If you want to get off Canada’s well-trodden path, this is where to go. Spend two weeks on the very eastern edge of the country and find vibrant cities, remote and weather-beaten fishing villages, migrating whales and icebergs that have drifted down from the coast of Greenland.
Suggested route & duration
Suggested route 13 nights from St John's
• St John's: 2 nights
• Trinity: 2 nights
• Twillingate: 2 nights
• Rocky Harbour: 1 night
• L'Anse au Clair: 2 nights
• St Anthony: 1 nights
• Cow Head: 1
• Gander: 1 night
About this independent tour
Why you’ll love this Self-drive
• See the kaleidoscope-coloured houses of Newfoundland and Labrador’s biggest ‘metropolis’, St John’s
• Watch icebergs the size of buildings drift past the coast in Twillingate – a short cruise along ‘Iceberg Alley’ is included
• Cross over to Labrador by ferry and explore its wild and wonderful south coast
When to go
• The climate shapes the touring season in Newfoundland & Labrador – you can travel between early May and late September
• To see the icebergs float past Newfoundland’s east coast, travel in late spring to early summer
• If you want to see whales and puffins, head to this corner of Canada in summer; for leaf peeping, travel in September
Suggested self-drive details
Day 1: St John’s Begin your holiday in St John’s. Stay 2 nights at Jag Boutique Hotel.
Day 3: Trinity Pass through inlet-edge villages on the way to Trinity. Stay 2 nights at Artisan Inn.
Day 5: Twillingate Spend time in Twillingate where a two-hour cruise into ‘Iceberg Alley’ is included. Stay 2 nights at Anchor Inn Hotel & Suites.
Day 7: Rocky Harbour Cross the western side of the island and visit Gros Morne National Park. Stay at Ocean View Hotel.
Day 8: L’Anse au Clair Follow the coastal road and take a short ferry ride to L’Anse Au Clair and spend a day exploring the untamed shores of Labrador. Stay 2 nights at Northern Light Inn.
Day 10: St Anthony Return to Newfoundland and head to the small town of St Anthony. Stay 2 nights at Haven Inn.
Day 12: Cow Head Drive back south to Cow Head, another gateway to Gros Morne National Park. Wander along empty beaches and head back into the park. Stay at Shallow Bay Motel.
Day 13: Gander Explore Gander, a small city with a rich aviation history. Stay at Sinbad’s Hotel & Suites.
St John’s views
Signal Hill, which overlooks St John’s, is where the first transatlantic wireless signal was received
Lakes, mountains, canyons and fjords make up this spectacular UNESCO World Heritage Site
Gros Morne National Park
Every year, in late spring and early summer, huge pieces of Greenlandic ice drift down past the east coast
Add a couple of nights at Fogo Island Inn which appeared on the BBC’s Amazing Hotels: Life Beyond the Lobby
Tailor your tour
Make it your own
We’ve crafted this self-drive based on our own experiences and customers’ feedback. It’s fully flexible, so talk to us and we can create your perfect trip.
Where to stay
Up in the wilds of Newfoundland and Labrador, accommodation is extremely limited. Hotels are modest and more a place to sleep rather than somewhere you’ll be spending lots of time. To enhance your experience, swap your stay in Twillingate with a couple of nights at the incredible Fogo Island Inn.
We’ve included a couple of once-in-a-lifetime experiences such as an iceberg and whale-watching cruise from Twillingate and entry to Gros Morne National Park. You could add on a tour of St John’s and the nearby Cape Spear or a short cruise in Bonne Bay over on Newfoundland’s west coast.
You’ll need at least two weeks to really get to know Newfoundland and pop across the Strait of Belle Isle to Labrador. If you have less time you can get a taste of Newfoundland by just visiting St John’s, Gros Morne National Park and Twillingate.
This is already an in-depth itinerary but if you want to extend your time in Canada we suggest combining it with a trip around Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. Another option is to spend some time in Toronto, Montréal or Québec City before heading for the coast.