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The Warmest Water
North of the Carolinas


    So say the travel brochures, and it's true. This past summer at our cottage at Heather Beach, Nova Scotia, the water temperature hit 76 degrees, while the summer range is commonly 68 to 73 degrees.

    Camping with our children there in 1990, we noticed a "for sale" sign on a sweet little cottage. We met with the broker, who calculated the asking price in U.S. dollars to be $15,000. Wrote a check on the spot. This is it, on the Northumberland strait, looking out to Prince Edward Island, about 15 miles by boat.

    Photo of Cottage

    The property taxes are $135/year, so it's quite affordable. The catch? Well, it's very modest, 2 tiny bedrooms, has hot and cold water and an outside shower, but only an outhouse. Definitely summer-only. But if you don't want to rough it you can find larger cottages with full plumbing for under $30K US.  (Update for 2002: Prices have been improving, make that . . . under $45K US).

    It's not a weekend place unless you can commute by air. With young children, and a low budget, we used to take a van, leaving about 3 in the afternoon, and drove straight through, so the kids could sleep much of the way and not be bored, arriving the next morning. Woodstock to Heather Beach is 770 miles. The civilized way to travel (and now we can afford to do this each year) there is to book a suite on VIA Rail Canada's wonderful sleeper coach that departs Montreal at dinnertime and arrives next morning after breakfast a few minutes from the beach.  (2002 note: actually, if you depart from St. Lambert, just a few miles from Montreal, there's free parking).

    It's the beach from another era. Low key, little in the way of night-life, no P-Town nearby, it's back to the basics. Great for young ones, the beach is safe and a great "babysitter". As my eldest approaches her teens, she may begin to find it not exciting enough, we'll see.

    More about this cottage

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Teran Realty 74 Mill Hill Road Woodstock, NY 12498
(845) 679-3333 1-800-57-TERAN