Sights of Newfoundland & Labrador

• A Travel Guide for Newfoundland, Atlantic Canada.
A vast island province at the easternmost point of Canada (and all of North America), Newfoundland and Labrador is a distinctive destination of stunning landscapes, warm and welcoming people and a culture shaped by tradition and history. Surrounded by 29,000 km (18,020 mi) of rugged coastline and featuring the 400-year-old city of St. John's at its epicentre, it's no surprise that one-of-a-kind adventures and attractions are plentiful. Whether seeking to uncover beloved histories, local traditions or the wonders of nature, the province has it all.


With over 150 community museums, a handful of provincially run interpretive centres, hundreds of art galleries, close to a dozen national historic sites and many provincial heritage sites, investigating culture and history in Newfoundland is a cinch. Curiosities are easily satisfied no matter which part of the island visitors venture to, whether it's the bustling capital of St. John's, the far-western reaches of the Viking village at L'Anse aux Meadows or Inuit settlements in the expansive wildernesses of Labrador. Every corner of the province displays its unique traditions, histories and stories with pride at military fortifications, restored heritage homes, historic communications stations, centuries-old fishing villages, places of worship and archaeological sites.


Dotted along the expansive and rocky shorelines, Newfoundland and Labrador's hundreds of lighthouses are testaments to the province's lengthy seafaring past. Formerly operated by on-site keepers, these navigational beacons were critical in guiding ships and fishing vessels safely into ports or away from the unforgiving coastlines. Today, the majority of the lighthouses are electrically operated, yet still serve their original objectives of marine safety. Many of the province's lighthouses have been restored to their original grandeur and most are open for tours, typically during the summer tourist season. The Cape Spear Lighthouse and Point Amour Lighthouse are two standouts as important national and provincial historic sites, respectively.


Down-home hospitality, lively kitchen parties and colourful and creative traditions fashioned from Irish, French, English and First Nations influences are synonymous with the Newfoundland way of life. These elements transfer well to entertainment opportunities province wide, which range from culture-infused performing arts at the many theatres and auditoriums to exhibitions of regional art at galleries and cultural venues. Sports enthusiasts and music lovers will appreciate major events held at area arenas and stadiums, while those looking to try their luck can place bets at St. John's Racing and Entertainment Centre, which offers live and simulcast racing events from May to October.


Towering cliffs, awe-inspiring coastlines, mysterious bogs, bays lined with ancient fishing villages, glacier-carved fjords, inlets, coves and magnificent off-shore icebergs create a geographical masterpiece like no other. The province's unique shape and physical orientation have resulted in a diverse natural environment at the ready for discovery; distinctive bodies of water, fresh and saltwater beaches, cascading waterfalls and an extensive system of parks and gardens wait to be explored and enjoyed, all sure to inspire. Sprawling urban green spaces, botanical gardens showcasing the unique flora of the island, hiking trails, ecological reserves, seaside whale-watching lookouts and a selection of small municipal parks are spread out across the province, making intimate encounters with nature easily accessible.


For those travelling with children, the opportunities for fun are endless; hands-on interpretive centres are plentiful, as are entertainment and educational venues catered to young minds and interests. Science centres, amusement parks and amenity-filled recreation centres are found in major centres like St. John's, Mount Pearl, Port-Aux-Basques and Corner Brook, while libraries offer diversions on a rainy day.
Atlantic Canada's Rocky Shoreline
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Photos of Newfoundland  Atlantic Canada's Rocky Shoreline

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