A sailor's guide to watering holes

Halifax's bar scene joins the Navy's centennial celebrations.

If you're walking around downtown this week, chances are you're a sailor after a stiff drink or sailors are asking you where to find one. Luckily, plenty of bars will be catering to our thirsty visitors.

Sailors can get a taste of their naval history if they head to The Seahorse Tavern (1665 Argyle Street). "This is the oldest tavern in Nova Scotia," says owner Victor Syperek. "The navy has been coming here now since 1948." Back then, sailors nicknamed the bar the "NAV COM TAV," explains Syperek, which stood for Navigators' Communications Tavern. Syperek promises specials on beer pitchers and wings starting Wednesday, plus 10 percent off all tapas and appetizers for sailors. Musician Dave Marsh will play Wednesday night, celebrating the spot his navy father and uncle used to drink in when it was the NAV COM TAV.

Sailors after cheap dark and stormys (dark rum and ginger ale) and looking to meet liquored-up university students can satisfy both cravings at the nautical-themed Frigate** or upstairs in Pogue Fado (1581 Barrington Street) on Thursdays. There will be $3 dark and stormys from 9pm to close. Find $3 dark and stormys on Wednesdays at Pogue Fado from 9pm to close as well. You can get a dark and stormy for just $3.75 at The Argyle(1575 Argyle Street) Thursdays from 4:30pm to close or at The Split Crow (1855 Granville Street), 4:30pm- 7pm, Monday-Friday.

Sailors who just can't get enough of the water get VIP treatment at Murphy's on the Water (1751 Lower Water Street), where they'll get 25 percent off boat tours, $5 off party cruises and 10 percent off food items. Thursdays, sailors can head to the Split Crow at 8:30pm for power hour, then hop aboard Murphy's Bounce Party Boat for 10 bucks, where they can enjoy two full service bars, the beats of DJ R$ $mooth and special giveaways. VIP passes also get sailors free cover to a late-night after party at the Split Crow (starting at midnight). The Alexander Keiths Brewery (1496 Lower Water Street) also gives sailors 25 percent off all beer store merchandise.

After all that boozing, a greasy breakfast is in order. I suggest the Mariner's Special at the Bluenose II (1824 Hollis Street). Ten loonies nets you three eggs, home fries, toast, bacon, sausage, ham and bottomless coffee, the perfect way to line your stomach before hitting the bars again.

If you’re walking around downtown this week, chances are you’re a sailor after a stiff drink or sailors are asking you where to find one. Luckily, plenty of bars will be catering to our thirsty visitors. Since the food and drink specials planned for Fleet Week are too numerous to mention here, we’ll cover a few specific interests. For a full list of local watering holes, CLICK HERE. For a look at Halifax’s English-style pubs, CLICK HERE. And if food is more your thing than drink, CLICK HERE.

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