Home Ice bergs Guide to beautiful Bonavista: the iceberg capital of Canada

Guide to beautiful Bonavista: the iceberg capital of Canada

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If visitors choose the right time, they can watch huge icebergs float off the beautiful coast of Bonavista, Newfoundland.

Bonavista is believed to be where Italian sailor Giovanni Caboto first set foot in the Americas in 1497. Caboto is believed to have shouted “O Buono vista!” after seeing the rugged shore for the first time, and this charming village bears its title. Tourists can see ten thousand year old glaciers drifting into the sea off the coast from the top of the town’s 19th century lighthouse.

With a rocky coastline, sandy coves and beautiful fishing boats, small groups of new and old dwellings can be found. Whales, seabirds and icebergs inhabit the lush forest, transforming into a beautiful coastline. The rocks of the keep crumble into a massive abyss, with two coastal streams resulting from decades of marine weathering. In fact, the landscapes and coastlines of the region bear witness to a deep history.


Getting There

Since there is no direct route to Bonavista, visitors must first travel to Newfoundland.

By plane

  • Nearest Airport – St. John’s Intl. – 23.3 km

By public transport

  • Shirran’s cab leaves Bonavista at 7 a.m. and returns to St. John’s at 2 p.m.
  • He is responsible for the only public transport to Bonavista.
  • Visitors must book in advance. It costs $ 40 for a one-way ticket.

By car

  • The distance between St. John’s and Bonavista is 298 kilometers.
  • The drive from St. John’s to Bonavista takes approximately four hours.

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Things to do

Explore the Bonavista Lighthouse

  • The brightly colored Coast Bonavista Lighthouse is a stunning view of Newfoundland beach, drawing in tourists with its history as the region’s fourth oldest lighthouse.
  • Built in 1843, the Cape Bonavista Lighthouse is one of the few in the world where tourists can climb to the top and see the same lighting mechanism that was used in the 1800s.
  • It’s a great place to see whales, ice caps, and seabirds, and it’s one of the most visited places in Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • Tourists are guided through the kitchenette, living room, and several bedrooms before climbing the steps of the tower to see a magnificent view: a working set of lamps and mirrors that are gently rotated by a mechanical system.
  • A trip to the Cape Bonavista Lighthouse is a must.


Visit the Bonavista Archives

  • The Bonavista Archives were formed to safeguard the city’s heritage as well as to help the city meet its legislative record keeping obligations.
  • The archive organizes, maintains and renders data in a range of easily accessible points of sale; oversees data resources; move passive and permanent documents to archives; and gets rid of obsolete documents without long term use.
  • The documents written in the archives range from the 18th to the 20th century. They contain information on the history of the city as well as on the people of Bonavista and the surrounding area. Genealogy records, company records, contracts, photos, postcards, maps, building plans, audio recordings, and church documents are part of the documents.


Hike the Cape Shore Trail

  • Distance: 3.5 km (one way)
  • Difficulty level: Easy – Moderately difficult
  • A track that runs along the main road from Bonavista to Cape Town, skirting the shore.
  • This hike offers great views of Bonavista Bay as you hike to Cape Bonavista Lighthouse on a well-marked route.
  • Along the route, hikers can admire the rocky coastline while keeping an eye out for seabirds and whales in season.
  • Picnic areas are available all along the route or at the John Cabot Municipality campsite for tourists.

Visit Dungeon Provincial Park

  • Right on Bonavista Bay, close to the Bonavista Lighthouse, is the Dungeon Nature Reserve.
  • The most striking feature is a large heart-shaped hole with two different exits to the water on what appears to be a typical grassy cliff overlooking the water.
  • Visitors can see ocean waves rushing from the viewing platform, the same tides that have sculpted this magnificent sea cave over the centuries, ultimately collapsing to create a natural walkway.
  • Le Donjon is a breathtaking spectacle located a few minutes from the hamlet of Bonavista and a must-see!


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Where to stay

Russelltown Inn

  • A flat screen TV and Netflix are available in each cabin. Several rooms have a sitting area where you can relax after a long day.
  • Each bedroom has its own bathroom. Premium toiletries, linens, hairdryers and bathrobes are included in your accommodation for your convenience.
  • Free WiFi access is available throughout the Russelltown Inn.
  • Bike rental is provided, and cycling is prevalent in the neighborhood.
  • Address: 134 Coster Street West, A0C 1B0 Bonavista, Canada

Sunny cottage

  • Seakissed Cottage is a home in Bonavista with free Wi-Fi and ocean views.
  • It offers free parking permits.
  • There is a microwave in the kitchenette. There is a television with cable networks.
  • Address: 9 SMITH LANE, A0C 1B0 Bonavista, Canada


Robbins by the sea

  • Robbins by the Sea is located in Bonavista and offers accommodation with a balcony.
  • BBQs are available at this vacation rental.
  • A kitchenette, relaxation area and TV are included in this vacation rental.
  • A sun terrace is available in the holiday home. Visitors can also relax in the shared lounge.
  • Address: 38, chemin Ryans Hill, A0C 1B0 Bonavista, Canada

Dorman’s mansion

  • Dorman’s Manor is located in Bonavista and features a porch and ocean views.
  • There is a lawn and a free parking permit in this vacation rental.
  • There is a DVD player and a television with cable networks.
  • Address: 63, rue Roper, A0C 1B0 Bonavista, Canada


Bonavista is today a thriving tourism industry. It is home to the friendliest inhabitants of Newfoundland and many of the area’s most significant historical monuments. It is a must see attraction in Newfoundland.

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