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- Difficulty: Easy to Moderate (distance).
- Facilities: Parking, toilets, picnic tables, tea room, estate museum.
- Signage: Interpretive panels and trail markings.
- Features: 930 hectares with 7 hiking trails. Estate Museum open daily until 5pm June 1-Oct. 5 (admission under $5). Park open year-round. Gate closes at 5 pm & permanently during the offseason (allowed to park outside the gate, but not block it). Accessible to people of all abilities.
- Habitat: European Ash | English Oak | Ah-Ha | More..
- Tags: #Accessible, #Hiking, #Historic-Site, #Lake, #Museum, #Old-Growth, #Park, #Picnic.
Uniacke Estate Museum Park
The trails at Uniacke Estate vary considerably. The park offers approximately 4km of leisurely and level gravel trails and about 8km of moderately difficult natural trails through woods, marshes, and ravines. The estate grounds of Richard John Uniacke, built in 1815, are now a beautifully preserved museum park open to the public. The walking trails are open year-round, as you’re allowed to park in front of the gate, but not block it. The museum and tea room open for the season on June 1st.
The easier, gravel trails include the Lake Martha Loop and Hothouse Hill Loop. Great scenery is accompanied by good signage giving you a background on the history of the area. The park is very #family-friendly and offers programs for students and children’s groups. Aside from the many scenic benches and picnic areas, the basement of Uniacke house is now a tea room offering a place to sit and enjoy refreshments while browsing the gift shop. With books, crafts and period-themed gifts, the tea room is a great place to browse some interesting conversation pieces.
If you’re looking for a #family-friendly activity in Uniacke Estate Museum Park, try “An Ant’s Life” to enter the world of small and become an ant. The step-by-step instructions for this 2.5 km (return) trail adventure and a route map can be downloaded at earthadventures.ca. The approximate time to complete the adventure is 2 hours, 30 minutes.
The more advanced trails are more rugged nature trails where you’ll encounter lakes and streams with some great vantage points. The Drumlin Field Trail, Red Spruce Trail, Post Road Trail, Wetlands Trail and Barrens Trail provide over 8km of hiking. The “Post Road” trail follows the original road between Windsor and Halifax used by stagecoaches in the early 1800s to deliver mail. You can almost picture yourself as a British redcoat marching some of these same roads in the 1700s. These more advanced trails take anywhere from 45 minutes to 3 hours depending on your route.
The area is steeped in history and is a great place for just about every kind of outdoor exploration. When walking the grounds its hard not to think back to a time when this estate would have born witness to the early European settlement and governance of Nova Scotia.
If you plan on walking all of the trails, bring along good hiking footwear, water, and other essentials that you’d bring when preparing for a hike. Cell phone service can be unreliable in the area. The trails are open year-round and remain un-groomed in the winter.