BBS ICT Project François Page
The community of Francois was settled in the late 1700s, primarily as
a fishing community. Small boat fishers harvested a variety of
species during the summer fishing season and sold their catch to
Newman & Company of Gaultois. In 1908 John Penney &Sons Limited of
Ramea replaced Newman & Company as the principal fish buyer. In 1922
the Penneys constructed a general store and set up a branch division
in Francois, consequently controlling fish collecting and supplies
for the community.
Francois's rich fishing heritage also included operation of a whale
factory at nearby Chaleur Bay from 1893 to 1911, as well as a lobster
canning industry which was operated by the Fudge family from 1870 to
1900 and later by a firm from Fortune. This enterprise constructed a
lobster factory in Francois around 1900. Although no lobster factory
exists there today, the lobster fishery remains constant and
lucrative. Local fishers still harvest a variety of other species as
well and sell their catch to outside interests.
Accessible only by boat or helicopter, Francois has a deep harbour
which is navigable year-round and a helipad which provides landing
space for helicopters.
When entering Francois harbour by boat, visitors are first greeted
by one of the few remaining manned light stations in Newfoundland.
Once past the light, visitors are astounded by the narrow opening
leading into the steep-walled rocky fjord that is Francois. Clinging
to the cliffs, the community of Francois comprises one of the few
outports on the south coast of Newfoundland to survive the
resettlement program of Newfoundland's first premier, Joey Smallwood.
Francois is a great point of departure for visits to the nearby
abandoned outports of Parson's (New) Harbour and Rencontre West.
Francois offers a variety of other attractions for the outdoor
adventurer in both summer and winter. A visit to Francois can
a hike through pristine wilderness to spectacular Chaleur Bay
a view of the majestic waterfall at Harbour Ruin a boat trip to the
lost whaling station technical climbing on the cliffs of Devil's Bay,
reputed to be the best climbing east of Yosemite
sea kayaking along the rugged coastline
camping in untouched country, fishing the highland ponds and
awakening to the smell of pan-fried trout caught by you or your guide
a hike to Charlie's Head to view the breathtaking coastline
a hike to Francois Point, where you will visit the manned light
station overlooking the Western Head of Francois
a challenging snowmobile ride along the trails of Francois
cross-country skiing for the extreme skier
ice fishing the highland ponds
ice climbing for the experienced climber
Christmas "outport style" celebrating the true twelve days of
For a truly astonishing experience of the isolation and sheer beauty
Francois has to offer, a visit to the Friar makes your trip one to
remember. The Friar is a 680-foot rock projection that provides a
bird's eye view of Francois and Chaleur Bay. Long celebrated by
residents and visitors alike, Francois is a place like no other on
For more information about François:
Visit our François links page,
our François business directory
or our François email directory.