Signal Hill National Historic Site

Stand atop Signal Hill and let your soul be stirred by the crack of muskets and the roar of cannon fire. Discover the story of how British and French soldiers battled fiercely to control this strategic location. Explore the iconic Cabot Tower and experience a view of St. John's and the North Atlantic that is truly spectacular.

As its name implies, centuries before the advent of ship-to-shore radio, signalman perched on Signal Hill and surveyed the ocean for ships headed toward the port of St. John's. Flag signals flown on the hill communicated the names of arriving ships to those who inhabited the harbour-front below.

Take a journey back in time to 1901, when the famous Guglielmo Marconi made communications history at Signal Hill by receiving the first ever transatlantic wireless signal.

Cabot Tower atop Signal Hill
The military and communications significance of Signal Hill is well documented and presented at the Visitor Centre. Staff will guide you through the story of Signal Hill and a short presentation in the theatre will allow you to discover the human experience of Signal Hill. Visitors can also take a self-guided tour with Parks Canada's new EXPLORA unit – ask for it at the Visitor Centre. 

The Signal Hill Tattoo 

During the summer months, experience a performance of the award-winning Signal Hill Tattoo. This engaging re-enactment demonstrates the military drills of the Royal Newfoundland Regiment of foot as formed in 1795. 

There are 5 kilometres of trail around Signal Hill

The experience at Signal Hill is very much an outdoors one. Be sure to hike the five kilometres of trails, especially the famous North Head Trail, which offers a unique traverse along the Narrows of St. John's Harbour and into the colourful community called the Battery.

The Johnson Geo Centre 

The Johnson GEO CENTRE and surrounding Geopark are the hill's other main attraction. The GEO CENTRE, built partially into a small pond that was drained to expose the rock, uses the plentiful geology of Newfoundland and Labrador to explore the evolution of the planet. Drop by the Visitor Centre for a guided tour.


Signal Hill National Historic Site is conveniently located in the east end of St. John's on Signal Hill Road. For more information, visit the Parks Canada official website:

Do you have a tale to tell about a visit to Newfoundland and Labrador?

Tell us your story

Related Stories

Load More (60 Total)