People who want to visit France and live in North America can find it easy to do so by heading to the tiny island of St Pierre and Miquelon when exploring Atlantic Canada. There’s no doubt that they will be stunned by this enchanting and charming unique place. France has three overseas collectivities in total, French Polynesia, St. Martin, and St. Pierre and Miquelon.
Although the former two boast nice and sunny weather, St. Pierre and Miquelon are known for their harsh climate, and anyone visiting will need a waterproof and warm jacket even during the summer months. Anyone hitting this iconic island will feel like they’ve reached France when they step onshore. Nature lovers and francophiles will be particularly amazed by this stark, cold, and beautiful island and will experience a version of France that they’ve never seen before.
Here’s What To Know About St. Pierre And Miquelon Before Visiting
Near the city of Fortune, off the southern coast of Newfoundland, Canada, lies the beautiful island of St. Pierre and Miquelon. Most of the population lives in St. Pierre, while Miquelon is far more rural. Although when one visits St. Pierre and Miquelon will be just off the coast of Canada, they will feel like they’re in France as soon as they dock. This is thanks to the voices, the tricolor flags, the baguettes, and more.
People must know that St. Pierre and Miquelon is in a time zone that is two hours ahead of New York, one hour ahead of Nova Scotia, and 30 minutes ahead of Newfoundland. The timezone of the island is GMT-2. Moreover, the currency adopted there is the Euro, although several shops accept Canadian dollars also.
Inhabitants of St. Pierre and Miquelon love to rest and live life calmly. Thus, all shops close on the island from 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm for the lunch break. Additionally, the island shuts also on Sundays.
- Recommended: St. Pierre and Miquelon are behind the times when it comes to technology, and many tourism businesses don’t have websites. Thus, people are advised to visit St. Pierre and Miquelon tourism site or call them to book their activities.
Here’s What To Do When Visiting St. Pierre
There’s a lot to enjoy in the splendid archipelago of St. Pierre. For instance, people can experience what being in France looks like, where they can get some cheese, enjoy a baguette from Boulangerie David Girardin, and try Pierre Escargots. Moreover, it is a must to visit Pioneers’ Island, also called Sailors’ Island, or Île aux Marins in French. This is where some locals have summer cottages. Visitors will enjoy the brightly painted houses and the mesmerizing coastline, along with some views of St. Pierre.
- Recommended: When visiting Île aux Marins, people must also hit the Archipélitude Museum and the unique church to behold the beauty of religious imagery adorned with boats.
- How to get there: To reach Îles aux Marins from St. Pierre, people need to take the ferry that runs every two hours during the summer months.
- Cost: The ferry round-trip from St. Pierre to Îles aux Marins costs 6 EUR for adults and 4 EUR for children and seniors.
People also enjoy exploring St. Pierre Downtown, which is filled with flowers, feels more European than Canadian, and is brightly colored.
- Recommended: Those who are interested in the history of St. Pierre can visit Musée de l’Arche, which is located right on the waterfront.
- Cost: The entry fee to the Musée de l’Arche is 7 EUR for adults and 5 EUR for children and seniors. Visitors can pay a few extra euros for tours.
Touring St. Pierre with a guide is also a great idea to see the best of the island. Le Caillou Blanc offers group van tours and customized private services and tours. For packages with lodging and arrival packages, coupled with individual tours of St. Pierre, people must book with Frenchi’s Tours.
St. Pierre and Miquelon are full of hiking trails, where people can experience nature and learn more about the rocky geography in that region. Moreover, hikes are available for all levels.
Nature lovers will also be amazed by the unique boat tours available on St. Pierre and Miquelon, where they can enjoy the geography and wildlife.
- Options: Many options are available for people who want to take boat tours, including the dory tour with Les Zigotos. They can also explore the island by zodiac, take a wildlife cruise to Grand Colombier, or a boat tour to Cap Percé.
Here’s What To Do To Enjoy The Most Of Miquelon
After visiting St. Pierre, people must head to Miquelon, divided into two islands, Grande Miquelon and Langlade. People can enjoy on this island various nature activities which they can book locally.
- How to get there: People have to take the ferry from St. Pierre to Miquelon-Langlade town. The trip needs 90 minutes to reach.
- Cost: The journey from St. Pierre to Miquelon-Langlade costs 16 EUR one-way and 24 EUR round-trip for adults. As for children, disabled people, and seniors, the trip costs 10 EUR one-way and 13 EUR round-trip.