The Viking Peninsula or Great Northern Peninsula is a large rural area in western Newfoundland. Located north of Gros Morne National Park, it extends to St. Anthony (population 2400) as the northernmost town on the island of Newfoundland. L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site, a former Viking settlement at the northern tip of the peninsula, appears on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
The Northern Peninsula is sparsely populated (about 25,000 people along 300 km of western coastline); weather conditions can be harsh, especially in winter, due to rugged terrain and direct exposure to westerly prevailing winds across the open Gulf of St. Lawrence. The population is declining. There are few tiny fishing villages and many wide open spaces.
Pack ice jams the Strait of Belle Isle in spring and early summer as icebergs further north break up during the spring thaw and are carried by ocean currents. One may encounter summer conditions ashore and winter conditions on the ice-filled water, or even be unable to get out of the harbour due to ice jams. Polar bears occasionally arrive on the Northern Peninsula from Labrador on the ice; animals or their tracks should be reported to Pistolet Bay Provincial Park staff so bears may be live-trapped and returned to Labrador.
- 1 L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site, Route 436 (north of St. Anthony), ☏ (May-Oct), (off-season), ✉ email@example.com. 9AM-5PM daily, early June-Thanksgiving, 9AM-6PM summer. Archaeological site with reconstructions of three Norse buildings, hiking trails, Viking guides in period costume, visitor centre and picnic area. $12.
- 2 Port au Choix National Historic Site, Point Riche Road, Port au Choix, ☏ . 9AM-5PM, mid-June to early September. Native archaeological site with visitor centre.
- 3 Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve, Burnt Cape, 1 km northwest of Raleigh. Over 30 species of rare plant life. Call ahead to book an excellent guided tour. Free year-round.
- 4 Pistolet Bay Provincial Park, Raleigh, ☏ . Unsupervised beach, picnic area, fishing, canoeing, thirty camp sites ($15/night) with partial services (showers, toilets).
- 5 Table Point Ecological Reserve, 14 km northeast of Daniel's Harbour on Route 430, ☏ . Free.
- From the Trans-Canada Highway, exit at Deer Lake and follow Highway 430 northward through Gros Morne.
- From Labrador, board the ferry at Blanc Sablon (+1-866-535-2567). The crossing to St. Barbe is 1¾ hrs, weather permitting, $25 for car and driver. In winter, this ferry lands instead in Corner Brook, with corresponding increase in time and cost.
- Norpen Bus Service, ☏ . This company runs a shuttle from Corner Brook and Deer Lake to St. Anthony Airport on Tuesdays & Fridays.
The only major local road is the Viking Trail, Newfoundland Highway 430, which follows the western coastline.
- 1 Cow Head Lighthouse, Cow Head, Newfoundland (Travel across the thin strip of land which connects the old summer island and the mainland 'winter town.' You will see signs that point you to the lighthouse trail.). A 10-minute hike with some stairs will bring you to the renovated lighthouse. This is very cool as it is open and you can climb up into the old lantern room and get a beautiful view of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Free.
- Scenic Pursuit, 51 Main St, Bide Arm, ☏ . Seasonal, M-Sa 9AM-8PM. Boat tours from Canada Bay, charters, iceberg and whale watching.
- 1 The Daily Catch, 112 Main St, St. Lunaire-Griquet, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Seafood, pork, chicken. $6-12.
- 2 The Norseman Restaurant, L'Anse aux Meadows (end of Route 436, turn right at harbourfront), ☏ (phone), (mobile text), toll-free: , ✉ email@example.com. Daily noon-9PM. Focusing on fresh, healthy, local and gourmet. In 22 years they have never served a french fry.
L'Anse aux MeadowsEdit
- 1 Marilyn's Hospitality Home, L'Anse aux Meadows, ☏ , toll-free: . B&B with full breakfast and fresh-made bread, one block from waterfront.
- 2 Snorri Cabins, Route 436, Straitsview, ☏ , toll-free: . Open year-round.
- 3 Southwest Pond Cabins, Route 436, St. Lunaire-Griquet, ☏ , toll-free: . Seasonal (May-Oct).
- 4 Valhalla Lodge, Gunners Cove Harbour Front, L'Anse aux Meadows, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: . Norseman Restaurant, Gaia Art Gallery and Valhalla B&B.
- 6 Tuckamore Lodge, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Hunting, fishing and adventure tourism lodge.
- 7 Plum Point Motel and Restaurant, Plum Point, ☏ , toll-free: , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. 40 rooms, restaurant, 18 housekeeping units.
Port au ChoixEdit
- 8 Sea Echo Motel & Restaurant, Port au Choix, ☏ , fax: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. 30 rooms, 3 cabins and 10 campsites, Point Riche Restaurant (and Greco Pizza), Sea Gull Lounge, souvenir shop, banquet/conference services.
- 9 Burnt Cape Cabins, Raleigh, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Adjacent to Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve, dining, groceries, fuel. Cabins with Internet and en suite bath.
- 10 Grenfell Heritage Hotel & Suites, 1 McChada Drive, St. Anthony, ☏ , toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Conference facility, wi-fi, continental breakfast, smoke-free, no pets.
- 11 Haven Inn, 14 Goose Cove Road, St. Anthony, ☏ , fax: , ✉ email@example.com. Cartier's Galley Restaurant with view of St. Anthony harbour, pet-friendly hotel, wi-fi.
- 12 Snuggle Inn Cottage Suites, 7 Gulley Bank Rd, St. Anthony, ☏ , toll-free: , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org.