The Great Canadian Road Trip: Part 10 – Corner Brook To Sydney NS

We got up bright and early at 6AM to start the journey back to Toronto. We have a 7 hour ferry ride from Port Aux Basques Newfoundland to North Sydney Nova Scotia. In short we’re taking the same route that we took to get to Newfoundland. But what’s different is that we are staying in Sidney Nova Scotia which which should be a different experience to “The Bates Motel” based on what my wife says.

First, the drive down to the ferry was very scenic which was great seeing as our drive from the ferry to Corner Brook was rainy. Here’s what we got on the Nikon Nikon COOLPIX W300 camera:

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The drive from Corner Brook to Port aux Basques is about 2.5 hours. And once you check in and get your boarding passes for the MV Highlanders ferry, you have to line up:

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From there you will be directed to drive onto one of the three car decks that this ferry has:

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Here’s what it looks like to drive onto deck three the ferry:

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From there, you put your car into park, put on the parking brake, get out and lock your car. Then you head up to the passenger decks.

Top Tip: Take everything that you might need for the 7 hour crossing including medication. The ferry crew will not let you access your car for any reason once you leave it.

Now unlike the crossing to Newfoundland, we didn’t have a cabin. That was due to the fact that I screwed that part up. But my wife and I did grab a table and a couple of chairs at the front of the ferry and we found that to be more than adequate. As the ferry left Port aux Basques, I took these pictures from the observation decks:

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I’ll let my wife take over at this point to describe what happened during and after the ferry ride:

The highlight of our return ferry ride was a sighting of some pilot whales along the side of the ferry. Once we docked we headed to our hotel for the night Cambridge Suites Hotel Sydney. We have noticed that some of the east coast hotels have their washroom divided into two rooms: one for toilet and tub and the other for the sink. I’m not sure why this is but I am sure someone local could explain it to me. For this place IT Nerd had a lot to say about the hotel room but what I will say is that we were lucky enough to have a spectacular view of the river from our room and the suite was by far the most spacious room we have had on this trip.

Here’s a picture of the view:

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I do have a lot to say about the room from a tech perspective:

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On top of a very spacious desk, there was this plug that gave you two AC outlets and two USB charging ports. This was very cool to have as it meant that we could easily keep our devices charged.

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Yet again, I found a clock radio with a 30-pin iPod dock. This despite the fact that Apple no longer makes device that use this type of connector.

#Fail

But that wasn’t the big fail of this hotel. The WiFi that the hotel provided was shambolic. It was slow, and it seemed to actively block connections to iCloud which meant that I could not download pictures off the camera that we brought with us and have them automatically upload to iCloud as a means of backup. Nor could I share them with my wife and nothing I did would resolve the issue. Now Cambridge Suites Sydney uses these guys to serve up their WiFi, and interestingly enough, so did the Greenwood Suites in Corner Brook NL. I did recall having an issue uploading and sharing photos to iCloud on the second last night of our stay. But it cleared itself up after about 90 minutes. Thus I suspect that the humans who provide WiFi for these hotels have some sort of issue, or they are doing something to block access to iCloud. I can’t tell which. Either way, they need to do something about it as I’m pretty sure others would encounter this issue and be none too pleased. In my case, it took a really good hotel experience and knocked it down a couple of notches.

#FirstWorldProblems

I’ll let my wife take over and describe the rest of our stay in Sydney:

Since we arrived early enough, many places were still open for dinner so we managed to snag a reservation to Flavor on the Water which was within walking distance of our hotel. The IT Nerd had a burger with fries, and although I was looking forward to switching from cod to lobster, apparently I am a few weeks behind the lobster season and missed it. They did however have a lobster club sandwich and I paired it with their beet or beetroot (as they call it out here), walnut and goat cheese and argula salad. It was delicious. I then ignored my inner calorie counting mind and ordered their carrot cake with coconut cream cheese frosting. After dinner we enjoyed a walk along the riverfront.

Walking on the riverfront along the boardwalk allowed me to snap a few pictures:

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Two notes:

  • The picture of the giant fiddle that you see in the slide show above is where the restaurant was located.
  • The picture of the piano has a bit of a story. Apparently it moves about and is left in a location for people to play. Though according to my wife who plays piano, it needs a tune.

Tomorrow we head to Moncton NB with a slight detour along the way to pick up some local “flavor.” Details on that tomorrow.

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