EPDM Coatings
rvupgradestore.com Composet Products PO Box Zone
Over The Network Custom Yacht Interiors

Author Topic: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand  (Read 550 times)

hoddinron

  • ---
  • Posts: 350
    • My blog
Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« on: May 25, 2017, 10:01:05 AM »
We're traveling to Nova Scotia starting on July 4th from Florida, but taking the roundabout way which will put us in NS toward the end of July.

How much lead time will we need to schedule a ferry ride from N. Sydney NS to Newfoundland?  We thought about leaving the trailer and getting B&Bs over there for a week, but most are very small, and we were advised that we'd have to reserve well in advance.

Hoping that there will be space in the campgrounds!

Ron and Joyce.
Ron & Joyce - Retired
2012 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 2.73 axle
2016 Sabre 25 RL 5th Wheel

Frank Hurst

  • ---
  • Posts: 576
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #1 on: May 25, 2017, 11:58:32 AM »
We drive a 38' MH while towing a car. We decided to leave the car in Nova Scotia and drive the MH while in Newfoundland. We took the short ferry crossing both ways. Some will say that you are repeating yourselves but it was amazing what we missed the first time. We got our ferry reservation about 7-10 days before we crossed. We made no reservations for camping and had no problems finding a place to stay.

Frank
« Last Edit: May 25, 2017, 12:03:26 PM by Frank Hurst »
Frank & Hilda Hurst
2003 Phaeton
2004 Malibu
Semi Retired Relief Veterinarian

muskoka guy

  • ---
  • Posts: 709
  • 2000 Coachmen Santara 370 isb cummins diesel
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2017, 11:59:36 AM »
We booked ahead a few weeks, but coming back the weather was bad and we got on in one days notice. Definitely take the camper. It cost us 400 dollars each way to port aux basque with a 38 ft mh.  If you go to the more remote parts of nfld, there are very few restaurants and motels. We wanted to see icebergs, so we ended going all the way up to lans aux meadows at the far north. As stated, not many restaurants or motels except in the larger towns which are few and far between. We stayed at lots of small campground for as little as 25 dollars. Some were only dirt parking lots with services, but that was fine with us. Peppi park in downtown St Johns was a nice park. Its right in the city, and only a cheap cab ride down to the harbour and downtown. We met a great cabby, who gave us a private four hour tour for 50 dollars each. Way cheaper than the charter tour, and he took us places no bus tour could ever go. Ask for george lol. A few hours south of St Johns is St Vincent beach. The whales come right up to the shore to feed on the caplin. We stayed on the beach for two days in the mh watching the whales. As stated, no restaurants or motels nearby. We had to use the furnace a few nights as it got chilly, even though it was mid July when we were there. Have fun, the people are great and the scenery is awesome. Dont forget Gros Morne NP. All nation parks and monuments are free this year to celebrate Canadas 150th birthday.
« Last Edit: May 25, 2017, 05:42:50 PM by muskoka guy »

ArdraF

  • ---
  • Posts: 9658
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2017, 05:09:32 PM »
Definitely take the RV!  We drove our 40' motorhome towing a car.  You unhook the car at the ferry and it's parked separate from the big trucks and RVs.  We've been to Newfoundland twice and love it.  The first time was for less than a week and only on the west coast.  The second time we arrived in Port aux Basque and drove across to St. John's (make reservations there at Pippi Park).  On the return west-bound we stopped at different places than east-bound so made a great experience out of the two-way trip.  By the way, we did it that way instead of going on the "long" ferry because the price of fuel that year (about $5.00/gal.) was such that driving both ways was the least expensive alternative.  On the second trip we ended going up to L'Anse Meadows again with an overnight trip across to Red Bay, Labrador (left the motorhome parked in a locked storage lot).  There are some wonderful UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Canada and I recommend stopping at each one.  St. John's is the oldest city in North America and it's a real gem.  A store called Irene's Curios is the oldest retail shop on the oldest street in the oldest city in North America!  Also, "Newfies" are a really hospitable group of people who go out of their way to say hello or to help visitors.  You'll love it!

ArdraF
« Last Edit: May 25, 2017, 05:11:23 PM by ArdraF »
ArdraF
:D :D

hoddinron

  • ---
  • Posts: 350
    • My blog
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2017, 05:14:10 PM »
Joyce and I are so relieved to hear your encouraging stories.  I think you're right that it will be worth it to go ahead and pay the ferry fare for the truck and 5th wheel.  More campground  spaces than B&B rooms, and we can cook our own food and sleep in our own bed, as well as set our own itinerary as we go.

Thank you so much!

Ron & Joyce - Retired
2012 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 2.73 axle
2016 Sabre 25 RL 5th Wheel

Hfx_Cdn

  • ---
  • Posts: 3156
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2017, 05:51:36 PM »
     A little side info, August 7th is a provincial holiday in New Brunswick, and a municipal holiday in over half of Nova Scotia.  So, campgrounds in both provinces will be busy and if you are delayed until that week end make reservations.  If you have the time, it will be well spent in both provinces.
     As you approach your visit, drop me a PM if you have any questions.

Ed
Ed & Donna
Winter-Pinellas Park FL, Summer- Maritime Canada
2000 Coachmen Catalina 34' DP (owned 2004 to 2015)
2006 Jeep Liberty Toad

muskoka guy

  • ---
  • Posts: 709
  • 2000 Coachmen Santara 370 isb cummins diesel
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2017, 05:54:12 PM »
We spent one night parked right on a wharf in a small village. We stopped to see an iceberg that was in the bay at Noddy Bay. Its a village of about 15 houses. One of the fisherman had his son take us out in his skiff to see the iceberg. They were not allowed to sell fish from the dock, but they were kind enough to give us some cod fillets to take with us. We had so much fun with the people, they let us plug the mh into the fish cleaning building and we stayed the night right on the dock. The people in NFLD are the true gem of the province. Down to earth hard working honest people. They can be a little hard to understand, but you will get used to it. I have worked with lots of Newfies in Ontario, so I had a head start on understanding them. As stated we also spent two days in a beach parking lot. The advantage of having your own camper is you dont need reservations for most things, and make up your itinerary as you go. Cheers.

AStravelers

  • ---
  • Posts: 606
  • Part time travelers, 4-8 months each year.
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #7 on: May 26, 2017, 02:28:47 PM »
Yes, by all means take the truck & 5'er.   

Plan on spending at least 4 weeks in NL.  We spent 7 weeks there in 2008. 

Keep in mind it is about 600 miles from the eastern end of NL to the ferry at Port al Basque.  The cost of fuel for the trip may well cover the extra cost of the long ferry to Argentia.  When we went, we took the long ferry to Argentia.  Then followed the southeaster coast and then up to St Johns, on to Bonavista, then Twillingate.  Don't miss going up to the  World Heritage Site, L'Anse au Meadow to see the restored Viking settlement and museum.  We also took the ferry to Labrador for a 5-6 day side trip.  Partly to see what was there an secondly to be able to say we did visit Labrador.  We traveled in our 40 diesel pusher pulling a 2002 Blazer.

If you don't currently dry camp/boondock, practice before going.  In NL you can park your RV overnight pretty much anywhere you are not blocking someones driveway.  Add an extra battery and get a small 1000 watt Honda or Yamaha generator to charge the battery.  If you want to run the microwave, get a 2000 watt generator.  Stay away from the small and cheap $200-$300 generators with the exposed engine.  They are so noisy you can't hear yourself think.  Also you really make your neighbors mad when you crank up one those noisy cheap generators. 

As others said, you should not have a problem making reservations for the short ferry a week or so in advance.  Plan on 2-4 weeks advance for the long ferry.

Al & Sharon
2006 Winnebago Sightseer 29R
2009 Chevy Colorado 4X4

http://downtheroadaroundthebend.blogspot.com/

muskoka guy

  • ---
  • Posts: 709
  • 2000 Coachmen Santara 370 isb cummins diesel
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #8 on: May 28, 2017, 03:32:24 PM »
You must turn off your propane when you get on the ferry. the short ferry can be 6 hours or longer if the seas are bad. We froze some water in a plastic container, and put it in the fridge before we boarded the ferry. Though it might help keep the fridge cool better. Probably not needed, but we just used the water for coffee once it thawed out. If you have animals, you can check them into the animal storage area, or leave them in the mh, but you are not allowed down below to check on them. Usually not a problem leaving them in the coach, as long as there are no problems, and the voyage takes longer than expected.

AStravelers

  • ---
  • Posts: 606
  • Part time travelers, 4-8 months each year.
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2017, 06:51:31 AM »
You must turn off your propane when you get on the ferry. the short ferry can be 6 hours or longer if the seas are bad. We froze some water in a plastic container, and put it in the fridge before we boarded the ferry. Though it might help keep the fridge cool better. Probably not needed, but we just used the water for coffee once it thawed out. If you have animals, you can check them into the animal storage area, or leave them in the mh, but you are not allowed down below to check on them. Usually not a problem leaving them in the coach, as long as there are no problems, and the voyage takes longer than expected.
On the long ferry (14-18 hours) we were allowed to go take care of the pets every 4-5 hours.  Those with dogs were allowed to take them to a designated area to do their business.  Probably, since the short ferry is about 5 hours they figure there is no need to check on the pets.  One would hope if the short ferry was delayed for 6-8 hours they would all people to check on their pets.   This was in 2008.  I wouldn't think that things would have changed for the long ferry. 
Al & Sharon
2006 Winnebago Sightseer 29R
2009 Chevy Colorado 4X4

http://downtheroadaroundthebend.blogspot.com/

hoddinron

  • ---
  • Posts: 350
    • My blog
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2017, 02:28:00 PM »

Thanks for the information about shutting off the propane and taking care of animals.  We don't take animals with us, so that's not a problem, but I'll pass it along if others need the information. I guess we'll limit frozen stuff and hope the fridge holds cold over night.

 The schedule says that the short ferry takes 8 hours port to port, so we were thinking of departing at midnight, and arriving at 8 in the morning, giving us all day to drive north along the west coast of NF.  There are cabins that can be rented, or people tell me that you can snooze in the lounge area fairly comfy.  Correct?

Thanks for all the great tips!

Ron and Joyce
Ron & Joyce - Retired
2012 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 2.73 axle
2016 Sabre 25 RL 5th Wheel

Hfx_Cdn

  • ---
  • Posts: 3156
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2017, 05:09:58 PM »
     Everyone we know rent a cabin, otherwise you may be in the middle of a "kitchen party", while fun, you won't get very far when you disembark.

Ed
Ed & Donna
Winter-Pinellas Park FL, Summer- Maritime Canada
2000 Coachmen Catalina 34' DP (owned 2004 to 2015)
2006 Jeep Liberty Toad

Krow

  • ---
  • Posts: 34
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2017, 06:51:38 PM »
We're in New Brunswick and travel every year to Nfld as we have family there.  We always book a night crossing and get a cabin.  Your 8 hours sleep ends up being about 5-6 in reality.  Your other option is to sit upright all night in a slightly reclining theatre chair or pay for one that reclines a bit more (think they still have those, they did in the ferries years ago that didn't have many cabins, maybe they don't now).

In your first post you indicate crossing to Nfld for a week.  It's a BIG island with lots to see.  Unless you have an unlimited budget, you have to consider the cost of the ferry into your trip - the longer you stay on the island, the more economical/day it is.  In a week you'll likey have to limit yourselves to staying on the west coast.  You'll get to Gros Morne National Park and, if you push it, maybe L'Anse Aux Meadows if you don't spend any time anywhere else (Port Aux Basques to L'Anse Aux Meadows would be 2 good days drive with a motorhome/trailer).  It would be a shame to spend all that money to get there and then have to leave before really seeing much.  Several weeks would still be a whirlwind tour around the coast, relocating almost every day.  In Newfoundland, you have to get off of the main highways if you want to see anything, otherwise it's mainly a drive through the woods to Corner Brook, Grand Falls, and St. John's.

Keith

ArdraF

  • ---
  • Posts: 9658
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2017, 07:00:25 PM »
KROW is correct.  On our first trip we spent a week and saw only the western end up to L'Anse Meadows.  On the second trip we stayed a month and still didn't see everything.  There's really only one major highway that crosses Newfoundland east/west.  All the other roads more or less peel off from it so it takes time to traverse enough places to see what you want to see.  We grew up during the days when Gander was a huge refueling stop from the USA to Europe so I had to see Gander, especially after hearing how wonderful its residents were to stranded travelers after 9/11.  They opened their hearts and homes to help those people who didn't know when they would get home.  There's an interesting book called The Day the World Came to Town about what they did.

ArdraF
ArdraF
:D :D

muskoka guy

  • ---
  • Posts: 709
  • 2000 Coachmen Santara 370 isb cummins diesel
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2017, 07:32:06 PM »
Its a good idea to land on the island in daylight. When we went, I had read stories of people landing there at night and having to navigate from the dock in thick fog. We landed like you said, first thing in the morning and drove to Cornerbrook the first day. The following day we went to Gros Morne. From there we headed up the coast. We encountered some heavy winds along the coast going up to L'anse aux meadows. If it is very windy, I would suggest staying put till it dies down. Unfortunately, my Winnebago fell victim to the famous roof coming loose, and we lost a small chunk of our roof in the high winds. We went to St Anthony and got some fibreglass and made a quick fix patch that got us home. You also pass through an area known as wreckhouse, and is famous for blowing trains off the tracks. It is in a mountain pass and it funnels the wind into a concentrated area you pass through. As stated, a week wont give you time to see everything. You might be better to do some research and concentrate one section. If I had to chose a short trip, I think I would include Gros Morne, the Twillingate area and St. John. It took us 10 hrs up to Lanse aux Meadows and 10 hrs back down. If you only have a week, the north leg would take up near half of it. That wouldnt leave much time to see the east side which has the more popular sites to see.

hoddinron

  • ---
  • Posts: 350
    • My blog
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #15 on: May 30, 2017, 01:11:50 PM »
Thank you all again!

There is so much to see in Newfoundland!  I'm sure we won't be able to see it all in a week.  Even a month!

And booking a cabin for some sleep during the passage is now on our list of MUST DO's.

Thank you! 

Ron & Joyce - Retired
2012 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 2.73 axle
2016 Sabre 25 RL 5th Wheel

Krow

  • ---
  • Posts: 34
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #16 on: June 07, 2017, 01:39:24 PM »
Another suggestion.... do a Facebook search and subscribe to "Heart of Newfoundland".  They have great photos.

Jeff

  • Forum Staff
  • ---
  • *
  • Posts: 8972
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #17 on: June 08, 2017, 10:33:29 AM »
Enjoy!

hoddinron

  • ---
  • Posts: 350
    • My blog
Re: Taking the Ferry to Newfoundand
« Reply #18 on: June 08, 2017, 03:41:49 PM »
Thanks everyone!  We're getting psyched!

Ron and Joyce
Ron & Joyce - Retired
2012 Ram 2500 Cummins Diesel 2.73 axle
2016 Sabre 25 RL 5th Wheel

 

Hosted by Over The Network