With its rugged coastlines, old-growth forests and sandy beaches, Nova Scotia offers something for all adventurers. There are many places around the province that offer authentic off the grid getaways. Make sure to pack all the gear you need and plan ahead when heading out for some of the backcountry camping places you can go to in beautiful Nova Scotia.
Fishing Cove Backcountry CampgroundStay in the only designated wilderness camping area in Cape BretonHighlands National Park. To start your camping adventure, you need to go to the Cheticamp or Ingonish Visitor Centre to register for a backcountry permit. The camping area is at the base of MacKenzie Mountain. The coast is a 6km hike from the camping area. You need to bring your own drinking water as potable water is not available on site.
Cabot Trail, Cape Breton Highlands National Park
Kejimkujik National Park and National Historic Site
Scattered along Keji’s hiking trails and canoe routes are 46 backcountry campsites. Each campsite has two tent pads, picnic tables, bear cables and a pit privy. If you prefer to travel light, there are two backcountry cabins available in the park.
3005 Main Parkway, Maitland Bridge
Tidney River Wilderness Area
Explore the Sable River Basin. The wilderness area is known for being a wonderful place for canoeing because the rivers run slow in most places. Camping is best attempted during seasonal high water periods.
Sable River, NS
Bowers Meadows Wilderness Area
This wilderness area features a large fen- and bog- dominated wetlands that connects to the Round Bay River. Most of the water is a still-water. Along with backcountry camping, the area is also suited for hiking, hunting, canoeing and fishing.
Raven Head Wilderness AreaAlong the coast of the Bay of Fundy, between Apple Head and Two Rivers is the Raven Head Wilderness Area. The area almost extends to the Joggins Fossil Cliffs. The forest access road almost takes you to the beach. Coastal hiking and beachcombing are great ways to pass the time when you are camping in the area.
Cloud Lake Wilderness Area
A hidden gem in the Annapolis Valley, this wilderness area is home both Cloud Lake and Frog Lake. Eskers along some of the waterways are excellent routes for backcountry camping and hiking. You can reach the wilderness from the Annapolis Valley Rail Trail and Squirreltown Road.
Fire Lane, Middleton
Home to two distinctly different forested areas between Mount Uniacke and Rawdon, Devils Jaw is a popular location as a backcountry recreation destination. The varied and rugged terrain provides quality opportunities for camping, hunting, hiking, and fishing. A campsite lease within the wilderness area at Long Lake will be honoured.
East Hants, NS
Terence Bay Provincial Wilderness Area
You would never expect there is a wilderness area inHRM, but there is. Between Spryfield ad the Atlantic Ocean is untouched nature. The lakes, woodlands, and coastal environment offer amazing opportunities for wilderness recreation just a short drive from the city. It is often windy, and foggy due to the Atlantic Ocean.
Margaree River Wilderness AreaProtecting the upper reaches of the Northeast Margaree River is the Margaree River Wilderness Area. From the canyon rim at Cape Clear, you have a breathtaking view of the rugged and scenic wilderness area below. The terrain is rough, so it can be challenging to find a safe place to set up camp. There are no managed trails at the moment.
Only reachable by boat or kayak, Scaterie Island is one of Nova Scotia’s largest Islands. The Island once had a fishing settlement that is now abandoned. The island is subject to harsh ocean weather and heavy fog, so plan ahead and check the weather before heading out.
Hidden away, and connecting central and western Nova Scotia, South Panuke maintains biodiversity land bridge. Moose can often be spotted around the park. The terrain is generally rugged with hills, ridges, and hummocks. There is one Crown campsite lease is located in the area.
Gabarus Wilderness Area
Just a short drive from Louisbourg is 20km of wonderful ocean shoreline and numerous fresh and brackish-water lakes. The Gull Cove Trail runs through the wilderness are, and you can find evidence of former settlements along the trail. Gull Cove is a great place to set up camp.
French River Wilderness Area
On the eastern edge of the highland plateau above the Cabot Trail, the French River Wilderness Area is one of the largest and most rugged protected area in Nova Scotia. The highest point in the area is about 500m. The area is home to many diverse habitats, which include steep river canyons, small remote ponds, and bogs. This area is only for campers who are looking for a challenging camping experience.
Blue Mountain – Birch Lakes
Go backcountry camping without leaving HRM. Blue Mountain – Birch Lakes is a popular location for mountain biking, hiking, and fishing. The park can be accessed from various locations, with the most popular being Kearney Lake and Timberlea. There are no designated campsites, so you will need to keep an eye out for a good place to set up your campsite.
Maskwa Club Trail, Timberlea
Eastern Shore Islands
To reach these backcountry camping spots, you will need to sea kayak or take a boat to the collection of 400 large and small islands. The islands are home to many colonies of seabirds and waterfowl. There are dozens of beaches that you can explore and relax on. Since you need to sail or sea kayak to the islands, make sure to check the weather before heading out.