Never too early to think of the beach

CanWest News Service
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As the weather gets warmer and vacation season fast approaches, going on a family get away to a resort down south may not be an option during these dark economic days. But spending a hot afternoon lounging on the beach, surfing on thunderous waves, or swimming in freshwater lakes is not out of the question, as Canada is home to many of the most beautiful and unique beaches in the world.
Beach: Singing Sands Beach
Where: Located on the northeast tip of Prince Edward Island, Singing Sands Beach (also known as Basin Head Beach) is east of the town of Souris and just over an hour's drive from Charlottetown.
Length: Although it can be hard to say where one beach ends and another begins in P.E.I., Basin Head is about eight km long.
Features: Basin Head has a great ecosystem, rich with diverse mammals, fish, and plants making it a great destination for long walks, scouring the sand for natural treasures, or sitting on a blanket watching a magnificent sunset.
What makes it special: When beach-goers walk along the sandy shores, a squeaky-singsong noise is made. The singing of the quartz sand made Singing Sands Beach a nomination in CBC's quest for Canada's Natural Wonders.
Beach: Martinique Beach
Where: Located in Nova Scotia, an hour's drive east of Halifax.
Length: At five km, Martinique Beach is the longest sandy beach in Nova Scotia.
Features: Named a bird sanctuary, Martinique Beach has a wildlife that features Canada geese, the endangered Piping Plover bird, and black ducks.
What makes it special: A quiet underpopulated beach, Martinique is the second home to many surfers who spend hot summer days gliding across its waters.
Beach: Parlee Beach
Where: Located on the east coast of New Brunswick near Shediac, about 20 minute's drive northeast of Moncton.
Length: One km long, approximately 700 metres of the beach is supervised.
Features: As one of the most popular beaches in the province, Parlee Beach is highly accessible, with a fully equipped park site, including changing houses, showers, a canteen, amphitheatre, and washrooms. It is also wheelchair accessible and pet owners are welcome to bring their furry friends to beach day. About one million people visit in the summer months with many as 25,000 visitors on particularly hot days.
What makes it special: Parlee Beach is known for having some of the warmest salt water north of Virginia.
Other top beaches:?
‰ Sauble Beach, Owen Sound, Ont.
‰ Long Beach, Vancouver Island
‰ Wasaga Beach, Georgian Bay, Ont.
‰ Grand Beach, Lake Winnipeg
‰ Wreck Beach, Vancouver
‰ Sandbanks Beach, Lake Ontario

Organizations: CBC, Natural Wonders

Geographic location: Canada, Martinique, Nova Scotia Prince Edward Island Souris Charlottetown Halifax Vancouver Island New Brunswick Shediac Moncton Virginia Sauble Owen Sound Long Beach Wasaga Grand Beach Lake Winnipeg Lake Ontario

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