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Family Road Trip: Ottawa to Hubbards (Part 2 of 2)

So in Part 1 of this post, I had just left you at when we’d crashed into a deep sleep in Truro. The big attraction for us in coming to this town in central Nova Scotia was to see the tidal bore — a natural phenomenon that happens twice a day, where the tide sweeps in from the Bay of Fundy and forces the Salmon River to flow in the opposite direction. Apparently Truro is one of the only places in the world to witness this and Hubby was keen to catch it.

Unfortunately, though, we hadn’t checked the time of the tides before we’d fallen asleep and when we’d woke, we realized it had taken place an hour earlier. Doh!

It would not happen again for 12 hours, so we were forced to move along without having seen it. If you’d like to see what this tidal bore is, you can watch this You Tube video and you’ll have the same vacation memory as us – haha!

We packed up and headed into the main street of town to find some coffee and breakfast. We landed on our feet when we wandered in all caffeine-deprived into Jimolly’s Bakery Cafe. After fuelling up both our bodies and the van, we really needed to push on wards since we needed to get ourselves to Hubbards, check into our rental cottage, stock up on some groceries, and then head back into Halifax to pick up my in-laws who were arriving on VIA rail to stay with us on our East Coast vacation.

FINALLY, we arrived to the cottage in Hubbards, a small coastal village with beaches and within close driving distance to a number of attractions — Lunenburg, Peggy’s Cove, and Halifax. The kids were beyond thrilled to get to our final destination. I, on the other hand, felt a little like Shannon over at the 8FOOTSIX blog who recently rented a cottage that looked fabulous in the photos but was dingy in real life.

I’m not gonna lie. I cried a few tears behind doors where the kids couldn’t see me. The bedding was fine, the bathrooms were fine. But the rest of the place looked like it hadn’t had a thorough clean in decades. Especially the kitchen. It bothered me the most. The kitchen cupboard doors were sticky, the appliances hadn’t actually been picked up when wiping counters, and even the tea pot right on the stove hadn’t been given a rinse. One look at this blender and it was clear that I would not be drinking daquaris on this vacation — *shivers!*

Hubby gave me a pep talk; I pulled myself together and we decided we’d just give the kitchen a good clean tomorrow morning since we’d been eating out in Halifax that night. But first, we’d hide the blender in a cupboard and pretend we never saw that frightening thing!

Piling the kids back in the car was difficult. Stella, who is almost 10, could understand we were just going for a short trek to Halifax to pick up Granma and Grandpa, but Max, who just turned 4 was devastated that we were back in the car again. He was moaning, ” We go back? We go back to cottage?” But thankfully, the trip was short and we found the VIA rail station with ease.

The most heart-warming scene unfolded when our kids bumped into another family of three kids and all five were awaiting anxiously for their grandparents. The other family’s guest, an older gentleman, who was clearly a beloved grandfather arrived first and was waving from far off as the grandkids jumped up and down and shared with our children — there he is! there’s our grandpa! And then we repeated a similar scenario moments later.

All six of us then took a beautiful stroll down the Halifax board walk. It was so well-designed, with a mix of condos, boat moorings, restaurants, and rest areas.

We stopped to eat at in the casual part of Salty’s restaurant. Fresh mussels, shrimp, and chowder were had and enjoyed by all! (Well not all, my son had a hotdog and my daughter had a Caesar salad.) It felt like a real treat to be reunited and to share a meal and a cold drink right on the wharf.

The next morning, I awoke in the cottage fairly late. The kids were so quiet! I headed into the kitchen to find that Hubby had scrubbed down the counters and all the dishes we’d be using and I loved him more than you couldn’t possibly imagine at that moment! We then drank coffee and stared at the ocean on this little secluded cove, where our cottage was right on the water. Our week was off to a good start.


  1. Too bad you missed the tidal bore! I actually did the rafting in Truro – it was a lot of fun – you ride on the river towards the ocean, and then you ride back on the turbulence caused by the flow changing direction when the tide comes in.

    • coffeewithjulie says:

       @aph We’re thinking of driving back tomorrow to see the tidal bore after all. Can kids do the rafting?

      •  @coffeewithjulie I think so, but Max might be too young – it’s a bit of wild ride. I’d call ahead – there’s a handful of different outlets there. 

        • coffeewithjulie says:

           @aph K! TY for the tips! Appreciated! Hope to make a trip to visit your neck of the woods soon too :)

  2. At least you are at the water! Tricky with the rentals. We’ve been really lucky and I only rent places that have reviews. I hope you got it clean enough to enjoy your stay?

    • coffeewithjulie says:

       @GiuliaDoyle We’ve always been lucky too … I’ve rented countless times! This place has good reviews, so I think that after people have been here, they are completely charmed by the wonderful waterfront location and the friendly people here. Everything felt better in the morning with a clean(ish) kitchen and the fresh ocean air, so we are definitely enjoying our stay. (But I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the place.)

  3. I don’t blame you for being upset over that kitchen…oi, that is SCARY!  Yuck.

  4. Oh, I would have been devastated about the kitchen too and I ok as long as things CLEAN.  I don’t mind if it’s old or outdated.  However, what a nice way to wake up the next morning….

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