Getting to Newfoundland
As Newfoundland (NL) is an island, there are only two ways to get to it - by air or by ferry. While planning our trip to NL, we struggled with those decisions.
Factors in your decision include where you wish to visit, how much time you have and the cost of the various options.
Check out the map to see where the ferry lands. The most common ferry runs from North Sydney, NS to Port aux Basques, NL - twice a day - once during daytime, once at night. A one-way trip (6 or 7 hours) for two is costs from $130 to $245 Cdn depending on sleeping accommodations. Port aux Basques is at the SW corner of Newfoundland.
Another ferry (three times a week) is available from mid-June to mid-September. This ferry runs from North Sydney, NS to Argentia, NL at the SE corner of Newfoundland. This one-way trip for two costs from $308 to $466 Cdn depending on sleeping accommodations and takes 14 hours.
Also it takes approximately 10 or 12 driving hours to get from one corner of NL to the other - from the SE corner to the SW corner or from the SE corner to the NE corner, or the SW corner to the NE corner for that matter.
In our case, we landed up going by air to St. John's. The advantage of that option was the additional price of including a stop from St. John's to Halifax to our round trip from Manitoba was less than $260 Cdn for the two of us, and flying meant that our travel day was shorter. This was tempered by the fact that car rentals on NL are more expensive than they are in NS - more on that in the next tip.Related to:
- Road Trip
Fly to Newfoundland
Air Canada flies into St. John's from a few major airports in eastern Canada. There's also an airport in Deer Lake near the west-center of the province with Air Canada regional services. Other airlines that provide flights to Newfoundland are CanJet, Provincial Airlines, WestJet and Air Labrador. International flights from London Heathrow to St. John's provided by Air Canada code sharing with British Midland. Other airlines that seem to provide stopovers are Lufthansa from Toronto, Austrian airlines and Continental from Newark.
Marine Atlantic ferries
The Marine Atlantic ferry provides a passenger/car ferry to Newfoundland from North Sydney, Nova Scotia. You must reserve a place for your car and you can get an overnight place to bunk down as well. All year round, barring bad weather that might cancel the ferry, the boat goes to Port aux Basques in the southwest corner of the province and a summer service to Argentia, on the Avalon Peninsula in the east, close to St. John's. The Argentia ferry is more expensive and takes over twice as long (14 hours as opposed to 6-7 on the Port aux Basques route).
Newfoundland by Marine Atlantic Ferry
Marine Atlantic provides governement subsidized ferry service to the island of Newfoundland. There is a six hour passage from North Sydney, Nova Scotia to Port aux Basques, Newfoundland, or an overnight passage to Argentia, closer to St. John's. Aside from air travel, this is it! The ferry was large and confortable, complete with a lounge and food, even live Irish music. The rates are fair, about $150 for a car and two passengers. Service can be hit or miss, and is weather dependent: our departure was delayed for 6 hours due to high winds preventing the incoming ferry from reaching Nova Scotia.
We spent the delay eating at a busy local chicken take-out (mmm!) and a nippy swim at the local beach, (what can you do?) just down the road from the ferry landing. Of course the delay meant we landed in Newfoundland very late, around 3 a.m., and had no place to stay. We drove north towards Gros Morne for a while, then slept in the car for a bit.
Trans - Labrador Highway in the Fall
I just wanted to put in this quick tip and say for me the most scenic time to ride the Trans Labrador Highway is in the fall.
Here is one view of the road in October nearing central Labrador and the community of Happy Valley - Goose Bay.
Lewisporte, Newfoundland is a picturesque community located in central Newfoundland. It is also the site in Newfoundland were you can catch the MV Sir Robert Bond to Labrador on a weekly basis.
I have another Newfoundland and Labrador transportation tip that covers the provincial ferry system.
Road System / Caribou Galore!
The Labrador Region is gradually opening up more and more to road transportation.
There is 526 kilometers of road between the Labrador West region and the Happy Valley - Goose Bay area.
On the south coast area there is 464 kilometers of road between L'anse au Clair Labrador and Cartwright.
The majority of roads in Labrador are gravel but in very good condition and well maintained.
In the picture I provided here you can see in the winter months it is very likely between Labrador West and Central Labrador you will come upon a caribou or two. This is an unusual case last winter when an entire herd decided to cross the road all at once!!!
You will enjoy the roads in Labrador simply for the landscapes and potential wildlife and icebergs on the coastal region. Take your time, relax and enjoy the landscapes!!Related to:
- Road Trip
The other option into the Labrador region is via Air Canada's regional carrier Jazz.
They offer one daily flight into Happy Valley - Goose Bay via Halifax, Nova Scotia. No flights around Labrador using this carrier. But the flight from Halifax is direct on a Dash 8 aircraft.
Innu Mikun / Provincial Airlines
The other airlines offering flights to and around Labrador is Innu Mikun Airlines or sometimes referred to as Provincial Airlines.
They offer regular flights into the Happy Valley - Goose Bay area and outlying flights to Labrador north coast region and Labrador West.
Compare prices with Innu Mikun and Air Labrador to make sure you save on your cost. They are rather close however in rates.
To get to or around Labrador there are a number of options and choices amongst airlines.
One carrier is Air Labrador. They offer regular flights into the Happy Valley - Goose Bay area and then connecting flights to the outlying coastal regions.
Coming into the central region you will be flying on a modern Beech 1900 or Dash 8 aircraft. To get to the coastal regions the aircraft of choice is the Twin Otter as seen here in this picture.
Be sure to check out their web site for fares and compare with the competition.
ships, boats. sailing what else is there. yo, how would one survive without.
serious, is the best transportation vehicle if you ask me
and when I watch the tourist boats come in, I rest my case.Related to:
- Sailing and Boating
A seniors bus and train tour
We arrived by train and left by chartered bus from Fermont. For local travel we had a school bus and local guide.Related to:
- Family Travel
Ferry to Newfoundland
If you've got time, take the ferry to Newfoundland. You leave from North Sydney, Nova Scotia and can go to either Argentia (near St. John's) or Port Aux Basques (West Coast).
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The Murray Premises is one place in St. John's I had always wondered about after trying a couple of...more
?? I don't know, my place is only 5 minutes away from here. Early in the 1920's Armstrong-Whitworth...more
112 Trans Canada Hwy, Gander, NF A1V1P8
Satisfaction: Very Good
Good for: Business
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