarded and home to over 200 artefacts including the ship’s only surviving deck chair. Visitors can also admire Canada’s longest-serving hydrographic vessel, CSS Acadia, which dates back over 100 years and lives at the museum’s wharf.

14. Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Historical Landmark

The fortress on Citadel Hill was created to defend the city from attack, but today, it stands as a lively national site and museum. Tour guides dressed in historical costumes will take you on a fascinating journey through this crucial site in Halifax’s history as you learn about the city’s first settlers, watch the sentry change and even become a soldier for the day. You can also hear ghost stories and bizarre legends on one of the citadel’s popular ghost tours which run from mid-July to late October.

15. Seven Bays Bouldering

Cafe, Contemporary

The newly opened Seven Bays is part bouldering gym, part hip cafe. Whether you’re a first-timer or an expert, climbers of all skill levels are invited to tackle the 120ft (36.5m) long bouldering wall. Get in a fun workout at the gym, before taking your pick from a selection of great coffees, local draught beers, smoothies and tasty treats listed on the cafe’s vegan-friendly menu. Climbing shoes are required and are available for rental. Children under 14 are welcome but must be closely supervised by an adult.

16. Halifax Central Library

Building, Library

17. Peggy’s Cove

Natural Feature, Architectural Landmark

Peggys Cove, Nova Scotia, Canada: A bagpiper plays for tourists near the lighthouse at the popular tourist destination of Peggys Cove, Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is home to over 160 historic lighthouses , but Peggy’s Point Lighthouse – built in 1915 – is without a doubt its most famous. Located a short drive from Halifax, the lighthouse can be found on Peggy’s Cove , a pretty fishing village along the south shore. Watch as huge waves cover granite rocks surrounding the lighthouse, before wandering along the boardwalk and grabbing a souvenir to commemorate your visit. Peggy’s Cove Boat Tours also offer opportunities for puffin and seal watching, along with the chance to indulge in fresh seafood on a Lobster Dinner Cruise.

18. Halifax tours

Walk, Segway, ride, kayak or sail around Halifax with one of the city’s many tour companies. Popular choices include the Harbour Hopper, an amphibious tour bus that drives you around downtown and then into the harbor; Taste Halifax Tours invite you to sample the best food in the city; and the ghost tours take you to the city’s most haunted spots. Theodore Tugboat is a popular tour choice for families in particular. Kids will learn about Halifax’s harbor before having the chance to meet Theo’s friends, Dispatcher, Tugboat Crew and Benjamin Bridge.

19. The Old Burying Ground

Halifax’s first burial ground, founded in 1749, also happens to be a National Heritage site. Wander around and you’ll find yourself transported to Halifax’s early history as you pass notable headstones, including that of Major General Robert Ross, who fought in the War of 1812 and was buried with full military honors. At the entrance to the burial ground, you can also see the Welsford-Parker Monument which was built in 1870 to commemorate two Haligonians killed in the Crimean War.

20. Alexander Keith’s Brewery

21. check out halifax’s vibrant street art.

The mural was designed by Jason Botkin, adorns the Freak Lunchbox in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

Halifax has a thriving street art scene, with the city’s walls colored in impressive public murals for visitors to discover. Many of the street artists here stay true to the cities maritime theme, but the murals you’ll come across are ever-changing, with new creations frequently sprouting up overnight. One of the best and most photographed is sprawled on the back of candy store, Freak Lunchbox, located in Downtown Halifax. Created by street artist, Jason Botkin (@robotkin), it depicts a vibrant water world, featuring a tangled heron, fish and octopus. Mulgrave Park housing development is also home to several murals reflecting the community’s spirit.

22. HMCS Sackville

For an insightful experience, climb aboard Canada’s oldest warship and the last of its 123 corvettes, HMCS Sackville. The ship was used during World War II and played a crucial role in winning the Battle of the Atlantic. It has served as a naval memorial since 1983 and invites visitors to learn about its history while exploring its gun deck, engine room and other features. HMCS Sackville is berthed in the Naval Dockyard, about one mile from the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic between November to mid-June, before being moved to Sackville Landing from late June to October.

23. Crystal Crescent Beach Provincial Park

Park, Natural Feature

Situated in Sambro Creek, approximately 17mi (28km) south of Halifax, you’ll find a peaceful sanctuary away from the city. Boasting three white-sand beaches in separate coves, Crystal Crescent Beach Park is known for its peaceful, clear waters, accessible hiking trails and ample wildlife viewing opportunities. Venture to Pennant Point on a 5.3mi (8.5km) hiking trail, which starts inland and takes you through barrens, boulders and bogland. You can also see the historic Sambro Island Lighthouse in the distance during your visit, built in 1759. Two of the beaches have boardwalks and toilet facilities.

24. The Museum of Natural History

25. fisherman’s cove.

Take a peek into Halifax’s maritime history at this quaint restored 200-year-old fishing village. Stroll along the picturesque boardwalk and admire the fishing boats lining the canal, or browse the area’s artsy boutiques and gallery, showcasing local artists’ paintings, prints and cards. Restaurants and seafood shacks here take great pride in the fish dishes prepared using daily catches. Situated around 20 minutes from Downtown Halifax across from its harbor, this waterfront community makes for a relaxing day trip from the city. It can be reached by car, ferry and bus.

Additional reporting by Emma Gibbins

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Top 14 Attractions to See and Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is the capital city of Nova Scotia province of Canada. Some of the best things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia include exploring the history of Atlantic Canada, Maritime History, the Battle of the Atlantic History, British Colonial buildings, and natural landscapes. Being a coastal city, you get to enjoy wonderful beaches, coastal landscapes, and islands. Even some of the best places to visit in Halifax are situated along the coast. These are the historical district, maritime museum, war museum, fortress, lighthouse, aquarium, shopping district, and waterfront promenade.

The port of Halifax played an important role during both world wars. It was a collection point for convoys while crossing the Atlantic. This history is a major aspect of Halifax sightseeing . The port also played a major part in the Battle of the Atlantic during the second world war. The HMCS Sackville battleship museum is one of the best Halifax tourist attractions to learn about this war. These museums also shed light on the biggest explosion in the world before Hiroshima nuclear blast. The event took place in 1917 when the French Mont-Blanc munitions ship crashed with a Belgian ship named Imo. The explosion resulted in a great disaster in the ocean as well on land. Buildings were demolished, windows were shattered and more than 1400 people lost their lives. When you visit Halifax, you will learn more about this tragedy when exploring historical areas.

The biggest historical Halifax attraction is the star-shaped citadel. It is a fortress built by the British as they began developing the region. It is one of the most fascinating things to see in Halifax for its size, architecture, defensive facilities, and historical significance.

As for outdoor activities to do in Halifax , you get to explore lakes, canals, marshlands, mountains, forests, and islands close to the city. Boat cruises and ferry rides are a fun experience for sightseeing as well as leisure. The coastal area is also popular for its forests and beaches. These are also popular Halifax tourist spots for seafood restaurants.

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Table of Contents

The Best 14 Tourist Places to Visit in Halifax in 3 Days (Trip Itinerary)

1. halifax citadel national historic site.

The history of this fort dates back to 1749 when the site was first established by the British. Later it was developed into a stronghold by 1856. It is one of the best places to visit in Halifax, Nova Scotia to learn about the military history of the region. The Citadel has an army museum and you can also see reenactments of historical events at this site. You will need about 2 hours to tour this place.

I suggest you should book a Guided Tour of Halifax Citadel National Historic Site .

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

2. Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History

This museum covers a variety of subjects including ethnology, geology, archeology, cosmology,  and so on. It is among the most fun things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia for family tourists. The museum also has an aquarium with several marine animals. It is also home to a 94-year-old tortoise named Gus, who is a local celebrity. You will need 2 hours from Halifax sightseeing to explore this museum and its other facilities.

Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History

3. Halifax Public Gardens

This Victorian-style garden is spread over 17 acres. It is part of the Nova Scotia Horticulture Society Garden and is home to several species of flora. The garden is popular among locals and tourists for outdoor activities to do in Halifax. You can easily spend an hour exploring this place.

Halifax Public Gardens

4. Point Pleasant Park

This wooded park is spread over 75 hectares and is home to several historical things to see in Halifax. This includes 17th century Chapel of St. Aspinquid and 18th-century forts. You will need about 2 hours to explore this park.

Point Pleasant Park

1. Halifax Waterfront

This riverside waterfront is great for a leisurely walk and fun activities in Halifax. The waterfront has farmers’ market, shops, cafes, restaurants, playground, casino and more. You can also take a boat ride to spot Halifax tourist attractions while cruising the river. You can easily spend an hour or two at this place.

At Halifax Waterfront, there are so many activities to do. Here below I have listed a couple of activities that you should try at Halifax Waterfront.

  • Halifax Harbour Hopper Tour
  • Tall Ship Silva Sailing Cruise Tour
  • Pedal Pub Crawl through Solar-Powered Pedal Bus
  • Sunset Cheese and Wine Yacht Sailing

Halifax Waterfront

2. Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

This museum focused on the maritime heritage of Nova Scotia. It is the oldest and the biggest maritime museum in Canada. It is one of the most important historical Halifax attractions. You will see artifacts, scale models of ships, documents, photographs, and so on. You will need 2 hours to tour this museum.

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic

3. Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

This gallery has the biggest art museum in Atlantic Canada. The gallery has more than 17,000 pieces of art including paintings, art installations, sculptures, and more. It is one of the most interesting places to see in Halifax. You will need an hour or so to tour this gallery.

Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

4. Province House

This building is the seat of the government of Nova Scotia. It is included among tourist places in Halifax for its historical significance and its Gregorian architecture. You will need 20 to 30 minutes to tour this building.

Province House

5. Historic Properties

Also known as Privateers Wharf, this shopping district is built in a series of warehouses that were built by a prominent businessman during the Napoleonic Wars. It is one of the most fun places to go in Halifax for shopping, dining, and entertainment. You will need an hour for this area.

Historic Properties

1. McNabs Island

This island has an area of 1000 acres and is known for its unspoiled natural expanse, a historic fort, and a lighthouse. It is one of the best things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia. You will need to get a ferry to get here and enjoy picnics, nature tours, history tours, beach activities, and so on. You can easily spend 2 to 3 hours on this island.

McNabs Island

2. Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

This museum focuses on the contributions and achievements of immigrants to the nation of Canada. The museum covers social, political, arts and cultural realms. You will need about an hour to tour this museum when you visit Halifax.

I suggest you should book your Entrance Ticket of the Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 in advance.

Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21

3. Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery

This craft beer brewery offers tours and beer tasting. This is the second oldest commercial brewery in the country. The pub attached to the brewery is especially popular for several pub games hailing from the 1800s. You will need an hour from Halifax travel to tour this brewery.

I suggest you should book a Guided Tour of Alexander Keith’s Brewery .

Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery

4. HMCS Sackville (K181)

This battleship serves as a museum dedicated to the Battle of the Atlantic and the heroes of that war. The museum gives you an insight into the workings of a battleship during the World War II period. You will need an hour to tour this ship.

HMCS Sackville (K181)

5. Discovery Centre

This centre is dedicated to science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics. The center has several exhibits and interactive experiments for different fields of science. There are special segments of the center designed for educating children in a fun and innovative ways. You will need an hour to explore this center.

Discovery Center

If you are looking for more top things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia check out the sections below. We have compiled an exhaustive list of attractions and activities to enjoy in and around the city.

Things to do in halifax, monuments, museums & historical places to visit in halifax.

  • Halifax Citadel National historic Site
  • Maritime Museum of the Atlantic
  • Art Gallery of Nova Scotia
  • Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21
  • Museum of Natural History
  • McNabs Island Lighhouse
  • Fairview Lawn Cemetery
  • St. Paul’s Anglican Church
  • York Rebout National Historic Site
  • Dalhousie Art Gallery
  • Anna Leonowens Gallery
  • Africville Museum
  • HMCS Sackville
  • Georges Island National Historic Site
  • Prince of Wales National Historic Site
  • St. Mary’s Cathedral Basilica
  • Old Town Clock
  • Naval Museum of Halifax
  • Fort Needham
  • Dartmouth Heritage Museum
  • Halifax City Hall
  • Old Government House
  • Studio 21 Fine Art
  • Khyber Center for the Arts
  • Saint Mary’s University Art Gallery
  • Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame
  • Saint George’s Round Church
  • Army Museum Halifax Citadel
  • Little Dutch Church
  • Deadman’s Island
  • Quaker House
  • Mont Blanc Anchor Site
  • Halifax Explosion Memorial Bell Tower
  • Cathedral Church of All Saints

Nature & Wildlife Tourist Spots in Halifax

  • McNabs Island
  • Shubie Park
  • George Island
  • Chocolate Lake
  • Blue Mountain Birch Coves Lake Wilderness Area
  • Shubenacadie Canal
  • Shaw Wilderness Park
  • Susies Lake
  • Admiral Cove
  • Birch Cove Lakes
  • Charlies Lake
  • Morris Lake
  • Purcells Cove Backlands
  • Horseshoe Island
  • Lake Micmac
  • Geizer Hill
  • Lawlor Island
  • Colpitt Lake
  • Williams Lake
  • Sable Island

Entertainment & Leisure Tourist Spots in Halifax

  • Halifax Public Garden
  • Point Pleasure Park
  • Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery
  • Discovery Center
  • Casino Nova Scotia
  • Sir Sandford Fleming Park
  • Long Lake Provincial Park
  • Hemlock Ravine Park
  • Alderney Landings
  • Halifax Common
  • DeWolf Park
  • Fort Needham Memorial Park
  • Mainland Common Park
  • Conrose Park
  • Victoria Park
  • Canada Games Center
  • Leighton Dillman Park
  • Merv Sullivan Park
  • Captured Escape Rooms
  • Kidston Lake
  • Red Bridge Pond
  • Scott Saunders Memorial Park
  • Peace and Friendship Park

Shopping in Halifax

  • Halifax Seaport Farmers Market
  • Historic Properties
  • Waterfront Broadwalk
  • Halifax Brewery Market
  • Halifax Shopping Center

Beaches & Islands in Halifax

  • Black Rock beach
  • Kearney Lake Beach
  • Rainbow Haven Beach
  • Craters Beach
  • Psyche Cove Beach
  • White Point Beach
  • Crystal Crescent Beach
  • Hirtle’s Beach
  • Martinique Beach
  • Lawrencetown Beach
  • Queensland Beach
  • Clam Harbour Beach
  • Conrads Beach

Offbeat Places, Tours, & Adventure Activities to Do in in Halifax

Sightseeing in halifax.

  • Spring Garden Road
  • Grand Parade War Memorial
  • Halifax Waterfront
  • Belchers Marsh Park
  • The Emigrant Statue
  • Halifax Harbour
  • Dartmouth Harbourwalk Trail
  • Samuel Cunard Statue

Food, Dining, Restaurants, & Street Food in Halifax

  • Waterfront Warehouse
  • The Bicycle Thief
  • Cafe Lunette
  • The Canteen
  • Brightwood Brewery
  • The Ostrich Club
  • The Stillwell Freehouse
  • Wines on the Water
  • The Split Crow Pub
  • Red Stag Tavern
  • King of Donair
  • Garrison Brewing Co.
  • Durty Nelly’s
  • Piatto Pizzeria
  • The Stuborn Goat

Where to Stay in Halifax?

Here we have listed Top Rated Hotels in Halifax. You can check below listed hotels for your perfect stay in Halifax.

  • Comfort Hotel Bayer’s Lake
  • Halifax Marriott Harbourfront Hotel
  • Prince George Hotel
  • Muir, Autograph Collection
  • Chateau Bedford, Trademark Collection by Wyndham
  • Courtyard by Marriott Halifax Downtown
  • The Westin Nova Scotian
  • Residence Inn by Marriott Halifax Downtown
  • Comfort Inn Halifax
  • Four Points by Sheraton Halifax
  • The Lord Nelson Hotel & Suites
  • Homewood Suites by Hilton Halifax-Downtown, Nova Scotia, Canada
  • Hotel Halifax
  • Future Inns Halifax
  • Holiday Inn Express & Suites Halifax – Bedford, an IHG Hotel
  • Coastal Inn Halifax
  • Atlantica Hotel Halifax
  • Halifax Tower Hotel & Conference Centre, Ascend Hotel Collection
  • Best Western Plus Chocolate Lake Hotel
  • Hampton Inn by Hilton Halifax Downtown


Custom Tours Package in Halifax, Nova Scotia

How to reach halifax.

The city is served by Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport. It is situated 35 km outside the city. You can get direct flights to visit Halifax from Calgary , London , Montreal , Toronto , Vancouver , Boston , Ottawa , Tampa, Philadelphia , Frankfurt , Washington DC , Sydney , Dublin , New York City , Chicago , and many more. You can get buses and cabs from the airport to get to the city.

VIA Rail connects Halifax to several cities in Canada including Montreal, Quebec , Moncton , and many more. The bus network for Halifax travel is a little more widespread. You can get direct or connecting buses to reach Halifax from many places in Nova Scotia province and nearby provinces.

If you are planning to visit Halifax by road, you should head for highway routes 101, 102, 103 or 104.

You can get a passenger ferry to reach Halifax from Dartmouth. This town is part of the Halifax municipality.

Image Reference

  • Halifax Citadel National Historic Site – Dennis Jarvis / Flickr
  • Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History – Paulo O / Flickr
  • Halifax Public Gardens – David Kirsch / Flickr
  • Point Pleasant Park – clare_and_ben / Flickr
  • Halifax Waterfront – Graham Hobster / PixaBay
  • Maritime Museum of the Atlantic – Phobophile~commonswiki / Wikimedia Commons
  • Art Gallery of Nova Scotia – Tom Flemming / Flickr
  • Province House – CP Hoffman / Flickr
  • Historic Properties – Stewx / Wikimedia Commons
  • McNabs Island – Dennis Jarvis / Flickr
  • Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 – Skeezix1000 / Wikimedia Commons
  • Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery – Joe Ross / Flickr
  • HMCS Sackville (K181) – Steve Knight / Flickr
  • Discovery Centre – aa440 / Flickr
  • 35 Worth Visiting Tourist Attractions and Things to Do in Los Angeles, CA
  • 33 Incredible Tourist Places to Visit and Things to Do in Bali, Indonesia

Mustafa Natalwala

Mustafa is a content writer and digital marketing expert at His mainly interests are into travelling, photography, film-making

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Top 10 Must-visit Attractions in Halifax

View Halifax

Are you planning a vacation or staycation in Nova Scotia, and wondering which are the top must-visit Halifax tourist attractions?

The huge variety of interesting things to do in Halifax contributes to the city’s popularity as a top Canadian tourist destination.

This world-class city is steeped in history, and it’s hard to settle on what to do.

Modern Halifax is now a blend of past, future, pleasure, and business .

As a place filled with heart and soul, it has been charming visitors with an abundance of art galleries, weekly festivals, live performances, delicious local seafood, and amazing outdoor adventures.

Wanna go surfing, shopping, or visit Halifax tourist attractions? Oh, and did we mention that Halifax is believed to have the most bars per capita of any city in Canada?

If you still need more reasons to visit this bustling trading hub on the Atlantic, start with these top things to do in Halifax to get you started.

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1. Take a harbor hopper tour

A ride with Harbour Hopper Tours should be the first on your list of outdoor activities in Halifax.

This 60-minute guided boat tour in and around Halifax’s beautiful harbour is a great way to quickly familiarize yourself with the city.

You will enjoy its serenity, see it from many different angles and learn about its history and culture from an excellent tour guide.

This is simply one of the adventures in Halifax you cannot miss.

If you are on a budget, simply take the public ferry from Halifax to Dartmouth for only $2.50 each way. This is a more cost-effective option to travel out into Halifax Harbour.


2. Walk along the Halifax Waterfront

Probably one of the best things to do in Halifax is simply to wander around the waterfront which is always buzzing with energy and is one of the city’s busiest areas.

The Harbourwalk is 4.4 km long and is a centre of activity all year long in Halifax.

It is surrounded by a gleaming ocean, a vibrant port, seasonal merchants, year-round businesses, and you simply cannot miss it when visiting Halifax.

Small sailboats, ferries, cargo ships, and navy vessels are common sights on the sea, while on land, there are endless possibilities to taste local cuisine and immerse in the culture, relax on a bench or in a hammock, or enjoy the salty maritime breeze.

Normal traffic is not permitted on the streets. When the weather is clear, visitors and locals alike gather here to take a leisurely stroll along the number one most-visited attraction in Nova Scotia.

Georges Island National Historic Site in the middle of Halifax Harbour, Halifax, Nova Scotia Canada

3. Visit Georges Island

This is one of the newest Halifax attractions.

For generations, Georges Island has shimmered just out of reach, always visible, but never accessible.

Set in the middle of Halifax harbour, this island has been a historic site since 1965 but it only opened to the public in the summer of 2020.

There, you can enjoy scenic views while immersing yourself in Halifax’s rich history. You’ll learn how this small island, its fortifications, and spooky tunnels played an important role as a prison in Nova Scotia’s growth, and in Canada’s defence.

Visiting George’s Island in Halifax should undoubtedly be at the top of your list of must-do activities in Nova Scotia.

4. Attend a festival

Attending a festival or event is a must-do in Halifax during the summer.

Each week, the city hosts a variety of glittering and upbeat festivals, and most of them are held at the waterfront.

One of the most popular is the Halifax Jazz Festival , which is recognized for its spectacular outdoor concerts.

Many of these festivals have low ticket prices, and some are completely free, so go get grooving!

Festivals in Halifax

5. Take a stroll through the Public Gardens

One of the most captivating sites to visit in Halifax is the Halifax Public Gardens.

These gardens are not to be missed if you are a nature lover.

You’ll come upon one of North America’s oldest and most beautiful Victorian gardens.

It’s the ideal spot to beat the summer heat while soaking in the beautiful scenery.

The gardens’ attractiveness is enhanced by seasonal blossoms, quaint bridges, charming ponds, decorated fountains, ornate gates, and statues.

So, if you are there in the summer, go and see the beauty of these gardens.

Gardens in Halifax

6. Visit the art gallery of Nova Scotia

The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia is Atlantic Canada’s largest art museum and is an anchor of cultural tourism there. It focuses on contemporary and historic artworks.

If you go there, you will get a sense of a venue for temporary exhibitions that highlight the art of this region and country.

The art gallery of Nova Scotia is home to more than 17,000 iconic artworks that reflect Nova Scotia’s culture to the world.

Located in historic downtown Halifax, it is a hub of cultural activity and offers staggering performances, parties, and presentations.


7. Go to Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia Brewery

Are you looking for fun things to do in Halifax?

Alexander Keith’s Nova Scotia brewery opened doors in 1820, and is considered “a jewel in the crown of Halifax” . It is also one of the oldest in North America.

Nowadays, a tour in the brewery is one of a kind, and that’s why it is one of the most attractive destinations for tourists and beer fans alike.

The visit is guided by actors in costumes who will take you through the historic property, tell you about the history of the company and the brewing process, while you taste the yummy beer.

This all is combined with live music and entertainment.

Enticing, isn’t it?

Going there should definitely be added to your list of unique things to do in Halifax.

8. Spend time in the largest maritime museum in Canada

Not only is it the largest one in Canada but also the oldest!

The Maritime Museum of the Atlantic is located in the heart of Halifax’s waterfront, and it is the best place to immerse yourself in Nova Scotia’s rich maritime heritage.

The Shipwreck Treasures of Nova Scotia show is one of the most popular. Many artefacts recovered from the RMS Titanic can be found there.

This museum is well worth a visit if you are interested in history.

Skating in Halifax

9. Go ice skating

If you are looking for fun outdoor activities in Halifax, skating at the Emera Oval is one of the most enjoyable during any season. What’s more, it’s completely free of charge !

Rollerblading/skating and biking are popular activities in the summer, while during the winter everything is frozen and you can enjoy ice skating.

Everything you need is an ID to get in all that fun(k)!

10. Visit the St. Paul’s Church

Which is the oldest building in Halifax and the oldest Protestant church in Canada? It’s the St. Paul’s Church which dates back to 1749 .

The structure may appear modest at first glance, but architecture enthusiasts and historians alike will enjoy its design.

When you walk around, you may notice a metal fragment embedded in one of the walls.

If you look closely, you can see a silhouette of a man in one of the stained glass windows, both of which are remnants of the legendary Halifax Explosion of 1917.

It’s sinister, but it’s absolutely worth a look!

You can drop in any time for a self-directed or guided tour of this fascinating building.

Who can help me apply for my Canadian Working Holiday Visa?

Are you a foreigner who is ready to pack bags and go on an exhilarating adventure in Canada?

If you want to visit and experience some of the places mentioned above, you’ll need a visa for your stay in the Great White North .

Visa First has over 17 years of experience in visa and immigration services and they are a trusted name in the industry.

Their visa specialists can deal with all the stressful documentation, and help you get your Canadian working holiday visa without any hassle.

How can I apply for a Canadian visa?

Easy! Simply visit and fill out the short form to get started.

Which one of the Halifax attractions above would you visit? Let us know in the comments below! 🙂

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Money latest: Barclays criticised for making 'ludicrous' decision to limit cash deposits

Barclays is criticised for making the decision to limit how much cash its customers can deposit in a year. The bank says the change was being made to help it identify "suspicious activity". You can also listen to the latest Sky News Daily podcast about inflation as you scroll.

Friday 19 April 2024 14:30, UK

  • Barclays criticised for making 'ludicrous' decision to limit cash deposits
  • Scammers targeting pet owners - here's what to look out for 
  • Do solar panels work in Britain's wet and cloudy climate?
  • Ketchup swaps that could eliminate tablespoons of sugar from your diet

Essential reads

  • Spotlight on unpaid carers: 'You can't afford to feel': The woman who cares for her daughter, son and husband
  • Ian King analysis: Why an interest rate cut may not come as soon as you think
  • Basically… How to improve your credit score
  • Money Problem: My boss ruined end of maternity leave with ultimatum - what are my rights?

"Misleading" labelling in some supermarkets means shoppers may not know where their food comes from, Which? has said.

Loose cauliflowers, red cabbage, courgettes and onions at Sainsbury's, peppers, melons and mangoes at Asda, and spring onions at Aldi had no visible origin labelling on the shelf or the products themselves, the consumer organisation found during research.

Only 51% of people find origin information on groceries helpful, a survey found.

Two thirds (64%) said they would be more likely to buy a product labelled "British" than one that was not. 

Almost three quarters (72%) said it was important to know where fresh meat comes from, while 51% said they wanted to know where processed and tinned meat comes from.

Under current rules, meat, fish, fresh fruit and vegetables, honey and wine should be labelled with the country or place of origin.

"Research has uncovered a surprising amount of inconsistent and misleading food labelling, suggesting that - even when the rules are properly adhered to - consumers aren't getting all the information they want about their food's origin," said Which? retail editor Ele Clark.

"Supermarkets should particularly focus on labelling loose fruit and vegetables more clearly."

An Aldi spokeswoman said: "We understand that our shoppers want to know where the food they buy comes from, and we work hard to ensure that all our labelling complies with the rules.

"When it comes to fresh fruit and veg, we are proud to support British farmers and aim to stock British produce whenever it's available. Customers understand that at this time of year that isn't always possible, but we remain firmly committed to supporting the British farming community."

Asda said: "We have stringent processes in place to ensure country of origin is clearly displayed at the shelf edge and on products themselves where applicable, at all our stores.

"We have reminded our colleagues at this particular store of these processes so that customers are able to clearly see the country of origin."

A spokesman for Iceland said: "At Iceland our products are great quality and value for customers and we follow UK government guidance on food labelling, including country of origin."

A Sainsbury's spokeswoman said: "We have processes in place to make sure country of origin information is clearly displayed on the product or shelf and we carry out regular checks working closely with our regulator, the Animal and Plant Health Agency."

By Jess Sharp , Money team 

Barclays has been criticised for making the "ludicrous" decision to limit how much cash its customers can deposit in a year. 

Ron Delnevo from the Payment Choice Alliance said the move was a "disgrace" and accused the bank of trying to force businesses to stop accepting cash. 

From July, the change will mean Barclays customers can only deposit up to £20,000 per calendar year into their personal accounts. 

The limit will reset every January. 

It comes after Natwest made a similar decision last year, capping deposits to £3,000 a day, or £24,000 in any 12-month period. 

"The decision by Barclays is ludicrous. This is plainly an anti-cash move," Mr Delnevo told Sky News. 

"It is trying to take free choice from people. It's like it is saying, 'if you are using cash, then we think you are a criminal'.

"It's a disgrace quite frankly and there is no excuse for it. It's just wrong." 

Asked if he was concerned other banks could follow suit, he said: "Definitely." 

He gave the example of someone selling a car for cash. "How would you deposit the money into your account?" he asked.

Barclays said the change was being made to help it identify "suspicious activity". 

"We take financial crime and our responsibility to prevent money laundering seriously," a spokesperson said. 

"We have contacted customers to let them know that from July we are making some changes to the amount of cash customers can deposit into their Barclays accounts.

"We have set the limit at an amount that will allow us to better identify suspicious activity, while still ensuring our customers have access to cash."

The UK's estimated 23 million pet owners are at risk of a new kind of scam, one that took nearly £240m in the first six months of last year. 

Scammers are now targeting the most vulnerable owners – those who’ve lost their pets. 

Fraudsters are turning to lost pet forums and websites to claim they've found missing pets, demanding a ransom payment for their return.

Figures from UK Finance reveal this type of fraud – known as Authorised Push Payment (APP), when a victim is tricked into sending money directly to a criminal’s account - cost British consumers £239.3m in the first six months of 2023.

James Jones, head of consumer affairs at Experian, has some tips on how to avoid the scam...

  • Never pay the ransom – If someone is demanding a large sum of money in exchange for your pet's safe return, call the police immediately. Never pay the money upfront, as it will most likely be a scam. Be sure to take a step back and analyse the situation.
  • Examine the photos - is it a fake? – In an era where the use of artificial intelligence to fabricate photos is becoming increasingly commonplace, spotting a fake is becoming more challenging. But if you do receive a suspicious photo, make sure to take a closer look to determine whether it is in fact your pet. To do this, check if the photo has been taken from your social media profile and reframed to pass as a recent photo. You should also check for any signs of photoshopping. This could be the way the image has been cut, or the lack of shadows. It is also always helpful to get a second opinion – what you might miss, another person could spot.
  • Spotting fabricated stories – Scammers may share specific personality traits you recognise about your pet to convince you they legitimately have it in their possession. However, they may be getting this information from adverts you’ve shared on missing pet websites, or even details shared about your pet on your social media profiles. Be extra cautious and question their authenticity.
  • Be careful not to overshare on social media – While sharing information of pets on social media channels is commonplace, this can make them a goldmine for fraudsters. Always be careful about posting personal details, such as your address, pet’s name, or your location in real time. This is all information a fraudster could use to their benefit. Even if you have a private account, you still need to be cautious, as fraudsters have sophisticated methods for obtaining personal information.
  • Avoid using your pet’s name as your password – The easiest password to remember is your pet’s name, but unfortunately fraudsters know this too. Of course, you need to be able to remember your passwords, but it’s vital not to make them too simple. The ideal password should contain a minimum of 10 characters using a mix of letters, numbers and symbols. As a rule of thumb, it’s also best to ensure you are using muti-factor authentication, when possible.

The British public donated some £13.9bn to charity last year, but higher earners who give to their chosen causes could be missing out on a tax break. 

"Many may be missing out on the tax perks of giving to charity, which can help to reduce their tax bill and save them from tax traps," Charlene Young, pensions and savings expert at AJ Bell, said. 

There is some £500m of unclaimed Gift Aid rebates - which you could be eligible for - according to data seen by AJ Bell. 

In order to get to the bottom of this, we need an understanding of Gift Aid. 

"Gift Aid is a tax incentive that gives a top up on donations from UK taxpayers to a UK registered charity or community amateur sports clubs (CASC)," Charlene explains. 

Within the scheme, the government tops up the charity donation by 25% - turning a £100 donation into £125 for the charity or CASC. 

"But there’s a tax break on offer for higher and additional rate taxpayers too - they can claim up to 20% or 25% on their donations," Charlene adds. 

Not only does the scheme mean charities can access more money at no extra cost - higher band taxpayers can claim some cash back. 

This table shows how much you can claim back...

"Claims are usually made via a self-assessment tax return, but you can ask HMRC for a P810 form to fill in if you don’t normally file a return. You can also backdate claims for up to four years, so it is worth looking into this as soon as possible," Charlene says. 

Although 94% of higher earners donating to charity have heard about Gift Aid, only 52% are aware they could claim a tax rebate on their donations, according to HMRC data. 

That leaves expected unclaimed rebates at around £500m. 

Geoff, a higher rate UK taxpayer, pays £780 in charitable donations over the course of a year. 

Gift aid tops this up to £975.

Geoff is eligible to claim back £195 (20% of £975) in tax relief from HMRC via self-assessment, or by contacting HMRC directly. 

In total, this means the charity has received £975 - but it has only cost Geoff £585. 

Avoiding tax traps

"If you're caught by tax traps, gift aid could help you lower your tax bill and put money towards good causes," Charlene says. 

"You might be a parent who has gone over the £50,000 high income child benefit charge, meaning you'd start to lose child benefit [HICBC].

"Or if your earnings have breached £100,000 you start to lose your tax-free Personal Allowance at a rate of £1 for every £2, a whopping effective rate of tax of 60% on earnings between £100,000 and £125,140.

"Making a charity donation and claiming Gift Aid means the full value of the donation [what you pay plus the government top up] is deducted from the income that would otherwise count towards the £100,000 limit [or £50,000 for HICBC]."

By  James Sillars , business reporter

The market reaction to Israel's attack on Iran is muted so far.

While Brent crude oil rose by 2% in response initially, it is currently just over 1% up on the day at $88 a barrel.

That is below where it started the week after Iran had launched its drone and missile strikes on Israel.

The future direction will probably depend on how Iran chooses to respond to events overnight.

Stock markets are also feeling some strain and, being Friday, we could see a rush to protect positions over the weekend later in the day.

Japan's Nikkei was 2.6% down though the Hang Seng was just 0.9% lower.

In Europe, the reaction was similar to that seen in Hong Kong.

The FTSE 100 fell 0.4% at the open - with small gains in energy stocks offsetting some of the wider hit to sentiment from events in the Middle East.

Travel-related stocks were seeing some of the worst pain due to the threat of disruption.

British Airways owner IAG shed 3.5% while easyJet was 2.3% off and Ryanair not far behind that figure.

By Ollie Cooper, Money team

It can be hard to balance getting nutritious foods that make you feel good without emptying your wallet.

In this series every Friday, we're trying to find the cheapest ways to identify the healthiest options in the supermarket.

We've asked  Sunna Van Kampen,  founder of  Tonic Health ,  who went viral on social media for reviewing supermarket products in the search of healthier choices, for his input. 

The series does not aim to identify the outright healthiest option, but to help you get better nutritional value for as little money as possible.

Today we're looking at ketchup - which contains a surprising amount of sugar. 

What's the worry with sugar?

"Reducing added sugars in your diet can lead to significant health benefits, including weight loss and decreased risk of heart disease," Sunna says. 

"But fear not, ketchup connoisseurs: there's a way to enjoy your sauce and look after your health too."

How much sugar? 

The average bottle of ketchup has around 4g of sugar per tablespoon. 

If you're having a generous dollop of ketchup three times a week, you're adding more than 600g of sugar to your diet each year from one condiment. 

"That's a whole lot of sweet for something that's supposed to be savoury," Sunna says. 

"Another way to look at it is that you're having a teaspoon of sugar drizzled over your French fries - it feels wrong, doesn't it?"

The good news is there's plenty of options.

Avoiding premium ketchups can save your wallet and your sugar intake - they tend to up sugar content by 35% to more than 30g per 100g.

A standard bottle of Heinz contains 22.8g of sugar per 100g.

"Without getting into the taste debate, Heinz's rival Hellman's comes up trumps for your health by lowering the sugar content to 18g per 100g," Sunna says. 

Heinz has created two lower-sugar versions: a 50% less sugar option (at 11g per 100g) and Heinz's No Added Sugar & Salt (4.4g of sugar per 100g).

"But watch out here," Sunna says, "as they do add artificial sweeteners in their place (sucralose)". 

In his view, there are two newer challenger brands that deserve a mention as they cut sugar without the artificial additives. 

"Dr Wills Ketchup using dates instead of sugar (15g per 100g) and Hunter & Gather keep the sweet stuff out entirely (6g per 100g). 

So, he says, there is "plenty to choose from to suite your taste buds and health needs".

What does that look like over time?

Making small changes for your health can build up to a big impact over the long term. 

"Going from standard Heinz to the brand's no sugar option will save you more than 500g of sugar a year in your diet," Sunna says. 

What's the cost? 

"Surprisingly, opting for a healthier ketchup doesn't mean squeezing your wallet dry," Sunna says. 

A bottle of Heinz No Added Sugar & Salt costs around £0.80 per 100g and is the most expensive.

The 50% less sugar version is cheaper at £0.54 per 100g. 

That's only 4% more than the standard, more sugary version, which costs £0.52 per 100g. 

"This way you'll save 32% on the price of your ketchup (compared with no sugar) and 50% of the sugar content for your health - that's a win-win," Sunna says. 

"In the grand scheme of dietary changes, switching ketchup varieties might seem small. But it's these little tweaks that can add up to a big difference in your health."

The nutritionist's view -  from  Dr Laura Brown , senior lecturer in nutrition, food and health sciences at Teesside University

"I would say that yes, they are correct in that the focus should be health over money and the reduced sugar version does not make too much of a difference. 

"Also, there is the option of making your own ketchup too, in which you could manipulate the ingredients to add more natural flavours that will reduce the need for the added sugar - provided it is consumed within a shorter space of time."

Read more from our series... 

By Bhvishya Patel, Money team

This week, we've been speaking to some of Britain's struggling unpaid carers, hearing at times heart-breaking accounts of their physical, emotional and financial struggles.

In our final instalment in the series, a woman who cares for her daughter, son and husband says it is a "lonely job" and you often feel "looked down on" as she urges the government to "look at the bigger picture" when it came to help.

"I care for three people but I'm allowed to get Carer's Allowance once. The allowance is deducted from my Universal Credit so in effect I do not get paid for caring at all." Suzanne Buckner, unpaid carer

Suzanne's daughter Charlotte, or Lottie as her mother and father Mark call her, was three when she was diagnosed with a neuroblastoma, a rare cancer that affects children and develops in early nerve cells, in 2010.

Her gruelling treatment left her with a number of healthcare problems, including the development of three benign tumours in her liver, non-autoimmune type 1, type 2 and type 3 diabetes and asplenia.

Charlotte, now 17, is also deaf and has severe back problems due to discs growing into her vertebrae.

"My daughter was told by her oncologist in December they didn't actually expect her to survive," Suzanne, 56, says.

Suzanne is also a carer for her son, 23, who has multiple complex conditions and her husband, 62, who has mental health conditions.

"It's an eclectic collection - one minute I'm a mental health nurse, then I'm dealing with behavioural problems and then it's just classic nurse," she says.

Suzanne receives universal credit of around £972 a month after her carer's allowance is deducted.

She says the carer's allowance earnings limit, set at £139 a week, means carers like her are "caught in this trap" where they can't earn above the limit for fear of losing their benefit money.

"I care for three people but I'm allowed to get carer's allowance once. The allowance is deducted from my universal credit so in effect I do not get paid for caring at all," she says.

"It's ridiculous because if I handed my family over to the state, can you imagine how much money it would cost?

"I sometimes think central government does not have the ability to calculate or look at the bigger picture."

Recently, Suzanne got "quite poorly" and was told to go to A&E after she was unable to get an appointment with her GP.

"I thought 'I can't go to A&E I've got to look after my family'. I think that's another area that's not looked at - the health and wellbeing of carers. It's a lonely job," she says.

"Even though I was sick, I was making sure Lottie was having her injections and medicines. You can't afford to feel.

"Emotionally it is hard because sometimes you can't fix the problem. There isn't a magic solution and you can't make a phone call.

"It doesn't matter to a degree how much money you've got, it  isn't going to go away. If someone is poorly, they are poorly."

Suzanne used to run several companies, including an advertising agency, before becoming a carer for her family and now does telecoms regulation consultancy work when she can.

Holding down a 9-5 job is "not possible for most carers".

"Lottie getting cancer taught me so much about life - do not plan," she says.

"If she had to go to hospital today that means I have to change all the tutors she's having and it can happen overnight.

"Having a child with cancer is even more of a lonely thing because it's quite a rare thing. If she gets sick, life just turns upside down."

After undergoing chemotherapy, Lottie was left with a low blood temperature and therefore keeping the house warm is important, Suzanne says, which increases heating costs.

The costs can go up further if Charlotte needs to go to hospital as this means trips "all over the country" to hospitals in Birmingham, the John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford and Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, increasing fuel and food costs.

'Less of a citizen'

Suzanne says there is "absolutely" a pressure on her finances and if it were not for the inheritance her mother left her, she "wouldn't be living".

"Both my husband's parents are dead and my parents are dead. I don't have siblings that live close by so I don't have any support," she says.

"I think the problem is, unless you've walked in somebody's shoes, you really don't understand."

Suzanne says there are some things central and local government could do to help, such as giving personal budgets through direct payments, which would allow carers to choose the support and help they needed.

"Personally I feel you get looked down on. People think you're only a carer, you get benefits, you're less of a citizen - that really annoys me," she says.

"I think the benefits system doesn't work. I'm not suggesting that all carers in the UK should be paid a certain amount, but they should be paid equitably so that people don't get to the point mentally where they say 'I can't do this anymore'. 

"There need to be some serious, high-level debates and they need to involve carers in those debates. 

"The government need to look at how much money they are wasting in the care system by doing the wrong things."

Speaking of her daughter's battles, Suzanne adds: " I don't know how she copes - I think she's an inspiration.

"She has to be pulled and tugged by doctors and have test after test, and she tolerates it all. Sometimes when I'm watching her have these tests I think to myself 'I don't know how she does it'". 

Charity calls for review

Helen Walker, chief executive at Carers UK, says it is in the state's interest to support unpaid carers because "if a carer goes down then the state has to look after two people".

If you have to give up work to care, she says, "you are going to find yourself spiralling into poverty".

"Carer's allowance hasn't had a fundamental review for years so we would like a review looking at who is eligible for it, how it works and an increase to the amount," she adds.

"And also there needs to be an increase to the amount of hours you can work while caring.

"Social care is underfunded so it needs some real investment in order for unpaid carers to be able to care safely and well.

"What many carers will say is they need a break. It's not that they don't want to care, it's that they are exhausted. They are at breaking point."

A government spokesperson said: "Unpaid carers play a vital role in the lives of their family and friends, which is why from April we're boosting carer's allowance meaning carers receive an extra £1,500 a year compared to 2010.

"Those in low income households may also be eligible for additional financial support such as universal credit."

You can read the previous parts of our series here:

We've all heard consumer advice that's repeated so often it almost becomes cliché. So, every Friday the Money team will get to the bottom of a different "fact" and decide whether it's a myth or must.

This week it is...

'Solar panels in the UK are pointless given the weather'

For this one, we've got the help of  George Frost , UK manager for sustainable energy advice firm iChoosr. 

"With cloudy and colder days in the winter, it is natural for people to think that solar energy may not be as effective in this country - but this is simply false," he says. 

Let's dive into it... 

So how do solar photovoltaic (PV) systems work?

George explains: "Solar panels are composed of PV cells, which contain electrons that are energised upon contact with light particles, or photons. 

"This energy is then directly converted into an electric current to generate electricity."

In simple terms: solar panels rely on the sun's light and not its heat  to generate energy. 

Like most electrical equipment, solar panels perform better in colder temperatures, as excessive heat can reduce efficiency. 

"Solar panels will generate more energy on a crisp and chilly sunny day than on a hot, sunny day," George says. 

The issue really lies not with temperature but with cloud cover.

Solar panels receive less sunlight if there is a high density of clouds. 

Data suggests the energy generated drops significantly under heavy cloud cover, but George says that even on less clear and bright days, solar panels can still generate a "substantial" amount. 

Battery storage can help make up for effects of cloud cover. 

"By installing a battery alongside solar panels, any excess energy generated can be stored and utilised later in the day when the panels are no longer generating due to the absence of sunlight," George says.  

"Although the winter months have fewer daylight hours, it's important to note that solar PV systems do not completely shut down on shorter and darker days."

The numbers

The ideal temperature for solar panel efficiency is between 1C and 20C. 

National Energy Action data shows that the average solar panel can generate up to 3kWh of electricity on a sunny day. 

A mildly cloudy day will produce 0.55kWh and a heavily overcast day 0.24 kWh, according to the Ecoexperts.

The typical UK solar panel system (3-4kW system, typically made up of eight to 12 panels) produces between 2,450 and 3,000+ kWh a year, depending on orientation, location and weather conditions - according to Solar Together data.

The average British home uses around 2,700kWh of electricity a year, Ofwat estimates. 

Myth or must?

It's a myth that British solar panels are pointless - and data shows the average panel system could in theory power your home almost entirely. 

Solar Together caveats that by saying: "In practice, it's difficult for the average homeowner to install enough solar panels to power their entire home. 

"They can, though, generate enough energy to power household appliances such as your TV and fridge-freezer."

Consider this myth busted - and think of the green impact too! 

The Duchess of Sussex seems to be soft-launching the first product from her upcoming lifestyle brand. 

Influencers and friends of Meghan have been posting pictures of American Riviera Orchard's debut item - strawberry jam - in recent days. 

Parenting campaigner Kelly McKee Zajfen has become the latest to promote the jar, posting an image of it in a basket of lemons and flowers on Instagram. 

The Duchess reportedly sent out 50 jam jars to online influencers. 

Los Angeles-based fashion designer Tracy Robbins shared a photo of a jar - marked 17 out of 50 - earlier this week. 

Megan has already launched the American Riviera Orchard website, but it does not feature any products and simply invites visitors to join a waiting list. 

An Instagram profile has also been set up for the business, but just features several posts making up its gold logo. 

"By Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex⁣⁣⁣. Established 2024", is all the description says. 

You can read more about when we first saw a glimpse of the product here ...

Barristers and judges have the biggest gender pay gap in the UK, a study has shown.

Women in the profession earn just over 29% less than their male counterparts - around £8.31 an hour. 

That's according to ONS data analysed by 

Financial managers and directors were found to have the second-biggest difference, with women paid approximately £11.56 less an hour than men in the same occupation. 

"Perhaps in 2024, studies like this will raise awareness of the gender pay gap and precipitate change in these industries, starting with pay reviews," said.

You can see the 10 jobs with the biggest pay gaps below...

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  1. Top 10 Must-Visit Attractions in Halifax, Nova Scotia

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  2. 15 Best Things to Do in Halifax (Nova Scotia, Canada)

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  3. 12 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Halifax

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  4. Halifax’s Top Attractions: Everything You Need To Know (and more

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  6. 15 Best Things to Do in Halifax (Nova Scotia, Canada)

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  1. Explore HALIFAX, NOVA SCOTIA, CANADA 🇨🇦 Walking Tour 4K 2022

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  1. THE 15 BEST Things to Do in Halifax (Updated 2024)

    1. Halifax Public Gardens. 4,109. Gardens. Welcome to Halifax's greatest natural and national treasure and most visited site in Halifax, Nova Scotia- a timeless oasis in an ever changing world. A beautiful Victorian-inspired garden open to the public since 1867. 16 acres in the Victorian Gardenesque style; Scroll beds shaped in an E for the ...

  2. 12 Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Halifax

    11. Art Gallery of Nova Scotia. 12. Take a Ferry to McNabs and Lawlor Island Provincial Park. Where to Stay in Halifax for Sightseeing. Map of Attractions & Things to Do in Halifax. 1. Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. Aerial view of the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site.

  3. 19 Best Things to Do in Halifax

    Holly Johnson|Alissa Grisler November 10, 2023. Ranking of the top 19 things to do in Halifax. Travelers favorites include #1 Halifax Citadel National Historic Site, #2 Halifax Public Gardens and ...

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    Page Contents [ Collapse] 21 Best Things to Do in Halifax. #1 - Devour a Halifax Donair. #2 - Enjoy the Nightlife in Downtown Halifax. #3 - Stroll the Halifax Boardwalk. #4 - Segway, Cycle or Paddle your way around Halifax. #5 - Ride the Halifax-Dartmouth Ferry. #6 - Explore Halifax's Twin: Dartmouth. #7 - Trace your Roots at ...

  5. The 15 Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

    15. Snap a Photo at Peggy's Point Lighthouse. A short drive from Halifax, you'll find one of Canada's most famous lighthouses and one of the top Halifax attractions: Peggy's Point Lighthouse. You'll also find the village of Peggy's Cove nestled on that same bit of shoreline, bursting with fishing town charm.

  6. The 12 BEST Things to Do in Halifax, Nova Scotia [2024]

    1. Go on a Free Walking Tour of the City Along the Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk. 2. Spend Time in the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Canada's Oldest and Largest Maritime Museum. 3. Visit the Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. 4. Stroll Through the Halifax Public Gardens.

  7. 30 BEST Places to Visit in Halifax (UPDATED 2024)

    2023. 1. Halifax Public Gardens. 4,109. Gardens. Welcome to Halifax's greatest natural and national treasure and most visited site in Halifax, Nova Scotia- a timeless oasis in an ever changing world. A beautiful Victorian-inspired garden open to the public since 1867. 16 acres in the Victorian Gardenesque style; Scroll beds shaped in an E ...

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    Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21. Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery. Halifax Citadel. Halifax Public Gardens. Fairview Lawn Cemetery. Ride a Bike around Halifax. Take a Photo Tour in Halifax. Go on a Secret Tour of Halifax. Go on a Winery Tour in Wolfville.

  9. The 20 Best Things to do in Halifax, Nova Scotia

    Read our Best Things to do in Nova Scotia - The Ultimate Travel Guide. 1. Alexander Keith ' s Brewery Tour. One of our favourite things to do in Halifax was to take the Alexander Keith ' s Brewery tour. As Dave said during our tour, "Alexander Keith's is a is a gathering of good people, great beer and great music.".

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    St Mary's Cathedral Basilica. Halifax. You can't miss Halifax's most ornate cathedral, which has the largest freestanding granite spire in North America. Discover the best attractions in Halifax including Citadel Hill National Historic Site, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, and Halifax Central Library.

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    Things to Do in Halifax, Canada - Halifax Attractions. 1. Halifax Public Gardens. Stopped here for a break from walking all day. So peaceful. The flowers were so beautiful this year. 2. Halifax Waterfront Boardwalk. The boardwalk from pier 21 to the casino is one of the best attractions in Halifax.

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    Another of Halifax's standout tourist attractions is the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, situated a stone's throw from the waterfront in downtown Halifax. Now located in Dominion Building, the museum was opened in 1908 with further floors to be found in the adjacent Provincial Building. ... 18 Top Tourist Attractions in Toronto. 10 Most Amazing ...

  13. Top Things to Do in Halifax

    6. Alexander Keith's Brewery. 1,230. Breweries. In 1820, Alexander Keith established his brewery in the heart of Halifax. Now, over 200 years later, we're proud to welcome you back into our home on Lower Water Street, the Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery.

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    2023. 1. Halifax Public Gardens. 4,109. Gardens. Welcome to Halifax's greatest natural and national treasure and most visited site in Halifax, Nova Scotia- a timeless oasis in an ever changing world. A beautiful Victorian-inspired garden open to the public since 1867. 16 acres in the Victorian Gardenesque style; Scroll beds shaped in an E ...

  15. Discover Halifax

    Welcome to Halifax, Nova Scotia. Explore local history, a vibrant culinary scene, and exciting events, all in a spectacular coastal setting. Discover the best things to see and do, places to stay and best things to eat in Halifax, Nova Scotia from the experts who know it best.

  16. Must-Visit Attractions In Halifax Nova Scotia

    With the world's second-largest natural harbor and being the lively hub of Atlantic Canada, Halifax is best known for its historical charm, community spirit, fresh seafood and incredible natural landscapes. Make the most of your visit with these must-visit attractions. 1. Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21.

  17. Top Halifax Attractions

    The Best 14 Tourist Places to Visit in Halifax in 3 Days (Trip Itinerary) Day 1 1. Halifax Citadel National Historic Site. The history of this fort dates back to 1749 when the site was first established by the British.

  18. A Perfect One to Three Day Halifax Itinerary

    A Perfect One to Three Day Halifax Itinerary. By Lora Pope Whether you're enjoying the vibrant neighborhoods, stuffing your face with lobster at amazing restaurants, or on a day trip to nearby islands and charming small towns, there are so many awesome things to do in Halifax. If you're planning a trip, this will help you map out a perfect ...

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    The highlight of the gallery in terms of local art is the Maud Lewis house, painted inside and out by the painter herself. Check out all the temporary and permanent exhibits, and finish your visit with a visit to the Pavia Gallery café. Address: 1723 Hollis Street. Phone: 902-424-5280.

  20. Things to Do in Halifax, Canada

    Ferries. By wolfesraven1313. It is a great way to see both skylines, Halifax and Dartmouth, especially if you ride on top. 2023. 9. Point Pleasant Park. 848. Parks. Have a picnic with sweeping ocean views or hike through 186 acres of forest in one of Halifax's most cherished parks.

  21. Top 10 Must-Visit Attractions in Halifax, Nova Scotia

    3. Visit Georges Island. This is one of the newest Halifax attractions. For generations, Georges Island has shimmered just out of reach, always visible, but never accessible. Set in the middle of Halifax harbour, this island has been a historic site since 1965but it only opened to the public in the summer of 2020.

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