Yacht clubs, time zones, Halifax beaches, coastal barrens… if you haven’t guessed this month’s topic yet, we don’t blame you. In this edition of the Long Lake Village blog, we’ll be exploring Armdale. Armdale is a name used to describe a collective of communities located adjacent to peninsular Halifax. The region is directly across the Northwest Arm from the South End. The area likely takes its name from this same long bay, and is as diverse in use as any part of the city. Why look at Armdale this month? Well, Long Lake Village falls within the community along its south western border with Spryfield and Long Lake Provincial Park.
Now let’s circle back and have a look at the opening sentence… Time zones? Coastal barrens? What do these have to do with Armdale? Well not only is the region home to a pair of Halifax’s most popular yacht clubs and summer beaches, it also has some fantastic fall hiking spots. The first is Fleming Park, named for Sir Sandford Fleming (the inventor of timezones). The second is the Colpitt Lake Backlands, one of the best places to view the Halifax Harbour and coastal Nova Scotian terrain. In the paragraphs to come we’ll explore these and other hotspots in the Armdale area.
In its northern half, which is home to Long Lake Village, the Armdale area is sandwiched between two geographic landmarks of Halifax; Long Lake Provincial Park and the iconic Northwest Arm. In addition to being responsible for Halifax’s unique shape, the Arm is home to the Armdale Yacht Club (Photo 1) and the Royal Nova Scotia Yacht Squadron. Besides their beautiful grounds and views, both yacht clubs feature full dining and bar services. In Long Lake Village, Downtown Halifax is only 10 minutes away, but several options for an evening out are even closer than that.
A large part of the coastline separating the two yacht clubs belongs to Fleming Park, often referred to as “The Dingle” for the landmark Dingle Tower located in the heart of the park. (Photo 2)
This 95 acre urban park is a wooded valley that borders on the Atlantic Ocean. It’s a great place to go for a run or walk during any season. Whether you want to stroll along the shore and enjoy views of the South End or get lost in the wandering trails that lead up into the coastal hills, the park has something for everyone. (Photo 3)
For those who noted the mention of time zones from earlier, the park has several monuments and sun dials. These monuments explain the origin of time zones and tell the story of Sir Sandford Fleming, for whom the park is named.
If you’re looking to go back in time, the Colpitt Lake Backlands are only five minutes south of Long Lake Village, at the edge of Armdale. In addition to magnificent views, this hike offers a look at some stunning Nova Scotian coastal terrain. The hike has been a popular location for university field trips, as evidence of some spectacular geological processes can be observed in the rock formations that line the hike.
Lastly, the Armdale region is home to not one, but two of Halifax’s hottest lake beaches. The first is Cunard Beach, located on Williams Lake, which offers swimming lessons and warm waters throughout the summer. The second is the insanely popular Chocolate Lake. This beach also has lifeguard supervision and summer swimming lessons. Chocolate Lake is frequently cited as one of Halifax’s favorite swimming lakes in local contests and publications.
In summary, Armdale is one of several communities with which Long Lake Village shares close ties, and this has been but the shallowest dive into all the area has to offer. Hopefully though, it will be clear that this community really is something quite special.