10 Must-Do’s When Visiting PEI in the Summertime

Prince Edward Island, Canada’s smallest province, is a very popular tourist destination in the summer. From the red and white sand beaches to the girl with the red braids (Anne with an E!), people travel from far and wide to explore. PEI is accessed through New Brunswick by bridge or by Nova Scotia by ferry. The ferry brings you to the eastern end of PEI while the bridge is more western. 

PEI is divided into 3 parts or counties: Kings, Queens, and Prince. Most of the things listed below are found in Queens County, which is in central PEI. Cavendish and Charlottetown are two main summer hubs and both are found in Queens County. 

While it would take some time to accomplish all 10 of these activities, it is not impossible in a week-long vacation. If you have less time, choose your favourites! 

  1. Sandspit Amusement Park

Sandspit Amusement Park is located in Cavendish. It is a small sized park with rides such as a roller coaster, tiltawhirl, scrambler, and of course the ferris wheel. It also has bumper boats if you want to get a little wet on a hot day! There is a mini golf course and a race car track there as well for an extra cost, as well as a few carnival games. You can purchase tickets to just do a few rides or buy a bracelet and spend the day. 

  1. Shining Waters Family Fun Park

Shining Waters Family Fun Park is just down the road from Sandspit, also in Cavendish. This park has more rides for younger kids as well as much more water rides. It is excellent for a hot day, but be prepared, it will be busy. Shining Waters has a roller coaster, paddle boats, kiddie rides, a house of mirrors, and much more. It also has a waterpark with a toddler area complete with slides and spray, body and tube slides, and a full-sized pool. There is a canteen where you can order lunch, and it is easy to make a day of it. There are even live animals you can visit!

  1. New Glasgow Lobster Suppers

You can’t visit PEI without having some seafood (unless you’re allergic of course!). There are many delicious options for seafood scattered throughout the island, but the most well-known is New Glasgow Lobster Suppers. Eating here is more of an experience than a meal! This restaurant chooses local first for all its ingredients when possible. When you arrive, you will select your main dish before sitting down. Each dish is accompanied with appetizers, a drink, and dessert. You DO NOT want to miss out on the pie! If you order a lobster, you will be brought a lovely plastic bib to wear to avoid a messy shirt. This is all part of the experience and memory making! You will not leave hungry or disappointed!

  1. Brackley Drive-In Theatre

The Brackley Drive-In Theatre is a favourite summer tradition of locals and visitors alike. This is one of only a few drive-in theatres left in Canada. There is a large grassy space in front of the big screen if you want to bring lawn chairs or blankets to sit outside and watch, or you can tune in to the posted radio station and watch from your car. Pickup trucks are a favourite as you can back in and make a bed with pillows and blankets in the back. You can bring your own snacks with you or get something from the canteen! Who doesn’t love some freshly popped popcorn while they watch movies? There are always 2 movies showing, one at dusk and one immediately after. The first movie is the more family friendly one. Don’t miss this low cost chance to create memories.

  1. Rent a Kayak or Paddleboard

Spend some of your time enjoying the water on the hot summer days. You can rent a kayak or paddleboard and explore! Inn at the Pier in New London is one of the beautiful places where you can do that during your vacation. 

  1. Visit the Green Gables House

The majority of tourists coming to PEI are coming for one of two things: the beaches or Anne! In Cavendish, you can visit the Green Gables House where you can tour the house and the property. Take a walk through the haunted woods and wander through the house, seeing many recognizable items from the books. 

This is a National Park and participates in the Xplorers program so children can do a scavenger hunt through Anne’s house and some other activities to receive a dog tag. Be sure to check in at the desk when you arrive. There is also a gift shop on site with lots of Anne souvenirs. 

Typically, a visit to the Confederation Centre to see the Anne of Green Gables musical would be on this list, but just this year the committee has decided to only do this musical every second summer! So if you are visiting in any even number year, you MUST see this production. It is the longest running production on PEI for good reason. 

  1. PEI Beaches

One thing is for certain; you are never far from a beach on PEI! Many people think of the red sand when they think of PEI, especially after Anne Shirley draws so much attention to it! Did you know that the colour of the sand depends on which shore you are on? The south shore beaches have red sand, and the north shore beaches have white sand. All islanders will have their own preference on north shore or south shore and even which beach they think is the best. 

As a visitor, you can’t go wrong with any of the beaches listed or even the beach closest to your accommodations. Only some provincial parks have a lifeguarded area, and provincial parks are the only beaches with some form of washroom. The two most popular are Cavendish Beach and Brackley Beach. These are both large beaches and will be busy on any nice day.

If you are taking your children to the beach, make sure they understand water safety specific to an ocean. If the tide is coming in, a child can go from being able to touch to being out over their head very quickly. If the tide is going out, a child floating on a tube would be slowly moving away from shore. It is also wise to know what a riptide looks like for precaution. Supervise your children at all times!

  1. Deep Sea Fishing

Enjoy the open waters for an afternoon while also attempting to catch your supper! These deep sea fishing tours allow you to experience an authentic fishing experience. Ride the fishing boat out into deep waters and test your sea legs as you cast your line. Once you reel in your catch, the crews will prepare it for you to cook up later. That warm PEI sun feels cooler out on the water. This is an afternoon well spent!

  1. Victoria by the Sea

You do not want to miss this gem. You will not just happen upon or notice it while driving, but it is well worth your time to check it out. Victoria by the Sea is a quaint little village on a wharf with shops, galleries, a playhouse, and the best lobster roll you’ve ever tasted. A bold but deserved statement! There are a couple restaurants with water views, and you can stroll around the shops while you let your dinner settle. If you really want to act like a local, you can jump off the wharf into the refreshing water! 

  1. Cows Ice Cream

After all of your fun in the sun, what better way to treat yourself than with a delicious waffle cone of Cows Ice Cream? There are a multitude of flavours to choose from, all with a creative cow-related name. This ice cream is made right at the Cows Creamery in North River, PEI. You can have a tour of the factory and possibly even see it being made. Be sure not to leave without a souvenir “punny” t-shirt from the gift shop!


There are many wonderful and exciting things to do on Prince Edward Island in the summertime, no matter what types of things you like to do. Enjoy Anne’s Island!

This article has been written by homeschooling staff writers of The Canadian Schoolhouse (TCS). Enjoy more of our content from TCS contributors and staff writers by visiting our themes page that has a new theme topic added every month!

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"Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6).