Focus on a Canadian Province: Newfoundland & Labrador
From CultureGrams – Province Edition:
Newfoundland and Labrador is Canada’s easternmost province. It includes two main sections: the island of Newfoundland in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, and a large chunk of mainland Canada known as Labrador.
Labrador is more than twice the size of Newfoundland. The two sections are separated by the Strait of Belle Isle. The province covers a total area of 405,212 square kilometres (156,453 sq miles), which is about the size of California.
Newfoundland covers 111,390 square kilometres (43,008 sq miles), while Labrador stretches across 294,330 square kilometres (113,642 sq miles). Newfoundland and Labrador has a subarctic climate, with long, cold winters and short, cool summers that start around the middle of June. The cold Labrador Current mixes with the warm waters of the Gulf Stream to create a thick fog that lingers off the coast of Newfoundland. The current also produces cold winds that gust across the province year-round.
Given its large size, Newfoundland and Labrador is not highly populated. A little over half a million people live in the province. Just fewer than 30,000 of these are Labradorians, while the rest are Newfoundlanders.
Here are some more interesting facts about Newfoundland and Labrador:
- Newfoundland and Labrador is Canada’s “newest” province. It joined the federation in 1949.
- Newfoundland’s rugged coast is known as Iceberg Alley. About 40,000 of the fastest-moving icebergs in the world break off of glaciers in Greenland every year and float through the alley.
- The island of Newfoundland juts so far out into the Atlantic, it’s actually closer to Europe than much of North America.
- The island of Newfoundland has its very own time zone—Newfoundland Standard Time. It runs a half hour ahead of the east coast of North America, so Newfoundlanders get to celebrate the New Year ahead of everyone else on the continent!
Almost every family in Labrador owns a snowmobile. It’s their main form of transportation in the winter when everything freezes over.