Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Touring Prince Edward Island

The day started with breakfast at 7AM, then onto our full day tour of PEI at 8AM. The weather was mild with intermittent drops of rain and temperatures reaching as high as 19°C.
Our first stop was Confederation Bridge. This $1 billion dollar bridge was completed in 1998 and used to link PEI to the mainland. It spans nearly 13 kilometers. The hotly debated bridge narrowly escaped construction with a 59.4% approval at the PEI polls.

Devika, Shelby, Nadine, Soohyun, Sonia, Nick, Wyatt, and Shivan braving the windy conditions at Confederation Bridge

On the bus...Sonia, Soohyun and Nick.

The East Coast's largest souvenir and gift shop

Our next stop was to Green Gables, the historic site for the setting of Lucy Maud Montgomery's classic tale of fiction, Anne of Green Gables. In real life, this farm was the home of David and Margaret Macneill, brother and sister, who were cousins of Montgomery's grandfather.

Soohyun and Sonia in an old horse drawn carriage

Nadia in front of the Mcneill's home

Soohyun braving the drizzle in front of the barn

Soohyun and Sonia at the Mcneill's

Shelby and Devika in the horse drawn carriage

Devika, Nadine, and Shelby petting the cow

Nadine milking the cow (with horns???)

The boys and the cow

It was tempting to play a round - 18th at Green Gables Golf Course
Following our tour around the farm and its adjacent lands, we ventured down the street to Prince Edward Island National Park. The park is home to sand dunes, barrier islands and sand spits, beaches, sandstone cliffs, wetlands and forests. We had to be careful not to come too close to the edges. The sand cliffs are subject to erosion and while they may appear compact, they could easily give way from under our feet

Shelby braving the wind

Wyatt, Shivan, Soohyun, Nadine, Devika, and Shelby along the red cliffs (iron oxide sand that everywhere on the island)

Nadine and Devika in the wind

Shivan and Wyatt admiring the cliffs and the Gulf of Saint Lawrence

Wyatt photographing the red cliffs
As we continued our journey along the Gulf Shore Road, we stopped of in the small fishing hamlet of Cavendish. There we would take a 10 minute stroll along the hard packed sand and watch the lobster boats go by.

Small  coastal homes showing signs of wear from the salty air and sea mist
Shelby and Nadia taking a few samples of sand home
Devika and Nadine trying to stay dry
Soohyun trying to avoid another picture
Shivan and Wyatt looking serious
A part of our maritime culture that's slowly disappearing
A lobster boat return with its catch
As we continued along the last leg of our tour, we circled back to Charlottetown to visit Province House. The birthplace of Confederation and the seat of Prince Edward Island's provincial legislature since 1847, Province House National Historic Site stands as a landmark in Charlottetown. Next door was the Charlottetown Confederation Centre of the Arts. Every Canadian played a part in the establishment of the Centre: each province and the federal government committed 15 cents per capita for a total of $5.6 million to construct the huge building. In other words, each Canadian contributed 30 cents each. This was the first time that all provinces agreed to give money for an institution outside their boundaries.

Province House National Historic Centre - where the idea of Confederation was born with John A. MacDonald
Nick, Wyatt and Shivan under the brief bit of sunshine we received today
St. Dunstan's Basilica - Cathedral of the Diocese of Charlottetown - just down the street
This is the room where the idea of Confederation was born
Art from the Double Take: Portraits of Intriguing Canadians collection
BC's contribution - notice the "earthy" tones and Birkenstocks of David Suzuki's attire? What does it suggest about BC?
A striking pose by Devika
Under the glass ceiling at the Art Gallery
We finished at Cows Creamery where we sampled cheese and ice cream. We were also invited to see their operations in making their T-shirts, ice cream and cheese.  Cows Creamery was apparently voted #1 by Reader's Digest a few years back.


Shivan and Wyatt lining up for some ice cream
Sonia and Soohyun about to have some too.
The team with Cow's cow.
The chubby dog at the clothing shop
We got back to UPEI at 4:00PM and had a rest for a few hours. Tonight we tried Lebanese food. It was a first for most of us. Some enjoyed the flavours and others not so much. After supper, we were all ready for a quiet night in.

Tomorrow it's a 7:45wake-up knock for an 8:15AM breakfast.

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