Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

Halifax Citadel National Historic Site
4.5
Military MuseumsHistoric SitesPoints of Interest & LandmarksHistory Museums
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Experience an exciting part of Canada's history by visiting this 19th-century fort with a sweeping view of downtown Halifax. Between May and October, the Citadel is brought to life by two historic regiments of the British Army - the pageantry of the 78th Highlanders and the precision of the Royal Artillery thrill visitors daily with live re-enactments. The skirl of the bagpipes mixes with the crack of a rifle and the assembly of recruits for the next foot drill. There's no shortage of authentic experiences to view and participate in! Kids will love the Xplorers Program - an activity book just for them. When the sun sets, it's time to experience the other side of the Citadel - join the Halifax Citadel Ghost Tour and experience the dark and errie lore from the early 1800's. Tours start mid-July and run select Friday and Saturday nights starting at 8:30pm until the end of October. Between Nov. to April, all exhibits and rooms are closed but noon gun fires daily.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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  • Adetoyese O
    Edmonton, Canada586 contributions
    Iconic and Historic
    This icon tourist attraction site is very easy to spot from most places in the downtown area. While I couldn'texplore the inside of this place as I expected, due to the time, I would surely visit again. This spot is good for your exploring and seeing all the areas in the downtown, especially towards the harbourfront.
    Visited March 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written March 18, 2023
  • williamNola
    314 contributions
    should be on top of your list to see in halifax
    one of "have to do's" in halifax. this fortress is not unique by any means. dozens of forts in north america built during this period were built in this exact style. what sets this one apart is it's condition. tip top, spit spot. virtually intact. good military (army) museum and some simple demonstrations complete the show. great place to bring kids
    Visited May 2023
    Written June 1, 2023
  • Stephane G
    2 contributions
    Historical throw back
    Very nice place to visit with a true immersion into the history of the canadian army. Very clean and well preserved piece of history. Very accessible for everyone, and highly interesting. Truly recommend this visit.
    Visited June 2023
    Written June 18, 2023
  • PavlaPavla
    Chrudim, Czech Republic6,560 contributions
    A piece of history
    The Citadel is located on a hill, so it has a beautiful view of Halifax. Inside the citadel itself is an exhibition showing the life of the people at the time when this fortress served its purpose. You can walk here on your own or take a tour with a guide. During my visit, people dressed in period costumes, mostly military ones, moved around the fortress and visitors took pictures with them. There was also a small gift shop and an information center.
    Visited July 2023
    Written July 14, 2023
  • Stirling B
    Ottawa, Canada637 contributions
    Fortress Halifax
    The Halifax Citadel was constructed to protect Halifax from an attack by sea. Sitting high above the Harbour it offers sweeping views and once you have visited you can understand why it was selected as the place to put it. After a long walk up the hill you enter the gate and one inside you are greeted by a huge central square. There are many areas to view and can see the history in a museum and walk across the top of the Citadel where the cannons are. There is also a small gift shop.
    Visited July 2023
    Written July 21, 2023
  • BellBoy53
    Brisbane, Australia610 contributions
    Insightful
    A historic monument where the staff, dressed in military uniforms from a by-gone era, give you an insight into life during the formative stages of Halifax’s development. Entry price is reasonable and includes a free walking tour. Lots of info in the static displays. Great all round views of the current city. Worth a visit.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written July 27, 2023
  • Susan P
    Putnam, Connecticut809 contributions
    The Must-Go Fort in Halifax
    This is a must do when in Halifax. If it is a sunny day, you can see the downtown area in the harbor. There is ample parking as well as handicap parking. This is a fort and quite large so allow ample time to see everything. There is a large building, which is now their visitor Center and museum. My husband and I spent almost 2 hours in this building alone. Exhibits include the Citadel through the years and relates to historic events in the area. Don't miss the room where you can try on military outfits, including hats for terrific photo opportunities. Interpreters dressed in period garb give presentations throughout the day. The big draw is the canon being fired at noon. No matter where you are someone will remind you that it's going to happen. The courtyard area is gravel and it was somewhat challenging to navigate on a drizzly, windy day. Nonetheless, I highly recommend going, and I would allow 3 to 4 hours.
    Visited June 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written August 23, 2023
  • JC
    London, United Kingdom28 contributions
    Very Insightful!
    We visited the Citadel in September 2022. It is a really informative place to visit, with history and displays from various times throughout the Fort's life. The changing of the guard is a very cool thing to witness, you can't miss it as they make quite a bit of noise doing so! Make sure to visit at noon to see the daily firing of the gun from the top of the Fort. Also keep an eye out for talks from the staff around the site.
    Visited September 2022
    Travelled as a couple
    Written August 31, 2023
  • Davigeta
    Saint Louis, Missouri1,091 contributions
    Great historic site
    This fort is a landmark in Halifax. It has protected the port since 1749, and the current structure is the 4th version of the fort. There are many exhibits in the buildings, explaining the history of the forts and other matters. There is an exhibit for kids on the 1944 Normandy invasion and the Canadian role in this. There are reenactments with people dressed for past periods of the fort's existence. They have military drills with firing of rifles. There is a small gift shop. The Halifax Citadel has great views of the surrounding area. Very informative, a must-see.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled as a couple
    Written September 16, 2023
  • TravelerUK1
    43 contributions
    Historical site worth visiting
    Highly recommend visiting. I got there when they opened and went on a free guided tour. Well worth it to learn more about the history of the citadel. The changing of the guard and the shooting of the 12 o'clock gun is worth seeing as well. I spent 3 hours there and walked through the whole place. They have a small cafe that sells good food. I ate lunch there. It's on top of a hill, so it's a bit of a trek and can get very windy up there. It's well worth a visit if you like history. I walked back up the hill the next day to walk around the outside of the citadel. You can do that at any time.
    Visited September 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written October 1, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Dave1796
Springfield, VA593 contributions
Aug 2023 • Couples
This is a must see when in Halifax. It's history, and the sweeping views of the city below. Highly recommended.
Written December 4, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TennisStar602
New Jersey616 contributions
Nov 2023 • Solo
The Halifax Citadel was free to enter in the middle of November when I visited. The staff was extremely friendly and informative. It was not very crowded when I appeared. Most of the indoor room attractions were closed, but guests were free to walk around the grounds inside and outside of the fort. There were many cannons and other such structures throughout the fort. There were also great views of Halifax and Dartmouth. There was a firing of the cannon at noon, but I was not present for this event. I parked directly outside of this attraction on the street.
Written November 22, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Foodange
Manchester, UK2,822 contributions
Sept 2023 • Couples
We really enjoyed our visit here.

We arrived in time to see the Noon Gun fired from close quarters.

When the cruise crowd left we stayed behind to chat to the actors, who were full of stories for us.

The side exhibition on Fortress Halifax is worth the entry fee on its own, with a multimedia show taking us through the building and destruction of the 5 different forts on the site.

We walked all the way round the battlements for good views over the town.

The only really bad issue was the belching diesel fumes from old London buses, sitting next to the queues at the entrance.
We weren't the only ones coughing and spluttering.
Tried to give one of the drivers some 'feedback' but he wasn't interested at all.
How do these drop on/drop off buses even get a license?
They’ve been banned in the real London for years, that’s why they’ve been sold to gullible tourist companies!
Oh and BTW London buses were always red, not white, pink or blue!
Written November 21, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

thedz Bear
Halifax, Canada239 contributions
Sept 2023 • Friends
Fascinating!!
We just arrived in Nova Scotia and in less than a week, we visited the place and it was a good experience. For us newcomers, the place showcases it’s beautiful heritage and inspiring story. This is a must go place once you’re visiting Nova Scotia.
Written November 6, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

roaming_kiwi58
Christchurch, New Zealand2,826 contributions
Sept 2023 • Couples
We are not really into museums, but decided it was worthwhile to visit the Citadel in Halifax. It was pleasant to wander around the walls and watch the changing of the guard. There are also a lot of museum type displays, which we perused only briefly. If you are into military history then there would be a lot to interest you. Worth a visit and we enjoyed our time here. We walked to the citadel from the wharf where our cruise ship was docked.
Written October 29, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TERRAvelista
London, UK17,547 contributions
Sept 2023 • Family
This was another great discovery in Halifax detailing, together with the Maritime museum (with lots of info about the Titanic and other shipwrecks in the area) just about anything you would want to learn about this city:

- you cannot park here, so you have to walk that hill all the way to the citadel, which is indeed a pain: of course descending is much easier and yes, there are some seating areas all the way up to here
- after paying the entry fee (under 10CAD if I remember correctly), we were welcomed by seasonal volunteers in their Scottish costumes: initially I thought they were army cadets but they detailed to me how proud they are simply to be volunteers who also do re-enactments so you might want to check their site and discover the times they do this
- inside there is a plethora of information in a pictorial shape but also medals, artefacts, guns and other military attires depicting not only information about Canadians and their input in WWI and WWII but also pre and after the wars: details about the migrating Indians (did you know they share 25% of their DNA with SE Asian population and also of the tribes in Australia - proof of their early migration, as learned from documentaries)
- also lots of info about the 1917 explosion that killed 6000 people and flattened Halifax

After walking the hill you think 'is it worth paying the entry fee?' The answer is a definite yes: very few places are worth their entry price and this place most surely is 100% worth it, if you like learning information.
Written October 27, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jamie H-D
Poole, UK694 contributions
Sept 2023 • Couples
My husband and I came in ‘shoulder season’ so there wasn’t a full time table of re-enactments or activities, but that was ok.
Lots to see and do as you explore the timeline for the French and British rule in the area, you can easily spend half a day or more here.
Very friendly volunteers and staff that are happy to answer any questions you may have.
It would have been good to have some sort of sign posts / direction to let you know a recommendation on where to walk round and in what direction so you make sure you see everything.
If you have a Parks Canada Pass then it’s free entry.
Written October 6, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MarinaFollowsTheSun
Berlin, Germany1,883 contributions
Aug 2023 • Couples
What a fun day. Everything is very interactive and family friendly.
The museum could be a little more detailed in terms of information, but all in all it was really enjoyable.
Be there at noon to hear the cannon shot.
Written October 3, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

TravelerUK1
PA43 contributions
Sept 2023 • Solo
Highly recommend visiting. I got there when they opened and went on a free guided tour. Well worth it to learn more about the history of the citadel. The changing of the guard and the shooting of the 12 o'clock gun is worth seeing as well. I spent 3 hours there and walked through the whole place. They have a small cafe that sells good food. I ate lunch there. It's on top of a hill, so it's a bit of a trek and can get very windy up there. It's well worth a visit if you like history. I walked back up the hill the next day to walk around the outside of the citadel. You can do that at any time.
Written October 1, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

19Stephen57
Bristol, UK26 contributions
Sept 2023 • Couples
The museum in the citadel provided a fascinating story about the history of Nova Scotia. At least an hour is required to properly read the displays but it is well worth the effort to do so.
Written September 22, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Halifax Citadel National Historic Site (Nova Scotia): Hours, Address, Attraction Reviews - Tripadvisor