Lunenburg, NS


Established in 1753, Lunenburg was the first British Colonial settlement in Nova Scotia and remains one of Nova Scotia’s most historic and appealing villages. Many of its downtown buildings possess a distinctive style with ornamental brackets and towers which complement their brightly painted designs. A growing number of art galleries and crafts shops also make for a rewarding browsing experience. The breath-taking Lunenburg waterfront is the home of the world-class Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic, with aquarium exhibits and a replica of the Bluenose, Canada’s most- recognized and most-storied ship.

Things To Do

Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic

The Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic is a fascinating place to explore the rich fishing heritage of Nova Scotia. Learn about the unique nautical culture of the local residents and how they earn their livelihood on the water. Explore the living fish exhibit and wharf-side vessels on the waterfront.

This activity is available on the following cruises:


In 1749, handbills were posted throughout Europe encouraging emigration to the New World. Over 2,700 “foreign Protestants” responded to the offer and immigrated to Nova Scotia. Most came from the Upper Rhine area of present-day Germany, from the French and German-speaking Swiss cantons and from the French-speaking principality of Montbeliard. They arrived in Halifax and remained there under British protection, working on the fortifications in order to pay off the cost of their passage. The Board of Trade’s visitor center on Blockhouse Hill is a replica of those early defenses.

In the 19th century, the town evolved as a major center for the offshore banks fishery, building and manning fishing schooners to exploit the Grand Banks of Newfoundland and the fishing banks off Nova Scotia. In 1921, the Smith & Rhuland Shipyard launched the most successful fishing and racing schooner in Canadian history, named Bluenose. The schooner faced the best of the American fleet in the prestigious International Fishing Series Races and won every contest over seventeen years.

During the Second World War, Lunenburg made a significant contribution to the war effort providing everything from ships to balaclavas. Over the same period, the town hosted Camp Norway, which was a facility to train exiled Norwegian whalers for the Royal Norwegian Navy and accommodate Canadian sailors while their ships were being re-fitted.

Learn More

Key Facts:

  • There are some 400 major buildings within the old town, most of them from the 18th and 19th centuries, almost all of them made of wood.
  • Upon arrival settlers participated in a formal lottery, choosing cards to determine the plots of land upon which they would settle and build.
  • The historic town was designated a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage Site in 1995.
  • The grand Lunenburg Academy was named a National Historic Site of Canada in 1983, and a decade later the ‘Old Town’ streets and buildings were recognized as a National Historic District of Canada.
  • St. John’s Anglican Church and Knaut-Rhuland House have also been named to Canada’s register of National Historic Sites.

Related Links: – Lunenburg Official Website