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St. John’s

St. John’s, the capital city of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, is North America’s most easterly city. In fact it is closer in distance to Ireland than it is to Toronto and much of the character of the place is derived from the English and Irish roots of its citizens.

Newfoundland and Labrador affectionately referred to as “The Rock” by locals, a pretty apt description of the pristine wilderness and coastal geography which surrounds the city and characterizes Signal Hill at the mouth of the T-shaped harbour. Newfoundland and Labrador boasts a staggering 17,000 km of coastline etched by dramatic glacier-carved fjords and incredible seascapes. This is a stark contrast to city’s animated and colourful architecture which clusters along harbour.

Brightly painted clapboard houses and interesting characters that stroll the dockside provide visitors with a memory to be savoured.

St. John’s is often compared to San Francisco as it was at the turn of the century. It is a bustling port city with all the amenities you could ever desire lots of pubs, eateries, and character hotels.

George Street, in downtown St. John’s, is the focal point of the city’s nightlife. Few visitors leave without at least one evening of frivolity – joining the locals for an evening of music, laughter. A mandatory sampling of the local drink known as “Screech,” or another honorary tradition “Kissing the Cod” is a unique experience.

Within an easy drive of the city are seascapes as spectacular as any in Northern California, but without the traffic jams. The people are the most hospitable and friendly you will find anywhere in Canada and with time spent will endear you to the place forever.

If you want to see whales, icebergs and seabirds – sometimes all at once Newfoundland and Labrador is the place. You can hop on a tour boat, or view from land. Explore two World Heritage Sites, including the first European settlement in the New World. Visit fishing villages, historic sites and the city’s new cultural complex, The Rooms. Shop for distinctive crafts and artworks, and dine out on local and international cuisine. Explore Gros Morne National Park, which predates Banff National Park in the Rockies by 20 years. Trinity offers a taste of old-time rural life in a theatrical bent.

No matter where you go in St. John’s or its surrounding area, you will have the opportunity to take in a local folk festival or musical event to hear popular tunes brought there centuries ago by the province’s ancestors.

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