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Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, labrador trip planning has started.

Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, labrador trip planning has started.

Sep 6th, 2007, 01:09 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Mar 2003
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Nova Scotia, Newfoundland, labrador trip planning has started.

We are making plans for fall of 2008 trip to these areas. We will travel across from Bar Harbor Maine on the CAT. Drive across Nova Scotia to the ferry to Newfoundland. Take another ferry to Labrador and then reverse. We have 2 weeks. I would like information on hits and misses. Looking at staying at Labrador Inn in Goose Bay, Labrador; Ramada Inn at St. john's Newfoundland etc. Any and all info is welcome. Thanks in advance.
ARKANSASNURSE is offline  
Sep 6th, 2007, 03:09 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
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Please tell me your screen name doesn’t mean you actually live in Askansas?
Not because there’s anything wrong with Arkansas, but because two weeks, coming from Arkansas & following your itinerary, will not give you time to do anything but drive.

I love my home province of Newfoundland, I lived for 3 years in Labrador, and I encourage people to visit there & enjoy the wilderness, the scenery, the picturesque fishing communities… but I think you’ll be too exhausted to enjoy any of it.
Why do I say this?

I believe (not sure about this) the ferry from Bar Harbor is only once daily, leaving in the morning. It’ll take you about 8 hours to travel through N.S. to North Sydney to catch the Newfoundland ferry. That would mean driving after dark, definitely not recommended, and not fun either. In the fall, the ferry from N.S. to NL will sail twice or 3 times daily, and the trip will take at least 6 hours. (see http://www.marine-atlantic.ca/ ) If you didn’t spend the night in NS, you’ll need to rest when you arrive. And you haven’t seen an inch of NL yet!

That was the quick and easy part. It’s over 6 hours to reach the ferry to Labrador – but the journey passes through Gros Morne National Park, one of the most scenic parts of the province, where nature lovers usually like to spend a couple of days hiking, taking boat tours, etc. The ferry to Labrador would cross once or twice a day in the fall. Then the journey gets adventurous. There are less than 100 km of pavement, then the road becomes gravel – and not very smooth, and NOT meant for fast driving or small cars. That lasts for about 300 km, when you reach the community of Cartwright. ….
And from there…can you actually reach Goose Bay (which is about 250 km away)? The last I heard, the road was under construction, and the NL Dept. of Highways (http://www.roads.gov.nl.ca/routes/LabradorRoutes.stm) still doesn’t show it as completed. There used to be ferry service, I know. I would definitely verify this with someone in Goose Bay. I know you can drive into Goose Bay from western Labrador (another gravel highway), but I thought the road from Cartwright was still unfinished. I could be wrong, but CHECK!

So you can see, that’s not going to be a quick trip.
If you left out Labrador, the trip would be quite pleasant. You could stop and look around in N.S. and enjoy NL. It’s possible to drive across NL from the ferry landing in Port aux Basques to St. John’s in a day, but you won’t see much. All the scenic villages, all the lovely seacoast are off the main highway. You’d want a couple of days in St. John’s, and another couple of days to explore one of the coastal areas – the Bonavista peninsula, the Notre Dame Bay area, or at least the southern Avalon peninsula. As I said above, you’d want another couple of days to see the western part of the island. Add another day to include the Viking settlement on the Northern peninsula. For details, see www.newfoundlandlabrador.com (Alternatively, go to Labrador and skip the island.)

And then you drive back to the ferry.


What I’m saying is, Newfoundland/Labrador is a big place (the island’s about the size of Tennessee, but because of peninsulas, takes longer to drive around) and it’s a long way from the U.S. It’s wonderful – please come and see – but don’t expect to cover a huge area in two weeks.
nfldbeothuk is offline  
Sep 6th, 2007, 05:58 PM
  #3  
 
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We're from Ontario and we visited Newfoundland during the summer of 2006. The best thing we did was fly into St.John's. In our 2 weeks, we saw ~1/2 of the sights - the top half, above the TransCanada Hwy #1. We rented a car and drove 3 000 kms. Gros Morne National Park & St.John's must be visited + Cape Spear,...Other visitors driving from Ontario, arriving by ferry were already exhausted from being on the road. We never had time to cross over to Labrador.
Make some choices. Cut back your schedule and you'll have a better holiday. Also,better to stay at Bed & Breakfast places, not hotels while there.
belleamie is offline  
Sep 7th, 2007, 10:37 AM
  #4  
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Yes, I do live in Arkansas and we mapquested our trip and discovered to drive was not plausible. over 6000miles. So, we are planning to fly into Bangor ME. But may have to opt for flying into Halifax NS. If that doesn't seem to work we will fly into St. John NF.
Many people here go to Alaska, I want to see the Atlantic Maritimes having grown up on the Long Island NY coast. This is a dream trip and we want to be realistic about it. NF and Labrador are the main goals to see, this is why we are spending a year to work out the details.
And please know your input is much appreciated.
ARKANSASNURSE is offline  
Sep 8th, 2007, 05:23 AM
  #5  
 
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If you have time I recommend that you spend a night or two here:
http://www.linkumtours.com/site/inns_quirpon.htm
SusieQQ is offline  
Sep 10th, 2007, 10:48 AM
  #6  
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Oh Susie QQ, thank you, this is EXACTLY what we are looking for. I have lighthouses everywhere trying to keep a beach feel around me. Thanks to YOU!!!
ARKANSASNURSE is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 06:33 AM
  #7  
 
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Well,we went to Quirpon,NF and it was the best evening of our NF trip 'cause we got screeched-in,Wayne(our host at Cape Bauld B&B) provided the entertainment and his wife our moose roast dinner. There is NOTHING in Quirpon, not a restaurant, no TV,cell phones don't work, and not even whales or wildlife. You end up in that area if you go to L'Anse-aux-Meadows and/or St.Anthony's.
My advice, if you are doing a lot of miles already is actually to skip the Northwest tip of NF 'cause there is very little to enjoy but ~900 kms to travel.
Also note that in 2006, there were NO icebergs in Iceberg Alley, or anywhere...global warming has changed the currents. There is so much to enjoy in NF and you will have a wonderful trip, I just want you to have realistic expectations.
belleamie is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 06:56 AM
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In 2006 during the boat ride back from Quirpon Lighthouse Inn we saw a large number of ice bergs and from the Inn's front door we saw lots of whales, even babies. I think a stay at the Inn is worth going up to this part of Newfoundland. It is a very unique experience.
SusieQQ is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 06:57 AM
  #9  
 
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Oh yes, we also saw moose and lots of wonderful birds.
SusieQQ is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 04:21 PM
  #10  
 
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Here’s a link to some of the icebergs this past summer. http://tinyurl.com/ypouwe
They were incredible in Notre Dame Bay, especially in the Twillingate area – at one point in June I could see six from one point. For icebergs, late spring/early summer is the time. I’m not sure if www.icebergfinder.com is still up-to-date or not. Oh, and if you have an iceberg “thing” – make sure you try some Iceberg Vodka when you get here. (yes, actually made with water from icebergs).
Having said that – they’re a temporary occurrence , not a mountain, so there’s no guarantee from year to year.
We guarantee the Atlantic Ocean can be spectacular every year!

nfldbeothuk is offline  
Sep 11th, 2007, 05:22 PM
  #11  
 
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OUr first trip to Newfoundland was for 2 weeks and it was a good amount of time. We could have stayed much longer, but it was a good cross section. I don't think I would have wanted to include Nova Scotia or Labrador. I think you might want to either visit Nova Scotia or Newfoundland, but not both in two weeks.
We flew into St.John's and rented a car.
We basically did the same as Belleamie. We did the top half. But also went down around the Avalon Peninsula. Amazing trip!
kodi is offline  
Sep 17th, 2007, 12:37 PM
  #12  
LJ
 
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Another, native Newfoundlander adding her 2 cents worth. Please DO think about flying directly into St. John's, NL (or Newfoundland Labrador) and be careful because there is a St. John in NB (thats New Brunswick) and it has happened when inexperienced travel agents make arrangements! You will need the time if 2 weeks is all you have. NL is a huge province!

This will save you precious time to see (from East to West): Battery Hill/Signal Hill, Marine Drive, Quidi Vidi,Cape Spear and other St. John's/environs sites.

Then on the road for an 11 hour drive to Corner Brook where you can see Marble Mountain (and stay at the resort there or Strawberry Hill where the Queen stayed) and then into Gros Morne (and do spend a day or two in that area. It is spectacular.

Then on to Labrador. You might want to post asking specifically about Lab: there are a couple of adventurers who have been there and have more info.
LJ is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2007, 11:08 PM
  #13  
 
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any good restaurants for a large group, reasonble prices. good food, cultural experience for someone from the prairies!
soccermom0_0 is offline  
Sep 24th, 2007, 09:06 AM
  #14  
LJ
 
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Soccermom: Where are you asking about? NL is a VERY big place...
LJ is offline  
Sep 25th, 2007, 01:03 PM
  #15  
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We have decided that it would be more feasable to fly into St. John's NL. Rent the car, travel around as we see fit. While we want to see the maritimes and the natural wilderness visiting small villages and the sort are the desire. DH wanted to know what language was spoken eg English, French etc. We are aware that Arkansans have a language that is odd to people from the north anyway. (Asti is not a wine but iced tea) THANKS
ARKANSASNURSE is offline  
Sep 25th, 2007, 01:37 PM
  #16  
LJ
 
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Dear AN: I don't want to be dreary and tell you things you already know, but as you have 2 weeks to spend in total and are planning on flying into St. John's (the Avalon Peninsula in NL), you are probably going to be remaining there in Newfoundland with maybe a side trip to Labrador...have I got that right?

IMHO, that would be a great trip and you will have a wonderful time with your car driving all over especially if you are planning on September, a beautiful time in this province.

I would strongly suggest you get in touch with NL Tourism (www.NewfoundlandLabrador.com) and get a copy of their wonderful guide for travelers. Then when you know more about what you want to see there, you can come back here and ask specific questions.

However, NL is NOT part of the Maritimes (which is a trio of provinces: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island... with NL added, they jointly become The Atlantic provnces). I mention this because Newfoundlander's are a bit sensitive at being lumped in with those other provinces as Maritimes: we are different and happy to be considered unique.

Please come and see for yourself and enjoy English all the way, a rather heavily accented English, at that! There is some French spoken still on the west coast of Newfoundland, but all speak English, too.

BTW, I loved your joke about "Asti": I can almost hear you say it!!!

LJ is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 05:30 AM
  #17  
 
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A little known B&B in Nova Scotia and one of the highlights of our trip is the Cape D'Or Lighthouse B&B, overlooking the Bay of Fundy. It only has 4-rooms is not a AAAA+ B&B and some might think it rustic, but if you want a unique experience and a great view, this is the place.
mcmouse is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 08:32 AM
  #18  
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
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Hi mcmouse. Is this the B&B you're referring to: www.capedor.ca -- I just want to make sure it's the same one we recommend in the upcoming edition of Nova Scotia & Atlantic Canada. There was some confusion about the name, but it sounds wonderful.

Thanks,
caroline
Caroline_T is offline  
Sep 26th, 2007, 12:25 PM
  #19  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
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Caroline,
That's the one!! Drive down a long dirt road and park at the top of the cliff and walk your bags down or they will send a truck up to the parking lot. The fog horn WILL rattle your bones, but that was even GREAT. My wife and I nearly always stay in B&B's and will rank this experience as one of the best.
mcmouse is offline  
Sep 27th, 2007, 07:34 AM
  #20  
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Thank You LJ for straightening me out on the maritimes. In Arkansas anything north of Arkansas is north. So when I mention maritimes I just get a "DUH" look. We are planning to get there, and hang out with no real itinerary. just 'we wanna see' type things. We are in early planning stages.
And mcmouse,the lighthouses are so desireable for this trip espcially staying in one. As for the fog horn, I grew up 1 mile from the Montauk lighthouse and we are currently living less than a mile from a railway, horns are not a problem will definitely check this out. Thanks bunches.
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