Monday, 30 July 2012

Saint-Pierre

Gord and I are spending a couple days in Saint-Pierre.  We flew in last evening and are flying back to St. John's on Wednesday.

In case you are wondering, Saint-Pierre is an island just southwest of Newfoundland and belongs to France.  Yes, France!  Their currency is euros, their electrical outlets are different (so we've had to borrow an adapter from our hotel) and everyone speaks French.

Located in the heart of the Grand Banks in the North Atlantic, 25 km southwest of Newfoundland, the archipelago of Saint Pierre and Miquelon is composed of eight islands, totalling 242 km, of which only two are inhabited. The islands are bare and rocky, with steep coasts, and only a thin layer of peat to soften the hard landscape.

Saint Pierre Island, whose area is smaller (26 km), is the most populous and the commercial and administrative center of the archipelago. A new airport has been in operation since 1999 and is capable of accommodating long-haul flights from metropolitan France.

Miquelon-Langlade, the largest island, is composed of two islands, Miquelon connected to Langlade (91 km) by the Dune de Langlade, a 10 km-long sandy isthmus A storm had severed them in the 18th century, separating the two islands for several decades, before currents reconstructed the isthmus.The waters between Langlade and Saint-Pierre were called "the Mouth of Hell" until about 1900, as more than 600 shipwrecks have been recorded in that point since 1800.  North of Miquelon Island is the village (710 inhabitants), while Langlade Island was almost deserted (only one inhabitant in the 1999 census). 

We did a 75 minute van tour this morning.  Jean Claude took us around Saint-Pierre and gave us lots of info.

We stopped for a while on this cove.  It was very rustic and beautiful.



Afterwards, despite the rain, Gord and I took a long walk looking around.  It's a quaint and pretty place.  Houses are so colourful ... I only saw one made of brick.  The streets are really narrow.


 This is the centre-ville (downtown).


You can get to Saint-Pierre by ferry from Fortune Bay, Newfoundland.  Or you can fly in from St. John's, Halifax and Montreal.

It's definitely worth checking out.

4 comments:

Julie said...

so cool!

Fizzgig said...

beautiful!!! enjoy your stay!!

Isabel said...

Love all the posts of your trip! Have lots of fun! Although I can tell you are.

Knit and Purl Mama said...

Wow! I had no idea there was French land so close to Canada. Very cool. Will have to check it out!