Planning Your Time

Many visitors to Newfoundland and Labrador arrive in St. John's, the provincial capital and a great place to get a sense of the region's history. Spend a few days touring downtown, including Water Street, the oldest street in North America, or hike part of the East Coast Trail right from town. Less than an hour's drive south of St. John’s, you can see whales, icebergs, and huge seabird colonies at Bay Bulls. You can also take a side trip to Cape St. Mary’s, one of the best places in the world to see gannets up close—you can walk to within 10 yards of their nests!

Those with more time often drive across the island. Twillingate, 444 km (276 miles) from St. John's (a five-hour journey), is an especially scenic destination, and Fogo Island is gaining acclaim for its unique artists’ studios, artists-in-residence programs, and the architecturally groundbreaking Fogo Island Inn. The ferry to Fogo Island takes about an hour each way. You could enjoy a marvelous three-day interlude touring the Bonavista Peninsula in eastern Newfoundland with its visually stunning coastline and settlements such as picturesque Trinity.

Allow at least three days to appreciate western Newfoundland’s dramatic mountains and rugged shoreline. One fly-and-drive option is through Deer Lake Regional Airport. An alternative would be to take the car ferry from Nova Scotia, which arrives in Port aux Basques, on the southern coast. Corner Brook, this region’s main city, makes a fine base for exploring the picturesque Bay of Islands. You won't want to miss the glacier-carved fjords and magnificent mountains at Gros Morne National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take a boat tour, go hiking or sea kayaking, and visit an interpretation center to learn more about what you've seen. Many people spend at least a couple of days here—if you're a hiker, you could easily spend a week exploring the multitude of trails. Farther up the peninsula, at L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Park, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, you can visit the only authenticated Viking settlement in North America.

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