Welcome to Elliston

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Perched at the tip of the Bonavista Peninsula is a community with many claims to fame. Elliston is a part of the Discovery Trail and one of ten geosites within the Discovery UNESCO Global Geopark. Not only does it feature a beautiful sandy beach in a sheltered cove, it’s also home to several unique features of this off–the–beaten–path destination. The countryside is dotted with the tiny doors of root cellars from years gone by, the coastline is dotted with hundreds of puffins; Newfoundland's official, and colourful, bird.

Discover Puffins

There’s no better place to see an Atlantic puffin than in Elliston — the site offers the closest view of puffins from land in North America. Hundreds of nesting pairs of this unique species roost on a rocky outcropping. Remember to bring a pair of binoculars, a telephoto lens, and good hiking shoes for the five–minute walk it takes to get within viewing distance. Check out their colourful beaks and you’ll see exactly why they’re playfully referred to as sea parrots.

Elliston and Area Birdwatching Attractions

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Explore Root Cellars

Elliston is known for more than its birding; this town is the Root Cellar Capital of the World with more than 130 of these underground structures documented. The cellars are one of ten geosites that you can explore across the Discovery UNESCO Global Geopark. Half of them are still in working condition and the oldest rings in at 165 years. These traditional food storage structures are built into hills and banks and were used to keep root vegetables, such as potatoes and carrots. Natural humidity keeps food cool in summer and frost–free in winter. They were integral to surviving the harsh winters and indicative of the food culture that still exists on these shores today. Crack open a door and take a self–guided tour.

Elliston and Area Natural Attractions

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Experience Festival & Events

And the culture of food and farm–to–table sustainability comes to life in the Roots, Rants and Roars festival. Featuring rising stars from the local and national culinary scene — along with some of the province’s finest entertainers — visitors will enjoy an interactive culinary experience.

A group of puffins is known as a circus, and the circus certainly comes to town every July during the Bird Island Puffin Festival. Eight days of fantastic live entertainment, beautiful crafts from local artisans, and scrumptious food and drink showcase what this area has to offer.

Elliston is also one of many official sites of the Bonavista Biennale, a peninsula–wide exhibition of contemporary artwork. The sites showcase engaging and provocative Canadian and international artists in outport settings.

Elliston and Area Festivals and Events

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Getting to Elliston

Elliston is located on the island of Newfoundland on the Discovery Trail, Route 230 — just 3 hours from both the Argentia ferry and from the town of Gander, and 3½ hours from the capital city of St. John's.

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Elliston, The Root Cellar Capital of the World by Newfoundland and Labrador.

Perched at the top of the Bonavista Peninsula is the tiny community of Elliston, the Root Cellar Capital of the World.

These traditional food storage systems – used mainly for root vegetables like potatoes and carrots – are built right into the ground, mainly into small hills and banks. The natural humidity and moisture keeps things cool in the summer and prevents freezing in the winter.

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Elliston and Area Travel Offers

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