Punt Boat Race Itinerary

Punt Race Weekend at Fogo Island Inn July 15 through to 17, 2016

Guests of Fogo Island Inn may lay anchor from the race’s best vantage point during the annual Great Fogo Island Punt Race: To there and Back.

Back in August of 2007, many thought it couldn’t be done: two persons per wooden punt with wooden paddles in a race against over 20 rowers. Once again, thanks to the courage and tenacity of the race’s initial competitors, Newfoundland’s greatest seafaring spectacle returns for its ninth year at 10:00 a.m. on Saturday, July 16, 2016.

All competing punts must be locally made and the race covers approximately 7 miles across the open Atlantic Ocean. The world’s only open-ocean rowing race dedicated to traditional punts is presented in partnership with the Shorefast Foundation and the Fogo Island Inn. The race is dedicated exclusively to punts built on Fogo and Change Islands, Newfoundland and Labrador. Competing rowers come from Change Islands, Fogo Island, and around the world to row their traditional wooden boats to victory. The race commences from the government wharf in Joe Batt’s Arm, moves past the Fogo Island Inn, travels close to Lion’s Den Point, and then returns to finish back where it started (to there and back).

The race, the wind, the tides, and the many other challenges of the course may be viewed from the comfort of the Fogo Island Inn. For race enthusiasts seeking a bird’s eye view, the “best seat on deck” is available with the Inn’s Punt Race Weekend itinerary.

The two-night offer starts at $1,201 per night for two persons and includes:

  • A welcome cocktail
  • A screening of Cranky, a film about the Great Fogo Island Punt Race at the Inn’s state-of-the-art 37-seat digital cinema
  • A one-hour learn-to-row-a-punt experience during their stay
  • A rooftop champagne toast
  • A “To There & Back” keepsake
  • All gratuities and service charges, excluding the standard 13% HST
  • Full use of all facilities within the Inn (cinema screenings, rooftop sauna and hot tubs, contemporary art gallery, gym and heritage library)
  • Children 12 and under stay for free
  • A $200 reduction will be made for single occupancy

DAY 1 – FRIDAY July 15, 2016

Arrive on Fogo Island and let the island start to reveal itself on the 30-minute drive through outport communities as you make your way home to Fogo Island Inn. Look out for boats in every harbour… some old, some new.

Evening: Check into Fogo Island Inn; a traditional yet contemporary masterpiece of modern architecture and design. The Inn has been recently recognized as one of Telegraph Travel's 50 Greatest Hotels in the World 2016. Our welcoming staff will orient you to your suite, which is a front row seat to one of the wildest and most powerful oceans in the world. Breathe out, unwind; you have arrived at a place of emotional freedom and unmediated connections to the natural world.

Cocktail Hour: Join us in the lounge and engage in conversation about the once dying craft of punt building over cocktails. Try one of our signature new Newfoundland cocktails, or sample from our extensive wine collection influenced by the best Canadian wines and Fogo Island’s traditional trading partners (Italy, France, Spain and Portugal).

7- 10 p.m.: Supper at the Inn in our award-wining dining room; named among the top 3 “Best New Restaurants of Canada” by enRoute magazine. Enjoy locally sourced produce, fish and game while the waves of the North Atlantic crash just beyond your table setting.

Late Evening: A screening of “Cranky,” a documentary film produced by Christopher Richardson featuring the punts of Fogo Island and the annual Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back, in the Inn’s 37-seat digital cinema.

DAY 2 – SATURDAY July 16, 2016

Wake-up: Wake-up and meet the day with a special surprise just outside your door. Our Day Break “Tackle Box” features fresh juice, tea/coffee and pastries. 7-10 a.m. Savour a full breakfast breakfast in the dining room.

10 a.m.: Witness The Great Fogo Island Punt Race to There and Back from Government Wharf or from the comfort of Fogo Island Inn. This annual event has revitalized the once dying craft of traditional wooden boat building and is the worlds only sea going rowing race.

Lunch: Can be enjoyed from a local vendor on Government Wharf, or served at your leisure in Fogo Island Inn’s dining room. Guests will have the opportunity to speak with local experts about the significant and rich heritage of the punt—a wooden boat that was once used by all island people, not just for fishing, but for communications, carrying water and providing social and other needs when no other transportation was available between communities.

Evening: Supper at Nicole’s Café, a Fogo Island favourite neighbouring the Inn. Nicole’s café draws its menu from Fogo Island’s food traditions bringing together the best of the land and sea in a creative mix of modern and traditional recipes.

Late Evening: Rooftop toast to the early settlers and visionaries of the Island’s Back Western Shore. Enjoy a view of the infinite, dizzying night sky. Be reminded that nature is truly eternal.

DAY 3, Sunday, July 17, 2016

Morning: Enjoy your “tackle box” in your room. Linger.

7-10 a.m.: Farewell breakfast at your leisure in the dining room.

Guests depart for ferry and the official two days of programming ends.