Discover the best of Charlottetown at these 10 attractions

Charlottetown, the capital of Prince Edward Island, is a charming city with a rich history and culture, but beyond the popular attractions like the Confederation Centre of the Arts, Victoria Park, and Beaconsfield Historic House, there are many hidden gems and quirky things to do in Charlottetown that will make your visit more memorable and fun. Here are 10 under-the-radar experiences you can have in and around Charlottetown.

Walk on the red sands of Prince Edward Island

One of the most distinctive features of Prince Edward Island is its red sand beaches, which are caused by the high iron content in the soil. The red sand contrasts beautifully with the blue water and green grass, creating a stunning scenery that you won’t find anywhere else. You can walk on the red sands of Prince Edward Island at several locations, such as Cavendish Beach, Brackley Beach, and Greenwich Beach.

Dare to swim in Dead Man’s Pond

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can take a dip in Dead Man’s Pond, a small pond in Charlottetown’s Victoria Park that has a dark and mysterious history. According to legend, the pond was used as a dumping ground for bodies during the French and Indian War, and some say that the water is still haunted by the spirits of the dead. The pond is also very deep and cold, making it a challenge for even the most experienced swimmers.

Visit the Anne of Green Gables Museum

Fans of Anne of Green Gables, the beloved novel by Lucy Maud Montgomery, will love visiting the Anne of Green Gables Museum, located in Park Corner, about 30 minutes from Charlottetown. The museum is housed in a farmhouse that belonged to Montgomery’s relatives, and where she spent many summers as a child. The museum displays many artifacts related to Montgomery and her books, such as her wedding dress, her typewriter, and her original manuscripts. You can also take a carriage ride around the property and see the Lake of Shining Waters, which inspired one of the scenes in the novel.

Admire the bottle houses

Another unique attraction near Charlottetown is the bottle houses, located in Cap-Egmont, about an hour from the city. The bottle houses are three buildings made entirely of glass bottles, created by Édouard Arsenault, a local fisherman and carpenter. Arsenault collected over 25,000 bottles of different shapes and colors over four years, and used them to build a house, a chapel, and a tavern. The bottle houses are open to visitors from May to October, and offer a glimpse into Arsenault’s creative vision.

Explore Prince Edward Island National Park

Prince Edward Island National Park is one of the best places to enjoy nature and wildlife in Charlottetown. The park covers over 40 kilometers of coastline, and offers many activities for outdoor enthusiasts, such as hiking, biking, kayaking, camping, and golfing. You can also see some of the rarest plants and animals in Canada, such as the piping plover, the red fox, and the lady slipper orchid. The park is also home to some of the most pristine beaches in Canada, such as Cavendish Beach, Brackley Beach,
and Greenwich Beach.

Marvel at St. Dunstan’s Basilica

St. Dunstan’s Basilica is the most impressive church in Charlottetown, and a landmark of the city. The basilica was built in 1916, and features a Gothic Revival style, with a towering spire, stained glass windows, and ornate carvings. The basilica is also the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlottetown, and hosts many religious and cultural events throughout the year. You can visit the basilica and admire its architecture and history, or attend a mass or a concert.

Shop and dine at Peake’s Quay

Peake’s Quay is a lively waterfront area in Charlottetown, where you can find many shops, restaurants, bars, and entertainment options. You can browse through the local crafts, souvenirs, clothing, and jewelry at the various boutiques, or enjoy a delicious meal or a drink at one of the many eateries and pubs. You can also catch a live performance by local musicians, comedians, or magicians at the outdoor stage, or take a boat tour or a seal-watching cruise from the wharf.

Relax at Victoria Park

Victoria Park is a beautiful green space in Charlottetown, where you can relax and enjoy the views of the harbor and the city. The park was established in 1873, and named after Queen Victoria. The park has many amenities for visitors, such as playgrounds, picnic areas, tennis courts, baseball fields, and a swimming pool. You can also walk or bike along the boardwalk that runs along the water’s edge, or visit the historic sites within the park, such as the Prince Edward Battery and the Beaconsfield Historic House.

Enjoy the arts at Confederation Centre of the Arts

Confederation Centre of the Arts is the cultural hub of Charlottetown, and a must-see for art lovers. The centre is dedicated to celebrating the history and culture of Canada, and features a theatre, an art gallery, a library, and a museum. You can watch a variety of performances at the theatre, such as musicals, plays, concerts, and dance shows. You can also visit the art gallery and see the works of Canadian artists, or learn more about the Confederation of Canada at the museum. One of the highlights each summer is their staging of the Anne of Green Gables Musical which is a perennial crowd-pleaser.

Tour Government House

Government House is the official residence of the Lieutenant Governor of Prince Edward Island, and a symbol of the province’s history and heritage. The house was built in 1834, and features a Georgian style, with elegant rooms and furnishings. The house is open to visitors from June to September, and offers guided tours that showcase its architecture and history. You can also see some of the artifacts and memorabilia related to the Lieutenant Governors and their families.

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