MOST people who visit Prince Edward Island are already familiar
with its famous fictional resident, "Anne of Green Gables." For
here in Cavendish, Lucy Maud Montgomery wrote the much-loved novel
about the red-haired, freckle-faced heroine. No trip to P.E.I. is
complete without a visit to the Green Gables house, the setting of
the book published in 1908 and translated into 16 languages.
Though Anne is not nearly as prevalent here as, say, Elvis is in
Memphis, she does show up quite a bit - in gift stores, on stage,
and in advertisements. As a Fodor's guidebook explains, "After
potatoes and lobsters, Anne is the island's most important
Like Montgomery, visitors to this island will delight in its
natural beauty, where rolling hills and green fields meet the ocean
at red-clay cliffs. The Indians named it Abegweit - "land cradled
on the waves."
For a friend and me, mid-July proved the perfect time to visit
P.E.I., as we escaped humid 90-degree weather in Boston. Our
dilly-dally drive took about 14 hours. We wended our way through
Maine and New Brunswick (the landscape was covered with beautiful
wild lupines), camped overnight in Shediac, Canada's lobster
capital, and took an early-morning ferry from Cape Tormentine, New
Brunswick, to Borden, P.E.I. Once on the island, we drove straight
north, following the suggestion of a bookstore owner we had talked
to in Maine.
Since we had only two days on P.E.I., we concentrated on the
north-central part of the island affectionately known as the "Land
of Anne." We set up camp in Cavendish National Park - on the north
shore at the Gulf of Lawrence. The park has sheltered kitchens,
laundry facilities, full bathrooms, and telephones. Our campsite
was 100 yards from giant sand dunes and a lovely stretch of beach.
Our fellow campers were mostly families, French- and
In addition to Green Gables, P.E.I. boasts many attractions,
some quirky (a house made of bottles and "Canada's Only Potato
Museum"), some adventurous (whale watching, sea kayaking, and
amusement parks), and many quaint (old shops, fishing villages,
lighthouses, and art galleries).
Still, the main attraction is the island's natural beauty.
Anyone who has enjoyed Cape Cod or coastal Maine would see
similarities here, though Prince Edward Island is much less
built-up and a bit more primitive. The tourist board is fond of
pointing out that, because of the Gulf Stream, P.E.I.'s waters are
warmer than any in the Atlantic north of the Carolinas. But don't
expect bath water. …