DescriptionBaddeck, on the shore of the Bras d'Or Lakes on Cape Breton Island, derives its name from the Mi'kmaq word abadak, which means “place with an island near.” The nearby island is Kidston's in Baddeck Harbour. Bras d'Or and its watershed were designated a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve for the combination of arctic and subtropical species therein.
During the era of wooden ships Baddeck's boatyards helped sustain the economy. Today its harbor bustles with yachts and commercial boating traffic. Early on, the town was popularized by American editor and writer Charles Dudley Warner in his “Baddeck and That Sort of Thing.” The village attracted many well-known persons who built summer houses in the area. Among those who came was Alexander Graham Bell, drawn because the scenery reminded him of Scotland. The resemblance does not end with the scenery; Gaelic is spoken, and old Highland Scottish customs persist in the local culture.
About 4 kilometres (2.5 mi.) from town is Bell's former summer home, Beinn Bhreagh, Gaelic for “beautiful mountain.” His descendants continue to occupy the estate, which is closed to the public. On the property are the graves of Dr. and Mrs. Bell.
A number of scenic routes originate in Baddeck. The Cabot Trail, a road around northern Cape Breton, loops through here and runs through Ingonish, Cape North and Chéticamp. Other routes lead through the Margaree Valley and to Whycocomagh and Lake Ainslie. Nearby waters are renowned for trout fishing and yachting.
Things to SeeAlexander Graham Bell National Historic Site