Lighthouses of Canada: Labrador and Belle Isle

Labrador is the mainland region of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Separated from the island of Newfoundland by the Strait of Belle Isle, the coast of Labrador stretches northwestward for some 1500 km (900 mi). However, settled communities with roads and lighthouses are found only on the southern section of this coast. Like the coast of Newfoundland, the coast of Labrador is rugged and indented with deep fjords and harbors.

This page includes the lighthouses of Belle Isle, the island for which the strait is named. Since Labrador is an integral part of the province and does not have a separate administrative identity, it's not clear whether Belle Isle would be considered part of Labrador or not. However, from the navigator's point of view, the Belle Isle lighthouses fit in sequence with the lighthouses of the Labrador coast.

The south coast of Labrador is accessible from May through December by car ferry from St. Barbe, Newfoundland, to Blanc Sablon, Québec. In addition, Nunatsiavut Marine offers car ferry service from Corner Brook to Blanc Sablon and passenger ferry service along the Labrador coast.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. CCG numbers are from the Newfoundland volume of the List of Lights, Buoys, and Fog Signals of Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Admiralty numbers are from Volume H of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA numbers are from Publication 110.

General Sources
Lighthouses of Newfoundland, Canada
Photos and notes by Kraig Anderson.
Lighthouses in Newfoundland and Labrador
Photos by various photographers available from Wikimedia.
Canada: Newfoundland and Labrador
Historic postcard views posted by Michel Forand.
Leuchttürme Kanadas auf historischen Postkarten
Historic postcard views posted by Klaus Huelse.
List of Lights, Buoys, and Fog Signals
Official Canadian light lists.


Point Amour Light, L'Anse Amour, July 2007
photo copyright Robert Smith; used by permission

Hamilton Inlet Lighthouses
Note: Hamilton Inlet is a nearly 150 km (90 mi) long, fjord-like inlet in southern Labrador. The western half of the inlet is a large basin called Lake Melville. The inlet leads to the town of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, which has a population of about 7500 and is the second largest settlement in Labrador.
Kenamu River Range Rear
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 19 m (62 ft); green light occulting once every 6 s. 19 m (62 ft) square skeletal tower carrying a trapezoidal daymark painted white with a red vertical stripe. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on the north side of the mouth of the Kenamu River, which flows into the south side of Hamilton Inlet just west of Lake Melville. Site open, tower closed. CCG 302; Admiralty H0077.1; NGA 0908.

Battle Harbour Lighthouses

Note: Battle Harbour is on an island just off the Labrador coast at the northern entrance to the Strait of Belle Isle. Formerly a permanent settlement, it has been only a summer fishing station since about 1970. Many of the buildings have been restored by the Battle Harbour Historic Trust, and the town has been declared a National Historic District. Passenger ferry service is available from the nearby mainland town of Mary's Harbour, which is accessible by car on highway 510.
Double Island
1905. Active; focal plane 38 m (126 ft); white light, 1 s on, 5 s off. 7 m (23 ft) round cylindrical cast iron tower with lantern and gallery; solar-powered lens. Lighthouse painted with horizontal black and white bands. Google has only a distant satellite view of the area. Sibling of the Long Island East End lighthouse on Newfoundland. Double Island is the easternmost land of Labrador. Located at the highest point of the island, on the approaches to Battle Harbour. Accessible only by boat or helicopter. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-681; CCG 278; Admiralty H0092; NGA 0968.
Camp Islands (2)
1961 (station established 1932). Active; focal plane 42 m (137 ft); white flash every 5 s. 7 m (22 ft) octagonal pyramidal concrete tower with lantern and gallery; solar-powered lens. Lighthouse painted white with a narrow red horizontal band, lantern red. Fog horn (blast every 60 s). 2-story and 1-story keeper's house, fog signal building, and other buildings. Krystina Scheller has a view from the sea, and Forand has a historic photo, but Google has only a distant satellite view of the station. Sibling of the Cape Bauld lighthouse on Newfoundland. This station was staffed as recently as 1997. Located on a small island south of Battle Harbour. Accessible only by boat or helicopter. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-678; CCG 279; Admiralty H0094; NGA 0976.

Belle Isle Lighthouses
Note: Belle Isle is an uninhabited island lying in the entrance to the Strait of Belle Isle from the Atlantic. The island is about 16 km (10 mi) long and 5 km (3 mi) wide. Geologists regard it as the northernmost peak of the Appalachian Mountains.
Belle Isle Northeast (Belle Isle North End)
1905. Active; focal plane 42 m (137 ft); white flash every 11 s. 27 m (90 ft) 12-sided concrete tower with six flying buttresses, lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted white, lantern red. Fog horn (blast every 30 s). 2-story and 1-story keeper's house, fog signal building, and other buildings. The lighthouse was built of cast iron; it was encased in the concrete in 1908. A 2007 photo is at right, Lighthouse Explorer has a Coast Guard photo, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Google has a distant satellite view of the station. Located at the northeastern end of the island, which lies halfway between the northern peninsula of Newfoundland and the Labrador mainland. Accessible only by boat (in heavy seas) or helicopter. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-648; CCG 232; Admiralty H0096; NGA 0984.
Belle Isle South End Upper
1858 (François Baby). Active; focal plane 143 m (470 ft); white light, 5 s on, 5 s off. 19 m (62 ft) round limestone tower with lantern and gallery, faced with firebrick and shingles, attached to a 1-1/2 story stone keeper's house. Original 1st order Fresnel lens in use. Fog horn (2 blasts every 60 s). 1-story assistant keeper's house (1960s). Lighthouse Explorer has a page with a 1993 Coast Guard photo, and Google has a very distant satellite view of the station. A historic lighthouse, one of four stone towers built on the northern approaches to the St. Lawrence in the 1850s. Its construction was a significant engineering accomplishment for its time. Located on top of the main ridge of the island at the southwest end. Accessible only by boat (in heavy seas) or helicopter. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-675; CCG 233; Admiralty H0102; NGA 0988.
Belle Isle South End Lower (2)
1908 (station established 1879). Active; focal plane 46 m (150 ft); white light, 5 s on, 5 s off. 7 m (23 ft) lantern, painted red, mounted on a stone foundation. Original 2nd order Fresnel lens. Google has a very distant satellite view. This light is part of the South End Upper station; it was built at a low elevation so that it might be less likely to be obscured by low clouds and fog. Anderson has a historic photo of the first lighthouse, a square wood "pepperpot" tower. Located atop the bluff at the extreme southwest tip of the island. Accessible only by boat (in heavy seas) or helicopter. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-747; CCG 234; Admiralty H0104; NGA 0992.
Belle Isle Northeast Light
Belle Isle Northeast Light, Belle Isle, August 2007
Panoramio Creative Commons photo by ghart27

South Coast Lighthouses
* [Saddle Island (Red Bay) (3)]
Date unknown (station established 1906). Active; focal plane 36 m (118 ft); white flash every 5 s. 7 m (23 ft) square cylindrical skeletal tower. 1-1/2 story wood keeper's quarters, boat house, and other light station buildings survive. The keeper's house is occupied, presumably by Parks Canada personnel. Bing has a satellite view of the station. The skeletal tower replaced a 1912 octagonal wooden lighthouse, seen in a historic photo. Red Bay is the site of a 16th century Basque whaling camp, and the island is the site of a whalers' cemetery. Located on an island in the entrance to Red Bay. The town of Red Bay is on NF 510 about 80 km (50 mi) northeast of L'Anse Amour. Passenger ferry service from the town to the island is available June through September, and hiking trails lead from the ferry landing to the light station. Site and tower closed. Site manager: Parks Canada (Red Bay National Historic Site). ARLHS CAN-750; CCG 230; Admiralty H0110; NGA 1000.
St. Modeste Island (2)
1956 (station established privately sometime before 1920). Inactive since 2010. 5.5 m (18 ft) square pyramidal wood tower with lantern and gallery, painted white; the lantern formerly had a red roof. Fog whistle (blast every 20 s). Marie-Laure Even's photo is at right, Robert Smith has a 2009 closeup and a 2008 photo, and Bing has a distant satellite view. Descendents of the MacDonald family, who claim ownership of the island, are interested in acquiring the lighthouse as well. Located on a small island about 90 meters off the north coast of the Strait of Belle Isle. Accessible only by boat, but easily visible from land near the village of West St. Modeste. Site open, tower closed. Site manager: Canadian Coast Guard. ARLHS CAN-700; ex-CCG 229; ex-Admiralty H0111; NGA 1004.
**** Point Amour
1858 (François Baby). Active; focal plane 46 m (152 ft); white light, 16 s on, 4 s off. 33 m (109 ft) round tower with lantern and gallery, attached to a 2-story keeper's house. The tower is limestone covered with brick and then with clapboards. 2nd order Fresnel lens in use. Lighthouse painted white with a single black band; lantern roof is red. Fog horn (blast every 30 s). Two modern dwellings and other buildings. Fog signal building (1906). Robert Smith's 2007 photo is at the top of this page, Stephen MacQuarrie has a 2008 photo, Anderson's page has two good photos, the Labrador Coastal Drive tourist web site also has a page for the lighthouse, Forand has a historic postcard view, and Bing has a satellite view of the station.This historic lighthouse marks the narrowest point of the Strait of Belle Isle; the strait here is about 15 km (9 mi) wide. One of four stone towers built on the northern approaches to the St. Lawrence in the 1850s, it is still the second tallest lighthouse in Canada. The Labrador Straits Historical Development Corporation manages the light station, operating a museum in one of the buildings; the original lamp is on display. In December 2013 the lighthouse was declared a heritage property and it was announced that ownership of the station would be transferred to the provincial government; the transfer occurred shortly thereafter. Located off NF 510 at L'Anse Amour on the north shore of the Strait of Belle Isle east of Blanc Sablon at the Quebec border. Site open; tower open daily mid June through mid October. Owner: Province of Newfoundland and Labrador. Site manager: Labrador Straits Historical Development Corporation. ARLHS CAN-665; CCG 227; Admiralty H0114; NGA 1012.

St. Modeste Island Light, West St. Modeste, October 2011
Flickr photo copyright Marie-Laure Even; used by permission

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Nunavut and Northern Québec | South: Northwestern Newfoundland | West: Northeastern Québec

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Posted June 22, 2008. Checked and revised August 12, 2014. Lighthouses: 8. Site copyright 2014 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.