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Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: 1099 Highway 312, Englishtown, Nova Scotia B0C 1H0, Canada
Phone Number:
+1 902-929-2563

Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours is one of the 100 Must-See Destinations in...

Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours is one of the 100 Must-See Destinations in Unforgettable Atlantic Canada! On the 2 1/2 - 3 hour boat tour you'll be amazed at the beautiful rock formations on the way to the Islands , a stop to look at an old sea cave as well as a stop or two to feed some Bald Eagles. The Bird Islands are home to Grey Seals, Bald Eagles ,Atlantic Puffins and other sea birds. Our vessel, Highland Lass has all removable windows down both sides (refit 2012) for easy viewing and taking pictures from the comfort of your seat.Our tour spends over an hour at the Islands viewing birds (more if necessary) this does not include the time spent feeding Bald Eagles on the way to and from the Islands or stopping for anything else of interest, whales dolphins, gannets etc. The tour is offered in English , however there are written transcripts ( limited numbers of each ) of the whole tour available on the boat in English, French and German to make your experience more enjoyable. Please note that tours can be cancelled due to unsafe sailing conditions.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 199 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 175
  • 16
    Very good
  • 2
  • 1
  • 2
fun and fulfilling

we got to sea a lot of different birds, including the tiny little puffins! and lots of seals on the way back

Reviewed 19 March 2017
Angel T
via mobile
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199 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 196: English reviews
Level Contributor
28 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 March 2017 via mobile

we got to sea a lot of different birds, including the tiny little puffins! and lots of seals on the way back

Thank Angel T
Cabot Trail, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia
Level Contributor
14 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 November 2016

The Birds are the reason and Donelda is the bonus! Donelda has been a lobster fisherperson for many, many years and she knows the sea. She also knows her birds and her customers and she brings the two together as close as she can. From Eagles swooping down to feed on fish to Puffins bobbing in the water around the... More 

Thank Westiespencer
Wilmington, Ohio
Level Contributor
18 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 October 2016

We drove for several hours from our campsite (Broad Cove) to get across a little causeway on a ferry boat and found the correct dock. The trip was most awesome. Donelda and her husband took us EVERYWHERE to assure that we all saw everything. They have been feeding the eagles for years so they all (several eagles) come to the... More 

Thank FranOHIO
Auburn, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 October 2016

This was a great tour. We went in the beginning of August and saw all kinds of wildlife; puffins, eagles, seals, great blue herons and so on. We highly recommend everyone to take this tour if you're heading to Cape Breton. Both Donelda and her husband were very informative. We thoroughly enjoyed it!

2 Thank bigkid1333
Level Contributor
67 reviews
58 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 September 2016

We liked this tour. It was cool to see the puffins and eagles, but we especially liked the seals! It is amazing to see. After a while though we did get kinda tired of it though, and the trips to the island and back take a pretty long time (half hour?). Donelda was quite informative. The boat was comfortable and... More 

1 Thank disapp0inted17
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for your review .There is a lot to see on the way to and from the Islands as well as going around the Islands . We always tell people that the tour can run up to 3 hours so people can are aware that they will be on the boat for up to 3 hours. Thank you for... More 

Upstate New York
Level Contributor
200 reviews
87 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 September 2016

My friend and I visited in August and though it was a cloudy day we saw LOTS of puffins (Atlantic Puffins being much smaller than we realized). We also saw LOTS of bald eagles since they like to eat puffins. Also on the 3 hour tour we saw seals, kittiwakes and many other sea birds. The boat is covered so... More 

2 Thank Joanne A
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for writing your review about your time with us . The Islands are amazing ! Thank you for recommending our tour! More 

Level Contributor
16 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 August 2016 via mobile

This tour is on a reasonably steady, canopied boat. Our tour lasted three hours and included close encounters with bald eagles, seals and other birds. The tour guides knew what they were talking about, providing details of the wildlife and history of the surrounding area. What we really appreciated is they explained that we were on shoulder season for puffins... More 

2 Thank Steve R
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for taking the time to write a review about your time with us and your compliments .We enjoy sharing our knowledge and area with our passengers . More 

Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
123 reviews
99 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 92 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 August 2016

Positives: The amount of seals that we saw, although I didn’t find we spent enough time looking at them when we passed by them sitting on the rocks. You do see a lot of puffins, but they are far away and very small so binoculars is a must. We saw many bald eagles and other birds. Sit on the left... More 

Thank Jolie J
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for sharing your time with us. If you had spoken to me before you left I could have addressed the speakers .I don't have speakers on the back of the boat because if the seals are on the rocks and I use the PA then the seals hop off the rocks. It also spooks the Puffins to fly... More 

Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 19 August 2016

I was looking forward to seeing puffins up close and personal, but realized quickly that they are way too shy and small for that. We did see a number of them, but fleetingly. The bald eagle sightings were much more spectacular. Donelda throws fish along the boat, so the eagles swoop down to grab them. Great photo opportunities. We also... More 

Thank Heidi T
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for sharing your time with us .The Islands have an abundance of wildlife for sure. I purposely did not put speakers outside so that it wouldn't scare the birds and seals while we are at the islands. I usually talk for about 20 minutes on the way out and most people pop in to see if it is... More 

Oberwil, Switzerland
2 reviews
Reviewed 19 August 2016

The crew at Donelda's was very professional and knowledgeable about the local wildlife. We saw many different species of seabirds (bald eagles, puffins, kittiwakes, guillemots, and others), as well as seals lounging around on the rocks and swimming near the boat. At the beginning of the tour, the crew threw some fish to a bald eagle that swoops down close... More 

Thank karen898892
don123, Owner at Donelda's Puffin Boat Tours, responded to this review

Thank you for sharing your time on our tour. We are happy that you enjoyed the time you spent with us. More 

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Phoenix, Arizona
over a year ago
Pembroke, Ontario, Canada
Thunder Bay, Canada

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Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?