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On your cruise to Canada, you might be surprised by how much you fall in love with Charlottetown, a quaint town on the island province of Prince Edward Island (PEI). A Charlottetown cruise promises picturesque and photographable moments, whether that’s enjoying a pint in a quintessentially Irish pub, strolling alongside the region’s signature white-and-red lighthouses, or cycling the easy, winding trails.
Historic Charlottetown is just minutes from the cruise pier, comfortably walkable, and easy to see in a day. The town’s history is rich and varied enough to keep history buffs fascinated, whether that’s a stop at the Prince Edward Battery or a walk along the historic Confederation Trail. For lovers of classic literature, head to the Anne of Green Gables House within Prince Edward Island National Park, where you can see the estate where Anne’s adventures were based. The key to Charlottetown is to unwind, unplug, and be open to wherever the day takes you. It’s an unhurried place where you’ll want to get to know the friendly locals, taste the local lobster and mussels, and admire the stunning coasts.
On your Charlottetown cruise, don’t miss the chance to connect with nature at Prince Edward Island National Park, which offers incredible seascapes, stunning vistas, and picture-perfect moments. Hiking, biking, and kayaking through the park’s extraordinary landscapes are all easy ways to pass an afternoon.
The cannons at Prince Edward Battery stand guard over Prince Edward Island and Charlottetown, though it’s hard to imagine war and battle ever descending upon this peaceful place. You’ll be able to walk along the boardwalk, learn the history of the island, and catch stunning views of the coast from the top of the battery.
One of the best ways to take in the beauty of Prince Edward Island is to bike or walk the Confederation Trail, a historically important site for locals. The trail offers cyclists of all levels a relaxed way to see more of the island’s nature.
Beloved classic “Anne of Green Gables” was reportedly based on Prince Edward Island, and now the Green Gables House is a must-see institution not only for lovers of the story, but literary buffs of all types. Tour the restored farmhouse and be transported back in time to Anne’s world.
It only takes three hours to see the whole island via car, so spend some time exploring PEI via car or bus to see more beyond Charlottetown. Prince Edward Island is known for its rolling hillscape and beautiful lighthouses, so it’s sure to be a pretty ride.
The Confederation Center of the Arts is particularly popular for performances, afternoon matinees, and shows of all varieties. This local venue is dedicated to supporting the visual and performing arts, so you’ll feel immediately welcomed and part of the Charlottetown community here.
If seafood is your fancy, you can’t go wrong with copious amounts of fresh lobster, oysters, and mussels, which are all local favorites. Check out New Glasgow Lobster Suppers or try the fish and chips at Water Street Fish & Chips. Pub culture is alive and well at watering holes like Olde Dublin Pub. Victoria Row has a variety of pubs and restaurants for all appetites. Upstreet Craft Brewery, one of the island’s only microbreweries, makes for a relaxed afternoon of tastings, flights, and discovery of the brewing culture here on Prince Edward Island.
The Mi'kmaqs lived in what is now known as Charlottetown and greater Prince Edward Island for thousands of years before European settlement. By the 19th century, Scottish, Celtic, and British influence shaped PEI into what we know today. Charlottetown is known as the “birthplace of the Confederation,” which is when, in 1864, several provinces banded together to form Canada. Known for its long stretches of beaches, red-and-white lighthouses, and friendly locals, Charlottetown has developed a signature look over the years.
The cruise ship will dock in the center of the action in Charlottetown, so you’ll be just minutes from the restaurants, museums, and attractions that the town is known for. The Visitor Centre is less than a five-minute walk from where you dock, so you can ask questions, get a map, and scope out the best things to do in town.
Your Charlottetown cruise ship will dock in the very heart of the town, making it convenient and easy to navigate Charlottetown on foot. Stroll through the town square or rent a bike to see the city on two wheels. Taxis are available from the pier as well, and they regularly pick up cruise passengers when ships are in port.
Because you’ll arrive in the center of town, most of Charlottetown’s boutiques and shops are conveniently located in the city center. Victoria Row and Queens Street are the most popular options, or you can shop for souvenirs and trinkets within the cruise terminal.
You’ll use Canadian currency during your cruise to Charlottetown, since Prince Edward Island is a Canadian province. Some areas accept US dollars, but it’s best to be prepared with Canadian cash. ATMs are available on the island, and many larger businesses will accept major credit cards. Leave a 15% to 20% tip at restaurants, and round up when tipping your taxi driver.