As you’ll soon discover, Islanders LOVE to talk about the weather, it’s truly a rite of passage to becoming a true Islander. You must discuss the prevailing conditions, question what Jay is forecasting (he’s our CBC weatherman), and share a memory of a time the weather was worse or better than it is currently.
And our obsession with weather makes sense, when you consider the Island’s deep roots as an agricultural and fishing community. It plays a pivotal role in day-to-day life and the bounty of the harvests from land and sea.
As you may have guessed by now, the weather in PEI varies significantly from day to day and season to season. We enjoy four distinct seasons, but even within each of these seasons, the temperature and weather conditions can change quickly.
Summer temperatures tend to range from 18°C to mid-30°C (68°F to 90°F). The conditions can range from hot and humid to temperate and slightly arid (but definitely still on the more humid side!) And, yes, it does rain on PEI. Fortunately, there’s still plenty to see and do in Central Coastal while our farmland is being watered from above.
Spring and fall temperatures tend to run between 8°C and 22°C (46°F to 72°F). It’s especially smart to dress in layers during these seasons, as temperatures can drop quickly once the sun sets.
Winter temperatures can also vary, typically ranging from 3°C to – 22°C (25°F to -7.6°F). Due to our coastal location, PEI tends to get a number of winter storms each year. When the snow falls and the winds pick up, it’s time to get cozy indoors, wait for the storm to pass, then emerge to embrace the blankets of white snow left behind.
As in the rest of Canada and, indeed, much of North America, tipping is considered the standard practice for hospitality services. While there’s no set requirement when it comes to tipping, adding 15% to 20% to your final bill at a restaurant, cafe or bar is considered the norm. Tipping of housekeeping staff, tour guides, taxi/tour bus drivers, and other hospitality staff is at your discretion and always appreciated.
Many PEI beaches are free to visit, including all provincial beaches and public beaches located outside the National Park.
There is a fee to enter the PEI National Park, located in the Green Gables Shore region, by vehicle during the summer season, collected daily from 10am to 6pm. Access is free for cyclists and pedestrians. Check here for full details on National Park fees.
We love and welcome pets of all persuasions on PEI! You will find several pet-friendly accommodation options in the Central Coastal region, as well as plenty of trails and parks that permit dogs.
Some shopkeepers welcome dogs on leashes (and offer water or treats to pooches), but always check before bringing your furry friend into a store. Most eating places do not allow pets on their premises, although some welcome dogs in their outdoor seating area. Please always check ahead for pet-friendly places.
Importantly, dogs are not permitted in the PEI National Park. While there are several reasons for this, one of the main ones is that the Park is responsible for protecting our endangered Piping Plover population. These native birds nest in the sand dunes on the North Shore and their habitat can easily be disrupted by humans and dogs exploring the dunes. For this reason, people are also not allowed to walk the dunes either (it’s just easier for them to read the signage than dogs!)
Due to its rural nature, there is very limited public transit in the Central Coastal region. The best way to explore is by private vehicle or you can sign up for a half or full-day tour through one of our local tour operators.
Please call our Island emergency services by dialing 911 in the case of a fire, accident, medical emergency, or crime.
Local businesses set their own policies and rates when it comes to currency exchange. Some will accept USD at a specified rate, while others may not. We encourage you to exchange your USD for Canadian dollars at a bank or other currency exchange bureau to enjoy the best rates. Please note that most shops, accommodations, and attractions accept major credit cards.
The legal drinking age on PEI is 19. Our province has also legalized recreational use of marijuana and the legal age of consumption is also 19. Please note, smoking of marijuana is not typically permitted at accommodations (including the grounds) and other public places.
You’ll find plenty of fish markets in Central Coastal and we can guarantee that every single one will have PEI lobster on offer. During the fishing season (May to June and Sept to Oct), you may also see lobster fishers and lobster mongers selling their goods out of refrigerated trucks parked in little and bigger communities around the region. Or, if you’re super adventurous, you can try your luck at buying directly from the lobster fishers as they arrive back at the harbour with their day’s catch. Just be sure to bring along cash, a cooler, and a friendly smile to win them over.
Contact us, we’d love to hear from you and answer any questions you may have about our beloved Central Coastal region!