LaHave Islands: Nova Scotia scenery in a nutshell

Crescent Beach Road, winding through the Lahave IslandsThe LaHave Islands are Nova Scotia scenery in a nutshell: rocky islands, ocean lapping at their bases; wharves piled high with lobster traps and surrounded by boats; forested roads that suddenly open up to sweeping ocean views; and a serene, 2-kilometer beach finishing (and starting) it all off.

While the LaHave Island archipelago boasts over 20 islands, Crescent Beach Road gives you access to 6. Look for Crescent Beach Road off of Route 331 between Rissers Beach Provincial Park and Bridgewater. It’s a short road, but so packed with scenery you’ll need to leave extra time for lots of stops if you’re driving.

When I travel, I run. Well, I run all the time, but it takes on new meaning when travelling because a run – especially a long, slow run – is a unique perspective on any location. And there is absolutely nowhere I love running more than on Crescent Beach on Nova Scotia’s South Shore. Yes, cycling or even driving is still a great way to see this gorgeous corner of the universe, if you’re not a runner, but the slower your mode of transport the better. There’s a lot of pretty to see here.

Crescent Beach on Nova Scotia's South Shore

If you’re driving, stop at the parking lot right off of Route 331 and get out of your car. Wander down to the right of the road. Crescent Beach is a flat, 2-kilometre stretch of hard packed beach that you can even drive your car on during low tide. Why you’d want to drive on the beach is beyond me, but people do it.

On the opposite side of Crescent Beach Road is more ocean, but no beach. My stepfather tells me people dig for clams here, and if you’re a bird enthusiast you might see something interesting on this side too.

Me, I’m always on the beach.

If you’re running, just run right up Crescent Beach and hop back on the road at the far end of the beach. Drivers and cyclists will need to take the more traditional (paved) route on to the LaHave Islands. And runners? Forget about what your Garmin is telling you here. Bring your phone or a camera. Stop and enjoy the view. Trust me, it’s worth it, because you’ll be treated to scenery like this:

LaHave Islands, Nova ScotiaLaHave Islands, near the museumFishing wharves on the LaHave Islands, on Nova Scotia's South ShoreView on the LaHave Islands

If you need more of a reason to visit, there’s the LaHave Islands Marine Museum (admission is free, but donations are welcome).

With views like these, though, and a long (typically not crowded) beach to relax on… who needs anything more?

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