Your Guide to Stepping Inside the World of Anne of Green Gables
Before an orphaned red-head even popped into her mind, Lucy Maud Montgomery fell in love with Prince Edward Island and its glorious coast. PEI’s luscious nature, beaches and of course, red dirt provided the perfect backdrop for Montgomery’s novel that has warmed the hearts of readers around the world! But PEI isn’t just home to red cliffs, glistening seas and rainbow sunsets, it is also home to world-class cuisine, theatre, and experiences you’ll only find on the Island. Love the novel? Here is how you can experience the Island through the eyes of Anne (with an e!)
Spoiler Alert: Avonlea is not a real town in PEI. Like Anne herself, the town was invented by Lucy Maud Montgomery as the setting for her novel. The town of Avonlea is based on real-life Cavendish, located on the north shore of PEI. Montgomery grew up in Cavendish, and declared it the most magical place on Earth. To experience the life Anne Shirley lead, you’ll have to start in Cavendish!
Where to Go
Although Avonlea isn’t technically a real town, you can still experience Anne Shirley’s hometown firsthand! Setting foot in Avonlea Village (8779 Cavendish Rd) will make you feel like you’re leaving the 21st century behind and stepping into the pages of Montgomery’s novel! The village comes alive with toe tapping live music, mouthwatering homegrown cuisine, and a multitude of heritage buildings for you to explore.
What to See
When Lucy Maud Montgomery moved to PEI she first fell in love with the nature. She was so entranced by the natural beauty that she based many scenes in the novel off of real life locations! The Lake of Shining Waters is located near the Anne of Green Gables Museum in Park Corner. Stroll along this glimmering pond home to many boat races and swimming fiascos throughout the novels. The Green Gables House in Cavendish was never inhabited by Montgomery herself, rather home to her cousins. If you’re brave enough, traipse through the Haunted Woods to the famous homestead. Or if you’re looking for a more romantic excursion, stroll along Lover’s Lane admiring the natural beauty of PEI along the way. And of course, make sure to stop into the house itself! Stepping into the historic Green Gables house will whisk you back through the years to a time of puffed sleeves, oil lamps, and of course- raspberry cordial.
Where to Stay
Overlook the gorgeous North Shore coastline while staying in Cavendish. Prince Edward Island is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, and Cavendish beach is the crown jewel. Complete your novel experience by staying at Avonlea Cottages. Most evenings you’ll catch a glorious sunset, and if you’re very lucky at certain points of the summer Cavendish beach provides the perfect front-row seat to a Northern Light show!
What to Eat
PEI is known famously for its two culinary industries, seafood and potatoes. As an Island we are abundant with fresh sea life, and the iron rusting in our red dirt provides the perfect environment to cultivate potatoes. Enjoy the best of both worlds when dining at Avonlea Village. Red Island Baked Potato bakes its Island spuds in specialized ovens to create delicious baked potatoes covered with a variety of local delicacies. Pair it with a 4 oz PEI Lobster roll from Dave’s Lobster and you’ve got a meal fit for a king! For dessert try a scoop (or three!) of PEI’s super premium ice cream at COWS.
What to Do
There are plenty of ways to partake in the Anne culture on PEI. Experience the heart-warming story for yourself at the Anne of Green Gables – The Musical in Charlottetown at Confederation Centre of the Arts. After the show, head across the street to the Guild Theatre and see Anne fall in love at Anne and Gilbert. Indulge your inner chocoholic and witness chocolate making at Anne of Green Gables Chocolates at Avonlea Village! Be sure to catch live local music at the Avonlea church. Children’s shows play daily at 11:00AM, and the local talent comes out at 7:30 for the Avonlea Village ceilidh. Take in the Matthew’s Carriage Rides at the Anne of Green Gables Museum, where you’ll ride along a country path with the beautiful PEI North Shore on one side and the Lake of Shining Waters on the other. Make sure to book some relaxing time as well! Cavendish Beach is the perfect place to lay in the sun or take a dip in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
What to Take Home
You can’t leave PEI without the perfect souvenir! The Anne of Green Gables Store in Cavendish is the perfect stop to pick up all things Anne, from a straw hat with braids, to your very own copy of the novel!