Track 4: Margaree & Lake Ainslie areas

  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • : Function ereg() is deprecated in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/includes/ on line 1040.
  • user warning: Unknown column 'u.signature_format' in 'field list' query: SELECT c.cid as cid,, c.nid, c.subject, c.comment, c.format, c.timestamp,, c.mail, c.homepage, u.uid, AS registered_name, u.signature, u.signature_format, u.picture,, c.thread, c.status FROM comments c INNER JOIN users u ON c.uid = u.uid WHERE c.nid = 12 AND c.status = 0 ORDER BY c.thread DESC LIMIT 0, 50 in /home/cabo7955/public_html/cabottrail/modules/comment/comment.module on line 992.

Inside the Glenora Distillery

Adapted and abridged from the Cabot Trail Companion.

There are nine local villages that include 'Margaree' somewhere in their name; and as you drive the Cabot Trail, there are actually two Margaree rivers — one on your left-hand side; one on your right. They join together at Margaree Forks and then carry on north towards Margaree Harbour and the Gulf of St Lawrence.

Exploring this glorious river system can take some time, so you might choose to stay an extra night or two, and there are plenty of great accommodations nearby. For a true Cape Breton knees-up, check out the Normaway Inn — an atmospheric 1920s lodge amidst acres of parkland. Probably the most famous music venue on the island, its converted barn is where innkeeper David MacDonald spends most nights of the week as MC.

The Normaway ceilidhs are legendary, and have helped to make Dave one of the best-known spokesmen for the Margaree area. On the Cabot Trail Companion, he tells us about the vibrant culture to be found down the Southwest Margaree and towards the Lake Ainslie area.

Although it's not part of the official Cabot Trail, we can't let you drive past the Lake Ainslie area without a mention, since it has such a wealth of attractions, all laced together by its own themed route, the Ceilidh Trail — another highly memorable, and musical, experience. If you can make time for it, Dave gives us his own suggestions for a side trip, which include a visit to the Glenora Distillery (home of North America's only single-malt whisky) and Mabou's Red Shoe Pub, owned by the famous Cape Breton artistes, the Rankin sisters.

Whether or not you follow his suggestions and extend your trip into the Ceilidh Trail, we pick up the Cabot Trail again at Margaree Forks, for the serene drive down to Margaree Harbour and our first glimpse of the sea...


If you'd like more information on this section of the tour, the following links may be of interest. Because we have no control over external sites, if you find a dead link please let us know!

Official Nova Scotia Ceilidh Trail page

Official Margaree website

Canadian Heritage Rivers: Margaree River System

Ceilidh Trail links pages

Ceilidh Trail School of Celtic Music

Accommodations & other businesses along the way.

* = Featured on the Cabot Trail Companion

Cajun Cedar Log Cottages Accommodation ($$)
8365 Cabot Trail, Margaree Forks. T: (902) 248-2494;

Ceilidh Culture Tours (bespoke)
10096 Cabot Trail, Margaree Hbr. T: (902) 235-2371;

Celtic Music Interpretive Centre
5471 Route 19, Judique. T: (902) 787-2708;

Chiasson’s Riverview Cabins Accommodation ($-$$)
1959 E Margaree Rd, Margaree Forks. T: (902) 235-2787;

Chimney Corner B&B & Cottages Accommodation ($$-$$$)
2581 Shore Rd (Ceilidh Trail), Chimney Corner. TF: 1-888-211-9061;

Delaney’s Country Inn Accommodation ($-$$)
141 Crossroads, E Margaree; T: (902) 235-2524;

Duck Cove Inn Accommodation ($$)
10289 Cabot Trail, Margaree Harbour. TF: 1-800-565-9993;

Glenora Inn & Distillery Accommodation ($$-$$$)
13727 Rte 19, Glenville. TF: 1-800-839-0491;

Inverness County Centre for the Arts
16080 Rte 19, Inverness. T: (902) 258-2533;

Inverness Visitor Information Centre
Central Av, Inverness. TF: 1-800-567-2400;

Margaree C@P Site
7972 Cabot Trail, Margaree Forks. T: (902) 248-2821;

Margaree Harbour View Inn B&B Accommodation ($-$$)
4018 Shore Rd; Margaree Harbour.T: (902) 235-2314;

Margaree Lodge Accommodation ($-$$$)
Margaree Forks. TF: 1-877-242-2193;

Margaree Visitor Information Centre
Cabot Trail, Margaree Forks. T: (902) 248-2803

Old Miller Trout Farm & Guest House Accommodation ($$$)
408 Doyles Rd, Margaree Forks. TF: 1-800-479-0220;

Red Shoe Pub
11573 Rte 19 (Ceilidh Trail), Mabou. T: (902) 945-2326 or 945-2996;

Salmon Pool Inn Accommodation ($$-$$$)
9378 Cabot Trail, Margaree. TF: 1-866-236-2737;

Whale Cove Summer Village Accommodation ($$)
Hwy 219 (Ceilidh Trail), Margaree Harbour. TF: 1-866-388-2202;

If you would like your business to be added to this list, please contact us...