Newfoundland is a big island and when you add an extra day to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site at Red Bay and experience the magnificent coastline of south eastern Labrador, McCarthy’s Party’s ’12 Day Comprehensive Newfoundland and Labrador Tour’ has a lot of ground to cover with many amazing people, vistas, history, language, music, culture and humour to enjoy. Make no wonder we include an extra half hour in our time zone, we need it to ensure you experience each of the many wonders we find in Newfoundland and Labrador.
“… in a constant state of flux.”
As a born and bred Newfoundlander, I like to take my time and truly observe an environment that is in a constant state of flux. This is a critical part of our cultural mosaic and I want our guests to enjoy and appreciate it. Thus, I never wear a wrist watch when I’m guiding. Instead I try to stick with my group and gently nudge them back towards the coach when I’m certain they’ve understood and absorbed the significance of my interpretation, and of course, have taken ample photos for their memory bank.
We’ve been touring for many years now so I have a 6th sense regarding the pace required to ensure our guests maximize every moment and every encounter. Of course, there will be visits where guests enjoy much longer stays and the opportunity to more thoroughly explore communities, shops, exhibits and coastal shorelines, on their own. On such occasions, I remind our guests to please respect the group and return to the coach for our scheduled departure.
However, I also insist that any guest who find themselves behind the clock, “Do not rush back to the coach!” Gather yourself, your belongings and your wits together, then make your way back as quickly as possible without running, over exertion or over extending your comfort zone. Rushing is not worth a fall, or worse. Just make certain you have a good story or an amazing photo to share when you get back and face the rest of the crowd.
“… much to see”
Last week we arrived at L’Anse – Amour lighthouse on a spectacular summer day. We’d managed to hook an early ferry crossing and having already spent a wonderful morning followed by a scrumptious meal in Red Bay, we were set to enjoy an extended stop at this magnificent site.
There is much to see and lots to explore at L’Anse – Amour but when we arrived there was a feeding frenzy happening within yards of the shore. Gannets were diving, whales frolicked and dolphins soared through the wave crests in a smorgasbord of what I assume to be herring. There were seals and fishing boats, samples of Labrador tea. An opportunity to climb to the top of one of the tallest lighthouses in North America. Fossils abound, and the remnants of a scuttled British War Ship make for an especially interesting beach hike.
“… a feeding frenzy…”
Needless to say, with about five minutes to spare we were down about a dozen passengers when I received a panic text from my “MIA” list. They were next in line to reach the top of the lighthouse tower and would have to jump out of the queue if they hoped to get back to the coach on time. Unfortunately, cell service is terrible in L’Anse Amour so I was unable to respond and hoped that they would remember my speech from our welcome reception and continue on their quest. Because I think Icebergs and whales and dolphins and gannets and fossils and ship wrecks and explosives and whistlers and gift shops and indigenous grounds and ridiculous beauty have to qualify as the foundation for one heck of a story.
Thanks for the memories everyone.