The Getaway
15 Things to Do in Charlottetown, P.E.I.

Charlottetown, the charming capital of Prince Edward Island, isn't just a hub of Canadian history; it's a vibrant blend of culture, cuisine, and coastal beauty. Known as the birthplace of Confederation, this seaside city captivates visitors with its rich past and lively present. From the cobblestone streets of Victoria Row to the scenic trails and waterfronts, Charlottetown offers a diverse array of experiences. Whether you're a history buff, a foodie, or an outdoor enthusiast, there's something here for everyone. Let's explore the top 15 things that make Charlottetown a must-visit destination.

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01 Explore historic Victoria Row

Charlottetown City skyline, buildings and architecture in the early morning on the historic landmark street of Victoria Row in Prince Edward Island, Canada

Victoria Row isn't just a street; it's a journey into Charlottetown's past. This picturesque row, with its Victorian-era buildings, is a haven for local artisans, quaint cafes, and unique boutiques. As you stroll down the cobblestone path, the blend of history and modernity is palpable. It's the perfect spot to soak in the city's charm, grab a coffee, and find a one-of-a-kind souvenir. The street often hosts live music and cultural events, adding to its vibrant atmosphere.

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02 Savor the famous lobster rolls

Charlottetown's culinary scene is incomplete without mentioning its lobster rolls. These aren't just any seafood sandwiches; they're a local delicacy. With fresh, succulent lobster meat served on a toasted bun, it's a taste of the island that you can't miss. Nearly every restaurant here has its own version, each boasting the freshest catch of the day. This dish perfectly encapsulates the maritime essence of Charlottetown.

03 Indulge in Cow’s Ice Cream

Charlottetown, PE / Canada - August 26, 2019: Corner view of Cow's Ice Cream storefront in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada Valphotog / Shutterstock.com

No visit to Charlottetown is complete without a scoop of Cow’s Ice Cream. This isn't your ordinary ice cream; it's an island tradition. Known for its rich, creamy texture and wide range of flavors, Cow’s has been delighting locals and tourists alike for years. It's the perfect treat to enjoy as you wander the waterfront or relax in a park. The unique flavors often feature local ingredients, making each scoop a special experience.

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04 Discover Peake’s Wharf waterfront

Charlottetown, PE / Canada - October 14, 2019: The Sea House Gift Shop, located on Peake's Quay in Charlottetown, PEI sells souvenirs to the many tourists who pass through every day. Eric Lysenko / Shutterstock.com

Peake’s Wharf, set against the backdrop of the harbor, isn't just picturesque; it's bustling with activity. Here, you can shop for local crafts, dine at waterfront restaurants, and soak in the stunning views. The wharf comes alive in the summer with live music and festivals, making it a lively spot for an evening out. The area also offers boat tours, providing a different perspective of the city from the water.

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05 Experience theater at Confederation Centre

CHARLOTTETOWN, CANADA - August 8, 2016: Confederation centre of the arts is a cultural centre dedicated to the visual and performing arts Adwo / Shutterstock.com

The Confederation Centre of the Arts isn't just a building; it's the cultural heart of Charlottetown. Home to the famous "Anne of Green Gables" musical, the Centre offers a range of performances that showcase local talent. Whether you're into drama, comedy, or musicals, there's always a show that'll catch your fancy. The Centre also houses art galleries and historical exhibits, enriching your cultural experience.

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06 Outdoor fun at Victoria Park

 Empty bench and footpath at coast, Victoria park, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, Canada

Victoria Park isn't just green space; it's an outdoor playground. With its lush lawns, walking trails, and sports facilities, the park is perfect for an active day out. Whether you're swimming in the pool, playing tennis, or just enjoying a picnic with a view, the park's scenic beauty is a refreshing escape from the city bustle. The park also features historical monuments and a waterfront boardwalk, adding to its appeal.

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07 Walk the Confederation Trail

A pedestrian bridge along the Confederation Trail in Prince Edward Island, Canada

The Confederation Trail isn't just a path; it's a journey through the heart of PEI. Stretching across the island, this trail offers a unique way to explore Charlottetown's natural beauty. Whether you're biking, walking, or jogging, the trail's picturesque landscapes and peaceful ambiance make it a favorite among locals and visitors alike. The trail is also a part of the Trans Canada Trail, connecting Charlottetown to various parts of the island.

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08 Seal watching adventures

Grey seal on Scottish coast with sparling eyes watching everything

Seal watching in Charlottetown isn't just a wildlife experience; it's an adventure. Board a boat and head out to sea, where you'll get up close with these playful creatures in their natural habitat. It's not just about watching seals; it's about understanding their world and the coastal ecosystem of PEI. These tours are often guided by knowledgeable locals who provide insightful commentary on the wildlife and ecology.

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09 Helicopter tours over Charlottetown

Seeing Charlottetown from above isn't just scenic; it's breathtaking. Helicopter tours offer a unique perspective of the city and its surroundings. From the rolling hills to the winding coastline, the aerial views provide a stunning panorama that's hard to forget. These tours are a fantastic way to appreciate the island's beauty and are perfect for special occasions or a memorable experience.

10 Night climbing at Rise & Climb

Rise & Climb isn't your average adventure park; it's a challenge in the dark. Their night climbing experience adds an extra thrill to the high ropes course. With the stars above and the forest around, it's an exhilarating way to experience Charlottetown's natural beauty after sunset. The park offers various difficulty levels, making it suitable for both beginners and experienced climbers.

11 Enjoy local sports events

Charlottetown's sports scene isn't just about watching; it's about cheering. From the excitement of an Island Storm basketball game to the thrill of a Charlottetown Islanders hockey match, the city's sports events are a great way to experience local enthusiasm and camaraderie. These events are not just sports matches; they're community gatherings where you can feel the island's spirit.

12 Relax with movies at City Cinema

City Cinema isn't just a theater; it's a community hub. This indie cinema showcases a range of films, from non-mainstream to local productions. It's the perfect spot for a relaxed evening, where you can enjoy a movie and maybe even catch a discussion with filmmakers. The cinema's cozy atmosphere and diverse selection make it a beloved spot among movie lovers.

13 Stroll through Downtown Farmer’s Market

The Downtown Farmer’s Market isn't just about shopping; it's about experiencing local culture. Here, you can find everything from fresh produce to artisanal crafts. It's a place where locals and visitors come together, sharing stories and enjoying the best of what Charlottetown has to offer. The market is a testament to the island's rich agricultural heritage and community spirit.

14 Craft beer tasting at local pubs

Charlottetown's craft beer scene isn't just growing; it's thriving. Local pubs offer a range of PEI-brewed beers, each with its own unique flavor. It's a great way to unwind after a day of exploring, sampling different brews and soaking in the local atmosphere. These pubs often feature live music and cozy settings, making them ideal spots to mingle with locals and fellow travelers.

15 Shop at Centre for Craft Retail Gallery

The Centre for Craft Retail Gallery isn't just a store; it's a showcase of island talent. Here, you can find exquisite crafts and artworks, each piece telling a story of the island's rich artistic heritage. It's the perfect place to find a memorable keepsake or gift. The gallery not only supports local artists but also offers visitors a glimpse into the creative soul of Charlottetown.

As you leave Charlottetown, you aren't just taking memories; you're carrying a piece of the island's heart. From its historic streets to its vibrant culture and natural beauty, Charlottetown isn't just a destination; it's an experience. Whether you're here for a day or a week, the city's charm and warmth are sure to leave a lasting impression.

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