When it comes to exploration and adventure cruising, Hurtigruten are leaders of the pack. Since 1893, the cruise line has worked the waters of Norway’s northern and western coasts, but now they’re expanding their repertoire to explore new worlds from 2017.
Hurtigruten’s 2017/18 programme will feature four brand new voyages to Newfoundland and Labrador, so we decided to take a closer look at the ports of call awaiting discovery along the way.
Despite being Newfoundland’s largest city and the province Capital, St John manages to retain a small-town feel. Locals are eager to let you know that the city is the oldest in North America and notable historic sites include Signal Hill and Cape Spear, Canada and North America’s most easterly point. Stunning natural beauty leaves an impression on those who hike epic coastal trails, whilst you’ll also find plenty to do in the city’s bustling centre.
Baffin Bay and Torngat Mountains National Park
Torngat Mountains National Park has been home to Inuit for thousands of years and they continue to hunt, fish and travel in the area today. Spanning from the Saglek Fjord to the very northern tip of Labrador, and with mountain peaks bordering Quebec, the region is brimming with spectacular scenery.
Baffin Bay is a hotspot for wildlife, with caribou, polar bears, Arctic foxes and beluga whales found in the region, along with the impressive 10ft-toothed narwhal porpoise.
St Pierre and Miquelon
This French enclave is just 12 miles outside of Newfoundland, but you could be forgiven for thinking you had wandered into a rural village in France. European French is the local language and wine and baguettes make up the staple diet.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site of Red Bay is recognised for providing the earliest and best-preserved testimony of European whaling tradition. Basque whalers would depart from Red Bay Whaling Station on perilous month-long expeditions, whaling to fuel the oil lamps of Europe. The historic town offers an intriguing insight into coastal living in Labrador.
Battle Harbour sits on Battle Island, just off Labrador’s southeast coast. It’s hard to believe that this tiny fishing village was once the capital of Labrador, with the historic district having been restored to its original 19th century state. If you’re looking for a digital detox, far removed from the technological ties of modern life, an escape amidst the craggy shores and fisherman’s cottages of Battle Harbour is perfect.