Vikings Whales and Icebergs

Vikings Whales and Icebergs

Trip Highlights

  • Spend your nights in a working lighthouse
  • Explore the island on foot and by zodiac
  • Visit UNESCO World Heritage site L'Anse aux Meadows
  • Listen to tales of vikings, villains, and heroes
  • Attempt a photo with both a whale and an iceberg in the same shot
  • Look out for moose, kittiwake, seals, otters, dolphins, humpbacks, minkes, and orcas

Trip Summary

Quirpon (pronounced kar-poon) offers a unique island experience at a 1922 light-keeper's home on the shores of Iceberg Alley. Fully restored, the Lighthouse Inn features ten beautiful rooms at the base of a still-operating lighthouse and is a Registered Heritage Building. Located off the northernmost tip of Newfoundland, this is the province's best location for viewing icebergs as the Labrador Current carries them south. Quirpon Island has never failed to have icebergs in July and boasts the longest iceberg-viewing season in Newfoundland, with most years seeing icebergs into late August and the last melting in the fall during a good year. Whales are constant companions off its shores, often coming close enough to the rocks to be touched. Whale experts ascribe this phenomenon to the underwater topography and ample food supply. In addition to Humpbacks and Minke - the presence of which is virtually inevitable - you may spot as many as 27 more species, including Orca, which are being spotted with increasing frequency around the Island despite becoming a rarer sight elsewhere in Newfoundland. Located just north of the only viking site in North America, your stay includes a visit to L'Anse aux Meadows UNESCO World Heritage Site as well as road and boat transfers to and from St. Anthony. Accessed by regular flights from St. John's and by road via the Viking Trail highway from Deer Lake/Gros Morne, this is a fantastic way to top off your trip to 'The Rock'.

Itinerary

Upon arrival in St. Anthony you will be met by a local host and transferred north to tour L'Anse aux Meadows. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the only Viking site in North America. Meet a Viking (perhaps self-titled but questionably named 'Bjorn the Beautiful') in this 1000 year old village that has been brought to life. L'Anse aux Meadows shows where European Vikings first set foot in North America, 500 years before Columbus. At 4pm, we meet the ferry at the dock for our transfer through 'Iceberg Alley' to Quirpon Island. Choose to either walk the great 5.5km trail (1.5-2.5hrs) along the cliffs to the Lighthouse Inn, or take the boat transfer. You will be drawn into the life of an isolated light keeper as we enjoy a delicious dinner and spend the night at the northern tip of Newfoundland.

Meals:  D

Wake up early to discover the island and visit its unique sites and delicate biology. Don't forget to ask about Tuckamore and the story of the mass murder that took place on the island. Take a walk along the cliff-top trails or explore the island following only your whims. Kittiwake colonies and eider ducks nesting in tiny coves where there used to be a fishing village are favourite spots. Watch for humpback, minke and orca whales and try to get a photo of a tail in front of a passing iceberg, or a breaching whale with the lighthouse has a back drop. Some of the best viewing and photos are from the land surrounding the inn, but this afternoon you have the chance to explore by zodiac. The water-based adventure takes you in search of wildlife, within safe distance of icebergs, and through tiny coves along the coast. While the humpbacks treat the zodiac as if it doesn't exist, feeding and swimming nearby, the orcas and dolphins will often make a point of visiting and potentially even touch the boat!

Meals:  B,L,D

Leaving the island around 10am today, we return through Iceberg Alley to the mainland. By now you may be able to take your attention away from whales to watch for seals and otters. On mainland, we visit the town of St. Anthony and learn the story of the British medical missionary, Sir Wilfred Grenfell. His remarkable perseverance and enthusiasm saved countless lives at the turn of the century and his legacy still lives on. During your visit, you can enjoy the works of local artists including whale bone carvings, paintings and clothing that evoke cultures that have survived for centuries. A visit to the Jordi Bonet murals in the rotunda of the hospital recounts Bonet's childhood in Spain, marked by civil war before migrating and creating works of art famous around the world, including the Titanic Memorial. Services end in St. Anthony where you can either rent a car and continue your Newfoundland travels or fly to St. John's for onward travel.

Meals:  B

What's Included

  • 2 breakfasts, 1 lunch, 2 dinners
  • 2 nights double room with private facilities
  • Local hosts to guide day trips
  • Ground transfers in St. Anthony
  • Ferry to/from Quirpon Island
  • Zodiac tour
  • Entry fees to L'Anse aux Meadows and Grenfell Historic Site

What's Not Included

  • Travel to/from St. Anthony
  • Meals not mentioned in itinerary
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Travel insurance (mandatory)
  • Kayaking tour (inquire at inn)
  • Applicable taxes

Upcoming Travel Dates

AT A GLANCE

Duration:3 Days
Province/Territory:Newfoundland and Labrador
Starting Point:St. Anthony
Activities:Wildlife viewing
Adventure touring
Walking
Zodiac Touring
Grade:Discovery and Cruising  Click for more information
Trip Code:VIK
Prices From:USD$1110
Single Supplement:USD$350 
Single Traveler Supplement:USD$500 
* All prices subject to applicable taxes