Monday, September 23, 2013

N. L. Road Trip (2): St. John's

St. John's was our first stop in N. L. It was a very long flight and we were tired but the rental car had been booked and the hotel reservation was complete; considering the size of the city which is fairly small we found ourselves in the hotel shorty after the airport. It would not have been possible to reach there and go anywhere else if we I had not purchased a G. P. S. but that was not free from issues which I will either have a separate post for it or describe when necessary.
There is a lots of history to the city and N. L. in general and that is because it has been one of the first settlements of the Europeans with ties to the UK. Newfoudnlanders also were volunteers for both the first and second World Wars. I did not have time to read all that in such a short time but we first visited Signal Hill which is a national historic site of the country. 
One thing I realized a little later and it was late was that the trip should have been done much earlier, as early as May or June! N. L. is an island and close to the north. September is when most of the festivals are wrapped up, Icebergs are melted, Whales and Puffins are gone away and most importantly it's mostly cloudy and rainy and a bit cold although we only got one really rainy day. 
Anyways Signal Hill has been a defense place for the city since early 1900s. If you want to walk up and down the trails of this place and see everywhere, take photos and read all the information you probably need at least 4 hours! We spent a bit more than half of it and got tired. Also do not forget to check sunrise at this place. That is the start of the day in Canada! Surprisingly there is no admission for the site. There is a little gift shop and museum as well as other exhibits. Overall it is a place to spend time in. 
Then after hours of walking and exploring we decided to check the downtown. We stopped at a local restaurant recommended by people called Oliver's. It's a fairly small restaurant but very clean and nice. We ordered Cod which is the main fish in Newforndland and that was good. I had it with salad which was nice. The food for two cost around $45 and we do not drink wine with our food and we did not have an appetizer or any dessert. The food was a small portion like many restaurants in Canada I would say and that is because their eating habits are different form ours. We had lot's of side items that we get ourselves full with them and they are mostly full of carbohydrates and I gave them up(!) while Canadians start with appetizer and drink wine with their food which help them to feel full after they meal although the main course is small. We walked for a few minutes in downtown area. People were spending their time in bars and restaurants like any other countries. It's a nice place for eating, shopping and observing.
(Photo: St. John's harbour from Signal Hill. It was mostly a cloudy day with scatter showers)

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