Coastal Nomad - Laura Roxanne the Explorer

Laura embodies the spirit of adventure that defines the coastal nomad lifestyle. We asked her a few questions to uncover some hidden gems across the island, learn about her favorite photography subjects, get some drone photography tips, discover the invaluable lessons Newfoundland has taught her, and her favourite memories of life by the coast. So, grab your hiking boots and your camera, because we're about to embark on a journey through Newfoundland with Laura as our guide!



What’s an underrated thing or place in Newfoundland that you think more people should know about? 

One of my favorite places on the island is Swift Current, which is about 20 km away from Goobies on the way down to the Burin Peninsula. My parents live there and it’s such a picturesque community on a river that feeds into the ocean. It’s incredible in all seasons but autumn there is so special. There is tons of hiking and areas to explore, it’s basically a photographer's dream. If you’re looking for a place to stay checkout Kilmory Resort for incredible views as well.

I also have to mention one of my favorite hikes I’ve ever been on. It’s called Little Heart’s Ease Beach Path. I think it’s easily overlooked as it’s not an official “East Coast Trail” and in a smaller community called Gooseberry Cove in Trinity Bay. It truly feels like you are in Neverland on this hike, from an amazing sand bar to a sea-arch, this moderate difficulty hike only takes about an hour! 


What’s your favorite thing to take pictures of?  

Easily, sunrise and sunset. There is something so special about being the first people in North America to watch the sunrise. It’s something I recommend to anyone who reaches out to me about things they can do while visiting Newfoundland. When that first ray of light hits you, the world gets very quiet and serene. 

I also enjoy taking pictures of the same locations during different seasons. I especially enjoy doing these comparison shots along the East Coast Trail. 


What tips do you have for people who are interested in drone photography in Newfoundland?

Firstly, make sure you do your research on local drone regulations so you get the correct type of drone and only fly in the right areas. Other than that, if photography and videography is something you’re passionate about, I encourage you to take the leap and do it! The perspective a drone can provide is unmatched. I can finally explore places others cannot and capture images from new heights that inspire me to continue my exploration. The feeling I get when I send my drone up is so rewarding, I want others to have that wanderlust as well!

I actively promote and support other women to venture into this field. Witnessing talented women shine in a predominantly male-dominated industry is incredibly gratifying for me. Photography, being deeply personal, thrives on individual perspectives, and it fills me with joy to witness fellow women express themselves through this art form. Their creativity and unique viewpoints serve as a great inspiration for me, and this sentiment played a significant role in my decision to invest in a drone for my own photography pursuits.

Sunrise Hike over Quidi Vidi Village

    Sunrise Hike over Quidi Vidi Village


What lesson has Newfoundland taught you?

Newfoundland has taught me the true meaning of “home is where the heart is”. Although I was born in Newfoundland, I’ve also lived in Alberta and the Northwest Territories at different points in my life. After moving back home again in 2022, I’ve developed a deep appreciation for the culture and heritage our island has to offer. Even when I travel internationally, I find myself singing Newfoundland’s praises to anyone who will listen. Newfoundland is a place that provides a deep sense of belonging, comfort, and happiness for me. When I sit alone on a coastline overlooking the water, listening to the waves crash against the shoreline and the sun trying to make its way around the clouds, I feel at home. I realize home is more than a physical  place, it’s a feeling and one I can only be provided on the rock.

In terms of photography, Newfoundland has taught me the lesson of patience. The weather is so unpredictable that even if you feel like exploring, the 60 km wind gusts may not have the same idea. This spontaneity of weather calls for flexibility and openness, skills that require patience and understanding to develop. It makes it even more satisfying when you do get those beautiful sunny days, the perfect conditions for unexpected discoveries. 


What's your favorite memory of exploring Newfoundland?

My favorite memories of exploring Newfoundland lead me back to my childhood visits to the Burin Peninsula where my grandparents lived. Myself and my cousins had no interest in watching tv or playing video games, we would count the days until we would all be staying at Nanny and Poppy’s so we could begin to discover the nooks and crannies of Parker’s Cove and St. Bernards. Everyday we would set out in a different direction, seeing who could find the most beautiful place to play. We would collect sea urchins, beach glass and shells as mementos of our exploration and bring them home to show our parents pieces of our journey. We were so free and the world felt so big. These memories come creeping back every time I turn a bend on a new section of the East Coast Trail that I haven’t explored before. To this day, I still get those same feelings as when I was a little girl exploring. It helps me relive those times even though so much has changed. 

My overall message to people who want to explore:

The outdoors is for everyone, you don’t  have to look a certain way or go outside everyday to be an explorer.  An explorer is someone who wants to explore, you simply need the desire to be one. Get up and go outside if you can. We are always creating reasons not to do things, it’s too windy, we’re tired, it’s snowing etc. Sometimes those conditions make for the best memories. 

If anyone is ever looking for travel tips or a hiking buddy, I’m your girl! I’m also happy to take photos of you along the way. 


To keep up with all of Laura's adventures ensure to follow her @thelauraroxplorer  on Instagram or buy some of her prints here!