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Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia Geography

The hills and low mountains ranges of Nova Scotia are all located within the Appalachian Mountains, a chain of eroded mountains that extend about 1,500 miles in length, from central Alabama in the U.S., through Canada's maritime provinces.

The province's rugged coastline is indented by hundreds of bays, coves and small inlets. Wide sandy beaches are plentiful, and they're often fronted by salt water marshes.

The Bay of Fundy fronting Nova Scotia's west central coastline is world-famous for its high tidal range and the bay is claimed to have the highest vertical tidal range in the world. In fact, over 110 billion tons of water flow in and out of the bay during a twelve hour tidal period. Want proof? Here it is!

Separated from the Nova Scotia mainland by the Strait of Canso, Cape Breton Island is Canada's 18th largest island. It is dominated by the Cape Breton Highlands in the north, and by Bras d'Or, one of the planet's largest salt water lakes.

Cape Breton Island's rocky shoreline is deeply indented along its eastern coastline, and in the far northern highlands stands White Hill, the province's highest point at 532 m (1,745 ft).

The Margaree and Mira are the largest rivers on the island, and countless smaller rivers and streams drain into the Bras d'Or Lake, Gulf of St. Lawrence and Atlantic Ocean. Its largest freshwater lake is Lake Ainslie.

Sable Island, part of the Halifax Municipality, is a crescent-shaped sandbar about 160 km from the mainland. Covered by grass, it is often referred to as the Graveyard of the Atlantic, as numerous ships have met their fate here.

Mainland Nova Scotia is dotted with hundreds of small, freshwater lakes; the largest of which is Lake Rossignol. Rivers of note include the Avon, Clyde, Jordon, Liscomb, Mersey, Philip, Roseway, Sable, Salmon, St. Marys and Tusket.

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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This page was last updated on July 14, 2016.