Dark Harbour is one of the few areas of Grand Manan's west coast which is accessible by car. The one hundred metre high cliffs of columnar volcanic basalt, which form the west side of the island, have been dramatically pierced by a strong flowing stream and give access to one of the island's most unique, unusual and photogenic areas.
A natural harbour has been augmented by a sea wall thrown up by the waves - fog and unusual lighting conditions create other worldly effects on the numerous camps, cottages and homes which ring the natural harbour. You definitely want to visit at low tide - the beach and road are mostly submerged at high tide.
Boats are moored along the shore with long lines, and laneways to individual dwellings are steep and short, and cut off at high tide. For visitors, the area close to the main working dock is always above water, and a good place to park - but park to the side to avoid blocking access to the dock.
Few people live permanently in Dark Harbour - the dwellings are mostly summer working camps - although, according to the Grand Manan Tourism web site, Dark Harbour is also an area which locals use to get away from the hussle and bussle of the eastern side of the island! The rings in the inner harbour are for fish farming.
"Dark Harbour Dulse", which had made the island famous world-wide, is hand picked along the west coast, and landed at Dark Harbour. You can also see it being dried (and can buy some) on the way to or back from Dark Harbour at Roland's Sea Vegetables located at 174 Hill Road - as well as on many other locations on the island.