As a Chick, specializing in digital marketing for tourism, I pride myself on being able to plan a pretty great vacation – when I am actually taking one and not working. I have been across Canada and the US and experienced amazing tourism destinations, but I had never been to Newfoundland.
As a first time visitor, referred to as a CFA, or “come from away”, I did have some help in pre-planning my trip. The “townies” from Destination St. John’s were the perfect hosts, and provided recommendations that ensured that I did see the most beautiful places in Newfoundland, had a warm meal at the end of a day of traveling, a cold pint of beer, and somewhere to sleep with the sounds of the ocean floating through my windows.
I share with you some of my experiences in this beautiful Canadian province, and give to you some of my “need to know before you go” insights. This part of Canada is a must do, and you need to plan ahead to make the most of your experience.
From what I had thought, pre-season mid-May, before the long weekend, would provide the best experience as tourists would not be overtaking St. John’s, and the operators in the remote towns on the Island would be happy to see early visitors just as the season was about to kick off.
I started planning my itinerary about a month in advance, and through my experience I have summarized some tips to ensure you get the most out of your visit.
Flying into St John’s from Toronto is easy as St. John’s has direct air access from many Canadian cities including Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, and as far west as Calgary. Direct air access is also available from some major US cities, and some European destinations such as London.
A walk up Historic Signal Hill is a must do. You can also drive to the top if the hike uphill is too much. Signal Hill was not an easy climb after walking across downtown to get there, but well worth the hike to the top. The view of St. John’s, the iconic painted houses, Cape Spear, and the ocean is spectacular.
Yellowbelly Pub and Brewery on Water Street was one of my favorite stops. Their beer was also served on tap in many other restaurants and bars in St. John’s and across the Island.