The best coffee in Cavendish: Samuel’s Coffee House

The best latte I've ever had - from Samuel's Coffee HOuse in CavendishWe love our annual trip to the Otentiks in the Prince Edward Island National Park, we really do. But because we only “camp” once a year, I haven’t invested in a french press, and instant coffee is a vile substance that barely reaches the bar of enabling me to function. Staring at my mug of insta-vile on morning two of our trip, I suddenly remembered the kind and helpful Twitterer who last year suggested we try Samuel’s Coffee House in Avonlea Village for coffee. Continue reading

The Dunes Studio Gallery & Café: a soothing escape in Brackley Beach, PEI

Gardens at the Dunes Studio Gallery & CafeAt the intersection of beauty and deliciousness, wonderful things happen. The Dunes Studio Gallery & Café, with its stunning gardens, locally crafted art, pottery, and jewelry, and intriguing café offerings made it onto my must-do list over two years ago. Unfortunately our 2013 trip to Prince Edward Island wasn’t quite long enough to squeeze it in, and it took two years for us to get back to the island. The Dunes was worth the wait. Continue reading

oTENTiks at Prince Edward Island National Park’s Cavendish campground

oTentik 6 at Prince Edward Island National ParkI have never seen better proof of the power of paternal affection than watching my husband pack the car up for our camping trip last week. Gary hates camping. Actually, hate might be too soft. He abhors the idea with every fiber of his being. Years of Army training combined with the reality that bugs of all varieties find him delicious exhausted all his patience for being out in the woods many years before I met him.

But we have a four-year-old, and she really wanted to go camping. (Admittedly, there may have been some coaching by Momma, who believes that camping is an essential childhood experience.) I found Parks Canada’s version of glamping – the oTENTik – online and reserved one at the Cavendish campground, assuring Gary that I didn’t mind taking Amelia myself (which was true).

Having been promised that there were actual beds in the oTENTik, and faced with his daughter’s excitement over the impending camping trip, Gary gamely signed on.

And bought 5 cans of bug spray.

birdwatching4 days of beachcombing, COWS ice cream, coffee on the peaceful dock overlooking the salt marsh, campfires, and many s’mores later, we were headed home and my husband informed us that he actually enjoyed the trip and would go back! I can’t imagine a more ringing endorsement than that.

If you’re thinking of checking out the oTENTiks in the Prince Edward Island National Park for yourself, read on for answers to the questions we had before we went.  Continue reading

Butterfly House, PEI Preserve Company

The butterfly house at PEI Preserve Company[updated July 2015]

Tucked inside the gardens surrounding the PEI Preserve Company in New Glasgow, PEI is a greenhouse filled with butterflies.

We visited it on our recent trip to PEI on the premise that the butterfly house and gardens would tire out our toddler before we had lunch at the restaurant in the PEI Preserve Company, but really – who doesn’t love butterflies?

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Cavendish Maples Cottages, PEI: Fun for kids & parents

Cavendish Maples Cottages, Prince Edward IslandWe needed a cottage in Prince Edward Island that would keep us relaxed and our toddler active and entertained during a whirlwind 48 hour visit to the island. Cavendish Maples delivered, in spades, with a great 2-bedroom cottage, pool, hammocks, playgrounds, lots of lawn space, and setups for games like horseshoes and beach volleyball that we didn’t even get a chance to try.

48 hours in Prince Edward Island isn’t much, especially when you’re working around a toddler’s napping/eating schedule. But the purpose of our trip was to meet up with my parents and visit a friend of the family, so we weren’t going to be touring the island’s many attractions.

Our first impression of the grounds was excellent – they’re well-maintained with stands of mature maple trees scattered throughout, so there’s lots of shade.

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