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Things to see and do in Newfoundland And Labrador

Tourist offices

Department of Tourism, Culture and Recreation

Address: P.O. Box 8700, St. John's, A1B 4J6
Telephone: (709) 729-2830.
Website: http://www.newfoundlandlabrador.com

Attractions in Newfoundland And Labrador

Experience untamed Labrador

To this day, Labrador is still a largely undisturbed wilderness. The Labrador Straits Museum has displays on the Maritime Archaic Indians who built a burial mound nearby at L'Anse Amour around 5500BC. A coastal highway extends along the eastern coastline, linking most Atlantic fishing villages.

Explore Newfoundland's historic sites

There are historic settlements aplenty on the Avalon Peninsula. Trinity records European explorers' first encounter with the ancient Beothuk people. Placentia was Newfoundland's French capital in the 17th and 18th centuries. On the west coast of Newfoundland, explore native archaeological history at Port au Choix National Historic Site.

Get to know the local marine life

Newfoundland is rich in marine life and seabird colonies, attracting millions of puffins, gannets, kittiwakes, murres and petrels. Go seabird and whale watching (for humpback, fin and minke whales) by boat or kayak in the Witless Bay Ecological Reserve.

Hear the sweetest folk music

The sweet, plaintive tones of Newfoundland's famous folk music are the province's unofficial soundtrack; you can hear local bands in one of the many bars in St John's. The annual Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Festival takes place in Bannerman Park during the first full weekend in August.

Hook a fat one

Salmon fishing is good in the Exploits and Gander rivers and you can see a salmon ladder at the Rocky River Falls. The season usually runs from June to September. A qualified, licensed guide is often required by law; check in advance.

Learn about the lighthouse life

The Point Amour lighthouse is the tallest lighthouse in Atlantic Canada. Built from 1854 to 1857, it is still a working lighthouse, although now automated. The living quarters house exhibits portraying the maritime history of the Labrador Straits.

Meet the native communities

Boyd's Cove on the Kittiwake Coast recounts the history of the mysterious Beothuk people. Labrador has two main Innu communities, at Sheshatshiu and Natuashish. The Métis Aboriginal community in Labrador lives mainly around Lake Melville.

Pick up a bargain in the vibrant city of St John's

Bustling Water Street in St John's is one of North America's oldest shopping streets. Other sites include the Cathedral of St John the Baptist; Signal Hill, reception point for Marconi's first transatlantic radio transmission in 1901, which offers good views; and The Rooms, the landmark provincial museum.

Ramble on Gros Morne National Park

You can go hiking, trekking and climbing on over 100km (65 miles) of hiking trails at Gros Morne National Park. The T'Railway Park also comprises almost 900km (565 miles) of hiking trails between Port aux Basques and St John's.

Spend some time on the water

Eastern Newfoundland, a region of sheltered coves and sandy beaches, boasts some popular sailing and swimming destinations.

Take in the stunning coastal landscapes

The scenic rugged coastline of Terra Nova National Park adjoins Bonavista Bay. The Burin Peninsula has beautiful coastal villages. Icebergs float off Cape Freels, and a coastal road runs along the Long Range Mountains affording good fjord, mountain and beach views.

Take up the trail of the caribou

Enormous herds of caribou roam along the Trans-Labrador Highway. You can also find caribou and black bears in the Avalon Wilderness Reserve.

Try cross-country skiing

Newfoundland isn't a major downhill skiing destination. However, you can try skiing at Newfoundland's Marble Mountain, 10km (6 miles) east of Corner Brook, the province's second city, where the Corner Brook Winter Carnival is held each February. Other ski resorts include White Hills. Labrador has excellent cross-country skiing trails.

Walk the Great Northern Peninsula

The wild, scenic Great Northern Peninsula is renowned for Gros Morne National Park, a blend of rugged mountains, deep fjords and bays. At the peninsula's northernmost tip, UNESCO World Heritage Site L'Anse aux Meadows is the New World's earliest European settlement and features restored Viking sod houses.

Witness the Northern Lights

Lucky visitors will catch a glimpse of the Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis), which sometimes charge up the skies here, particularly in Labrador. This luminous meteoric phenomenon produces spectacular astral light shows.

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