Dreaming of an Anne of Green Gables Getaway? You’re in the right place! I took my mom and younger brother to Prince Edward Island (or PEI, but you already knew that!) a few years ago, and we had a fantastic time! The Prince Edward Islanders are all in on the Anne Shirley experience, so you’re guaranteed to get your fill of the “Anne girl.” Here’s how to plan your trip!
Step 1: Decide How Long to Stay
Whether you want to make it a weekend getaway or a week-long adventure, you can’t go wrong on PEI! We were there three days and two nights, but it wasn’t quite enough time to do and see everything. I would recommend 3-5 days so you can take your time, see everything you want to see, and not feel rushed.
Helpful info: How to Plan a Trip
Step 2: Bring Your Bosom Friend
No trip to Anne’s world would be complete without your bosom friend. So make it a girls’ trip, bring your mom, or bring the “Gilbert” in your own life along with you to make the trip extra special!
Step 3: Decide How to Get There
Getting there can be part of the fun! It’s always a treat flying into a small airport, like the one at Charlottetown, and how often do you have the option to travel by ferry? For me in my everyday life, not often enough! I do recommend renting a car if you choose to fly to the island. The Anne-inspired sites are spread out, so you’ll want a car to see them all most efficiently.
Fly into YYG
The fastest way to get to PEI is to fly. You can fly into Charlottetown; the airport code is YYG. You will likely have to change planes in Toronto or Montreal, so if you happen to have a long layover, take advantage of the situation and explore either of those cities as well!
More here: What to Expect Flying in a Tiny Plane
Drive Across Confederation Bridge ($48.50 CAD to Leave)
The Confederation Bridge connects the Canadian province of New Brunswick with the province of Prince Edward Island. The bridge is 8 miles long (12.9 km), and while you can drive into PEI for FREE, you will have to pay to leave! The cost is $48.50 CAD, or $37.14 USD.
Take the Northumberland Ferry ($80 CAD to Leave)
Alternatively, you can take the 75-minute Northumberland Ferry from Caribou on the province of Nova Scotia. Again, you can get to PEI for FREE, but you will have to pay to go back to Nova Scotia. The cost is $80 CAD, or $61.24 USD. If traveling by vehicle, you must check in 40 minutes prior to departure; walk-on passengers must check-in 30 minutes prior to departure. Check the schedule and make a reservation here.
Note: Via boat is certainly how Anne would have traveled around PEI herself!
This is the option we chose, as we were coming from Halifax, Nova Scotia, and would be returning there after our trip to PEI. We spent one night in nearby Pictou so we could take the early ferry, and we’re so glad we did! Pictou is an adorable coastal town, and between the local shops, historic sites, and fantastic restaurants, there is plenty to do to take up an afternoon or an entire day. In fact, we liked it so much, we spent another afternoon there on our way back to Halifax!
Read next: How to Spend a Day in Pictou, Nova Scotia
Step 4: Choose Where to Stay
There are loads of wonderful places to stay on PEI! For the ultimate Anne experince, I recommend staying in Cavendish. If you want lots of things to do and walkability, consider Charlottetown. Either way, I recommend renting a car, since you will want to visit both places, no matter which location you choose to stay.
We stayed at the Dundee Arms Inn, which is a 1903 Queen Anne revival-style mansion that has been converted into a charming inn. It’s also just around the corner from the main road with Charlottetown’s best shops, restaurants, and attractions!
Other historic and charming options include the quaint and cozy Shipwright Inn Bed and Breakfast, the historic Great George Hotel (made up of 17 historic buildings), or the very unique Sydney Boutique—an 1857 convent that has been converted into suites and apartments!
More here: Legendary Hotels of the World
If you’re hoping to stay close to the Anne of Green Gables House, you will have plenty of Anne-inspired options to choose from! Here are a few:
Kindred Spirits Inn and Cottages is a charming property literally right next door to the real Green Gables. The reviews are glowing, and the family-owned property boasts “6 acres of quiet.” There is also a surprising number of amenities available, including a heated saltwater pool, hot tub, game room, playground, fitness room, and I definitely saw a photo of a life-size chess game in a garden on their website!
Dalvay by the Sea is a pretty special accommodation in the area. Know why? This hotel portrayed The White Sands Hotel in the Anne of Green Gables movies! It has also been named one of the most romantic hotels in all of Canada, and dates back to 1895. Choose one of their luxurious rooms, or perhaps get an entire cottage to yourself!
Keep reading: Your Ultimate Guide to Accommodations
Step 5: Choose All the Best Anne Things to Do!
See Anne & Gilbert at The Guild, Charlottetown
Anne & Gilbert is a charming musical based on the Anne of Green Gables books! It plays at The Guild in downtown Charlottetown. It’s the first thing my family and I did after we arrived for our PEI trip. The second thing we did was buy the soundtrack so we could sing along in the car for the rest of our trip!
Shop at the Anne of Green Gables Store, Charlottetown
This is the perfect place to find a fun souvenir from your trip! Whether you want a special copy of your favorite book, an Anne doll, a hat with “carrots” braids attached, Diana’s favorite raspberry cordial, or just a mug to remind you of your trip as you sip your morning coffee, you’ll find a little something for yourself here.
Visit Green Gables Heritage Place, Cavendish
Located in Prince Edward Island National Park, you’ll find the home that inspired Green Gables. Lucy Maude Montgomery lived in this house, and now you can tour it yourself, along with Lovers’ Lane and the Haunted Woods! And if you’re there in July and August, you just might meet Anne herself!
Explore Avonlea Village, Cavendish
I don’t know about you, but I loved the Anne of Green Gables companion series, The Road to Avonlea! You can visit the “town” of Avonlea yourself, and it’s just a short jaunt away from Green Gables. Instead of a filming set, however, you’ll find actual shops, restaurants, and more places to explore, making this a perfect place for lunch or a snack, as well as another place to hunt for the perfect Anne-inspired souvenir!
Visit the L.M. Montgomery Birthplace, New London
This is one spot we didn’t quite get to on our trip, but if I had it to do over, again, I’d make sure we did! You can tour the home where Lucy Maud Montgomery, author of the Anne of Green Gables books and more, was born and lived the early years of her life.
Check out Kensington Train Station, Kensington
This is where they filmed some of the first scenes in the movie, where Matthew met and picked up Anne at the train station. She wasn’t the boy he’d been planning to bring home, but he couldn’t just leave her there!
Explore the Anne of Green Gables Museum, Park Corner
If you still haven’t had enough of Anne and L.M. Montgomery, be sure to check out the Anne of Green Gables Museum! It houses some of L.M. Montgomery’s personal effects, as well as items that inspired Anne’s imagination and escapades.
Are you ready to plan your own Anne of Green Gables getaway? Have you visited Prince Edward Island yourself? Comment below!
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