Tuesday, June 11, 2024

Newfoundland Recap

 I had a little weekend trip to St. John's, Newfoundland.  When I was coming down the escalator, there was a kid holding a sign that said "Welcome to the Rock" and there was an ad for the musical Come From Away, so then I was singing that song for the rest of the trip. 

After getting the rental car (a Dodge Ram 1500) and checking into the hotel, we went to the grocery store and liquor store to buy a few things for the room.  I always love a craft beer. 

Check out this one!

I was tagging along with my friend Cindy, who was there on a conference.  I got to attend the social events, like this dinner at Saltwater.  I had the best lobster rolls.

On Friday morning we went for a walk, St. John's is full of hills!  We went shopping at The Salt Shop and then down to Water Street. 

Cindy had sessions all afternoon so I set out to Signal Hill.  I decided to drive to the top and then hike down (which meant I also had to hike back up!).  St. John's is known for its fog, rain, and drizzle, and it's not unusual to get to the top of Signal Hill and not be able to see anything.  I lucked out though and it was clear, and even brightened up more as I hiked.  I was happy to have my sweatshirt, as it was quite windy up there.  I'm also glad I have hiking shoes. 

I could not stop taking photos, it was so pretty up there.  I went out towards the Ladies' Lookout Trail, and then down to the North Head Trail.

Looking towards the city, to the left. 

This was the best part, right on the edge, I was definitely holding onto that chain!

Looking down from that part of the trail. 

The trail comes right out onto residential streets. 

I stopped in for lunch at The Salt House and did a little shopping before going back to the hotel to get ready for dinner. 

We went to O'Reilly's on George Street for some pre-dinner drinks and appetizers.  It felt like we were in Ireland, it was the same vibe there as it is in the Temple Bar area.

And then we went for dinner at The St. John's Fish Exchange.  This was a great spot.  We were kind of full from the pre-dinner drinks, but I had the best bowl of mussels for my dinner and it was so good.

Views from our table.

We went back to O'Reilly's to hear some live music and have a couple more drinks, but I called it a night around 10:30. 

Cindy had more of her conference on Saturday so I made plans for a boat tour and another hike. There are a couple of different options, I chose O'Brien's Boat Tours out of Bay Bulls.  I walked around the harbour after I got there. This large red ship was there and I looked up what it was, apparently it's for specialized construction so I guess for an oil rig or something. 

This was our tour boat.  Seats up top and below.

I sat up top.

This was our first destination, Gull Rock. 

You won't really be able to tell, but there were more birds on this rock than I have ever seen.  Puffins, gulls, murres, and other relations. 

The puffins live in little holes in the greenery.   Their eggs are safe as the only predators are other birds and they can't fit into the holes.  

There was apparently a couple of whales too, but I didn't really see them, just one air spout. It's not really the time for them yet, there will be more in a couple of weeks when the capelin (little fish) are back.

And it turned into another beautiful day!

After the boat, I had lunch at The Stone Ducky and then drove to Cape Spear.  This is the Eastern most part of North America (if you don't count Greenland which is technically part of the continent).

During World War II there were guns aimed out at the ocean to protect the continent from UBoats.  The battery tunnels are still there. 

We had plans to visit Conception Bay and Quidi Vidi the next day but something unexpected came up and we needed to rebook our flights home early.  So that just means I’ll have to head back to St. John’s sometime again soon.


  1. What a wonderful weekend! The views along the hike look spectacular and I would definitely be holding onto the chain too! Newfoundland looks like a very beautiful part of the world. Sorry to hear that you had to cut your trip short, hope you get to go back and visit the places you missed soon.

  2. What beautiful scenery! I am so jealous you saw some puffins. I wanted to go on a puffin boat tour when we were in Acadia but we never got around to it. I'd love to see them in the wild.