Top 5 Reasons to Stay at the Fogo Island Inn

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Fogo Island Inn is in a category of itself. It’s consistently rated 5 stars and scores a perfect 10/10 on multiple platforms. The Inn on Fogo Island, however, is much more than this

Fogo Island Inn - another unforgettable Newfoundland trip for even the most experienced traveler
Photo from Travelersjoy.com in their post: “Shag the day away in these awe-inspiring rooms with views”

Staying at the Fogo Island Inn boutique hotel is unlike staying at any other place in the world. Located on a hilltop overlooking Fogo Island’s windswept rugged coastline, the Inn is as far away from far away as you can get. The Inn on Fogo Island is in such an unexpected setting, you’ll feel like you’re standing on one of the four corners of the earth.

On your way to the Inn, even before you step inside, it won’t surprise you that the Flat Earth Society considers Fogo Island to be one of the four corners of the earth. The architecture of this world-class hotel blends in with the rugged Newfoundland coastal landscape and has a design similar to a traditional fishing stage. Its twenty-first-century modern fusion architecture in a 300-year-old fishing village will make you feel like you’re travelling forwards and backwards in time all at once.

Walking into the Fogo Island Inn, you’ll receive a warm Newfoundland greeting. It’s hard not to feel at ease at the Inn on Fogo, but this kind of hospitality is pretty standard across the board when it comes to the people and culture in Newfoundland. At the Fogo Island Inn, everything is inclusive. This includes food, tours, activities, entertainment, transportation and more.  

1: FOOD

Traveling Newfoundland and eating new Food combinations
From The National Posts article: Think Spring Thaw With Salt Cod Cakes

Three fine-dining meals are included when you stay at the Fogo Inn, and the food is one of the highlights of any visit to the Inn on Fogo Island. Executive chef Jonathan Gushue oversees all food that comes out of the Kitchen at the Inn.

All food is locally inspired, made of the finest ingredients from the wilds of Newfoundland and follows a seven seasons rotation. Only the best quality ingredients make their way to your table. Everything is either caught, farmed, or foraged on the island of Fogo and in its coastal waters.

Popular ingredients you’ll find on your plate when eating at the Fogo Island Inn restaurant include salt cod, turnip, bakeapples, parsnips, fresh scallops, king crab, moose, caribou, shrimp, trout, and rhubarb.

Eating at the Fogo Island Inn offers an experience that goes beyond an outstanding culinary experience, guaranteed to please even the most discerning foodie. On Fogo Island, food is a way that people connect with culture and nature. It’s the ultimate expression of local culture that personifies Fogo Island’s unique identity intertwined in food. If you have a chance to look up from your meal when dining in the Fogo Island Inn, which admittedly is hard to do when the food is this amazing, you’ll also be able to relish a perfect view of rare seabirds, marine mammals, and icebergs stretching out all the way to the horizon.  

2 ACTIVITIES

Photo from the Fogo Island Inn's article showcasing their Inland Winter Experience
Photo from the Fogo Island Inn’s article showcasing their Inland Winter Experience

There is so much to experience and explore on Fogo Island and the Fogo Island Inn makes it easy for you to enjoy the best experiences. The experiences offered at the Inn are some of the most unique and well thought out in the world, a must-do for anyone visiting this special part of the world.

There is a lot to see and do, regardless of the time of year you choose to stay at the Fogo Island Inn.

Seasonal Activities

During winter, enjoy unique activities like the Nighttime Snowmobile and Stargazing Adventure, and the Traditional Newfoundland Cabin Experience.

Go inland on Fogo Island and explore a winter wilderness experience,

  • have a visit with local Newfoundland dogs,
  • go snowshoeing,
  • go out on the sea ice for fully guided seal watching,
  • experience ice skating on a frozen outdoor pond, and
  • gaze at a nighttime sky full of planets and strips of constellations.

The stargazing on Fogo Island is unlike anything you’ve experienced before and one of the reasons why the Inn on Fogo is referred to as the “million-star hotel“.

During the iceberg season, join local guides on an exclusive marine open boat experience or embark on the famous “fish and ships” tour that takes you out on a real Newfoundland fishing vessel in the Atlantic ocean.

If you like hiking or are a geology buff, this is an ideal place for you too. Newfoundland is considered the Galapagos of geology and the hiking on Fogo Island is spectacular. When staying at the Fogo Island Inn you can join guided geology hikes, all-day nature hikes, and guided community walks with a local host.

Other activity options at the inn on Fogo include:

  • visiting the Fogo Island Museum,
  • joining an art workshop,
  • checking out one of the many Fogo Island summertime music festivals like the FESTIVAL AT BRIMSTONE HEAD,
  • hanging out at the nighttime bonfire,
  • cycling around the many bike paths on the island,
  • collecting beach rocks along the rugged coastline,
  • caribou watching,
  • ocean swimming,
  • taking a trip to Oliver’s Cove,
  • picking wild berries,
  • visiting some of the local gardens and root cellars,
  • walking to the Great Auk Sculpture,
  • fishing for trout in one of the pristine local ponds,
  • relaxing in the rooftop sauna,
  • iceberg watching from a coastal meadow,
  • rowing in the coastal waters in a traditional punt,
  • visiting Sandy Cove Beach, and of course,
  • soaking in one of the Fogo Island Inn’s rooftop hot tubs. 
Your Wonderful trip to Newfoundland is not complete without your own oceanview hot tub
Rooftop hot tubs: embrace the escalating chill of the season and its long, starry nights.

3: BECOMING ACCUSTOMED WITH THE SEVEN SEASONS

Understandably, when you carve out your living from the waters and landscape of Fogo, there are much more than four seasons to consider, and when you pay attention to the local trends, you’ll see why locals consider there to be seven seasons on Fogo Island, in perfect harmony with the natural environment that surrounds them.

The seven seasons approach reflects more than changes in weather and wind. It’s in tune with the specific lifestyle changes that happen throughout the calendar year as the seasons come and go.

Summertime on Fogo Island is spent in the wildflower-covered meadows and gardens tending to crops and enjoying the perfect weather. During the snowy season, locals spend a lot of time socializing at the cabin while repairing and preparing gear for the spring. Right after winter is what’s called pack ice season where multi-year arctic ice makes its way to the shores of Fogo Island, and with it come a multitude of seals and occasionally polar bears.

When the pack ice thaws, it marks the start of what’s called June’s Trap Berth Season, a time when fishers stake out fishing grounds while navigating around the giant icebergs that float down from Greenland and dot the landscape around the Fogo Island Inn at this time of year.

As the summer sun progresses, millions of wild berries start to dot the hilly landscapes of Fogo Island. Berry picking is a big part of Fogo Island culture and culture in Newfoundland. It’s easy to tell it’s Berry Season, and once this season starts it goes all the way into the fall. Blueberries are famous in Newfoundland, but these are just one of the many berries locals and visitors to Fogo Island love to collect.

During Berry Season, you can pick berries like marshberries, crowberries, bakeapples, partridgeberries, and blueberries from sunrise to sunset. As the summer sun begins to dwindle and what is known on the mainland as fall begins, one can experience all the seasons in a single day. Warm days contrast infrequent storms and gale-force winds, foreshadowing the shorter days and inclement weather that will soon come.

The official names for the seven seasons on Fogo Island are

  • Winter,
  • Pack Ice,
  • Spring,
  • Trap Berth,
  • Summer,
  • Berry, and
  • Late Fall.

Whatever season you choose to visit the Fogo Island Inn, rest assured there will be something amazing to see, do, eat, and experience. That’s a promise that’s easy to keep.

 Seven Seasons hooked rug - hand-dyed and as-is wool on linen. Designed and hooked by Gwen Burt, Northern Arm, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, 2013.
Seven Seasons hooked rug – hand-dyed and as-is wool on linen. Designed and hooked by Gwen Burt, Northern Arm, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada, 2013.

4: SOLITUDE

In this modern hectic world, your attention is always being competed for. Dings from your cell phone, ads all around you, and a million distractions can make it hard to think and even breath. Trying to get away from it all can often lead to just more distractions, making your head spin and adding to the ever-increasing uncertainty and indecision people often experience in their day to day lives.

Stays at the Fogo Island Inn sharply contrast this. Fogo Island is one of the safest places in the world, a place you can let your guard down, commune with nature, and just be.

If you need a fresh perspective or are looking for resolve, this is the best place for quiet contemplation. The Inn perched on a hilltop on this special part of Planet Earth is otherworldly, often feeling like a different planet altogether. 

5: LIFE IS SHORT AND TIME IS SOMETHING YOU CAN ONLY SPEND, NOT SAVE

Take a break, take time for yourself, you're Newfoundland trip is meant to recoup your spirit
Courtesy of https://destinationstjohns.com/tag/fogo-island-inn/

The reality is we will all be dead soon. In the grand timeline of the universe, our physical existence in this body and on this planet is remarkably short. We wake up every day feeling a little immortal, and we go to sleep each night feeling confident we will wake the next morning, but like the million or so people that die globally during the average 8 hour sleep some of us enjoy, you wouldn’t be the first person to get duped by this fallacy if things did not go according to the way you had expected.

For a lot of us, many of the days we spend blend into each other. Hotel stays can feel remarkably similar, and beach vacations can be unbelievably boring after a while.

That’s what makes Fogo Island and the Fogo Island Inn so special. This place, the people, and the activities make a trip to Fogo Island and the Inn on Fogo totally unlike anything you’ve ever experienced. The time spent in a place like this can spin you in a direction you’ve always wanted to go but didn’t know how or spark ideas and epiphanies that are life-changing.

Your time is worth more than you think. It’s the most valuable thing you have, and it is in a limited supply. Spend it wisely.   

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About Us

Whale House Guest House offers luxury boutique private suites with outdoor hot tubs overlooking humpback whale feeding grounds. Located next to the east coast trail in the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve, just 30 min from downtown St. John’s.

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