Self-Guided Downtown Art Tour

In 2015, DHBC launched a Gritty to Pretty beautification program to award a limited number of grants for beautification projects located in Downtown Halifax.

Gritty to Pretty includes three grants: Open Grant for any great beautification initiative, one specifically for Façade Lighting, and one for Murals. These projects contribute to DHBC's beautification efforts to make Downtown Halifax more welcoming to locals and visitors alike. Learn more about the program here

Self-Guided Downtown Art Tour


Have your camera ready and explore all the beautification projects in Downtown Halifax. You are welcome to start your tour anywhere, but our tour starts in the South End of Downtown Halifax and moves into the Downtown core. 

Before you start, grab a coffee or cold drink from Rousseau Chocolatier, 5151 South Street; Trident Booksellers and Cafe, 1256 Hollis Street; or Swee Tea House, 1237 Barrington Street.


Peace and Friendship Park, Hollis and South streets

  • Winter-themed lights including snowflakes decorations and 26-foot tall treet
  • Will be lit until the end of March 2021
  • Photo by Stoo Metz Photography


Victoria, Roman Goddess of Victory, 1221 Barrington Street:

  • Mural completed in early 2020 by local artist Mike Burt (@princefuze)


Halifax Distillery Mural, 1668 Lower Water Street

  • Mural depicts rum-running boats tied at dockside in the early morning
  • Artist Jake Sibert used existing elements on the wall as part of the scene


The Brewery Market Facade Lighting, 1496 Lower Water Street

  • Facade lighting 
  • Best seen at night


Rio Abajo Rio: The River Beneath the River, 1583 Hollis Street

  • This mural is the second in a series of murals inspired by Pikola Estes interpretation of the tale "la llorona"
  • Artist: Jacoba Niepoort (@jacoba_niepoort)
  • Group: Rad Consulting, Navid Saberi, and Jacoba Niepoort


NEW Sea Troll, I Heart Bikes, Halifax Waterfront


Park and Art, Metro Park, 1556 Hollis Street

  • Original Art in the parkade to transform an otherwise dark or drab wall into a wall filled with colour and creativity. 
  • Artist: James Janssen
  • Group: Argyle Fine Art and The Hardman Group Limitied
  • There are 5 murals, one on Granville level, and 4 more on floors 4 & 5


NEW BEE KIND Mural, 1660 Hollis Street

  • Adorns the building steps in front of the FM Architecture - Interior Design - Planning office
  • Altruistic Current Team - Amber Solberg, Dylan Smibert, Elyse Moir, and Erica Meschwitz


Urban Character Mural, 1557 Barrington Street (at Blowers)


NEW Connection, 1326 Barrington Street (Mural)

  • Artist: Trackside Studio's Daniel J. Burt
  • Name reflects that in 2020 humans are more connected with each other than ever, yet many are still divided. This mural is for the people who go out of their way to help others. 


NEW Barrington Street Bus Shelter, Barrington Street & Spring Garden Road

  • Orange and blue geometric pattern mural on the Barrington Street and Spring Garden Road bus shelter
  • PBJ Design


Ocean Optometry Facade Lighting, 5240 Blowers Street

  • Facade lighting
  • Group: Ocean Optometry 
  • Best seen at night


Lighting Our Past, 1521-1531 Grafton Street

  • Historic facade lighting
  • Group: Oakport Limited/A.S. Developments
  • Best seen at night


#PlayMeHFX Xylophones, Grafton Park (former Halifax Memorial Library at Spring Garden & Grafton Streets)

  • Flower xylophones brighten up Grafton Park.
  • Group: PBJ Design Society


The Stubborn Goat Façade Lighting and Mural, 1579 Grafton Street

  • The mural makes use of iridescent paint, creating both a daytime and nighttime experience.
  • Artist Jake Siebert, and The Stubborn Goat


NEW Defeat, north side of 1600 Grafton Street

  • Mural completed by Mike Burt (@princefuze)
  • Dynamic street-art version of a warrior during a struggle. The main purpose of this mural is to be visually stimulating with bright and bold colours.


NSCAD Academy Wall, Market Street between Sackville and Prince streets

  • A beautified retaining wall with a composition of fantastical African birds and beasts and their North American cousins
  • Artist/Group: Alex Mbuga Thuku (artist) and NSCAD University


Parametric Bench, Rogers Square - moved to Argyle Street

  • The Parametric Bench represents a space that is meant to be shared and thus promotes the idea of a connected community and bring people together. The bench's unusual style of curved layers will be sure to draw attention. The curves of the bench are meant to mimic the ripples of the ocean and represent the city's connection to the harbour
  • Artist/Group: Duncan Armour (artist) and PBJ Design Society


NEW A Night Out, Albemarle Street

  • This piece is intended to add a touch of whimsy, humour, and inspiration to the city and the people who live and work there.
  • Artist: Drew McSherry, Scotia Square


eSpace Building Facade Lighting, 1652-1656 Barrington Street

  • Facade Lighting
  • Best seen at night


Daisies in the Wind New Facade, 1717 Barrington Street, (at Prince and Barrington streets)

  • Inspired by the street art of Tom Bob, this project transforms the urban infrastructure into something that brightens the street and brings a smile to the passersby.
  • Artist/Group: Jason Skinner (@jason.a.m.skinner) (artist), PBJ Design Society and Greenwood Lane


Cabot Building Facade Lighting, 1725-1727 Barrington Street

  • Historic Facade Lighting 
  • Best seen at night


Freak Lunchbox Mural Facade Lighting, 1729 Barrington Street

  • Facade Lighting by the Gritty to Pretty program
  • Artist/Group: Freak Lunchbox
  • Best seen at night


St. Paul's Facade Lighting, 1684 Barrington Street

  • Historic Facade Lighting
  • Best seen at night


The Pearl on Barrington Street, corner of George and Barrington Streets

  • Created through Sculpture Nova Scotia by sculptor Miro Davis
  • "When you sit on the pearl, her shell forms a throne behind you, creating a protective shelter that invites contemplation." - Miro Davis


NEW The Fun and Beauty of Performance, 1809 Barrington Street


Fountain Campus Accent Lighting, Granwille Mall/5163 Duke Street

  • Historic Facade Lighting
  • Group: NSCAD University 
  • Best seen at night


NEW Between the Sea and the Sky, Lower Water Street at George Street

  • This colourful mural is made of rectangular wooden tiles inspired by the sky and water of the Halifax Harbour. The tiles are nested in the vertical recesses of the retaining wall surrounding the access point of the overpass that connects George Street to the courtyard of the Supreme Court of Nova Scotia.
  • ​This mural was completed by Joseph Pesina, Luke Fair, and Rachel Anzalone in early November 2020.


Ferry Boat Lane, Lower Water Street

  • Facade Lighting
  • Best seen at night


NEW The Sea in Her Blood, Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, 1675 Lower Water Street

  • This mural, called The Sea in Her Blood, is inspired by the diverse, and sometimes unexpected connections Nova Scotia women have with the sea.
  • Came to life thanks to the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic, Trackside Studios (@trackside.studios) and DHBC's Gritty to Pretty Placemaking grant
  • Arists include: Mike Burt (@princefuze), Daniel Burt (@bunhundred) and Justin Fraser-Fong (@pekingdon)



Check out our other Trails:

Downtown Family Fun Trail

Downtown Shopping Spree Trail

Downtown Fun & Games Trail


Wondering what to do in Downtown Halifax? Check out our list of 70 Things to Do here