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“Be sure to visit earlier in the day to ride to the island!”

Red Bay National Historic Site
Ranked #1 of 5 things to do in Red Bay
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Richmond Hill
Level Contributor
320 reviews
200 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
“Be sure to visit earlier in the day to ride to the island!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 July 2014

We arrived too late for the boat, so the main building at the top and further exhibits at the bottom of the hill were all we could do.

Views were spectacular, and the staff were genuinely enthusiastic and very happy to show us everything. We learned a lot about the whaling history of the area and it was very rewarding.

Gift shop has some locally made items, not cheap, but good quality.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank MARK L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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70 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Another missing piece of Canadian history”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 July 2014

Much like L'Anse aux Meadows, this is a bit of Canadian history that I had no idea existed, and which I find fascinating. The interpretation centre is very well done. Make sure to catch the boat out to the island and have a walk around.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Cam S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
181 reviews
91 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 74 helpful votes
“Fabulous visit”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 July 2014

EXcellent museum. If travelling with kids and you are in any Parks Canada site such as this one, please check for their Explorer programme or any other activities for kids. Our kids ranged in age from 5 to 10 and all, plus myself and my 86 year old mother really enjoyed this programme. Not only does it encourage the kids to look for things both in the visitor centre and around the site, it rewards them with certificates and surprises at the end of the visit.
This particular site had a fabulous musical instrument that we are going to re create and share with our 5 year old grandson's school. We learned a lot about the Basque culture.

Visited July 2014
Helpful?
Thank Bejazzes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
81 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Labrador in the 1500's”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 June 2014

I had no idea that there was this kind of industry in Labrador in the 1500's. Or that the Basque fishermen would sail all the way here in their tiny boats.
This historic site is very well done. You start up the hill where you register, get some background and check out a few exhibits. Then down the road to the main centre with all kinds of artifacts and some reconstructions. Staff at both locations are knowledgeable and helpful.
Getting here is also an attraction. The drive from Blanc-Sablon is very scenic.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
Thank KA_Travel_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
49 reviews
26 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
“Fascinating glimpse into history”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 June 2014

The national historic site at Red Bay provides a fascinating window on a little known period in Canadian history, that of the Basque sailors who came to Red Bay in the 1500s to hunt whales. For over 50 years, these brave men crossed the Atlantic in wooden boats to obtain the whale oil that lit the lamps of Europe. The Red Bay site describes the hardships they faced on the high seas and their back-breaking work in great details. I found the clothing remnants extracted from sailors' graves especially touching, a stark reminder of how ephemereal things we take for granted really are.

Red Bay is about 1 hour away from the Newfoundland-Labrador ferry by car over a paved but winding road. We found it was totally worth the drive. There is a gift shop/restaurant next door if you need to buy lunch while you're out there. The exhibits are wheelchair accessible. We found the guides knowledgeable and friendly. The village of Red Bay itself is very scenic and quite lovely. Bring warm clothes though; we were there in early June and the bay was full of pack ice which made the air rather chilly.

Visited June 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Sudriveraine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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