One good resource for planning evening adventures is The Buzz (www.buzzon.com), a free monthly newspaper that details ongoing and special events around the island with an emphasis on Charlottetown. It’s widely available; look for it in visitor centers, bars, and restaurants.
Pubs and eateries spill onto sidewalk patios at Victoria Row, a small section of Richmond Street beside the Confederation Centre that is blocked off to traffic in summer. Things get lively when musicians show up, which happens regularly. A local favorite is Fishbones (fishbones.ca; 902/628-6569), an oyster bar and seafood grill with good live music at 136 Richmond St.
Olde Charlottetown, as the heritage district is called, is a great spot for those who enjoy pubs. Gahan House Pub (www.gahan.ca; 902/626-2337) at 126 Sydney St. was PEI’s first microbrewery. It serves solid pub food (fish and chips are served in a bag) plus a full range of brews to sample. They do tours of the brewery for C$10.
For live Celtic music and lobster and roast-beef dinners, head for the Olde Dublin Pub, above the Claddagh Oyster House at 131 Sydney St. (www.oldedublinpub.com; 902/892-6992).
On the waterfront at 23 Queen St., the Merchantman Pub (merchantman.ca; 902/892-9150) offers a more upscale menu than the usual pub fare—think lobster bruschetta, crab cakes, walnut coated scallops.
Upstreet Craft Brewing (www.upstreetcraftbrewing.com; [tel] 902/894-0543) is a few blocks removed from downtown at 41 Allen Street off University Avenue, but the beer is the best on the island, and its open noon ‘til midnight. There’s usually a quality food truck parked outside. They make an excellent Czech style pilsner called Commons and a tasty light beer called Rhuby Social, a rhubarb strawberry wheat beer.
For high culture, always check first with the Confederation Centre of the Arts (www.charlottetownfestival.com; 800/565-0278 or 902/566-1267), where the stage bustles with dramatic and musical activity throughout the year. The musical Anne of Green Gables, a perennial favorite, is performed here throughout the summer—but so are concerts, plays, and other performances. The Guild (www.theguildpei.com; 866/774-0717 or 902/620-3333), a black-box theater at 111 Queen St., showcases emerging and professional artists and is a hotbed of fund-raising events, giving it a unique community feel. Music, comedy, theater, dance: It’s always affordable. Finally, the art-house City Cinema, at 64 King St. (citycinema.net; 902/368-3669), has an excellent lineup of domestic and foreign films; typically, there’s a choice of two films each evening.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.