5 About Canada’s Newfoundland You Probably Didn’t Know

Canada never ceases to amaze just about anyone who sets foot in the country. One of its most interesting locations is Newfoundland and Labrador, the country’s most easterly province and perhaps one of its most charming provinces. Aside from being known for its thriving mining industry, the area has a lot of interesting historical points and facts that tourists and outsiders may not know about. Let’s explore some of them and get to know Newfoundland and Labrador a little better.

1. The Province’s Official Name

While many people call it Newfoundland as it’s shorter, that’s not entirely correct. The full and official name of the province since 2001 is Newfoundland and Labrador. It was changed to recognize the enormous tract of land included within its borders. It was formerly known as the island of Newfoundland and was called Terra Nova by the European colonists when they first settled there.

2. Reaching the Island

As mentioned before, Canada’s Newfoundland and Labrador is essentially its own island that can only be reached by air or sea. Although Labrador is attached to the Canadian mainland, Newfoundland itself is a large island detached from it. Those who are planning to visit the island can either ride a ferry or a plane to reach it.

3. Wildlife Facts

A few select wildlife species live on the island. You won’t actually find any crickets, porcupines, skunks, snakes or even deer there. However, Newfoundland and Labrador is known for its vast population of moose that was introduced to the island over 100 years ago. Now, they number at around more than 100,000, making moose sightings quite a common occurrence there.

4. UNESCO Sites

There’s a reason why many tourists love to visit Newfoundland and Labrador, and that’s because of its unique historical sites. Out of all the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in the world, four of them can be found on the island, namely:

  • Gros Morne National Park
  • L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site
  • Red Bay National Historic Site
  • Mistaken Point

The last entry is a fossil site located at the south-eastern tip of Newfoundland and Labrador. Mistaken Point has been recognized as a heritage site due to the 17-km long strip of rugged coastal cliffs where a huge assemblage of large fossils can be found. 

5. Home of Vikings

Long before Christopher Columbus “discovered” the new world, explorers before him had already sailed to Newfoundland and Labrador. In fact, the Viking explorer Leif Erikson had sailed to Greenland and Newfoundland way back in the 11th century. Newfoundland and Labrador was actually the home of several Viking colonies, which were discovered in the 1960s. Now, the site has been forever immortalized as the L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site, which is also recognized by UNESCO.


Newfoundland and Labrador is truly an exciting and wonderful place to visit. The area never falls short of its breathtaking sites known for their beauty and rich history. If you’re planning to visit Canada any time soon, consider visiting Newfoundland and Labrador and have the time of your life.

Newfoundland Gold is an alliance of companies focused on the advancement of mineral exploration and mining projects in Canada’s Newfoundland. Mining in Newfoundland is one of the province’s largest and oldest industries up to date, and we continue this legacy through this alliance built by some of the province’s mining industry giants. Sign up for our newsletter to receive updates about Newfoundland Gold and its members.