Just outside the town of Bonavista is the tip of the Bonavista Peninsula, which was only about a 2 hour drive from Newman Sound campground. Wayne had never been there before, so it was new territory for both of us.
Cape Bonavista Lighthouse was constructed in 1843 and is currently restored to the 1870's period. The highlight of the lighthouse is an original catoptric light mechanism that dates to 1816. An adjacent interpretation centre features exhibits on lighthouse technology and lightkeepers' lives. But of course I was too busy wandering around outside to go check it all out. Maybe next time.
We enjoyed walking around the headland, but we had to be careful because the wind was roaring along at over 20 mph. And hey, is there anything sexier than the sight of a man with a Canon EF 100-400mm lens hanging from his hip?
The little offshore island was spattered with bird droppings, but far enough that even that big zoom lens wasn't going to give up its secrets.
It's funny how I thought we had lots of time on the island, but the hours fly by so quickly that we not only skipped going inside the lighthouse but skipped adjacent Dungeon Provincial Park as well.
Bonavista is where modern North America began. On June 24th, 1497, an Italian explorer sailing under the British flag for King Henry VII, made landfall in the New World. "O Buona Vista," Giovani Caboto was said to exclaim after nearly two months at sea. Oh happy site! News of the existence of the this New Found Land - and the riches of the Grand Bank fishery - spread throughout Europe after Cabot's return journey across the Atlantic.
Cape Bonavista is a great place to look out for whales and icebergs in the early summer, but we are too late for such sightings. We did see some other things while in the town of Bonavista, including the replica of the Matthew which was Cabot's vessel when he landed there. I'll share more of what we saw in Bonavista tomorrow.