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Red Bay: Labrador's First UNESCO SiteRed Bay:  Labrador's First UNESCO Site

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The exploits of 17th century whalers are part of southern Labrador experience
Red Bay National Historic Site

When Columbus told the world of his New World Discovery of 1492 he received letters from Basque captains complaining he had revealed their most guarded secret. By the 1540s thousands of Basques were leaving France and Spain to make epic transatlantic voyages to the Labrador coast where their whaling efforts harvested the oil that lit the lamps of Renaissance Europe. The industrial efforts of the Basques had profound effects on the whale populations of the North Atlantic while history books are still being rewritten to recognize the many new world firsts achieved by these hardy seafarers. In June 2013 the story and archaeological remains of this Basque enterprise were recognized when Red Bay, Labrador became Canada’s newest UNESCO World Heritage Site. For 2017 our Viking Trail Experience tours have the unique distinction of featuring three UNESCO Sites; Gros Morne, L’Anse aux Meadows, and Red Bay Labrador.