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Amherst, Nova Scotia

Town of Amherst History

As the Province’s historic border town, Amherst is the first community to welcome visitors to Nova Scotia traveling from New Brunswick via the Trans Canada Highway. The Town was named in honour of Lord Amherst, the commander-in-chief of the British Army in North America during the Seven Years' War. Amherst makes its mark in Canadian history by being home to four Fathers of Confederation: Edward B. Chandler, Robert B. Dickey, Jonathan McCully, and Sir Charles Tupper. During the late 19th century, local industrialists and entrepreneurs constructed many fine Victorian and Edwardian homes along Victoria Street East that add to the Town’s charm this very day.

Things to Do in Amherst

The Town of Amherst is a bustling centre for business offering a variety of shops and services to travelers. Amidst the charming architecture of Amherst’s historic downtown are popular shopping destinations such as Dayle’s Department Store and Deanne Fitzpatrick’s Rughooking Studio.

Could you be related to a Father of Confederation? The Cumberland County Museum & Archives is the place to discover the Town and County’s fascinating heritage and to explore your genealogy. And to go even further back in time, Amherst is located just minutes from one of Nova Scotia’s most impressive historic attractions: UNESCO World Heritage site Joggins Fossil Cliffs and Centre.

Amherst is renowned for its festivals and events hosting both the Maritime Rockabilly Shakedown Festival and Blueberry Festival in August, the annual Nova Scotia Fibre Arts Festival in October along with wonderful Artisan and Farmers Markets occurring throughout the summer.

The seacoast is never far away in Amherst as it is the gateway to both the Bay of Fundy tides and the beaches of the Northumberland shore. Wildlife experiences and the great outdoors are also just moments away within the Amherst Point Migratory Bird Sanctuary.


As a shopping and service centre to the region Amherst is home to a variety of accommodations including several hotels, motels, inns and bed and breakfasts as well as nearby camping and RV Parks. Find a list of accommodations in Amherst.

Places to eat

Amherst boasts a variety of dining options including local pubs, cafes, family dining, international cuisine and a great selection of fast-food favorites.