Vibrant, colourful and over 500 years old - St. John's is the perfect combination of big-city luxury and traditional small-town charm. Wander past the colourful jellybean lining the sides of steep hills and hidden alleyways or hike up to nearby Signal Hill through the Battery, where the tiny colourful wooden homes cling to cliff-sides ravaged by ocean waves. Visit the unmistakable and iconic Cabot Tower, a castle-like structure built to commemorate the 400th anniversary of John Cabot’s discovery of Newfoundland as well as where the Marconi famously received the first transatlantic wireless message in 1901. In the evenings, sit back, relax, and enjoy live music across the city or for more lively nightlife, head to any local pub or bar for traditional tunes with the friendly and courteous locals. Dine at a local restaurant and sample cod tongues, mussels, lobster, fish and breweries and other native culinary delights and then venture over to George Street and enjoy welcoming and warm Newfoundland hospitality and live music over a beer or two in one of the many pubs and cocktail bars.
Newfoundland and Labrador holidays open up a province full of history, where awe-inspiring nature reigns supreme, and incredible wildlife roam the mountains and swim along the dramatic coastline. Here, you’ll find fishing villages and colourful cities, home to hospitable locals, and sites that speak of the province’s rich heritage.
At Gros Morne National Park on Newfoundland’s west coast, you’ll find a dramatic landscape shaped over many years. Here, you can walk across the Tablelands, hearing the sound of the red rock, that of the earth’s exposed mantle, crunch beneath your feet.
See incredible coastal wonders at Green Gardens, and explore the freshwater of the stunning Western Brook Pond by boat.
For a glimpse of what life was once like in this stunning part of Canada, explore the Viking Encampment at L’Anse aux Meadows, or visit Bonavista, the seafront town where Italian explorer John Cabot first touched down when he discovered the North American coastline.
Discover Newfoundland and Labrador’s Historic Capital
Spend a few lazy days discovering the charming streets of St. Johns, Newfoundland and Labrador’s historic capital city, which sits on the oceanfront.
St. Johns is a city defined by its friendly locals, incredible seafood and the colourful houses of Jellybean Row. Head up to Cabot Tower, perched on the Signal Hill National Historic site and gaze out over the calmness of the city resting beside the enthralling Atlantic Ocean. Experience the mightiness of the ocean at Cape Spear, the easternmost tip of North America that is just a short drive from the city. You can also visit the nearby picturesque fishing village of Quidi Vidi.
There’s even more to maritime heritage and much more stunning coastline to discover on Canada’s Atlantic Coast, so why not journey onto the neighbouring provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Prince Edward Island?
Explore Newfoundland & Labrador
Visiting Newfoundland & Labrador is all about activity and getting out and experiencing its diverse landscape. From enjoying the shopping, lively nightlife and world-class cuisine in St. John's to hiking and cruising among the remote landscapes, searching for one of a kind wildlife and experiencing living history. Below are just a few of what we think are the best experiences in this incredible province.
Newfoundland and Labrador is one of the most spectacular whale watching places on Earth. View the world’s largest population of humpback whales who migrate each year to feed along the coast as well as another 21 species of whales and dolphins visit along with them including the minke, sperm, pothead, blue, and orca. Make sure to visit between May and September see these them feed, frolic and even breach near the shores. Catching a single glimpse of these majestic mammals is an exciting and awesome experience, whether it's from the deck of a tour boat, the side of your sea kayak, or a seaside trail.
Developed over 485 million years, Gros Morne National Park is a place unlike any other on earth. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the park is a never-ending series of wonders and delights, and a demonstration of the spectacular beauty of nature. Hike the amazing landscape along the earth’s mantle or travel along the water through fjords carved by glaciers millennia ago, leaving behind towering cliffs and thunderous waterfalls. Head to Terra Nova National Park - Canada's most easterly, containing four hundred square kilometres of outstanding natural beauty. Here you can kayak or boat from sheltered bays to breathtaking coastlines, amongst whales and seabirds or hike along the twisting paths through Dense forests and quiet coastlines where you may spy a moose, lynx, beaver, or an eagle. Named for the Inuktitut word 'Tongait', meaning 'place of spirits', Torngat Mountains National Park is an remote and spectacular wilderness and one of the few untamed places left on earth. Stretching from Saglek Fjord to the northern tip of Labrador, it's a land of unique mountain formations, polar bears, magnificent fjords, glaciers and caribou - an absolute once-in-a-lifetime place.
Travel back in time to where Viking once stood. L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site is the only authenticated Norse site in North America - dating back over 1000 years to the first recorded Europeans to reach the New World. Explore the Viking Encampment where you can try your hand at blacksmithing or weaving or listen to fascinating heroic and tragic tales of Thor, Loki, Erik the Red, and more from the Sagas. Or head to Red Bay National Historic Site to learn the incredible history of whaling and the way of life in this region.
When it comes to viewing icebergs, there is simply nowhere better than Newfoundland & Labrador. Every spring these 10,000-year-old glacial giants arrive from the Arctic and are visible from many points along the northern and eastern coasts. Coming in every shape and size, with colours from snow-white to deepest aquamarine - they are truly breath taking, and that's without seeing the ninety-percent still below the surface of the ocean. Icebergs are so plentiful in fact, that the locals put them to good use, you can drink it straight, as in Berg water, or in spirits like Iceberg Vodka, Gin, and Rum.
“If you're visiting Newfoundland & Labrador, take a short flight to Gander and stay at the amazing Fogo Island Inn. The contrast between its modern and unusual architecture, as well as the stark landscape, is truly incredible.”
“Head to the four small islands of Witless Bay Ecological Reserve to observe Atlantic Puffins and other wonderful wildlife, such as humpback whales and minke whales.”
Events & Festivals
Festivals and events are wonderful to include during your Newfoundland and Labrador holiday, offering a glimpse into the country’s authentic culture and traditions.
Iceberg Festival, St. Anthony
Each June, St. Anthony’s Iceberg Festival celebrates everything that makes the province great, with icebergs taking the centre stage as they float down Iceberg Alley, incredibly sculpted by Mother Nature. As well as gazing in awe at the magnificent chunks of ice, you can expect live music, great food and the warm hospitality that Newfoundland and Labrador is known for.
Newfoundland & Labrador Folk Festival
Unfolding over three days each August, the Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival is known as one of the best cultural events in the province, with traditional music, workshops and local artwork.
Signal Hill Tattoo
In commemoration of the final battle of the Seven Years War, visitors can watch as the battle unfolds in reenactments performed by the Royal Newfoundland Companies at the Signal Hill Tattoo. The battle was fought at Signal Hill, which is now a National Historic site, on the 16th September 1762, and each year from July to early August, the sound of muskets and cannons comes to life here once more.
Get a flavour of the local culture through your palate during your Newfoundland and Labrador holiday. Here are a few of our favourite dishes.
For at least 500 years, Newfoundland and Labrador has produced salt fish. Though cod used to be the primary fish used, other white fish is now more widely used due to the overfishing of cod. The fish is laid in salt and dried to preserve. The salted fish is then used in many recipes typically enjoyed in the province, such as ‘fish and brewis’ - a traditional Newfoundland meal, stews and fish cakes.
Fish and Brewis
A traditional meal found in Newfoundland and Labrador, fish and brewis is typically made from salt fish and hard bread that’s soaked overnight separately before being boiled until tender. The fish and bread is then served together and topped with scrunchions, the solid and liquid fat of fried pork rind.
Jiggs’ Dinner is a staple in many households across Newfoundland and Labrador. Usually eaten on Sundays, the meal consists of salted beef boiled together with an array of root vegetables and potatoes. Pease pudding, a thick dish typically made from yellow split peas, is also boiled in the same pot in a dumpling bag. All the food is served together, finished off with a gravy.
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