Aug 13, 2012 / 2:06 pm
Located in the heart of the Grand Banks in the North Atlantic, 25 km S.W. 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 a hard landscape. The Island's are a self-governing territory of France, and it is the only remnant of the former colonial empire of New France that remains under French control. The inhabitants have traditionally earned their livelihood by fishing and by servicing fishing fleets operating off the coast of Newfoundland and about 70% of the islands’ supplies are imported from Canada or from France via Nova Scotia. The local currency is the Euro, but Canadian dollars are widely accepted and also used as a secondary local currency; with the language being Metropolitan France French.
The airport of Saint-Pierre opened in 1999 and Air Canada connects flights thru Canada to the island's hub. There are also 2 passenger "walk on only" ferries that operate daily service from the port of Fortune, NewFoundland. Once you arrive daily private coach tours are easily booked through the local Office of Tourism; these are both extensive, accessible and affordable. Each island offers a variety of tours and most can be personalised even including food for the day if you so wish. There are literally thousands of photo opportunities awaiting; including the Wild Horses that run free through Miquelon. Daily walking tours will impress upon you the beauty of the nature of he islands. The Valley of the 7 Ponds on Saint-Pierre is well worth the 3 hour hike. And don't forget to visit the famous hideout used by Al Capone!!
The majority of the island's accommodations include B&B's, guest houses and cottages. There are also a few Boutique Hotels scattered throughout. Be sure to make your reservations well in advance as the island's host some major festivals and accommodations can book up or sell out quite quickly. Not to be missed are the Sailing Race which runs from Halifax to Saint-Pierre, the Atlantic Musical Festival or the Basque Festival. Museums and Lighthouses are around every corner waiting to be discovered as are a variety or restaurants offering European and Canadian fare. Zodiac or Sailing excursions can be arranged as well as deep sea fishing for all level's of Fishermen.
For more information on visiting these island's of France, contact your Travel Agent today !
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