The Best Ecofriendly Retreats in the Maritimes

Stroll around Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia to reconnect with nature
Stroll around Peggy's Cove in Nova Scotia to reconnect with nature | © Dan Leeth / Alamy Stock Photo
Photo of Julie Fanselow
6 January 2018

The Maritime provinces of Canada – formed of Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick – are naturally attuned to the outdoors, from sea spray off the Atlantic to the deep Acadian forests and waterways dotting the landscape. It’s no wonder many regional innkeepers are devoted to offering sustainable alternatives to mass-market tourism. If you’re ready to reconnect with primeval nature, here are the best ecofriendly retreats in the Maritimes – and they’re all bookable on Culture Trip.

True North Destinations, Nova Scotia

Independent Hotel, Luxury
Map View

Break up your trip on the Cabot Trail with a night or two in a luxury geodesic dome with a private hot tub. Each dome has a kitchen, spacious living area and splendid ocean views, the latter of which you can also enjoy from the wraparound deck. The resort is within the island expanse of Cape Breton Highlands National Park, where the mountains meet the Atlantic coastline.

River Ridge Lodge, Nova Scotia

Map View
Courtesy of River Ridge Lodge / Expedia

Light and bright accommodations prevail along with earth-friendly practices at this resort on Mahone Bay in the South Shore region of Nova Scotia. Rest well in the quiet rooms, start the day with a homemade organic breakfast and then enjoy complimentary access to human-powered transportation – bikes in summer or snowshoes in winter. The charming coastal villages of Lunenburg and Blue Rocks are a short drive away.

Windhorse Farm, Nova Scotia

Eco Hotel
Map View

Windhorse is a popular retreat set in an ancient forest and wild meadowlands in Nova Scotia. Solar-powered accommodation on the 200-acre (80ha) site ranges from the tiny Sweetwater cabin, perfect for one person, to a four-bedroom farmhouse. Seasonal meals made from organic produce are served on site. Ramble in the woods, amble in the gardens and explore Wentzells Lake, a wide spot on the LaHave River.

Treetop Haven, Prince Edward Island

Independent Hotel
Map View

World traveler Sheila Arsenault is the ideal host at Treetop Haven, where five geodesic-dome TreePODS are hidden amid this haven on Prince Edward Island. The pods sleep up to six; each has a kitchen and a deck with a hot tub and barbecue. Experience the Japanese art of forest bathing, with yoga instruction and massage available on request. The red sand of Chelton Beach Provincial Park is a 10-minute drive away.

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  • Ridgeback Lodge, New Brunswick

    Independent Hotel, Hotel
    Map View

    Less than an hour’s drive from Saint John, New Brunswick, Ridgeback Lodge has a couple of rustic cabins and several glamping domes, some designed for stargazing. Birdwatching, canoeing and snowshoeing are other ways to while away your time in the woods. Enjoy activities on the lodge grounds, or explore nearby attractions including a farmer’s market, pottery shop and friendly pub.

    Cabot Shores, Nova Scotia

    Resort, Eco Hotel, Hotel
    Map View
    Courtesy of Cabot Shores Wilderness Resort / Expedia

    With choices ranging from campsites to chalets, Cabot Shores has accommodation for every taste. Nestled between the Cabot Trail highway and the Atlantic Ocean, the resort has a freshwater pond and a private beach, plus access to extensive hiking trails along Indian Brook. After an active day, look forward to mingling with other travelers at a cookout featuring hearty food and s’mores for dessert.

    Trout Point Lodge, Nova Scotia

    Eco Hotel, Hotel, Lodge, Luxury
    Map View
    Courtesy of Trout Point Lodge of Nova Scotia /

    Trout Point Lodge is in the Tobeatic Wilderness of southwestern Nova Scotia, about 40 minutes from the ferry port of Yarmouth. Forget about cell phone coverage or satellite TV. Instead, soak in a wood-fired hot tub, swim in the river or take a guided stargazing walk under some of the darkest skies in North America. Rooms are luxurious yet designed with sustainability in mind.

    This is an updated version of an article originally by Kate Horodyski.

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