North Bermuda? Diverted cruise ship passengers soak up the sights of Cape Breton
A cruise ship that was originally scheduled to head to Bermuda stopped in Sydney on Monday.
The ship, which sailed out of Boston, was diverted to the Maritimes and made one of its three stops in the Cape Breton port.
Some passengers were left longing for sun and sand.
“It's not fun and it's cold,” said Phil Kosa. “And we're not dressed for it - as you see, shorts.”
But even though Cape Breton is not a tropical island, tour buses were all booked up with people looking to explore it.
“With 2,300 people arriving, that's always an impact on our local offerings that we have right here in the port of Sydney,” said Christina Lamey, manager of cruise marketing and development for the Port of Sydney.“But also, all the tour operators are selling more excursions today. That's another ship, and another set of buses that are running all across the island. To the miner's museum, the Cabot Trail, the Alexander Graham Bell Museum, and Fortress Louisbourg.”
It was 18 C and sunny just after lunchtime and while it was not exactly tropical temperatures, a lot of people were making the best of it.
Some went so far as to say that they prefer this place to some Caribbean destinations.
“I didn't like the Bahamas at all,” said Kathy Martell.“This is lovely, and the people are very friendly so, if we have to be anywhere, why not here?”
The Maritime hospitality combined with comfortable early September weather had some accidental visitors coining this place with a new nickname: North Bermuda.
Many said they've been stranded in much worse places and that at least this isn't the Bermuda triangle.
Though they were only in port for the day, they seemed to be blending in as they made plans for the last few hours in port.
"I think we're just going to R&R a little bit,” said Carol Skinner. “Take in some local food, a couple of beers, probably, and get back on the ship.”
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Ryan MacDonald.