From Stratford, across the Hillsborough Bridge from Charlottetown, the route travels south near the shore of the Northumberland Strait to Woods Islands. Vehicles can take the Northumberland Ferry and connect to Nova Scotia Highway 106.
Hillsborough River Causeway
Hillsborough River causeway was built in 1961, and has since caused significant changes to the tidal flow of the river, and the area’s flora and fauna. The dykes along the shore have constricted tidal flows to rush much faster though the open middle portion. Various shorebirds seen near the causeway are common tern, and use the old bridge piers as nesting sites.
Orwell Corner Historic Village is a provincially-owned historical restoration project begun in the 1970s depicting Island life in the post-Confederation period. The village includes a general store and an operating shingle mill, blacksmith’s shop, an old schoolhouse, barns, and a meeting house. There are lovely gardens and picnic sites in the village. Nearby is Sir Andrew MacPhail Homestead, the birthplace of named for the noted doctor, writer, and teacher (born in Orwell in 1864) and knighted for his work in the Canadian Army Medical Corps during World War One.
Wood Islands Harbour & Lighthouse
Wood Islands Harbour (originally called Victoria Harbour) There were three islands, now permanently linked by sand bars which form and protect the Harbour. The southwestern shore of the lagoon forming Wood Islands Harbour is the southernmost point in Prince Edward Island.
The town has had ferry service since a ‘winter mail run’ between Wood Islands and Pictou, Nova Scotia, in 1777. This was the island’s winter seasonal connection to the mainland. The harbour is not only the ferry docks for Northumberland Ferries Limited, but is an important port for the fishing and aquaculture industries. The southeast island came to be attached to shore with the construction of the Wood Islands ferry terminal and berthing docks
Wood Islands Lighthouse and an eight room structure was completed in 1876, for a total budget of $6,000, to aid marine traffic in the Strait and for fishers in and around Wood Islands harbour . It is the second oldest lighthouse on the island. The lighthouse had a difficult approach, and it was not until the late 1930s that a road to the light was built. The Wood Islands Lighthouse is now a museum, with daily tours from mid-July to mid-September, operated by a local community group.
Woods Islands, was once completely out of the water, and divers can see signs of a drowned forest about 8 feet below the current sea level.
Northumberland Ferries Limited (NFL) is a ferry headquartered in Charlottetown, PEI (NFL also owns Bay Ferries Limited). It operates the ferry service across the eastern part of the Northumberland Strait for the Trans-Canada Highway, connecting Wood Islands, PEI and Caribou, Nova Scotia. It has operated this ferry service since 1941, and runs ferries from May to December (when sea ice does not limit operations).
Fares are paid only when exiting Prince Edward Island; the round-trip fares (in 2016) will be C$71 for automobiles, $40 for motorcycles, $20 for bicycles, $19 for adult passengers (13-59 years of age) and $16 for seniors (60+). Children under 12 years old travel free.
The other major Northumberland Strait crossing, the Confederation Bridge from Prince Edward Island to New Brunswick, currently charges its C$46.00 per car toll only when exiting Prince Edward Island as well. Therefore, travellers entering the island on the ferry and exiting on the bridge or vice versa only need pay for one of the links.
Trans-Canada Highway Itinerary Map
Use mouse to drag/move map. Click on “+” or “–” to zoom in or out. “Satellite” combines map & photo.