Hi there! We’re Elizabeth and Luke and we blog about our weekend adventures and travels over at Something Saturdays. The premise behind Something Saturdays is to make the most of our weekends by doing something new every Saturday, whether that means exploring things in our local area or travelling abroad. We met while we were both working in the Netherlands, but Elizabeth is from St. John’s, Newfoundland, where we currently live, and Luke is originally from Bath, UK. We have lived together in St. John’s for two years now, and during that time we have done our fair share of exploring, attending festivals and community events, learning new skills, and trying out new things.
St. John’s is the largest city on the island of Newfoundland and is located on the east coast. When you visit St. John’s, you should first head over to Signal Hill, Cape Spear (the most easterly point in North America!), and The Rooms for great views and to get your bearings.
It is worth wandering around the downtown area among the houses of Jellybean Row and take in a Foodie Tour to get exposure to local history and cuisine.
Quidi Vidi is a small, picturesque fishing village within the boundaries of the city that is worth visiting, and don't forget to go to the street with the most pubs and bars per capita of any street in North America, George Street. While you’re on George Street, don’t forget to get Screeched in! It's a "ceremony" to become an Honorary Newfoundlander and is a must-do for anyone visiting the island. There's nothing wrong with doing a shot of Screech, kissing a cod, and repeating some Newfie words you don't understand, right?
There are many trails around the province that take hikers along the rugged shoreline, with the 265 km East Coast Trail being the longest. The ECT is broken into sections, with the La Manche Village Path, Stiles Cove Path, and the Sugarloaf Path being some of our favourites that are close to the city. The Skirwink Trail is another trail not to be missed and is located along the cliffs near Trinity, and Gros Morne offers a host of hiking trails on the west coast of Newfoundland.
Newfoundland isn't overly developed, meaning that there is lots of room for wildlife. Whale watching is common in the spring/summer and you can usually also sea kayak in the same areas. The whale watching tours in Bay Bulls also take you to the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve which is home to North America's largest Atlantic Puffin colony, among other sea birds. On the island of Newfoundland itself, there are more moose than people and it isn't uncommon to come across them when you're driving along the highway.
Interested in seeing icebergs? There's no guarantee you'll see an iceberg on your visit to Newfoundland, but the best time of year is late spring or early summer (May/June). Last year was a great year for them and we managed to see quite a few. If you want to see them, you'll probably have to get out of St. John's (although we had some huge ones just outside of St. John's harbour last year), with Twillingate being a top spot for iceberg-viewing. The best way to find out where the icebergs are at any given time is on Iceberg Finder. It is incredibly useful!
We’re also planning a couple of international trips in the next two months to Mexico and Ireland, so stay tuned!