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Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site

Just east of Sydney, Nova Scotia, you’ll discover a portal to the past at one of North America’s busiest 18th-century seaports. Founded by the French in 1713, this reconstruction of the original French town and fortifications is the largest—and best—of its kind in North America, offering a heavy dose of history and culture with each unique experience.

Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site 1

Please Note

Due to COVID-19, the visitor experience at Parks Canada places will be different than it has been in the past. The health and safety of visitors, employees and all Canadians is of the utmost importance. Parks Canada is asking visitors to comply with recommendations from Nova Scotia public health authorities by wearing a mask in indoor public spaces, and by respecting recommended social distancing measures at all times. Please visit and follow Parks Canada’s social media channels for information and updates on the status of all Parks Canada places.


7 Ways To Time Travel at the Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site

Please note that not all experiences highlighted in this video are currently available due to COVID-19 restrictions. If there are any changes, this information will be updated. Enjoy this video to begin planning your 2021 vacation.

Locals Know Blogs

  • 18th-Century Experiences

    Looking for an unplugged vacation? We have just the thing. Cook over an open fire. Fire a cannon as they did 300 years ago. Test your physical endurance in military basic training—18th-century style.

  • Sleep in a Fortress

    The gates may close, but the experience continues on. Camp under the stars, safe inside the fortress walls. Or, become an honorary Louisbourg resident and sleep in a period-style house for the night.

  • Historic Tastes

    Explore the taste and aromas 18-Century colonial living. Sip on Louisbourg’s favorite drink, Fortress Rum, and dine on traditional French recipes served by costumed staff.

Illustrated map of Cape Breton Island

Easy to Find. Hard to Leave.

There are direct flights to Sydney from Toronto and Montreal and from other North American and European cities via Halifax. If traveling by ground, the Trans-Canada Highway 104 leads to Cape Breton Island.

Getting Here and Around