Baddeck is a pleasant little village of 800 people (2011) on the shore of Bras d'Or Lake in Cape Breton Island, Nova Scotia. It's a popular spot for boating in the summer and its central location makes it convenient as a base for exploring the island.
According to some historians the name Baddeck is derived from the Mi'kmaq term abadak which has been translated as "place with an island near" (in reference to Kidston Island, immediately offshore).
Today, Baddeck functions as a service centre for the sparsely populated county.
Baddeck became a tourist destination with the 1874 publication of "Baddeck, And That Sort of Thing", a travel story written by Charles Dudley Warner. Tourism grew even more following the construction of the Cabot Trail in 1932, with Baddeck being at the start and end of the loop. While the village population is just over 700 people, local hotels feature over 600 rooms.
Pretty much everything is located on either Shore Road or Chebucto Street. The town stretches out along these two streets, but if you don't mind walking, everything can be reached on foot.
- 1 Alexander Graham Bell National Historic Site, Chebucto Street (Route 205), ☏ . Open from May to Oct, 9AM - 5PM. Opens longer June - mid-Oct. Although the telephone wasn't invented here, Alexander Graham Bell had a summer home in Baddeck where he did some of his research and experiments. This site has a number of exhibits, photos and videos relating to his life and work. $7.80 adult, $6.55 senior, youth (17 and under) free.
- Sail/cruise on the lake. Tours depart daily from the pier in summer.
- For the golfer, the Bell Bay Golf Club, +1 902 295-1333, is close to town.
Basic groceries and supplies can be purchased from the Needs Convenience at the corner of Shore Road and Chebucto Street (it's next to the Lynnwood Inn). There's also a small grocery store just outside of town near where Shore Road intersects with the Trans-Canada highway (Hwy 105). Restaurant options include:
- Baddeck Lobster Suppers, 17 Ross Street, ☏ . Casual with hearty amounts of food. Known for the "all you can eat" Cape Breton mussels, seafood chowder, potato salad, coleslaw, homemade rolls, biscuits, dessert and beverage. From $30 for the hard shell Atlantic lobster dinner, $19-25 for other mains.
- Bell Buoy Restaurant, 536 Chebucto Street, ☏ . Specializing in seafood, but also offering steaks, pastas and salads. Best known for their chowder and homemade oatmeal bread. Lunch menu is available with simpler fare. Offers vegetarian and gluten-free meals.
- High Wheeler Cafe, 486 Chebucto Street, ☏ . 7AM - 6PM. Little cafe that serves hearty sandwiches and pastries including some sugar-free options. Good spot to buy a sandwich in the morning to take with you on the day's travels. Also, sit down for a bowl of homemade soup (always a vegetarian choice) or a cappuccino. They also offer a number of home-made products made with Spelt flour, for those with digestive issues. $5-10.
- McCurdy's Dining Room, 257 Shore Road (at Silver Dart Lodge). Serves a mix of pasta, seafood and meat dishes with a view of Bras d'Or Lake. $13-30 for mains.
- Yellow Cello Cafe, 525 Chebucto Street (at the Green Highlander Lodge). Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Cafe with soup, salad, vegetarian and Italian dishes. Nightly entertainment during the summer months.
- Baddeck Legion, 37 Ross St., ☏ . Open to all. Features live, local entertainment and a beautiful view from the patio. Large drink list with great whiskies for a good price.
- Broadwater Inn, Bay Road (Hwy 205) (about one mile east of Baddeck), ☏ . Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 10AM. An inn and cottages overlooking Bras d'Or Lake. Rooms $90-135, with the suite and cottages a bit more.
- The Dunlop Inn, 552 Chebucto Street, ☏ , toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 2PM - 9PM, check-out: 11AM. Small B&B style inn on Baddeck's waterfront. $99-160, open May - Oct.
- Green Highlander Lodge, 525 Chebucto Street, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: . A 3-room B&B/inn that can arrange guided fishing trips in the area.
- Inverary Resort, 368 Shore Road, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: . Hotel rooms and cottages on Bras d'Or Lake. The main building was destroyed by a June 2018 structural fire, but a portion of the resort remains open. $140-400 in high season. Cheaper rates available in the off-season.
- Lynwood Inn, 441 Shore Road, ☏ , toll-free: , ✉ email@example.com. Reviewers indicate rooms in the newer building are spacious and comfortable. Some rooms have balconies with views of the lake. $100-140.
- Silver Dart Lodge, 257 Shore Road, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: 11AM. Mix of rooms in the lodge, chalets and suites set on a hill overlooking the lake. $90-165 for lodge rooms and chalets, suites cost more.
- Telegraph House, 479 Chebucto Street, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. An old Victorian house with some charm where Alexander Graham Bell once stayed. Reviewers indicate the rooms are clean and well appointed but sometimes a bit small. $70-120 for rooms. $150-200 for the two-bedroom cottage and McRae House.
- Hunter's Mountain Chalets, 562 Cabot Trail Road (about 8 minutes west of Baddeck on Cabot Trail), ☏ , toll-free: , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 4PM - 7PM (please call, if later than 7PM), check-out: 10AM. Hunters Mountain Chalets provides 12 luxury housekeeping accommodation units. Situated on a wonderful, quiet, south view section of land at the foot of the Cape Breton Highlands, the chalets have magnificent panoramic view and offer serenity, access to nature and a central location on Cape Breton Island. They also offer Segway rides on private walking trails. $88-118 for 1-bedroom unit. $98-128 for 2-bedroom unit; $19 for extra persons.
- Baddeck is a convenient starting and finishing point for a trip around the Cabot Trail, considered to be one of the most scenic drives in Canada. The road is a 300 km loop along the coast and through the Cape Breton Highlands and offers many hiking, camping and scenic turn-off opportunities.
- The reconstructed Fortress of Louisbourg, about two hours drive away, is a National Historic Site and offers a glimpse at what life was like in the mid-1700s.
|Routes through Baddeck|
|Antigonish ← Port Hastings ←||W E||→ Jct Cabot Trail → North Sydney|