Town of Witless Bay

Town of Witless Bay

Welcome to The Town of Witless Bay! 
Located on Route 10 as a part of The Irish Loop, Witless Bay is a small, scenic, traditional Newfoundland outport community that offers an abundance of Tourism   

Hiking, camping, and fishing can be found along the East Coast Trail.  Sea kayaking is very popular in Witless Bay and for the amateur looking for adventure, we have private Sea Kayaking Tours available. 

Local sports organizations are available in the area for both adults and youth.  Soccer, hockey, figure skating, and softball are just some of the athletics to enjoy. Or, take a Boat Tour to view whales, icebergs, bird colonies and many other marine species!

Public Announcement

There will be a small film crew in production in the Ragged Beach area of Gallow?s Cove, Witless Bay on Sunday, May 13th and Monday, May 14th from approximately 8am to 8pm each day.

As per our arrangement with the Town of Witless Bay, parking at the end of Gallow?s Cove Road will be limited during this time but the East Coast Trail will still be accessible.

We ask for the public?s cooperation during these two days as we work to insure as little disruption as possible and would like to thank the town of Witless Bay for their support.


Patrick J.Conley
Locations Manager
709 730-7335


NOTICE 1: Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Newfoundland and Labrador Chapter, is happy to offer three summer positions for students (aged 15-30). Two of these positions will take place in Witless Bay as they will assist with the Puffin and Petrel Patrol.  


NOTICE 2 - The recently formed Recreation Committee for the Town of Witless Bay will be holding their first open meeting at the Puffin Centre on Thursday, May 10th at 7:00 p.m. Chris Brinston, the Chairperson for this Committee, wishes to extend a public invitation to anyone wishing to become a volunteer member of this Committee. Please stop by to share your ideas! If you are unable to make this meeting, no problem, the Recreation Committee plans to meet the 1st Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. 


Notice 3 - Signage Removal 

As part of the Town?s annual clean up, Witless Bay Council will be taking down private business signs that have been randomly placed on poles within the community. Anyone wishing to claim their signs can collect them from behind the Witless Bay Town Hall. Thank you.


Application for 10% Residential Property Tax Reduction



The Witless Bay Seabird Ecological Reserve consists of four important seabird colonies and includes the surrounding waters which the seabirds inhabit during the breeding season.   


Four islands make up the terrestrial component of the Reserve - Gull Island, Green Island, Great Island and Pee Pee Island. They provide breeding habitat for the largest Atlantic Puffin colony in North America and the world?s second largest Leach?s Storm Petrel colony.

Thousands of other seabirds breed on these islands, including Herring Gulls, Great Black-backed Gulls, Black-legged Kittiwakes, Razorbills, Common Murres, Black Guillemots and the first known Northern Fulmars to breed in Newfoundland.

In addition, the surrounding waters provide an important wintering area for Common Elders, King Elders, Thick-billed Murres and Dovekies.


           Access to Information Request Form (& Instructions) -

     Government of Newfoundland and Labrador 


Interesting Facts:        

  • 1675, the population of Witless Bay is 34.
  • 1700's, Irish fishing servants begin arriving in the area and quickly start to outnumber the English
  • 1755, as Roman Catholicism is still outlawed in Newfoundland, priests disguised as fishermen, minister to the spiritual needs of the community.
  • 1836, the first official census of Newfoundland puts the population at 542, of which 540 were Roman Catholic.
  • 1845, Roman Catholic Church opens.
  • 1860, the Presentation Sisters open a convent and a school for girls.
  • 1871, population reaches 928.
  • 1960's, people are re-settled from Gallows Cove at the southern headland of Witless Bay to the community of Witless Bay.
  • 1986, Witless Bay is incorporated
  • 2006 Census Population: 1070