10+ Unique Things to Do in PEI

Stroll the serene Greenwich Dunes, where secrets of PEI's nature await—will you uncover the dunes' mystifying allure? Read on...
Date Published
March 8, 2024

Table of Contents

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Ever wondered if a place could actually whisper secrets of old-time tales and sing through vibrant red cliffs? Hey, you over there, craving an adventure that doesn't just check off the tourist bins but wraps you up in charm thicker than the island's famed Cows Creamery ice cream—get ready to fall head over heels for Prince Edward Island. This gem's not just a pretty face with its postcard-perfect landscapes; it's a sandbox of soul-stirring, taste-bud-tempting, and goosebump-giving experiences!

You've probably heard whispers of the Greenwich Dunes walk, but we're about to dive deep into the heart of PEI's unique beat. Our little island packs a punch with haunted tours that'll make your spine tingle more than a north wind in January, contra dancing nights that get you stepping like you've never imagined, and ceilidhs that'll have you tapping to live music until the cows, quite literally, come home.

So lean in, friend, because I'm about to spill the secret sauce that makes 'the Island' a place where memories cling like sand on wet feet, and every moment is as rich as our artisan cheese tastings. Let's uncover together the top must-do's and hidden treasures of PEI that will transform your stay from ordinary to the storybook extraordinary.

Unwind at Greenwich Dunes Trail

Imagine stepping onto a path that weaves through wildflowers and leads you to breathtaking views of parabolic dunes—a natural phenomenon so unique, you'll forget to check your phone. That's the magic of the Greenwich Dunes Trail. Nestled in the heart of Prince Edward Island's National Park, this walk is a can't-miss experience.

The Greenwich Dunes walk will take you about 1-2 hours to complete, and trust me, every second is worth it. Picture this: you're sauntering across a floating boardwalk, suspended above the marshlands, with the sounds of birdsong in the air and the gentle rustle of the grass beneath your feet. Pure bliss, right?

Now, let me tell you why this dunes trail stands out:

  • Unique Dunes: These dunes are shape-shifters, constantly reformed by the wind, and they're one of only a few in North America.
  • Tranquil Beach: At the trail's end lies a stretch of beach so serene, you'd think it was made for you.
  • Eco System: The area is rich in ecosystems, from woodlands to wetlands, providing you with an ever-changing landscape.

If you've got kids, they'll love it here too. And for you solo adventurers, or the lovebirds looking for a romantic stroll through nature—this place whispers your name. Don't forget to pack some snacks; with little hideaways along the route, you’ve got perfect picnic spots!

As for the crowd? Well, whether you're flying solo, trailing a bunch of young explorers, or hand-in-hand with that special someone, the dunes welcome you. It's not just about adrenaline-pumping activities; sometimes, it's the tranquility that draws you in. So, breathe in, take that Insta-worthy shot with nature's work of art in the background, and embrace the art of 'just being'.

And hey, if you're eager to make your footsteps count on this trail, find out more and trail blaze your way to an unforgettable walk.

Savor a Local Artisan Cheese Tasting

Picture this: you're sitting in a charming, rustic dairy barn turned tasting room, surrounded by the lush greenery of PEI. Before you, a spread of handcrafted cheeses, each a testament to the island's rich dairy heritage. Welcome to the ultimate artisan cheese tasting in PEI.

Artisan cheese tasting in PEI is not just an activity; it's an experience that tantalizes your taste buds and teaches you about the local cheese-making traditions. Whether you're a fan of creamy brie or sharp cheddar, you'll find an array of cheeses to sample, each paired with the perfect wine or freshly baked bread.

But why stop at tasting? Dive into the stories behind the cheese, as local cheesemakers love sharing their passion. You'll hear about the meticulous aging process, the locally sourced milk, and the unique flavors influenced by PEI's terroir. It's the mix of knowledge, flavor, and local flair that makes this experience stand out.

If you're wondering how long to spend indulging in this cheesy adventure, give yourself a couple of hours to truly savor and enjoy. If you're with a group of friends or your special someone, it's the perfect way to spend an afternoon. Families can also enjoy, as some spots offer more than just cheese tasting – think petting farm animals and exploring the countryside!

What's nearby you ask? Well, PEI is an island of breathtaking beauty, so you'll likely find yourself close to a beach where you can walk off the cheese-induced bliss, or perhaps a quaint town to continue your local exploration.

To get started on planning your cheese tasting journey, explore the best artisanal cheese spots on the island. Remember, whether you're a cheese aficionado or simply curious, PEI's artisan cheese tasting will not disappoint. Plus, you'll leave with a newfound appreciation for the island's dairy artisans and maybe some cheese to enjoy later!

Embark on a Haunted Tour of Charlottetown

Spooky vibes and chilling tales? Oh, you're in for a ghostly treat with the haunted tours in Charlottetown! Grab your bravest pals and tiptoe into the realm of restless spirits that wander the historic streets. Why should you join a haunted tour, you ask? Well, not only do these tours give you a peek into the eerie past of this charming town, but they're also ridiculously fun and not to be missed if you're into a bit of supernatural history.

So, what's unique about these ghostly walks? Charlottetown is like an old book with pages full of stories, and some of those tales never left. They say every nook and cranny holds whispers of the past, and these tours are your chance to listen. Through the dimly lit alleys and past the Victorian-style buildings, you'll hear about the island's spookiest legends and maybe, just maybe, encounter a specter or two.

And don't worry, you won't need to pack your proton pack; the ethereal residents are said to be more fascinating than fearsome. This night-time adventure is ideal for the history buffs, the thrill-seekers, and even the skeptical friends who tag along "just for laughs." It's a fantastic way to mingle with locals and tourists alike, all while learning something new and nifty about Charlottetown's darker side.

Now, how long should you anticipate mingling with the spirits? Most haunted tours last about an hour or two, leaving plenty of evening left for a warm cup of cocoa or a stiff drink, depending on how close you've gotten to the ghoulish inhabitants.

And here's a tip: If you're curious about the supernatural or just crave an offbeat experience, consider adding haunted tours in PEI to the top of your to-do list. These ghostly excursions are perfect for groups of friends, couples looking for an unconventional date night, and yes, even brave families with older kids who aren't afraid of a little bump in the night. Ready to answer the call of the haunted? Charlottetown's phantoms await..

Partake in a Contra Dance Evening

Picture this: the fiddle's playing that toe-tapping, heart-racing rhythm, folks are lined up ready to do-si-do, and there you are, smack dab in the middle of a PEI contra dance evening. It’s a whirl of color, sound, and joy, and you’re invited to jump right in!

Contra dancing nights, a tradition that's both historical and a barrel of fun, are about connecting with locals and fellow travelers through dance. All you need are some comfy shoes and a willingness to learn—they'll guide you through the rest.

What makes contra dancing in PEI unique? Well, it's like taking a step back in time and joining a community that’s kept the tradition alive for generations. The music is live, typically featuring a blend of fiddles, guitars, and maybe even a banjo, providing a lively soundtrack to an already vibrant evening.

A contra dance night is perfect for singles, couples, or families. Whether you’re a dance floor veteran or have two left feet, it doesn't matter one bit. The emphasis is on fun, not perfection. Plus, you’re bound to make friends, as swinging your partner inevitably means swinging with someone new before the song’s over.

Spend about two to three hours twirling and laughing; it's a workout for your body and soul. Nearby, you'll often find places to grab a bite or sip some local brews, so the party doesn't have to end when the music does.

And don't worry if you’re feeling a bit shy. By the end of the night, I bet you'll feel like a local—and you’ll certainly have the dance moves to fit right in!

Ready to show off your newly learned jigs? Grab a dance partner or come solo; either way, you're about to have an unforgettable night.

Attend a Lively Ceilidh on the Island

Imagine tapping your toes and clapping along as the lively jigs and reels of traditional Celtic music fill the air. That's exactly what's in store for you when you get in on a ceilidh, a must-do in PEI! Ceilidhs (pronounced "kay-lees") are vibrant gatherings where locals and visitors alike come together to enjoy live music and dance.

So what is a ceilidh? It's an Irish and Scottish tradition that's all about community entertainment, and yes, PEI's got it in spades! Picture a cozy hall or pub, musicians fiddling away, and people smiling from ear to ear. It's a vibe that's contagious and, let's be real, it's impossible not to join in on the fun.

Now, you might be wondering, is a ceilidh for you? Well, if you're into tapping along to a beat (who isn't?) and you enjoy a dash of Celtic charm (come on, of course you do!), then the answer is a resounding YES! Whether you're flying solo, on a romantic getaway, or have the kiddos in tow, everyone gets a kick out of a ceilidh.

Don't know a reel from a jig? No issue! It's all about letting loose. And hey, watching the locals whirl and twirl is entertainment in itself. You'll be hootin' and hollerin' for more before you know it.

You're probably thinking, "But how do I find one of these ceilidhs?" Easy! They're happening all around PEI, and you can find a schedule and locations for the best ceilidhs and live ceilidh music on the island with a quick search. Whether you end up in a rustic community hall or a bustling pub downtown, it’s an experience that'll leave your heart full and your feet tired.

Plan to spend an evening immersed in authentic Island culture. Grab a drink, settle in, and let the music take over. An evening at a ceilidh isn’t just an event; it’s a memory in the making where the heart of PEI beats strongest. Don’t miss out, join the ceilidh crew! It’s toe-tappingly, hand-clappingly, heartwarmingly unforgettable.

Experience PEI's Eco-Tourism Activities

Imagine you're breathing in that fresh, crisp air, with nothing but the sound of leaves rustling and birds chirping. Got that picture? Great, because PEI's eco-tourism scene is all about stepping into nature’s embrace and saying "ahhh."

First thing's first: what are the eco-tourism activities in PEI? Well, get ready to swap your flip-flops for hiking boots because PEI is dotted with trails and preserves that prioritize Mother Nature's untouched beauty. And if you want to talk unique, let’s talk about kayaking through lush wetlands or bicycling under a canopy of century-old trees.

You can practically hear the paddle splashing and the bike gears clicking, right? That's not even the half of it. PEI also offers bird watching, where you can spot anything from the majestic bald eagle to the tiny, energetic warbler. And all of this is done with the utmost respect for the environment—you'll be learning about conservation efforts every paddle, pedal, and step of the way.

So, put on your adventurer's hat and explore places like the Island Nature Trust lands. Whether you're a solo eco-warrior or with a nature-loving crew, these eco-tours cater to all. Bring the kids and instill a love for the environment early on, or take a peaceful solo walk to clear your head. And timing? You'll want to clear at least half a day because once you get out there, you won't want to leave.

Now, the next step is simple: Suit up in some eco-friendly gear and dive into the green heart of PEI. Whether you're weaving through the forest or skimming over the water, you're in for a dose of pure, unfiltered Island life. Earthy, exhilarating, and educational – that's PEI's eco-tourism for you. Let's preserve this beauty for generations to come and have an absolute blast along the way!

Explore the Unique Red Sands Shore

Been dreaming of a beach that's not your basic stretch of white sand? On PEI, you hit the jackpot with Red Sands Shore—a masterpiece of nature that'll make your Instagram pop like no filter ever could. Picture this: terra-cotta sand beneath your feet, ocean waves gently whispering, and a sky so vast it seems straight out of a painting. Sounds magical, right?

C'mon, group selfie time against a backdrop that screams "marvel of nature"! The Red Sands Shore isn't just a pretty face—it's a geological wonder too. Thanks to an abundance of iron oxide (that's the sciencey stuff that gives the sand its reddish hue), your beach day here becomes a walk through living rust-colored art.

Here's the deal, you'll want to spend a good chunk of the day here; flip-flops in hand, sunscreen slathered on thick, and enough snacks to fuel your curiosity. It's a prime spot for the whole crew—from inquisitive toddlers making sandcastles to grandparents soaking up coastal views. A quiet morning stroll? Perfect. Sunset yoga session? Even better.

Nearby, you've got quaint coastal villages calling your name. Dip into a local café, snag a lobster roll—the crustacean kind, not the gymnastics move—and chat with friendly locals who've got stories for days.

Whether you're here for the 'gram, the serenity, or a bit of both, Red Sands Shore sets the stage for an unforgettable day. So, schedule it in, beachcombers and peace-seekers. Red Sands Shore awaits to give you that warm, I'm-in-some-epic-landscape hug.

Ready to see it for yourself? Check out the Red Sands Shore for all the insider info on making the most of your exploration. Trust me, it's one for the books.

Enjoy a Creative Pottery Class

Imagine getting your hands dirty (in the best possible way) and unleashing your inner artist! Pottery classes on the island are where it's at. You don't just make a mug; you make memories—and let's be real, that slightly wonky vase you'll treasure forever.

So, you're wondering, are these classes beginner-friendly? Absolutely! Like the first pancake in a batch, it's okay if it's not perfect. That's part of the charm! Picture this: you're sitting at the wheel, clay spinning between your palms, and suddenly you feel like you're in that scene from _Ghost_—except, you know, less spooky and very much alive.

Each class is bursting with friendliness, and you'll find yourself among locals and fellow travelers alike, all there to have a good time. Whether you're flying solo, with your other half, or have the kids in tow, everyone finds their groove. This isn't just about the pots; it's about the laughter and the new friends you'll meet.

While you're getting cozy with a chunk of clay, the instructor will guide you through the process. Every pinch, twist, and squeeze brings your creation to life. And here's a little secret: nothing beats the feeling of creating something with your own two hands. It's like magic, but messier—and way more fun!

Should you book ahead? Definitely! These classes are popular, so secure your spot and don't miss out!

After all the shaping and molding, guess what? You've not only made a pretty epic souvenir, you've also got a fun story to share. So, be proud of your pottery pièce de résistance and remember: it's not just a piece of clay; it's a piece of the island that you crafted with love. And that's pretty cool, right?

Delight in a Sunset Viewing at North Rustico Harbor

Picture this: You're draped in a warm glow, the sky is painted in strokes of pink and orange, and a soft sea breeze whispers secrets only the waves can understand. Yup, you're soaking in one of PEI's magical sunset views at North Rustico Harbor.

North Rustico Harbor isn't just any sunset spot. It's the kind of place where time slows down just enough for you to appreciate the little things – like the flicker of a lighthouse beacon or the gentle bobbing of fishing boats returning home. It's where the tangerine-tinted sky meets the tranquil waters, creating a masterpiece you'll want to frame in your mind forever.

So, bring a cozy blanket, some local snacks, and your favorite people – because this experience is all about sharing. You'll hang with the friendliest of locals, who might just spill where to catch the best angle for that sought-after golden hour selfie. And let's be real, who doesn't want to up their Insta game with a stunning sunset backdrop?

As the sun dips below the horizon, you might find yourself getting reflective – or maybe it's just the way the light dances on the water. Either way, here's your moment to live in the now, because North Rustico Harbor is where picture-perfect memories are made. Of course, all good things must come to an end, but don't worry; in PEI, sunsets are like potato chips – you can't have just one!

Whether you're a solo adventurer, entangled in a romantic getaway, or wrangling a family of five, this harbor's got a place for you. Spend a solid hour or simply stay until the stars say hello. Whatever you choose, this isn't just a sunset. It's an experience that'll color your night with shades of awesome. And hey, if you're feeling adventurous, why not stick around? This harbor town's got charm that doesn't quit, even after dark.

Discover Local Wildlife on a Seal Watching Expedition

Picture this: you’re on a boat, the cool ocean spray periodically misting over you, and there—off in the distance—sleek, playful seals are basking on a rocky shoal. Does that not just scream excitement? That’s right, a seal watching expedition in PEI is not just an activity; it's an adventure that brings you up close and personal with some of Canada’s cutest marine residents.

Seal watching expeditions are a must-do for:

  • Nature enthusiasts looking to snap that perfect wildlife picture.
  • Families who want an educational yet totally cool experience for their kids.
  • Anyone who enjoys a good sea tale, because yes, you'll hear loads out there on the waves.

So, what makes these expeditions so unique? First off, it’s balancing the thrill of the find with the serenity of the sea. You might spot the seals lounging lazily or playfully diving in and out of the water – if you’re lucky, they might put on quite a show. Your boat captain will likely be a local, someone who has stories to share about the ecosystem, the seals, and maybe even a pirate tale or two.

Locals and tourists, pack your binoculars and wear layers (it gets nippy out there), and set aside a good half-day for this excursion. You want to be fully in the moment, not worrying about rushing back. And let's be real, why would you want to rush this experience?

From the giggles of children seeing a seal for the first time to the collective 'oohs' and 'aahs' from adults, this expedition is a crowd-pleaser. It's great for the whole family or even a band of intrepid solo travelers looking for camaraderie in a shared, unforgettable experience. What’s more, once you disembark, you’re likely to find some cozy spots nearby for a warm drink and a bite – the perfect end to your nautical narrative.

Now, ready to set sail on your own seal watching expedition? Dive into PEI’s local wildlife and let those sea dogs (literally) make your day!

Dig into History at the Acadian Museum

Ever wondered where you could uncover the hidden tales of Canada's founding peoples? Look no further than the Acadian Museum. Here, you're not just walking through a gallery; you're stepping right back into the vibrant saga of the Acadians. This is the kind of place that changes the way you view history; it's not just about dates and dusty facts—it's an immersive experience that'll have you feeling like a time-traveler.

Imagine yourself getting wrapped up in stories of resilience and culture as you explore exhibits that detail the lives of the Acadian people from the 17th century to today. You're not just reading about history; you're practically chatting with it, as the friendly ghosts of the past seem to linger on every artifact and photograph. Whether you're a solo history buff, part of a curious family tribe, or with a bunch of pals, the museum is an intriguing spot for everyone.

Now you ask, how long should you reserve for such an exploratory jaunt? A comfortable visit usually lasts between 1 to 2 hours. That's just enough time to soak in the knowledge without feeling like you're cramming for a history exam. And if you're wondering what's nearby, the University of Prince Edward Island is a stone's throw away, making for a perfect blend of old and new learning experiences.

This museum is not only a must-visit for history enthusiasts—but also for anyone looking to connect with the spirit of PEI. It’s not your average snooze-inducing historical site. It's where history pulses through the exhibits and whispers stories of a resilient culture that's weathered the storm of time. The Acadian Museum is where you come face to face with the heart and soul of the Island!

For the full experience, make sure to check out their latest exhibitions and events before you go. Just imagine the stories that await you!

Take a Scenic Drive Through Island Backroads

Imagine the wind gently tousling your hair as you zip through the rolling hills and pastoral landscapes of PEI. When it comes to experiencing the heart and soul of this picturesque island, taking a scenic drive is a must-do activity!

PEI's backroads are a patchwork quilt of charming farmlands, lush forests, and quaint coastal villages. Ever seen a postcard that made you sigh and think "I wish I was there"? Well, these drives are like cruising through that postcard in real life.

You might be asking, "What makes the scenic drives in PEI so unique?" Let me paint a picture for you: these routes are less traveled, which means no bumper-to-bumper traffic—just you, your favorite folks, and the open road. You'll weave through country lanes where wildflowers nod as you pass by and the ocean peeks at you between bends.

Here are a couple of highlights to rev up your engine for:

  • Rolling green hills: Perfect for snapping Instagram-worthy shots that'll have your friends green with envy.
  • Red sandstone cliffs: They pop up along the coast and are especially magnificent at sunset.

Now, if you're wondering about the best route for this picture-perfect drive, I've got a hot tip: try the Points East Coastal Drive. You'll be hugging the coastline, discovering lighthouse after lighthouse, and trust me, each view is more breathtaking than the last.

Don't forget to stop along the way. The local seafood shack cooking up fresh catches of the day, the roadside stand with just-picked strawberries, they're all a part of the PEI backroad experience.

And who's this adventure for? Whether you're a solo explorer with a passion for photography or a family looking for that perfect picnic spot, there's something magical about the open road here for everyone.

Ready to grab the keys and start your engine? What are you waiting for? PEI's scenic drives are calling your name.

FAQ

What are some things to do in PEI this weekend?

You've got options! From beach hopping to sampling seafood, PEI's got a little something for everybody this weekend.

What can I do in PEI today?

Ever heard of spontaneous adventures? Take a scenic drive, visit a lighthouse, or chow down on a lobster roll. Go wild!

What are some family-friendly activities in PEI?

Grab the kiddos and hit up amusement parks, sandy beaches, or interactive museums. Family fun's never been so easy!

Are there any free activities in PEI?

Oh, you bet! Hike the trails, enjoy the beaches, or explore the charming downtown areas. And yup, it's all free!

What can I see in PEI if I only have one day?

One day? No sweat. Drive the coast, hit a beach, and don't skip the famous Cows Ice Cream. Now that's a day!

What's happening in PEI in September?

Festivals, fairs, and the turning leaves. September in PEI is packed with events that scream "autumn is here!"

How many days should I spend in PEI?

At least three days. Gives you enough time to soak in the vibes, catch a sunset, and, of course, eat your weight in seafood.

How can I spend a day in PEI?

Easy peasy. Start with a sunrise, have a mid-morning beach walk, enjoy a seafood lunch, and wrap up with an evening concert.

Is a trip to Prince Edward Island worth it?

Totally worth it! With its stunning landscapes and chill pace, PEI is like the comfiest sweater you always wanna wear.

What's Prince Edward Island most famous for?

It's the land of Anne of Green Gables, red sand beaches, and potatoes that'll make you wanna kiss a farmer.

Final Words

Whew, talk about a jam-packed adventure! From the tranquility of the Greenwich Dunes to the spooky vibes of haunted tours, you've just journeyed through the very best PEI has on offer. Let's not forget the lively ceilidhs, the artisan cheese tastings, and those unforgettable eco-tourism activities—that's what makes this place truly special.

And the cherry on top? Those sunset views at North Rustico Harbor that you'll be talking about for days. PEI isn't just a spot on the map; it's a treasure trove of experiences waiting to fill up your photo album and your soul.

So, grab your camera and your sense of adventure, because these things to do in PEI are calling your name. Are you ready to answer?

Meet the Author
Isabella Kai
Isabella Kai, the Instagram wordsmith, crafts tales that captivate hearts worldwide. A dedicated foodie, she whips up culinary delights and pairs them with stories that make your taste buds dance. Beyond the screen, she's on a mission to visit every artisan bakery in town.
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