Motorcycle Travel Guide: Newfoundland, Canada

Welcome to the Newfoundland Motorcycle Travel Guide! This article is packed with info, the best biking routes, maps, what not to miss and a bunch of top tips on bike touring in Newfoundland. 

Newfoundland Motorcycle Guide


Picture of By Mike Buhler

By Mike Buhler

Mike's an adventure rider and calls Newfoundland home.

The Newfoundland Motorcycle Travel Guide

Riding a motorcycle in Newfoundland is an adventure you wont forget. There is almost no traffic here, the ocean scenery is second to none and the entire island is dripping in incredible history. Did you know the viking explorer, Leif Erikson, who discovered the Americas (about 500 years before Christopher Columbus) first arrived here in the 11th Century? Newfoundland was also Britain’s first overseas territory and the forerunner of the British Empire. We were our own country until 1949, have the most eastern point in North America (Cape Spear) and are also home to one of North America’s oldest cities too!

But there’s plenty of time for history later, here’s all the info you’re going to need on riding your motorcycle in and touring this beautiful land. 

The best riding route in East Canada

There’s something for everyone here. We have long and fun off-road routes like the totally unique 900 km (560-mile) T’Railway, which is the first leg of the Trans Canada Adventure Trail (TCAT). If you’re after asphalt, then the Irish Loop, Cape Shore and the Bacallieu Trail are fantastic.

A brilliant tour to spend a couple of days riding are the loops around the Avalon Peninsula. There are a number of lighthouses to visit and the Ferryland Lighthouse offers summer picnic baskets as a place to stop for lunch. There are plenty of beaches to stop and walk around too – St. Vincents is a lovely one. Going by the bird sanctuary in Saint Mary’s is a great stop to take in some of the local fauna and puffins are a cute distraction. Grates Cove Studios offer up a deliciously wonderful Cajun/Korean themed meal for lunch or supper while you’re there.

What makes these loops so incredible are the meandering roads that wander back and forth along the sea. The roads are never ending curves and corners that trip through little communities perched along the ocean and open to wide vistas of coastline everywhere you turn. Rarely is there any traffic to slow you down.

I recommend staying at the Seagoat Moto Lodge and taking two days to ride the loops. It’s about 550 miles per day, with one day being a bit longer than the other. There is one stretch that will have to be repeated but you have a choice of routes to repeat depending on timing or what you want to see again. There are plenty of offshoots to add if you fancy them and of course, you can take as long as you need!

Loop 1

Loop 2

When to go?

Typically, August has the warmest, driest and best weather but the riding season certainly goes from June to October. It is common to find some of the best riding weather of the year in September and October. Always carry cold weather gear with you because it can get down to single digit temps any time of the year. Starting too early or going too late will definitely give you cold weather and most likely some rain. It is not uncommon to get snow on May 24 weekend or Halloween, so be prepared. 

How much?

Fuel tends to be expensive for Canada with average prices around $1.30/litre (£0.70) but in the current climate it is under $1.00 (£0.58) . If you want 5 star dining you can find it in St. John’s with the corresponding prices, but once outside of the city you will mostly find average eating with moderate pricing. Newfoundlanders don’t eat as much fresh green food as you might like. Hotels in the area go from $120 (£700 to as much as you want to spend. The Fogo Island Inn can put you in their Fogo Island Family Suite for $3,475 per night (£2,000). And yes, it is absolutely stunning.


There are campgrounds across the island both Provincial and private, be warned that the private ones cater mostly to RVs. On the upside it is legal to camp anywhere in the province unless it’s private property so feel free to pop up your tent anywhere you please.

There are AirBnBs all over the island in all kinds of people’s homes and at all kinds of prices. Hotels are generally only found in bigger population centres and what most people would think of as good hotels only in the two bigger cities.

One standout is the Seagoat Moto Lodge that caters specifically to touring motorcycles and bicycles. There are four rooms for rent, two with en-suites and two with a shared bathroom and campsites for tents too. There are specific amenities for motorcyclists such as boot dryers and space to hang up wet tents. There’s a bike lift and tools plus supplies for basic maintenance. The Lodge is partnered with the local BMW dealer and can help set-up a service or ordering new tyres or parts. 

The other service they offer is pick- up/delivery of crated motorcycles and you at the airport, so if your time is limited they can still help you make a trip to Newfoundland work. There are no other motorcycle specific accommodations in the province.

Below you’ll find a map that shows real-time prices of accommodation around the island. You can use this to gauge where you’d like to stay and figure out current costs. 

For more info on camping, see the camping guides section. 

READ MORE: Motorcycle Camping Guides

Don’t miss

Newfoundland is all about the ocean and that is what you should plan your trip around. Make time to walk along the shore, do a hike on part of the East Coast Trail, visit some little fishing communities, eat plenty of fish because the local bounty is wonderful and check out local little museums. The history of the white man is over 500 years old if you discount the Vikings that came over 1,000 years ago. You could easily spend months roaming around and some people do.

Getting there and away

Coming to Canada from out of province requires a passport and some countries may require visas. Visas are not needed for UK citizens. Cars drive on the left so pay attention if coming from the UK. Signage is quite good on major highways but it is a totally different style when compared to Europe and may not be as good on secondary roads. 

There are no bike rentals in Newfoundland, the closet option is in Halifax, Nova Scotia. To get from Nova Scotia to Newfoundland requires a five-hour drive to the ferry.

There are two options: one from North Sydney to Port Aux Basques for a six-hour ride from the west coast of the island and one from North Sydney to Argentia for a 14-hour ride to the eastern side of the island that runs from June to September. For 2020 the Argentia ferry has been cancelled. The PAB ferry 2020 is $43.78 (£24) per person and $57.80 (£33) for motorcycles.

If you’re not from Canada, you could ship your motorcycle there, rent one or even buy one. There are dedicated guides for each option in the Canada section of this website. 

READ MORE: Canada Guides

Top tips

Cape Spear is the most easterly point in North America and it has two lighthouses, if you’re here you should go. There might be small lines of RVs at some of the more popular tourist spots but it’s not too bad. On weekends, travelling the old road around Conception Bay can be very busy. 

Always carry clothes for cool weather, the wind off of the water can drop the temperature considerably compared to being inland. 

As mentioned the Cajun/Korean themed food at Grates Cove Studios is excellent and there are many good restaurants in St. John’s.

Newfoundland Motorcycle Guide

About the author

Mike Buhler is an adventure rider from East Canada who calls Newfoundland home. He loves navigation rallies, off-roading and bike tours too. He’s also opening up a BnB for touring motorcyclists in Newfoundland in 2021. Check back soon for the link.

Read more on motorcycle travel in Canada 

Thanks for checking out our Newfoundland Motorcycle Travel Guide. We hope you enjoyed it! Here’s a few more articles on motorcycling in Canada that we recommend you read next. 

We may receive a commission, at no cost to you, if you purchase a product using the affiliate links on this page. We’re not sponsored, are completely impartial and don’t run ads. So this helps us keep the site running. Thank you for your support.

Try these next…

Are you planning a motorcycle trip to Canada or do you have any questions or tips to share? Let us know in the comments below. 

20 thoughts on “Motorcycle Travel Guide: Newfoundland, Canada”

  1. Still waiting on the borders to open! I’ll be headed to Newfoundland as soon as they do!

    Regards from North Carolina!


    • Hopefully wont be too much longer! We’re looking forward to getting over to Newfoundland as well! And North Carolina too!!! Cheers, Andy

  2. Planning a motorcycle trip in August 2022 hope the border is open then going to NFLD been there several times only once by motorcycle this will be second time any tips or ideas last two weeks it will take me 3 days to get to Sydney for ferry

    • Hi Richard, huge apologies, I know this reply is nearly a year late!!! To be honest, I just completely missed your comment. I’ve messaged Mike (the author of this article) and hopefully he’ll reply to you on here very soon. Cheers and best of luck on your tour,

  3. Hi, I’m planning to go in Newfoundland this summer, would you go on a klr650 or fjr1300, I want to go all around?

    • Hi Stephane, thanks for your comment, I’ve just messaged the author (Mike) who will hopefully get back to you on here soon, thanks,

  4. Hi Richard and Stephane. Richard I will be home in August. Our B&B is not “officially” open but we are taking in folks who come through. Do you know dates? I am leaving end of August for my own trip to the Trans Taiga. Also there is the Horizons Unlimited meetup August 12-15 which I am going to so I will be gone from home 9-17 I think. My rally the Skibum Soirée is August 19-21.

    Stephane I would suggest either bike would be good. How much dirt would you be looking for on your KLR? I’ll be riding the T’Railway a bunch this summer to see what condition it’s in for bikes. The FJR would be a decent ride but be warned there is a lot of crappy pavement around the island. If you’re comfortable on dirt roads on the FJR that might be more comfortable says the guy who tours on a KTM 640 Adventure.

    Feel free to get in touch:

    • First off I would ask just what are you calling the east coast? Just the Avalon Peninsula or do you want to go further? Newfoundland highways has broken up a number of loops and named them, one favourite called the Bacallieu Trial. Most of these rides are short’ish day rides. If you contact Newfoundland tourism I’m sure they will send you an official highway map that shows them.

  5. I am planning an end of July solo trip to Newfoundland this summer. This info was great!! I plan to tent/hammock camp for the few days I will be there any July weather advice? I was hoping to get all the way North to St Anthony and possibly catch a glimpse of an iceberg or two.

  6. Hi! We are planning a bike trip in June 2024. Possible to send us info about Mike’s BnB? Would love to chat routes and recommendations.

  7. Hi – very interested in doing 2+ weeks on Newfoundland this summer. It would be nice to know where any/all of the motorcycle shops on the island are. Can you gather that info and add it to this guide ? I think that it would be helpful to know. Thx,

    • Hi Scott, great to hear you’re planning a trip around Newfoundland!
      For motorcycle shops, the easiest way to find them is to just type “motorcycle garage” into Google Maps and it will show you where they all are.
      We can’t upload that sort of information because it is always subject to change and is easily found on Google.
      Thanks and have a great trip!

  8. There is a KTM dealer in St. John’s if you need anything from them. There are any number of local shops some better than others.

  9. My high school buddy and I plan to ride from Florida to North Sydney to take the ferry to Newfoundland for a ride around. We will get on the ferry to Port aux Basque. Once on the island, we plan to head to Gander via Twillingate. Our initial plan is to ride from Gander to Greenspond, St. John’s, Trepassey, Lord’s Cove, and Fortune and then back to Port aux Basque for our return to Nova Scotia.
    We are interested in enjoying the riding and seeing the country. This will be our 15th summer of “Wild Hogs” trips.
    Any suggestions that you could make would be much appreciated.

  10. I guess I forgot to mention that we will leave Florida around the first week of August and take approximately a week to get to the ferry in North Sydney.


Leave a comment