Great Northern Peninsula
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 25000 people along 300km 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. 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.
- By car
- From the Trans-Canada Highway, exit at Deer Lake and follow NL 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.
- By bus
- There is limited Viking Express bus service northbound from Corner Brook and Deer Lake. There is no rail service anywhere on the island of Newfoundland.
- By air
- There is a small airport in St. Anthony (IATA: YAY) with scheduled service from St. John's and onward to Labrador and northern Quebec. Additional flights are available in Deer Lake (IATA: YDF).
- Provincial Airlines, toll-free: +1-800-563-2800. Scheduled passenger, cargo and charter flights.
The only major local road is the Viking Trail, Newfoundland Highway 430, which follows the western coastline.
- Viking Express, 2 Herald Ave, Corner Brook, ☎ +1 709 634-4710, fax: +1 709 688-2272. Bus three times weekly on NL 430 from Corner Brook and Deer Lake to St. Anthony, approximately $56 and seven hours end-to-end one way.
- L'Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site, Route 436 (north of St. Anthony). 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.
- 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.
- Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve, Burnt Cape, 1km northwest of Raleigh. Over 30 species of rare plant life. Free year-round..
- Pistolet Bay Provincial Park, Raleigh. Unsupervised beach, picnic area, fishing, canoeing, thirty camp sites ($15/night) with partial services (showers, toilets).
- Table Point Ecological Reserve, 14km northeast of Daniel's Harbour on Route 430, ☎ +1 709 454-7570. Free..
- Scenic Pursuit, 51 Main St, Bide Arm, ☎ +1 709 457-2706. Seasonal, 9AM-8PM Mon-Sat. Boat tours from Canada Bay, charters, iceberg and whale watching.
- Dark Tickle Company, 75 Main St, St. Lunaire - Griquet, ☎ +1 709 623-2354. Manufactures jams, sauces, vinegars, teas, drinks and chocolates using wild berries from Newfoundland and Labrador. Books, clothing, souvenirs.
- The Daily Catch, 112 Main St, St. Lunaire-Griquet, ☎ +1 709 623-2295. Seafood, pork, chicken. $6-12.
- The Norseman Restaurant, Harbour Front L'Anse aux meadows (end of Route 436 turn right), ☎ +1 709 623-2370 (seasonal), toll-free: +1-877-623-2018, e-mail: email@example.com. 9am-10pm daily.
- Skipper Hot's Lounge, Straitsview, St. Lunaire-Griquet, ☎ +1 709-623-2241. noon-midnight daily (June-Sept), 2pm-midnight weekends off-season. Bar and lounge, take-out fried foods and sandwiches, live music, billiards and darts.
L'Anse aux Meadows
- Marilyn's Hospitality Home, L'Anse aux Meadows, ☎ +1 709 623-2811, toll-free: +1-877-865-3958. B&B with full breakfast and fresh-made bread, one block from waterfront.
- Southwest Pond Cabins, Route 436, St. Lunaire-Griquet, toll-free: +1-800-515-2261. Seasonal (May-Oct).
- Valhalla Lodge, Gunners Cove Harbour Front, L'Anse aux Meadows, ☎ +1 709 754-3105, toll-free: +1-877-623-2018, fax: +1 709 623-2144. Norseman Restaurant, Gaia Art Gallery and Valhalla B&B.
- Tickle Inn at Cape Onion, RR#1, Cape Onion, ☎ +1 709 452-4321, toll-free: +1-866-814-8567, fax: +1 709 452-2030. Oceanfront heritage home, seasonal (June-Sept).
- Torrent River Inn, Hawke's Bay, ☎ +1 709 248-5225, toll-free: +1-800-563-8811, fax: +1 709 248-5363.
- Tuckamore Lodge, ☎ +1 709 865-6361, toll-free: +1-888-865-6361, fax: +1 709 865-2112. Hunting, fishing and adventure tourism lodge.
- Plum Point Motel and Restaurant, Plum Point, ☎ +1 709 247-2533, toll-free: +1-888-663-2533, fax: +1 709 247-2327. 40 rooms, restaurant, 18 housekeeping units.
Port au Choix
- Sea Echo Motel & Restaurant, Port au Choix, ☎ +1 709 861-3777, fax: +1 709 861-3669. 30 rooms, 3 cabins and 10 campsites, Point Riche Restaurant (and Greco Pizza), Sea Gull Lounge, souvenir shop, banquet/conference services.
- Burnt Cape Cabins, Raleigh, ☎ +1 709 452-3521. Adjacent to Burnt Cape Ecological Reserve, dining, groceries, fuel. Cabins with Internet and en-suite bath.
- Grenfell Heritage Hotel & Suites, 1 McChada Drive, St. Anthony, ☎ +1 709 454-8395, toll-free: +1-888-450-8398. Conference facility, wi-fi, continental breakfast, smoke-free, no pets.
- Haven Inn, 14 Goose Cove Road, St. Anthony, ☎ +1 709 454-9100, fax: +1-877-428-3646. Cartier's Galley Restaurant with view of St. Anthony harbour, pet-friendly hotel, wi-fi.
- Snuggle Inn Cottage Suites, 7 Gulley Bank Rd, St. Anthony, ☎ +1 709 454-2408, toll-free: +1-877-454-4667.
- Dockside Motel, St. Barbe, ☎ +1 709 877-2444, toll-free: +1-877-677-2444, fax: +1 709 877-9459. At Blanc Sablon/Labrador ferry dock.
- Gros Morne National Park
- It is not possible to drive westward into Quebec directly from Blanc Sablon as no road exists, but a coastal outport ferry runs westward to Anticosti.