Situated on the Avalon Peninsula’s eastern fringe is Canada’s oldest city – St Johns. Well known throughout the world for its historical fishing industry St Johns is now a thriving metropolitan area with fishing, gas and oil industries at the front of its economic growth.
St Johns history dates as far back as 1947 when the first sailor John Cabot arrived into its Harbour. John Cabot was also known as John the Baptist as he sailed into the city to preach to those who would listen to his Hebrew prophets. The city was given its name by fisherman who believed that St Johns resembled a fishing town in Portugal. The climate in St Johns is notoriously known as the snowiest in Canada although its winters are relatively milder compared to other parts of Canada.
The history of St Johns is present in many of gothic style cathedrals and monuments scattered throughout Newfoundland & Labrador. There are many interesting ones to visit including The Anglican Cathedral of St John the Baptist which was built in 1847 and Christ Church built in 1842. For an insight into St Johns Past take the family to Newfoundland Museum, The Railway Coastal Museum and the Provincial museum.
Should the kids find the museums a little boring there are plenty educational and entertaining places of interest to keep them happy – one place not to miss is the Newfoundland Science Centre and the Johnson Geo Centre that informs visitors about the planet and the future – it also has some special exhibits.
St Johns has a lovely coastline and with that in mind organised boat trips into the Atlantic are possible – where you can spot whales, dolphins and puffins.
Dining Out & Nightlife
Being a harbour city St Johns has more than its fair share of Sea Food restaurants with the specialty being crab, prawn and lobster dishes. If you are not keen on sea food Paella then don’t despair there are hundreds to be found throughout the city – whether it be a romantic dinner for two, pizza place to take the kids or a restaurant that has entertainment while you dine, you certainly wont be disappointed with the choice.
Nightlife in St Johns isn’t sleepy, there are themed bars, and plenty sports bars where you can watch the game, have a beer and feast on clam chowder. There is a predominant Irish influence to be found in St Johns so expect to find plenty traditional themed bars selling Guinness.
Travelling to St Johns
St Johns International Airport is where you will arrive into from the UK. Cheap flights are available departing most UK airports with one or two stopovers at either Toronto or Edmonton. Flying time to St Johns varies depending on flight changes but is in the region of around 11 hours.
To enter Canada as a holidaymaker you are required to hold a current valid Passport and complete a visa waiver form. For some citizens born outside the UK may be required to have a medical check-up before being allowed entry into Canada.