Canada: Newfoundland and Labrador

Travel+Leisure has a Canada Travel Guide that you won’t want to miss!

We focus in this blog on the areas of Newfoundland and Labrador.

The second largest country in the world, Canada offers a vast variety of activities for travelers that want to vacation in the area. With a climate that varies from offering four distinct seasons to areas that are fairly hot or intensely cold, it is almost a one stop shop in terms of vacation planning.

Located to the far east of Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador is the combination province of the mainland, Labrador, and the island of Newfoundland. The province proudly calls itself home to the oldest settlements and cities in North America. Home to approximately half a million people, Newfoundland and Labrador is one of the must visit vacation destinations in Canada.

Things To Do in Canada

Iceberg Viewing:

When visiting Newfoundland and Labrador, iceberg viewing is definitely a must. Even on a sunny day, 10,000-year-old icebergs can be seen along the northern and eastern coasts. The main location to spot the ice giants isIceberg Alley, which spans from the coast of Labrador to the southeast coast of Newfoundland. The best ways to watch icebergs is by boat tour or kayak.


There are approximately 29,000 kilometers (18,000 miles) of coastline that can be explored. This includes beaches, sea stacks, and around 300 hiking and walking trails. It also is not uncommon to spot seabirds, whales, and icebergs on these adventures. Must visits are Green Gardens and Burnt Hill, both in Gros Morne National Park, and the East Coast Trail. Check out this link for the best hiking trails.

Places To Eat in Canada

Raymond’s Restaurant:

Raymond’s Restaurant debuted in 2011 and is operated out of a building dating back to 1915. A classic example of architecture in the area, the restaurant is also named after the grandfather of the head chef and the father of the sommelier- both of which were named Raymond.

The restaurant gets all of its ingredients locally, which includes the fresh seafood that is always served. Canada has wonderful fresh ingredients. While the menu changes regularly, there are certain staples that one can try at any point during the year such as roasted Quebec duck with savory duck sausage or smoked pork shoulder.

Java Jack’s Restaurant and Gallery:

Java Jack’s is located directly in the center of Gros Morne National Park in Canada. Java Jack’s began as a cafe in 2000 but became increasingly popular and, in 2003, opened a restaurant in the upstairs portion of their building. They serve fresh fish and seafood, wild game, and even offer vegetarian options. All of the restaurant’s vegetables are completely organic and grown in a large garden behind the building. They also grow flowers to place upstairs in the restaurant dining room and downstairs in the cafe.

Newfoundland and Labrador is undoubtedly an underrated travel destination. With its own rich culture in one of the largest countries in the world, it still manages to offer a unique experience unmatched by other parts of Canada.

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Choosing the Right Cruise for You

Choosing the right cruise for you and your family can be daunting.  There are so many factors at play: price, crowd, ship size, port location, and so on and so on.  Luckily, Travel + Leisure created a nifty cruise finder tool to help you choose the right one, no matter if you want a relaxing tropical getaway or adventure packed snowy scenery.  There is a cruise out there tailor-made for your wants and needs but first, you have to know what your options are and what factors to consider.

1.    Where do you want to go?

Used to, the only available cruises were in the Caribbean, greatly reducing access to many Americans, not to mention international travelers. Now it seems there isn’t a place on the globe that a cruise won’t go yet, not every line goes to every destination and some lines are stronger than others in particular areas. In Alaska, for instance, two lines — Princess and Holland America — dominate with seven ships apiece. Carnival, on the other hand, always has been a leader in the Caribbean, with more voyages there from more home ports than any other line.

How long do I want to be away?

This can have a huge influence on which line — and ship — you choose. Some lines, such as Carnival, specialize in shorter cruises of three to seven nights. Others, such as Oceania, rarely offer a voyage of fewer than 10 nights.  On the far end of the spectrum, a few lines such as Cunard and Holland America operate annual around-the-world cruises of 100 nights or more.

What’s my budget?

Like hotels, cruises come in a wide variety of price points with features to match.  Mass-market lines such as Carnival offer voyages for as little as $399 per person, per week. Luxury lines such as Seabourn and Regent Seven Seas can charge as much as $1,000 per person, per day. Rates also can swing significantly depending on the season and the lead-in price you see in advertisements often is for a small, “inside” cabin without windows onto the sea. You might pay hundreds of dollars more for an outward-facing cabin with a balcony.  Also, be warned: The upfront cost of a cruise is only part of the expense, particularly for the less expensive, mass-market lines. While companies such as Royal Caribbean and Princess include most on-board entertainment, activities and meals in main restaurants in the base cost, passengers pay extra for alternative specialty restaurants and drinks. Most mass-market lines also add a gratuity for the staff that can be as much as $12 per person, per day, and there are additional charges for everything from on-board Internet use to shore excursions.

What’s my cruise personality?

Every line has its own personality — and appeals to a different type of person. Carnival, for instance, is known for a gregarious, fun-loving crowd. Celebrity, by contrast, draws a quieter, more style-conscious customer. The two lines operate ships of similar sizes, and often on similar routes and at similar prices, but a regular Carnival customer would likely be miserable on a Celebrity ship — and vice versa.

Am I bringing the kids?

Some lines are much more focused on families than others. In addition to Disney Cruise Line, which has staked its business on families, mass-market lines such as Royal Caribbean and Carnival are leaders in family-friendly cruising, with extensive onboard children’s areas, deck-top water parks, family pool areas and other kid-friendly amenities. In general, the biggest mass-market ships also tend to be the best for families, given the wide range of deck-top activities.

How much do I care about entertainment?

Some lines, such as Disney, Royal Caribbean and Norwegian offer large theaters that stage Broadway-worthy productions such as the musical Chicago and the Blue Man Group. Other lines focus less on on-board entertainment, and the variety and quality of shows even can vary within a line from ship to ship. In general, larger ships offer more elaborate and diverse options than smaller ships, which have less room for large theaters. Some of the smallest ships have no entertainment at all, other than the occasional on-board lecture or port talk.

How important is the food?

Dining always has been a big part of the cruise experience, and many lines pride themselves on their selection of restaurants. That said, some cruise lines place far more emphasis on food than others. Lines such as Oceania, Cunard and Crystal have brought in big-name chefs such as Jacques Pepin, Todd English and Nobu Matsuhisa to create and manage eateries. And diversity also varies widely, with some lines such as Royal Caribbean and Norwegian offering more than a dozen restaurants on some ships.

Do I want to get dressed up?

Overall, cruise ships have become a lot less formal in recent years. The days of black-tie nights are virtually gone. But the dress code at sea still varies from line to line. Want to keep it super casual? You might want to go with Norwegian, where the “freestyle” philosophy extends to the dress code. By contrast, on U.K.-based Cunard, formal nights (black tie for men, evening wear for ladies) still take place several times a week, and passengers wear jackets even on casual nights.

No matter what you choose as your cruise line and destination, it is sure to be an experience to remember!  For more travel tips, click here.

Best Heritage Hotels of Asia

Many of Asia’s most beautiful heritage hotels emerged during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Here, we take a travel through time to explore the top 2 of the region’s most stately places to rest your head:

Raffles Singapore

Originally opened in 1887 by the four brothers, the hotel has welcomed every manner of celebrity and diplomat over the years. It’s so rooted in Singapore history that the government declared the building a protected National Monument in 1987. From gleaming wooden floors to open courtyard gardens, luxurious afternoon tea sets and spacious suites, the hotel has long been associated with old-world comforts. This year, international architecture firm Aedas is leading the ultra-sensitive renovation project. The plan aims to re-imagine the social areas and dining experiences, refresh suites with updated technology and incorporate long overdue amenities — such as soundproof bedroom windows — while retaining the building’s beautiful old bones.

The Peninsula, Hong Kong

If the fleet of custom “Peninsula Green” Rolls-Royces in the driveway and white-capped pageboys standing guard by the door are any indication, The Peninsula has long been a top meeting place for Hong Kong’s upper crust.  It’s also one of the oldest hotels in the territory. The Pen, as it’s nicknamed, opened in 1928, overlooking Victoria Harbour from its prestigious plot in Tsim Sha Tsui. Around the property, Old World charm meets avant-garde atmosphere. The guestrooms have a more modern feel, thanks to a round of renovations completed in 2012. However, certain corners still feel like they’ve been locked in time. The high ceilings and French atmosphere come with grand chandeliers, leisurely lunches and white-gloved service.

Likewise, the ornate Lobby Lounge serves elegant afternoon tea sets soundtracked by a live string quartet, while Spring Moon has been a bastion of Cantonese fine-dining since it opened in 1986.

For more of the best places to stay in Asia, click here.

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