A Local’s Guide to 6 of the Best Beaches in PEI

PEI is known as a place to relax and reconnect with a more peaceful version of yourself. You know, the one that’s always in there somewhere, but often gets bogged down with the busyness of “real life”—yeah, that’s the one.

It’s also one of the best places to embrace your inner beach bum and throw caution to the wind (except don’t forget the sunscreen #safetyfirst). And with over 24 publicly-known beaches (and countless private-access beaches), there are no shortage of options suited just for you.

But as you’ll soon find out, everyone’s a bit biased when it comes to recommending beaches. Mainly due, in part, to whether you grew up closer to the south shore or the north shore. So don’t trust every well-intending Islander you meet on this one.

But in order to keep everyone happy (we’re all about keeping the peace, after all), here are six beaches from north shore to south you’ll want to check out.

1. Ross Lane – Just 30 minutes north of Charlottetown along the Gulf Shore Parkway East in the PEI National Park, Ross Lane is like the lesser-known (and maybe even cuter?) little sister to well-known Brackley Beach. Same great views, white sand, and supervised swimming—except with half the crowd, twice the space to spread out, and quickly becoming a hidden gem.

2. *Argyle Shore – Typical of the quieter, more understated beaches of the south shore, Argyle Shore is an ideal spot to unwind with a book, marvel at the red cliffs, and float upon the warm waves of the Northumberland Strait.

3. *North Rustico Harbour Beach – Flying under the radar outside of the PEI National Park on the north shore (AKA no charge to enter), North Rustico Harbour beach just about has it all. Long stretches of white sand, beautiful views, and even allows dogs on leash… because who says humans get to have all the fun?

4. *Chelton Beach Provincial Park – It is one of the south shore’s best beaches but remains pretty well unknown to visitors. It’s a long stretch of red sand beach with a magnificent view of the Confederation Bridge, and features playground equipment for the kiddies, a supervised beach, showers, flush toilets, and canteen. Oh, and little Rover is permitted on-leash, too.

5. *Cousin’s Shore – We might get in trouble with the locals for sharing this, but Cousin’s Shore, just north of Kensington, is the epitome of a “best-kept secret.” Not only does it have soft white sand, but it also has the rich red cliffs that PEI is so famous for. The best of both worlds? We dare say, yes.

6. *Victoria Harbour – Back to the south shore we go, this time to Victoria Harbour, just outside the quaint village of Victoria-by-the-Sea. It’s a peaceful place for clam-digging in bare feet at low tide, reading in a beach chair at the water’s edge, or dozing off on a blanket under an umbrella in the afternoon sun.

(*pet-friendly beaches)