One of several campgrounds located in Baddeck, we found this to be a decent commercial campground with thoughtful staff decisions making things more pleasant than they could have been.
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Overall Rating: 3.7/5
Price per night / Discounts: $45.02 / 10% off with Good Sam
Campground website: Bras d'Or Lakes Campground
Our Site #: 16 - FHU
Privacy Rating (how spacious and private do the sites feel):
3/5: This is where the staff really helped us out. Like most of the commercial campgrounds we've stayed at in Canada, the sites were very close together. However, for most of our visit, the campground was only half full and it was apparent the staff made sure to place campers in every other space, giving everyone more room. Had we had a direct neighbor the whole time, it would have felt tight, but given the additional space, we felt it was decent.
Location Rating (accessibility to points of interest or to major highways):
4/5: Baddeck is a pretty decent sized town with most everything you need available. It is located right on the Cabot Trail, so it's very convenient to jumping on the trail, however, it's still a long way from the National Park, so if your goal is to spend a lot of time exploring the park, you might want to try to find something a bit further north. We only spent one day hiking there. Had we been closer, I'm sure we would have gone there more, but it was just too far of a drive to deal with day after day. Otherwise, the campground was pretty convenient for exploring this area of Nova Scotia and it's located directly on Bras d"Or Lake, which is beautiful.
Site Quality and Big Rig Accessibility Rating (utilities and accessibility of campground hook ups):
3.75/5: Site quality was ok as far as big rig friendliness and accessibility of the utilities. I would note, however, that the grounds were pretty bumpy. I twisted my ankle stepping off our entry step one day onto extremely uneven ground. The sites could use some grading.
Technology and Customer Service Rating (online resources, reservations, and staff):
2.5/5: When you call for reservations in the off-season, they book you in, but then call you back later in the spring to take a credit card. When they called me to get my credit card, they told me they didn't have the type of site that I had initially requested (50 amp). They said the initial reservation wasn't an actual reservation, but a request, and that nothing was guaranteed until the credit card was run (which I would have happily given them when I made the initial reservation/request). After being told I was out of luck, they eventually figured it out and called me back to correct the issue. Hopefully it was a one time error and not the way they normally do things, but I have no idea. The whole concept of waiting to take a credit card to secure the reservation doesn't make a whole lot of sense. It definitely seemed disorganized - a feeling that was confirmed when we got there and they couldn't find our paperwork. Eventually everything was straightened out, and they were very nice, but it just seemed a bit messy.
Internet Availability Rating (Verizon coverage or campground wifi):
5/5: The Wifi worked! Hallelujah!!
Overall, we liked this campground. We'd adjusted our expectations for Canadian commercial campgrounds based on our experiences over the summer so we knew to expect a cramped campground, but we really appreciated that they placed guests in every other space, as long as they had the room. It made things infinitely more enjoyable to not be staring into our neighbors' windows all the time. Otherwise, we had some nice views and access to the massive lake, we had the necessary conveniences available in Baddeck, and we were right on the Cabot Trail. Overall, a pretty solid choice for exploring Cape Breton Island.