Vinland is so called because of what appears in the Icelandic Annals at the time of discovery. The expedition describes an area with wild grapes in profusion, vast stretches of towering timber, an abundance of game of all kinds, rivers teeming with giant salmon, meadows rich with a harvest of wild wheat, and a climate so kind that winter frosts were hardly known; even the dew seemed to them sweeter than anything they'd ever tasted before. And Leif the Lucky named the country Vinland: 'Wineland', the land of grapes.

This is the main point of conjecture about the location of 'Vinland'. Since the settlers seemed to place so much importance on the quantaties of grapes that surrounded them, it seems unlikely that they could have been talking about Newfoundland. Before the discovery of the settlement in Newfoundland at L'Anse Aux Meadows, Vinland had been confidently located by enthusiasts in areas as far apart as Hudson Bay and Virginia.

The discovery of Viking settlement in Newfoundland is of monumental historical importance, but does little to paint a clear picture of the extent of the Norse colonization of America.