From the Heart…Mine and Newfoundland’s

Solo traveller Julie Bean finds just what she was looking for aboard a Newfoundland Circumnavigation expedition. In this heartfelt reflection, read more about Julie’s rewarding experience.

© Dennis Minty

Julie Bean on a Zodiac during the Newfoundland Circumnavigation expedition in 2022.

Each of us embarked on the Newfoundland Circumnavigation expedition for 176 of our own, individual reasons. In my case, it was a need to find peace within myself; to challenge myself after two and a half years of COVID-19 isolation, and come to terms with the recent death of my dear sister.


© Dennis Minty

Hiking and taking in the great outdoors

Well, the Newfoundland expedition met my needs and much more. Physically, you challenged me as I took part in as many hikes as possible, sometimes huffing and puffing and, at times, hanging on for dear life. The support of the expedition team and fellow travellers along the way felt both encouraging and safe. Having the benefit of the on board masseuse, Fern’s fabulous massage after Stanleyville’s hike was especially rejuvenating.


© Dennis Minty

Expedition staff photo: (Left to right) Gerry Strong - musician, Jen Derbach - photographer, Kevin Major - author/historian and Krista Gooderham - naturalist.

I have enormous respect for Cedar and MJ Swan, and the rest of the Adventure Canada team. They are a true Canadian company and their commitment to regeneration and sustainability is one of the many reasons I chose to travel with them over other tour operators. I especially appreciate the entire team being able to literally turn on a dime and make everything look so easy, no matter the circumstances.


© Dennis Minty

Local musicians and expedition team members playing a little something for guests on board the ship. (Left to right: Gerry Strong, Tony Oxford, and Jeff Pittman)

From the lively musicians, to the charity auction for the Miawpukek community’s recreation department, to hilarious whisky songs, to simply being one with nature, Adventure Canada’s motto must include having fun, since we all had it.


© Dennis Minty

Landscape picture of Newfoundland coast

Visiting the province of Newfoundland and Labrador had been on my bucket list for some time and I left feeling as though I'd learned more, with a greater understanding of its history, settlers, geology, and uniqueness. In large part, this is thanks to Adventure Canada’s relationship with the landscape and its people, a relationship they have been developing and maintaining for many years now.


© Dennis Minty

A local fisherman in a boat

The humour and kindnesses of the local people, plus our fabulous on board expedition team, provided insights into a world so far removed from my home town of Toronto.

The storm we experienced at Gros Morne thrilled me—I thought, this is TRUE Newfoundland and Labrador weather and, once again, the Adventure Canada team and the ship’s captain made it as comfortable as possible for us. Just think, we were like the resilient cod fishermen weathering the storm, only we had delicious food and a warm bed!


© Dennis Minty

Powwow in Miawpukek

I was particularly charmed by the little boy during the Powwow in Miawpukek (Conne River). His concentration on keeping time with the drummers spurred me to join in with both the Snake and Circle dancers. How fortunate I am I thought, to be dancing with Indigenous people on National Indigenous Peoples Day—thank you again, Adventure Canada.


© Dennis Minty

Taking a Zodiac cruise near a waterfall

You satisfied my craving for this rugged landscape, and I am sure my fellow travellers—all 176 of them—felt the same, each having their personal interests, individual likes, and dislikes responded to and looked after. Nothing was too difficult or awkward for this remarkable team to handle.


© Dennis Minty

Julie walking down a trail

It is important to me, too, how easy Adventure Canada makes it for solo passengers. Very few companies pay attention to us “singles”; you make travel available to us and create an environment for making real connections on board the ship. Thanks to you, I enjoyed sharing my wee cabin with a lovely woman from Halifax and tramped around the mountains with another new friend, so much so, we have signed up to travel together on the Greenland and Wild Labrador expedition!

I, among others, left this expedition feeling refreshed, inspired, and genuinely happier than when I boarded. Thank you, Adventure Canada.

About the Author

Julie Bean

Julie Bean

Traveller and retired Chief Administrative Officer of a 550 lawyer, multi-office law firm

Prior to retiring, Julie rarely had time to travel far. Upon retirement, her feet hit the Antarctic shelf, Saharan desert sands, Galapagos rock, various high seas, and Artic ice caps, never looking back. Adventure Canada is her go-to whenever possible: Into the Northwest Passage took her breath away; Ireland’s culture intrigued her, and then there’s Newfoundland….”