Gros Morne National Park

Get the Continental Drift

Located on the west coast of Newfoundland, Gros Morne National Park was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1987. For the visitor, this translates into exposed earth crust, dramatic fjords, alpine plateaus, waterfalls, crystal lakes and sheer cliffs. Every summer, scores of hikers, campers, bikers and kayakers enjoy this natural wonderland. The Western Brook Pond boat ride typically hogs the press. Waterfalls cascading off 600-metre cliffs into a dramatic freshwater fjord, why wouldn’t it? Hiking the desolate Tablelands, a moonscape formed by nearly 500 million years of continental drift, is just as spectacular. These rocks, once part of an ancient seabed, tell the remarkable story of our planet’s forces, the tectonic plates that slammed into each other creating our continents. An easy 4km, two-hour trail crosses its alien landscape with rare plants and age-old minerals.

Length of Trip : 3 to 7 days

Cost : Click here to see the national park fees. Parks Canada also offer a Vikings Trail pass, valid for 7 days with entrance to Gros Morne, L’anse Aux Meadows and other parks along the coast.

Click there for the latest rates on Bon Tours boat tours up Western Pond Brook.


Best time to go : June to September

Wheelchair friendly : Yes

Family friendly : Yes

Where to eat : There are some great restaurants in Woody Point, Rocky Harbour and Norris Point. I’m a big fan of the moose pie at the Old Loft Restaurant in Woody Point. The Treasure Box in Rocky Harbour is great, as is Trout River’s Seaside Restaurant.   Free wifi, fresh salmon, moose burgers and delicious ice-cream above the gift shop at Sunset Cottages in Rocky Harbour (next door to the Ocean View Hotel). Further along the Viking Trail, I enjoyed a terrific seafood meal at The Anchor Cafe in Port au Choix. Blackened halibut and cod and huge starter portions of fresh mussels.

Official Site : Parks Canada
Lots of info on Gros Morne National Park
Bon Tours Western Brook Pond boat ride
Great Canadian Trails offer 3 night or week-long inclusive packages to discover Gros Morne.

Where to Stay : The Ocean View Hotel in Rocky Harbour is a good hotel, located between the Tablelands and Western Pond Brook.   Book ahead though in summer. The Torrent River Inn is clean and convenient along the Viking Trail, located between Gros Morne and St Anthony.

Getting There : The nearest airport is Deer Lake Regional Airport, 35km from the Park. You can fly there from Montreal, Toronto, Halifax and St John’s, and car rental is available. By car, you can get to Gros Morne on the ferry from North Sydney, Nova Scotia, docking at Port aux Basques, a 4 hour drive away. Many visitors include Gros Morne as part of a roadtrip by car or RV up the Viking Trail.

Note from Robin : The Western Brook Pond Tour is perhaps the most famous activity in the park, but there’s real magic to discover by just exploring. The unique fishing communities within the park boundaries are worth checking out, as are many of the trails and sights signposted along the coastal drive. Parks Canada have an excellent interpretation centre at Woody Point with enthusiastic guides, well worth paying a visit to get yourself orientated.

Great Canadian Trails