Signature Experiences of Newfoundland – 15 Nights

Highlights

Travellers around the world are wanting to explore and live a life that’s less ordinary.  That’s why we have created Canadian Signature Experiences. A collection of once in a lifetime travel experiences that showcase the unique and authentic attraction and activities found in our region.  This 15 night self drive tour takes in the best experiences that Newfoundland has to offer.

Included

Welcome Kit Includes: Travel Wallet, Full Itinerary, Vouchers, Driving Directions, Maps & Supporting Literature
15 Nights Accommodations
Intermediate Car Rental for Duration (Unlimited kms, CDW Insurance, Airport Fees, Additional Driver Fee, Drop Fee & Taxes)
St. John’s City Tour
Ferryland Picnic
Bay Bulls Nature Cruise
Rugged Beauty Boat Tour
Western Brook Pond Cruise

Not Included

All Meals (unless stated)
Flights
Travel Insurance
National Park Entrance Fees
Car Rental Extras (Gas, PAC Top up Insurance, GPS and taxes on extras)
Car Parking Fees
Gratuities
Harmonized Sales Tax at 15%
Any additional items not stated

Day 1 – St. John’s

Arrive St. John’s. Welcome to the oldest city in North America! This historic, vibrant city has many attractions with the added bonus of a wide selection of restaurants from fine dining to traditional Newfoundland fayre. St. John’s has the highest concentration of pubs per capita on the continent and a visit to the infamous George Street is a must!  Overnight St. John’s. 

Day 2 – St. John’s

Today you will explore this delightful city. This morning you will enjoy a City Tour of St. John’s – a great orientation of St. John’s, as well as the most Easterly point in North America. You will visit the National Historic site of Cape Spear as well as Signal Hill. Other stops include Quidi Vidi Village, Government House, the Roman Catholic Cathedral and an orientation of the shops and restaurants of downtown St. John’s. Other sightseeing suggestions include visiting The Rooms, Johnson’s GEO Centre, the Newman Wine Vaults or maybe taking a gentle stroll along sections of the Grand Concourse, which comprises of 40 km/25 miles of spectacular trails and walkways within St. John’s, Quidi Vidi Lake and Rennies River.  Overnight St. John’s. 

Day 3 – St. John’s/Avalon Peninsula

Depart St. John’s early along the Irish Loop to the scenic Avalon Peninsula, home to over 5500 woodland caribou. Continue to Bay Bulls, where you will enjoy a Cruise around the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve, a protective sanctuary for kittiwakes, murres, puffins and other seabirds. The waters off Bay Bulls are home to the world’s largest population of humpback whales.  Continue on to the Southern Shore of the Irish Loop where if you choose, visit Cape Broyle where you can experience a Legendary Whale Wonders Adventure by Kayak.  During the 2 hour adventure, you will have multiple opportunities to enjoy cascading waterfalls and spectacular caves. Whales and icebergs are plentiful when in season. This adventure is suitable for the most novice paddlers!  Continue along to Ferryland where you will experience the unique gourmet feast of Ferryland Lighthouse Picnic!  Continue south to visit the Colony of Avalon archeological site and also drive on to Canada’s most significant landfall marker – Cape Race Lighthouse.  On April 14th 1912 this station received the distress calls from the HMS Titanic. Continue to St. Mary’s.  Overnight St. Mary’s. 

Day 4 – Avalon Peninsula

This morning drive the western shore of the Avalon Peninsula via Cape St. Mary’s. Take time to visit the Cape St. Mary’s Ecological Reserve Seabird Sanctuary – the Interpretive Centre overlooks Bird Rock – one of the largest nesting sites for gannets in North America. Continue along the Cape Shore Route to Castle Hill National Historic Park – a fort erected in the 17th century to protect the once French capital of Newfoundland. Continue to Placentia.  Overnight Avalon Peninsula. 

Day 5 – Avalon Peninsula/Trinity

Depart the Avalon Peninsula and take the scenic coastal loop along Conception Bay to the charming village of Brigus – residence of the world famous northern explorer Captain Bob Bartlett. Be sure to visit Hawthorne Cottage, Ye Olde Stone Barn Museum and The Tunnel whilst in Brigus. Depart Brigus continuing along the scenic Conception Bay Route via Heart’s Content and Heart’s Delight. Continue onto Trinity – The cultural architectural capital of Newfoundland. Trinity also hosts the New Founde Lande Trinity Pageant – a humerous look at Newfoundland & Labrador history. Places to visit in Trinity include the Ryan Store, Hiscock House and the Blacksmith Museum to name a few! Overnight Trinity. 

Day 6 – Trinity

This morning enjoy a nature cruise of Trinity Bay. The afternoon at leisure to explore this beautiful region further. This area has been used for the filming of the movie “Shipping News” starring Dame Judi Dench & Kevin Spacey and also for the TV miniseries drama “Random Passage”. Visit the nearby Cape Random film set constructed in 2000, the site offers visitors the opportunity to step back in time and imagine the life of our forebearers in a typical fishing community in the early 1800’s. Continue on and drive the remainder of the Bonavista Peninsula. Take time to visit Cape Bonavista Lighthouse, Historic Ryan Premises, Mockbeggar Plantation and the Matthew Interpretation Centre.  Return back to Trinity. Overnight Trinity. 

Day 7 – Trinity/Twillingate

Depart Trinity and take a leisurely drive to Terra Nova National Park, – a beautiful example of typical Newfoundland landscape. Terra Nova National Park is known as the ‘Fingers of the Sea’ as it protects remnants of the ancient Appalachian Mountains. Rocky headlands provide shelter from the awesome power of the open ocean. The landscape of the park varies from the rugged cliffs and sheltered inlets of the coastal region to the rolling forested hills, bogs and ponds of the inland. Keep an eye out for ospreys, eagle, lynx and moose.  Continue on to Central Newfoundland and explore the “Road to the Isles” or “Road to the Shore” routes to visit the many coves, inlets and fishing villages dotted along the coastline.  Continue your drive to the fishing community of Twillingate. Overnight Twillingate. 

Day 8 – Twillingate

This morning why not take a nature cruise around Twillingate Island and in particular “Iceberg Alley” and Notre Dame Bay. In season, expect to see not only majestic icebergs, but also whales, Atlantic dolphins and seals as well as many native seas birds like terns, black guillemot, kittiwakes, seagulls, puffins, murres and shearwaters. Twillingate is a nature lovers paradise. Later explore the area – there is a lot to see and do in Twillingate! Sightseeing suggestions in this area include visiting the still-active 1876 Long Point Lighthouse, Twillingate Museum, Durrell Museum (The Polar Bear Exhibit), Auk Island Winery (famous for berry flavored wines), Iceberg Interpretation Centre, Prime Berth Fishing Heritage Centre to name a few! Other suggestions include visiting the quaint communities of Change Islands & Fogo Island (both accessed by local ferry).  Overnight Twillingate.

Day 9 – Twillingate/Gros Morne National Park

Today, leave behind the Central Region of Newfoundland, and head west through a vast expanse of lush forest and contrasting scenery towards Deer Lake. Drive north along the Viking Trail to Gros Morne National Park – designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987 for its impressive geological features, the 1805km.sq park offers beauty and adventure that are unsurpassed anywhere else in the world. Take time to fully explore the south side of this beautiful area of Newfoundland. Visit the impressive Discovery Centre and the scenic communities of Woody Point and Trout River. Take time to view the magnificent ‘Tablelands’ – the reason Gros Morne was given its UNESCO status. Gros Morne is a hiker’s paradise catering to all abilities, with over 19 hiking trails to choose from covering over 100kms of the park. Continue to Norris Point. Overnight Gros Morne National Park. 

Day 10 – Gros Morne National Park

Today explore the north side of the park. Highlights include the scenic community of Norris Point and Rocky Harbour – the service hub of the Gros Morne area. Take time to visit Lobster Cove Head Lighthouse and Bonne Bay Marine Station. In the afternoon, enjoy a spectacular Western Brook Pond Fjord Boat Tour – the only way, other than by helicopter, to see the spectacular Western Brook Gorge. Enjoy a 45min boardwalk stroll to the dock before enjoying a leisurely cruise into the gorge – be at one with nature as you see the dramatic ravine-like sides of this inland fjord tower over 600 metres above you. Overnight Gros Morne National Park. 

Day 11 – Gros Morne National Park/Quirpon Island

Depart Gros Morne National Park driving north along the great Northern Peninsula, enroute take time to visit Port au Choix National Historic Site and view artifacts of the Maritime Archaic people who occupied the region over 3700 years ago. Continue on to Quirpon Dock where you will be met at 4 pm to be transferred by small power boat over to Quirpon Island. A unique remote island experience awaits you! You will stay in a refurbished original Light Keeper’s residence, which is located on Quirpon Island in Cape Bauld on the northernmost tip of the Northern Peninsula. This is a truly once in a lifetime experience not to be missed! Overnight Quirpon Island.  * (All meals included).  

Day 12 – Quirpon Island

Relax and enjoy your Quirpon Island experience – whale watch from the helipad or enclosed viewing area or roam the rugged landscape. In season Quirpon Island is one of Newfoundland’s best locations for iceberg viewing as they drift the Labrador Current on their journey south. The northern tip of the Island is strategically located at the mouth of the Strait of Belle Isle – a conveyor belt of food sources for whales. In season, expect to see Minke and Humpbacks and also other species including the Orca and Right whale. Overnight Quirpon Island. (All meals included).

Day 13 – Quirpon Island/Main Brook

Today depart Quirpon Island and take the time to visit both L’Anse aux Meadows – the only authenticated Viking settlement site in North America, and Norstead Viking Village – a fascinating re-enactment of how Vikings lived over 1000 years ago. Also, visit the Grenfell Historic Properties located in St. Anthony and learn of the impact that Sir Wilfred Grenfell had on the social, medical and economic climate of the early 1900s during his worldwide mission. The historic properties tell the story of the evolution of Northern Newfoundland and Labrador and the people of the region over the last 100 years. Also visit Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve or Pistolet Bay Provincial Park. Continue to Main Brook. Overnight Main Brook. 

Day 14 – Main Brook/Humber Valley Area

Today take a leisurely drive back down the Viking Trail and on to the scenic Humber Valley Region and on to Steady Brook. Enroute, be sure to visit the attractions along the way. Sightseeing suggestion include a visit Broom Point – just 5 minutes south of St. Paul’s. Today you can meet the fishermen who worked on restoring the cabins and fish stores. You can also visit the remains of the “SS Ethie”, Shallow Bay Beach, and “The Arches”.  Continue on to the Humber Valley Region – a haven for outdoor enthusiasts.  A whole host of activities are available nearby ranging from hiking, kayaking, zip-lining, caving, golf and cycling.  Overnight Steady Brook.

Day 15 – Humber Valley Area

This morning why not drive to Newfoundland’s second city – Corner Brook, located on the south shore of the Humber Arm. Places to visit re the City Museum, the Newfie Bullet Historic Train and the Captain James Cook Monument. Further afield follow the Captain Cooks Trail following along the spectacular South Shore of the Bay of Islands – site of the former Frenchman’s Head Lighthouse and the picturesque communities of Bottle Cove and Lark Harbour. Continue back to Humber Valley – enroute see Shellbird Island – best viewed from the rest area at the exit from Bay of Islands to Marble Mountain. According to local legend, the Spanish buried treasure on Shellbird Island in the Humber River and if you look closely, you will see the face of The Old Man in the Mountain in a rock formation “standing guard” over the island. Also be sure to visit Steady Brook Falls, one of the Humber Valley’s most scenic areas. Overnight Steady Brook. 

Day 16 – Humber Valley Area/Deer Lake

Depart Steady Brook and drive the short distance to Deer Lake airport ready for your onward journey.

Note: Quirpon Island Lighthouse Inn – A hike from Quirpon Island dock to the inn may be required, dependent on weather conditions. All meals & boat transfer included at Quirpon Island.

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