Thinking of heading for an RV adventure in the Great White North? If so, you won't want to miss out on a trip to Prince Edward Island's Northumberland Provincial Park. It's the perfect place for a relaxing getaway.
Located on Canada's Prince Edward Island, Northumberland Provincial Park is situated adjacent to the Woods Island Ferry terminal where families can travel from Pictou, NS, to Woods Island, PEI, via a boat which transports passengers and their vehicles onto the island. Alternatively, passage onto Prince Edward Island can be attained via the province's Confederation Bridge, a 13 km (8 mile) roadway which traverses over the Northumberland Strait and connects the province of Nova Scotia to Prince Edward Island. This innovative bridge is a toll highway with a fee required of all visitors at the end of their stay.
The shores of Woods Island are renowned for their deep red-colored sand, a hallmark unique to the province known as PEI. The campground rests along the shores of the strait and offers lifeguard supervised swimming in season.
In the summertime, the area surrounding the Northumberland Provincial Park is a hot bed of activity. Families may choose from a number of sightseeing ventures or simply relax along the beach. But it's worth a trip to PEI in the off season too when the crowds are far smaller, and the island enjoys a shift to cooler temperatures and breathtakingly brilliant fall colors.
For the ideal island RV experience, bring the family for a camping trip at Northumberland Provincial Park. It's an outdoor vacation you'll never forget!
There are two different avenues for reaching Northumberland Provincial Park. From Pictou, Nova Scotia, you may take the Northumberland Ferry across the Northumberland Strait to Woods Island. To get to the ferry departure point, take the Transcanada Hwy/NS-106 N to the Northumberland Ferry terminal. Here, you will park your vehicle in the ship's belly and board the vessel on the upper decks for a ride that will traverse 30 km (19 miles) and take approximately one hour and 36 minutes in total. Once the ship has docked at the Woods Island Ferry terminal, you will pick up your vehicle and continue onto Transcanada Hwy/PE-1 W. Carefully follow the signs for Murray River/Murray Harbour/Points East Coastal Drive/PE-4 until you make a gentle right onto PE-4 N. Take a right onto Northumberland Park Road to reach your destination. The passage on the ferry is fee-based and operates only seasonally. Reservations are recommended. Bring along some Gravol in case of seasickness as the waters can be rough. The highway is two lanes and travels at a moderate pace. Traffic typically moves well, and there is little road construction even during the summer months.
The other route to Northumberland Provincial Park is from the mainland and crosses over the Confederation Bridge, a fee-based stretch of highway. From Port Elgin, NB, take the Transcanada Hwy/NB-16 E2 to PE-1 E. Follow the highway until it reaches Kinross Road/PE 210 E. This road will take you across the Confederation Bridge and back onto the Transcanada Highway. Follow the exit for PE-4 N to Northumberland Park Road. This street proceeds directly to your destination. The entire route is 152 km (or 94 miles) and should take slightly under two hours. The route is comprised of two lanes only and travels at a moderate speed through small villages. The highways are straight and meander through areas that are quite scenic. Road construction is infrequent but be prepared for delays just in case. The fee for using the Confederation Bridge is collected on your way back off the island and is payable by cash, credit, or debit card.
Parking is available directly outside the entrance to Northumberland Provincial Park.
With its close proximity to the Woods Island Ferry terminal, the easiest way to access Northumberland Provincial Park is on foot. Taxi service is also available for a fee.
Northumberland Campground is home to 45 campsites and 7 cabins. Reservations are required for RV or tent stays from June 7th through September 22nd annually.
The cabins are complete with power and 31 of the campsites are also equipped to provide electricity and water. 14 units are completely unserviced. Generator use is permitted, and pets are allowed so long as they remain leashed during their stay.
The amenities provided at Northumberland Campground include public phones, bathrooms, showers, hiking trails, a dump station, a laundromat, a playground, and a kitchen shelter. Among the fun things for families to do are clam digging, swimming, sunbathing, hiking, and sightseeing.
In the summer months, swimming is one of Northumberland Provincial Park's most popular activities. Lifeguard service is provided in the months of July and August. At all other times, families must swim at their own risk.
The red sand beach along the banks of the campground is the perfect place for leisurely walks in search of seaside treasures or building sand castles. After a day of fun in the surf, why not recline in the sand and enjoy the latest bestseller or work on your tan? Bring along a picnic lunch and some drinks to enjoy to keep hunger and thirst at bay.
Throughout the summer, there are children's activities offered on the beach by the staff of the provincial park as well.
If you are a true lover of seafood, you'll be delighted to discover that the banks of the beach at Northumberland Provincial Park are the perfect place for doing some clam digging! Roll up your pant legs and grab your bucket and sand shovel, and get to work perusing the red clay sand in search of your dinner!
Once you've gathered your "feed" of clams, bring them back to the on-site fish cleaning station to prep your haul for supper. There is a kitchen shelter where you can cook your clams as well.
For the true wine lover, why not stop by Rossignol Estate Winery to sample some of their best vintages? Tours of the vineyards and wine tastings are conducted on a daily basis during the summer months. Learn more about the wine making process and what makes PEI grapes so special. At the end of your tour, you can purchase a few bottles of your favorite Rossignol wines to take home as a memento of a great PEI vacation.
Rossignol Estate Winery is a 7 km (4 mile) drive from Northumberland Provincial Park.
Located 25 km (16 miles) from the Woods Island Ferry terminal is the Cape Bear Lighthouse and Marconi Museum. A great spot to visit in both sunshine and rain, the Cape Bear Lighthouse was built in 1881. A unique construction, this beacon is square and consists of three towers. For centuries, it has enjoyed a prominent role as the light that guides vessels across the Northumberland Strait. The views from the top of the lighthouse are breathtakingly beautiful. From the summit, you will see incredible red sand beaches, cliffs made of sandstone, and interesting marine life including porpoises, pelicans, and seals.
The Marconi Museum is also housed on the property and contains a gift shop where souvenirs and snacks can be purchased.
With such stunning views of the shore, Northumberland Provincial Park is the ideal place for doing some birdwatching. Grab your binoculars, your camera, and your naturalist's guide, and you've got a recipe for a day of fun photographing and recording the unusual species of birds you encounter along your birdwatching tour.
Be sure to wear comfortable shoes and bring along some water and snacks to keep hunger and thirst satiated as you are sure to work up an appetite!
Northumberland Provincial Park offers lots of interesting trails where you and your family can explore the beauty of Prince Edward Island. Whether you choose to meander along the coast of the red sand beach or traverse through the campground's lightly forested areas, you are sure to encounter some stunningly beautiful plant and animal life.
You'll need to bring some drinking water and snacks with you on your hike. Your dog is welcome to join you but must remain on a leash at all times.