Some of our favourite memories of family vacations on the east coast involve Cows Ice Cream.
Our first visit to Prince Edward Island on Canada’s east coast was the summer before Katie turned 2 years old and we fell so hard for the island that we returned again and again. Our island vacations resulted in many wonderful family memories but if you asked either of the girls they would tell you that one of the best things about PEI is Cows ice cream.
Cows began making ice cream in 1983 using all natural ingredients, and a recipe dating back to the days of Anne of Green Gables, and continues to use the same old-fashioned ingredients today to make the more than 32 flavours available at its retail outlets.
According to the Cows website there are 3 factors that make the ice cream so delicious – (1) it is made with 16% butterfat; (2) there is little air incorporated making it high-density, slow to melt in your mouth ice cream; and (3) only the finest ingredients are used. There’s no doubt that Cows ice cream tastes amazing but it’s the names that they use for the various flavours that I love best. Wowie Cowie, Messie Bessie, Moo Crunch, Gooey Mooey, Cowrispy Crunch, Fluff n’ Udder – how can anyone resist names like that??
Katie was enthralled the very first time we visited the Cavendish Boardwalk and saw the store with a large black and white cow on the roof. We weren’t familiar with Cows before that day but it soon became a daily ritual to drive over after dinner and have some ice cream for dessert. A ritual that continued as Katie grew older and welcomed a new baby sister to share her love of ice cream with.
Cows Ice Cream in Cavendish, PEI
Katie enjoying a dish of ice cream at Cows
It didn’t take long for us to discover that there were several Cows outlets on the island and we made sure to sample the wares in Charlottetown and at the Gateway Village outlet at the base of the Confederation Bridge. (There are currently 5 outlets on Prince Edward Island.)
As Cows grew in popularity, retail outlets were opened in other parts of Canada and before long we were eating our favourite flavours of ice cream in Halifax and in Niagara-on-the-Lake (only an hour from home!). There are also outlets in the villages of Banff and Whistler which we really ought to make an effort to visit soon.
Outside Cows in Niagara-on-the-Lake
In 1985, Cows introduced a fun line of cow-themed T-shirts for staff to wear and when customers wanted to buy the shirts a new line of merchandise was added to the stores. At first there were only t-shirts and sweatshirts available but as the cleverly-designed images that draw heavily on popular culture grew in popularity then other items such as mugs, caps, sleepwear, towels, pencils etc. were added to the line. Some of our favourites over the years have included: Cowy Potter and the Goblet of Milk; Hannah Moontana; moomoolemon; Justin Beefer; and Royals HoneyMOOning on Prince Edward Island. I read that one of their new designs for this year will be Keep Calm and Graze On which should be a very popular design. Shopping for Cows souvenirs is almost as much fun as eating the ice cream as far as my kids are concerned and browsing the stores definitely takes more time than it does to eat a cone.
We are returning to Prince Edward Island this summer for the first time in 6 years and you can rest assured that one of our first stops will be the Cavendish Boardwalk for one of the best ice cream cones in the world.
Enjoying a refreshing cone on a hot, summer day
Cavendish, Prince Edward Island with Kids
Prince Edward Island Trip Report
Top 10 Things For Families To Do In Niagara Falls
This post is part of the Celebrate Travel Blog Carnival hosted this month by Mother of all Trips. The theme this month is ice cream.
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Ahhh! I plead ignorance! We saw the Cows outlet at Whistler last summer, but never bothered to venture in, mainly because it was raining and incredibly cold. Now I feel like I really missed out on something good, and when it comes to ice cream, I try not to miss out on anything. I’ll have to make a return visit based on your recommendation.
Colorado Mountain Mom
You had me at “16% butterfat”… LOL. Yummy!!!
What a fun post, Lisa. I felt your love of Cows truly shine through, and now I’m wishing we could take a trip to Prince Edward Island just to see where the creamy Ice Cream Magic began! Looks so fun. 🙂
Food is always a memorable highlight for my family when traveling, too – ha ha!
It all sounds so yummy – and looks so yummy! What a great idea – having such fantastic names and also selling items with the logo of the company – smart business people!
Waffle cones are my favorite, that alone would be enough for me to give it a try!
Oh, Steve – you walked by a Cows outlet without going in! I feel so incredibly bad for you!! Cold and rain is no excuse – Whistler isn’t that far away from you – go back for some ice cream!
Yes, 16% butterfat pretty much ensures tastiness! 🙂 Food is an important part of my vacation too! PEI is a wonderful place for a family vacation (the ice cream is just one small part) – you should definitely consider it!
Lisa, it is definitely yummy!! Cows may even be worth a trip all the way from Australia for a cone! 🙂
Aleah | SolitaryWanderer.com
Ohhh ice cream sounds so good right now! Especially the Justin Beefer LOL Those people there are so creative. Maybe they’d get to send a franchise here in the Philippines someday 😀
I love the age progression! So sweet!
Mary @ The World Is A Book
We loved all the merchandise at the Cows store in Whistler. The cow in front is also a big hit for posing. We tried their ice cream once and it was great even in cold weather but I bet tastes much better in the summer. These pictures are too adorable!
Yummy, I love ice cream too…
What an awesome family tradition! I’ve never been to the island, but after seeing your Cows pics, I think I would love it just for the ice cream. Looks amazing 🙂
Yum, sounds delicious! I could have used some of that yesterday in Vegas when it was 107!
Debbie Beardsley @ European Travelista
Can’t go wrong with ice cream! Love the cows, I would take my picture with them too.
Aleah, it’s been really hot here the last few days so I’ve been thinking of ice cream quite a bit! 🙂
Thanks, Jessica! And when you’re in Niagara Falls you have to make a side trip to the charming little town of Niagara-on-the-Lake and have some ice cream!
Thanks, Mary! In the summer Cows ice cream is a little slice of heaven – you have to come back to Canada for a summer vacation to find out for yourself!
Thanks, Muza-chan!! 🙂
Sabrina, it’s time for you to start thinking about a trip north to Canada – it’s not as hot as Texas in the summer and there’s a lot for you to love – the ice cream is just the tip of the iceberg!
With the humidity, it was 104 in Toronto yesterday – we could all use some ice cream! Hope you’re enjoying Vegas!
Debbie, you wouldn’t believe how many photos I actually have of the girls with the cows! 🙂
Cows, my favorite ice cream and I love the t-shirts. I used to go to the Island on business for years, and it was always my first stop. Of course, living in Halifax meant that I could head downtown anytime I fancied a cone. They have some amazing flavors.
Keep calm and graze on – I love that and I bet the Brits will embrace the theme. I didn’t know NOTL had a Cows too. There’s something about eating ice cream that makes you happy!
So, like Steve, I am kicking myself for not going into Cows at Whistler. You even told me to go before our trip!!! And I was pregnant! Ice cream calls out to those of us carrying an extra human. I am put to shame and will be righting my error as soon as we get back there…hopefully this summer.
I had not heard of Cows before now, but we would like to make a trip that way and its good to know the best places before we go. I’m pretty sure I would love it just as much as my kids.
I remember Cows ice cream from Charlottetown and around the island. My kids loved it! Moo Crunch was a favourite 🙂
I’m not sure that it would be an entirely good thing if I could get a cone anytime I fancied one! 🙂
I think the Niagara outlet is relatively new – we just discovered it last summer and visited a couple of times!
Keryn, when I advise you about ice cream you MUST listen – I know my ice cream! 🙂 Hope you make it back to Whistler this summer – there are a lot of flavours to try!
Allison, you would love PEI and Cows Ice Cream – it’s not much of a secret that I love it as much as my kids do!
Sophie, Moo Crunch is my absolute, all-time favourite!! 🙂
Out here in California we get P.E.I. mussels, but not its ice cream.
They have Cows ice cream all across Canada? It’s silly but this feels like a revelation to me. For no good reason whatsoever I thought that the Whistler store was the only one. Thanks for the ‘something’ I learned today!
We loved Cows at Niagara on the Lake! So fun to relive through your photos!
Sounds yummy even at 8 am!!! I love hearing about local places like this!
Thanks for linking up!
I visited PEI when I was just a little girl and have been wanting to get back there. You’ve just given me another great reason to do it soon. Fun pics of the kids and their ice cream.
What a special treat to be enjoyed again and again.
We make an adventure out of finding new ice cream joints.
Hooray for creamy butterfat! That’s gotta be the magic ingredient. Sounds absolutely delish.
I guess you are going to have to travel to PEI to try the ice cream then! 🙂
That’s funny! I associate Cows with PEI and was shocked when I discovered that there was one in Whistler, and now Niagara.
I had fun reliving through the photos too, Jody. Now I’m craving ice cream though!
You are going to have to come up to Canada to visit us some time, Becca, so you can see all these places in person!
eileen at FamiliesGo!
kid approved. what more do you need?