This eclectic cluster of four museums, all within a stroll of each other, gives a concentrated taste of life in another age. The best two are the Seal Island Light Museum that offers a rare chance to enter a lighthouse and see one of the large lenses once used to guide sailors to safety. The second is the Barrington Woolen Mill Museum, a creaky old riverside mill takes visitors back to the days of water powered wool processing (used for sturdy clothing for fishermen).

Recently, Darren Hudson, world champion log roller (many times over), started the Lumberjack AXEperience here at 5 Petticoat Lane (; 902/637-7609), an uproariously fun set of activities including log rolling, axe throwing, and competitive sawing. The activity fee is C$90 for adults, C$25 or C$50 for youth, depending on adult accompaniment. It’s open mid-May to mid-October, Thursday to Saturday starting 1pm; call ahead to arrange for an alternative time.

The grounds for these activities are laid out beside the Barrington River just behind the Woolen Mill. Darren created a lumberjack coloring book for sale on site and even has a beer named after him—Wild Axe Pilsner from Boxing Rock Brewery (; 902/494-9233) in nearby Shelburne, which makes unique, extra hoppy beers.