13535
Newfoundland And Labrador
The Best of Spectacular Newfoundland Coast to Coast
Observe puffins and whales, visit an ancient Viking settlement, sail a land-locked fjord and learn the story of Newfoundland on a spectacular journey across the island.
Rating (4.95)
Program No. 13535RJ
Length
14 days
Starts at
3,275
Print All
Map details are not available for this location.
View Map
Expand All
14 days
13 nights
37 meals
13 B 12 L 12 D
Getting There
See travel details and required documents
DAY
1
Arrivals and Check-In, Welcome Dinner, Orientation
St. John's, Newfoundland
D
Quality Hotel Harbourview

Afternoon: Arrivals and transfers to the hotel in St. John's, check-in after 3:00 pm. Meet your group leader between 4:00 - 5:00 p.m. to register and pick up your program packet. If arriving after 5:00 p.m. please check with the front desk.

Dinner: Welcome dinner at 6:30 p.m. followed by introductions and orientation. Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

DAY
2
Marine Ecology, St. John's, Cape Spear, Signal Hill, Rooms
St. John's, Newfoundland
B,L
Quality Hotel Harbourview

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast is at the hotel.

Morning: You will begin your visit to St. John's with a guided exploration of the city; St. John's is the capital of Newfoundland and Labrador. This colorful city, born of its sheltered harbor, was a busy port 40 years before the Mayflower landed at Plymouth. Although it is a small city, St. John's has a warm, vibrant spirit. Water Street is the oldest street in North America. You will also visit Cape Spear, the most easterly point of land in North America, Signal Hill National Historic Site and Cabot Tower.

Lunch: Lunch en route, followed by a visit to historic Quidi Vidi Village, including a guided exploration of the brewery.

Afternoon: Join an expert at "The Rooms" for an introduction to the people of Newfoundland. A unique blend of art gallery, archives and museum; its controversial design mirrors the colorful "fishing rooms" where families came together to process their catch. This is a wonderful opportunity to be exposed to local culture and craft as well as traditional and modern looks at life in Newfoundland and Labrador as it houses the largest collection of artefact's and specimens - from the First Nations, Vikings, French, and English. There will be some free time for independent exploration this afternoon.

Dinner: Dinner on your own to explore local fare.

Evening: Back at the hotel, a local expert will discuss "Seabirds and the Marine Ecology of Newfoundland and Labrador". Learn about the diversity of North Atlantic seabirds and the Low Arctic ocean conditions along the coasts of Newfoundland and Labrador that provide their habitat. Newfoundland is the southern limit for icebergs and many Arctic seabirds. We will also explore the interrelationships between seabirds and their ocean environment and assess the current information about the North Atlantic, the fishes in it and climate change from the point of view of the spectacular seabirds of Newfoundland and Labrador.

DAY
3
Puffin and Whale Watch, Witless Bay Ecological Reserve
Port Union, NL
B,L,D
Seaport Inn

Activity note: The puffin and whale watching are aboard Gatherall’s Catamaran, a purpose designed and built passenger vessel – not a converted fishing boat. It is a more stable than conventional vessels; which means less seasickness and a more pleasant ride. Space for all passengers both outside and inside (in case of inclement weather). Two washrooms and an on-board bar/canteen service. The Catamaran offers a raised height for viewing birds on the islands and the perfect angles for viewing whales.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast is at the hotel.

Morning: This morning we travel to Bay Bulls, where a boat field trip will give you the opportunity to spot puffins and whales (weather and season permitting). The live, onboard interpretive program will describe the natural and cultural heritage of Newfoundland. You will also visit the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve, where over 1,000,000 pairs of seabirds gather to breed during the summer months.

Lunch: Lunch at Gatherall's, overlooking Bay Bulls Harbour, showcasing a stunning ocean view.

Afternoon: Continue on to Port Union. Historic Port Union is Canada's only union built town, and it was a thriving industrial town during the period that the Fisherman's Protective Union flourished. The town's community spirit is still very much alive today as residents work to preserve their union built heritage and bring their history to life.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel, offering a choice of local specialties.

Evening: Explore Port Union on an optional walk, or catch up on your rest.

DAY
4
Historic Port Union, Bonaventure, Trinity History, Theatre
Port Union, NL
B,L,D
Seaport Inn

Activity note: Tonight the group will take in a theatre performance in Trinity at 7:00 p.m.

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the inn.

Morning: A local historian will deliver a presentation, "Port Union: A Union-Built Town". You will learn how Sir William Coaker formed a union of fishermen in the early 1900s to fight against the merchant trade of St. John's. His goal was to revolutionize the fishery, placing control of the fish trade in the hands of fishermen. Sir William is noted as an activist, labor leader, visionary, businessman, publisher and politician.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Travel to Bonaventure to the site of the CBC mini-series Random Passage, taking you back to the early 1800s. Based on the acclaimed book of the same name by Bernice Morgan, this site includes period buildings and fishing stages designed to replicate the life of a typical Newfoundland fishing community in the early 1800s. As you take a guided walk through the constructed buildings, you will learn about the hardships of immigrants from England and Ireland in their struggle to survive in the harsh Newfoundland climate. We continue on to Trinity to explore the town's historic sites. The preservation of Trinity's cultural and built heritage has made it perhaps the most notable "heritage community" in the province.

Dinner: Dinner at a local restaurant in Trinity.

Evening: Enjoy a theatre performance in Trinity presented by the Rising Tide Theatre Company. Since its founding as a professional theatre company in 1978, Rising Tide Theatre has offered audiences some of the finest plays and talent available in Canada. The Company has explored current and controversial issues on stage, rejuvenated and modernized classics, and created plays which seek to portray the culture and character of Newfoundland and Labrador.

DAY
5
Puffins, Root Cellars, Ryan Premises, Community Dinner
Port Union, NL
B,L,D
Seaport Inn

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the inn.

Morning: Before the advent of electricity, vegetables were stored in root cellars. Elliston has over a hundred of them, some which have been restored. That is why the town officially declared itself the "Root Cellar Capital of the World" in July 2000. The town boasts 135 documented root cellars, some of which have survived nearly 200 years. You will learn about early Newfoundland subsistence. Guides will talk about the importance of the cellars in the life of the settlers and how they were constructed. You will also visit the Elliston puffin site. Elliston boasts the closest viewing of puffins from land in North America.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: At Ryan Premises National Historic Site, learn the intriguing story of the East Coast fishery. Parks Canada staff will describe the compelling story of the fishing industry in Newfoundland in the unique setting of these restored merchant's premises. The first thing you notice is the smell of salt cod. More than a century after employees of James Ryan Ltd. began salting and storing the cod brought in by local fishermen, the tangy aroma of their work remains as strong as if the enterprise had just closed yesterday.

Dinner: Local residents will join you for dinner and share their stories about life in rural Newfoundland. Dinner will be a buffet style meal featuring traditional Newfoundland dishes.

Evening: Following dinner there will be traditional music and dancing, try your hand at playing the "ugly sticks" and spoons; and become an honourary Newfoundlander at a screech-in. An evening of fun and laughter.

DAY
6
Terra Nova National Park, Boyd's Cove Beothuk Site
Twillingate, NL
B,L,D
Anchor Inn Motel

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the inn.

Morning: We set off for Twillingate with stops en route. At Terra Nova National Park, learn about the geology and geography of the park, the marine life along its coastline and the issues affecting its ecological integrity. Discover why the park's theme is "where long fingers of the North Atlantic Ocean touch our boreal landscape". After watching a short introductory movie, you will have a guided visit of the marine exhibits and touch tank, then up to the top of Blue Hill. The natural habitat of this 400-square-kilometre park includes spruce and fir forest, rolling hills, sheltered inlets, rugged coastline, bogs, ponds, streams and glacial features. From whales roaming the rich feeding grounds of the Sounds to the orchids of the boreal habitat, this area has supported an impressive array of marine and terrestrial life for thousands of years. Salmon, moose, bear, lynx and bald eagles are just some of the wildlife you may see at Terra Nova.

Lunch: Buffet lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: At Boyd's Cove Beothuk Site, learn the haunting story of the extinct Beothuk people. Discover how these people lived in the 17th century - who they traded with and what sort of religion they practiced. Explore the physical world in which the Beothuk lived by following a traditional path through the forest used by early European settlers and possibly also by the Beothuk. Archaeological excavations have uncovered a group of house pits occupied between 1650 and 1720 AD, at a time when the now-extinct Beothuk people had had some interaction with Europeans and were making use of metal scavenged from European sites. The Beothuk people became extinct with the death of Shanawdithit, a Beothuk woman, in St. John's in 1829. The Boyd's Cove site and Notre Dame Bay area provide important information about the life and culture of this unique people.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel in Twillingate, featuring a choice of items.

Evening: This evening is yours to explore local sites and discover Twillingate on your own or relax at the hotel. This town of 5,000 people is located in beautiful Notre Dame Bay. The town probably dates from the 15th century, when it was a fishing port. It flourished in the 18th century, becoming known as the "Capital of the North". Since the downturn in the fishery, many businesspeople and residents have turned to tourism to turn the town's fortunes around.

DAY
7
Prime Berth Heritage Centre, Twillingate Museum
Twillingate, NL
B,L,D
Anchor Inn Motel

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Your day will start with a visit to Prime Berth Fishing Heritage Centre, where you will learn about Newfoundland's inshore fishing heritage and culture as it is lived in the hundreds of little outport communities scattered around the coast. See demonstrations in a 100-year-old fishing stage and learn how life has changed in these communities in the past 20 years. The large number of cultural artifacts enables you to connect with the "soul" of Newfoundland. You will also be able to speak to people who have spent their lives in tiny outport communities. They work in the commercial fishery, catching snow crab, cod, capelin, herring, lobster, mackerel and squid. Run by commercial fisherpeople, the centre features an old fishing stage, net loft and fish store. You will also learn how the province's people are coping since the collapse of the cod fishery.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant.

Afternoon: Visit the Twillingate Museum, in operation since 1973, the museum is housed in the former Anglican Church Rectory built at the turn of the century. The museum features rooms furnished in the style of that period along with exhibits dedicated to special people. There are collections of family histories, historical photographs, local cemetery data, Beothuk and Maritime Archaic Indian artifacts. Later this afternoon, spend some free time on your own to explore local sites and discover Twillingate. You may see icebergs (season permitting) because Twillingate calls itself the "Iceberg Capital of the World".

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel offers a choice of items.

Evening: Free evening to relax at your motel or continue exploring the wonderful opportunities Twillingate has to offer.

DAY
8
Coach to Gros Morne, King's Point Whale Pavilion, Cow Head
Cow Head, NL
B,L,D
Shallow Bay Motel and Cabins

Breakfast: At the hotel in Twillingate.

Morning: This morning we board the coach and head across the island to explore the West Coast and Great Northern Peninsula. We will make a few stops along the way in Grand Falls-Windsor, King's Point and Deer Lake before reaching our destination - Cow Head.

Lunch: Lunch at a local restaurant in King's Point.

Afternoon: After lunch we visit the King's Point Whale Pavilion where the main attraction is a 50- foot whale skeleton. The humpback whale skeleton was extracted from a carcass that washed up in northeastern Newfoundland several years ago. Then continue on to Cow Head. This small fishing village is situated on the Gulf of St. Lawrence in Gros Morne National Park. It represents a large sample of Newfoundland's western highlands and coastal lowlands - a landscape of mountains, fjords, deep glacial lakes and wave-carved cliffs. We arrive in Cow Head at approximately 5:30 p.m. in time to check-in and freshen up for dinner.

Dinner: Dinner at the Shallow Bay Motel dining room, overlooking the water.

DAY
9
Gros Morne National Park, The Tablelands, Cow Head
Cow Head, NL
B,L,D
Shallow Bay Motel and Cabins

Breakfast: Buffet breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: This morning we set off to explore Gros Morne National Park by coach, water taxi and on foot. We visit the Discovery Centre and learn about this spectacular region.

Lunch: Picnic lunch in the Park.

Afternoon: Learn about the remarkable geology in Gros Morne National Park in a presentation and guided walk to the Tablelands. In fact, Gros Morne has been called the "Galapagos of Geology" and became a World Heritage site in 1987. Thanks to sharp ridges and huge cliffs, coastal bogs and highland tundra, dramatic ocean inlets and lakes, the scenery at Gros Morne National Park ranks among the most spectacular in Atlantic Canada. The park is a textbook illustration of plate tectonics, the theory that suggests that continent-sized plates of the earth's crust have collided and separated repeatedly over geological time. About 600 million years ago, the joint land mass of Europe and North America was starting to pull apart. Magma from the lower crust welled up and filled the gap between them, and this solidified magma is visible in the cliffs of Gros Morne's Western Brook Pond.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel features a choice of items.

Evening: Enjoy a free evening to explore Cow Head, relax in the hot tub by the ocean, or catch up on your rest.

DAY
10
Rocky Harbour, Western Brook Trail, Boat Excursion, Theater
Cow Head, NL
B,L,D
Shallow Bay Motel and Cabins

Activity note: Today you will walk the trail to Western Brook Pond 3 km (2 miles) in length each way. The trail is boardwalk and gravel, mostly flat with a few slight grades. There is no transportation available on the trail. Located at dockside is a sheltered waiting area, indoor washroom facilities, canteen services, gift shop, picnic area. Two Coast Guard approved vessels have a combined capacity of 165 people. Live interpretation of some the geological and historical features of this wonder of nature.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Curving around a long and sweeping bay with the mountains in the background, Rocky Harbour is the largest and prettiest village in Gros Morne National Park. Learn about the geology and wildlife of Gros Morne National Park at the Rocky Harbour Visitor Centre. Then walk the Western Brook Pond Trail to begin the cruise on Western Brook Pond. Pause for a while to examine the variety of plant life, look for wildlife or read the interpretive panels located along the trail.

Lunch: Enjoy a picnic lunch dockside at Western Brook Pond. There is a sheltered waiting area, indoor washroom facilities, canteen services and a gift shop as well as several beautiful picnic areas.

Afternoon: This afternoon you will take a boat excursion on Western Brook Pond in Gros Morne National Park (weather permitting). This is the largest lake in the park. On board the boat, you will see the spectacular, land-locked Western Brook Pond fjord. The fjord is just one of numerous glacially carved fjords in the Long Range Mountains, the northernmost extent of the Appalachian Mountains. Waterfalls cascade from a height of 3,000 feet (900 meters), and you may spot some of the local wildlife. The lake is home to Atlantic salmon, brook trout and Arctic char as well as an unusual colony of cliff-nesting gulls. The trail carries you over the fragile coastal plain, once located below sea level. A light weight jacket is advisable while aboard the boat.

Dinner: Dinner at the hotel features a choice of items.

Evening: Enjoy a presentation at the hotel by the Gros Morne Theatre Company, focusing on Newfoundland stories, song and music, celebrating the Newfoundland culture, heritage, and most importantly her people. Plays include stories about heroic nurses, heroic actions during a ship wreck, a pair of Newfoundland Eds, and a real life murder mystery from the 1800s.

DAY
11
Norstead Viking Village, L'Anse aux Meadows, Entertainment
St. Anthony, NL
B,L,D
Haven Inn

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Depart for St. Anthony. The town had its beginnings as a seasonal fishing station for French and Biscayan (Basque) fishermen in the early 1500s. This is how Jacques Cartier came upon it in 1534, when he named the protected harbor St. Anthony Haven. A permanent coastal settlement did not begin until after the Napoleonic Wars ended in 1815. During the latter decades of the 19th century, the town was a service point for Newfoundland schooners sailing between the Labrador coast and ports in Bonavista. As the largest town at the tip of the Great Northern Peninsula, it was a base camp for early European settlers.

Lunch: Lunch at Northern Delight.

Afternoon: Learn how the Vikings would have lived 1,000 years ago at the Norstead Viking Village, a re-created Viking village. Costumed interpreters carry out authentic demonstrations. At the boatshed, marvel at a full-scale replica of a Viking ship. At the place of worship, explore the transition from paganism to Christianity. Visit the chieftain's hall, blacksmith shop, tents and fire pit. Next we explore L'Anse-aux-Meadows National Historic Site - one of the highlights of this program. At L'Anse aux Meadows you will learn about this famous ancient Viking settlement, the first European encampment in the New World and site of Leif Erickson's Vinland. Discover the westward migration of the Vikings and understand how they lived so long ago. Stand on the same grassy plain facing the sea where the Vikings stood 1,000 years ago, then stoop to enter the reconstructed sod house that once protected them from the chill, wind and snow. You will experience first-hand the warm, smoky atmosphere of these efficient buildings, while costumed interpreters depict Viking life. Eight Norse sod-house foundations were unearthed by explorer Helge Ingstad and his wife, archaeologist Anne Stine Ingstad, in the 1960s.

Dinner: Dinner at the Norseman Restaurant. Explore an unforgettable dining experience in L'Anse aux Meadows. Take in a fabulous view of the ocean where whales and icebergs cross paths and enjoy the local entertainment.

DAY
12
Whale Watching, Grenfell Historic Properties, Hawke's Bay
Hawke's Bay, NL
B,L,D
Maynard's Torrent River Inn

Activity note: The Gaffer III is a custom built 48 passenger boat with a washroom facility, heated cabin, stereo and PA system. There is a forward observation deck for unrestricted nature viewing easily accessible from the after deck to eliminate climbing stairs. For the adventurous, the Gaffer III has a fly-bridge for that panoramic view. the vessel is complete with radar, life jackets, depth sounder, GPS, 2 VHF’s, life raft and fire extinguishers. Vessel and crew are Canadian Coast Guard Certified.

Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.

Morning: Embark on a whale watching safari off the coast of St. Anthony to explore the breathtaking coastal waters of Iceberg Alley, an area noted for icebergs, whales and seabirds. In season, this northern corridor of Iceberg Alley consistently has more icebergs than any other location in Newfoundland. The St. Anthony coast is also one of the best places in the world for viewing humpbacks and Atlantic white-beaked dolphins. Minke, fin and killer whales are also common. A naturalist will provide interpretive commentary on icebergs, marine wildlife, and Newfoundland culture.

Lunch: Lunch at the Lightkeepers Restaurant, located in the former residence of the Fishing Point lighthouse keeper. The restaurant features a spectacular ocean view of Iceberg Alley.

Afternoon: Explore the Grenfell Historic Properties complex in St. Anthony. At Grenfell House Museum and Interpretive Centre, learn about the life and times of Sir Wilfred Grenfell, a medical missionary who devoted his life's work to serving the people of northern Newfoundland and Labrador. The Jordi Bonet Murals in the rotunda of the nearby Charles S. Curtis Memorial Hospital are a series of ceramic murals depicting the culture and history of the people of Newfoundland and Labrador. On entering the rotunda, one is at once struck by the beauty and harmony of design and color. Some of the panels are quite realistic and not difficult to interpret while others are more abstract.

Dinner: Seafood dinner at the inn.

Evening: A presentation by a local expert highlights early Newfoundland culture in Canada.

DAY
13
Port au Choix Nat. Historic Site, Salmon River Fish Ladder
Deer Lake, NL
B,L,D
Holiday Inn Express Deer Lake

Breakfast: Breakfast at the inn.

Morning: On a field trip to Port au Choix, learn how the rich waters off this coast have supported many different groups of people. The remains of four ancient cultures have been found at Port au Choix to date: Maritime Archaic Indian, Dorset and Groswater Paleoeskimo, and Recent Indians. Archaeologists searched many years for a site such as this one, which sheds new light on our understanding of native peoples in this part of the world. Visit the lighthouse at Port Riche and have an opportunity to hunt for fossils.

Lunch: Lunch at the inn. Entertainment is provided by a local musician during and after lunch.

Afternoon: A presentation on the Torrent River Boardwalk and Salmon River Fish Ladder is followed by a visit to the Fish Ladder. The boardwalk along the Torrent River ends in a spectacular waterfall, the site of Newfoundland and Labrador's most successful salmon-enhancement project. When the salmon are migrating you can see them jumping up the ladder to the area where they will spawn. Depart by coach for Deer Lake, arriving approximately 6:15.

Dinner: Final dinner in Deer Lake.

DAY
14
Insectarium, Program Concludes/, Transfer to Airport
Deer Lake, NL
B

Breakfast: Breakfast is served at 7:30 a.m. Participants travelling on early morning flights will need to take a taxi to the Deer Lake Airport (approximately 5 minutes).

Morning: For those with later flights, we will explore the Insectarium in Deer Lake and learn all about the world of insects, especially species found in Newfoundland and Labrador. We will drop participants off at the Deer Lake International Airport or hotel in Deer Lake after the activity - approximate arrival at the airport is 11:30 am. This concludes our program. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys.