Canada: Nova Scotia

Cape Breton Island Sea Kayak

Six nights; seven days of adventure by sea kayak, spending nights in cozy inns, with one final day of spectacular hiking.
“The meals prepared by Freewheeling and served by our guide were truly outstanding and quite a departure from what might be found in restaurants along the way.” – Will S.


Start: Halifax, The Lord Nelson Hotel, 13:00, day one. Please contact us to arrange pickup from the Halifax Airport at 14:00, or to arrange alternate pickup location in Halifax.

Finish: Halifax, The Lord Nelson Hotel, 19:00, day seven.

Day 1


Meet in downtown Halifax at 13:00 or the Halifax airport at 14:00, for a 3½ hours transfer to Isle Madame. Good nightlife and music are available in Arichat, one of the oldest communities in Nova Scotia, whose growth prospered on the boatbuilding and fishing trades. A once bustling seaport full of tall ships in the 1700’s it still boasts Our Lady of the Assumption Cathedral, an excellent example of the wooden churches built by the Acadians in all their communities, as well as a restored 1793 shipbuilder’s blacksmith shop, and an interpretive display at Cannon Lookoff. D
The Groundswell D’Escousse, or Clairestone Inn, Arichat

Day 2

Paddle Isle Madame

From Arichat, paddle through fishing villages in which Basque and Portuguese fishermen found refuge from fierce Atlantic storms as early as 1500, and take in Acadian life and culture at the Acadian Culture Centre in La Picasse. Petite Anse is one of the most picturesque villages in the province, with colourful marine architecture nestled along rocky coast you will enjoy from your kayak. BL
Same lodging

Day 3

Paddle West Bay

Transfer to St. Peter’s Canal. Paddle the southern end of West Bay, past beaches, an out-of-the-way marina, and the St. Peter’s Canal approach. BLD
Bras d’Or Lakes Inn, St. Peter’s

Day 4

Paddle the Bras d’Or Lakes

Transfer to the Malagawatch First Nations Reserve, to paddle the perimeter of the beautiful islands they call home. The Bras d’Or Lakes are partly saline, connected to the sea at its extremities. Tides are minimal, and the surface stays much calmer than the sea, even on exposed headlands. The hills and untouched forests surrounding it make it a particularly scenic and satisfying place to enjoy days on the water before transferring to your inn in Mabou. BLD
Duncreigan Country Inn, Mabou

Day 5

Paddle Mabou Harbour

Paddle out towards the mouth of Mabou's beautiful harbour, and along a coast with scenery rivalling Scotland’s, where gorgeous hillside meadows tumble toward the sea. We look forward to showing you the beauty. BL
Same lodging

Day 6

Paddle Port Hood Island

Today’s outing takes you to Port Hood Island, where the Henry Island Lighthouse makes a fascinating stop. Afterwards, the downwind (if the prevailing wind prevails) paddle can be as long as you like! BLD
Same lodging

Day 7

Hiking up to 15km

Just wait 'til you see this hike! Cut into the edge of a hill that tumbles all the way to the sea, the path along Sight Point will leave you giddy with excitement, and maybe vertigo. This is the part of Nova Scotia that most reminds us of its namesake: Scotland. You may even see some sheep illustrating the area’s heritage. In any case, you will be amazed at the expansive sea views as you explore this and other trails on a good day of hiking. Transfer back to Halifax at day’s end; 3½ hours. Arrive by 19:00. BL


Note about the route:

Kayaking at moderate pace in waters matched to the group’s abilities. You will be expected to maintain several hours of paddling exertion daily. Hiking is on steep terrain requiring sturdy footwear.

If you have ever wanted to see why Cape Breton Island has inspired musicians, artists, and inventors, this is a perfect way to do so. From Isle Madame on the south coast of Cape Breton, you will paddle the waterways and islands frequented by native and Acadian paddlers of the past, between here and the entrance to Bras d’Or lakes at St. Peter’s Canal. You will paddle around the islands of the Malagawatch First Nation – an idyllic archipelago with abundant shorelines along which you can glide in your quest for the company of great blue herons, moose, and eagles. Mabou will be your base for the final adventures. It is a quiet village that at first glance belies the abundance of musical talent enjoyed here. An evening at The Red Shoe will give you some idea of the rich culture thriving in the surrounding hills. You can visit the first single malt distillery outside Scotland, enjoy fantastic paddles in the harbour, along the coastal hills to solitary beaches and an amazing lighthouse, and hike a dizzying trail overlooking the Gulf of St. Lawrence. This is a full week of Cape Breton experience, but we guarantee you will leave wanting more!


Day # Daily distance
Paddle Isle Madame
  Paddle West Bay
  Paddle the Bras d’Or Lakes
Paddle Mabou Harbour
Paddle Port Hood Island
  Hiking up to 15km

Learn more

Explore more of Cape Breton Island.

Visit the amazing Fortress of Louisbourg.

Spend some extra time in Halifax including a visit to the Titanic gravesites.

Add a day or two of Sea kayaking on Nova Scotia's South Shore.

Contact us for hiking, cycling, paddling, or multisport extensions.


US 2995 C 3695 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 7 days, 6 nights, 6 breakfasts, 6 lunches, 4 dinners, sea kayak equipment, luggage handling, full-time guide, van support, maps and route notes, transfer from/to Halifax, 15% sales tax


Not available for this tour.

Single room

US 445 C 535

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.