Holding on against the relentless ocean, Cap Noir (Black Cape) is made up of some sort of black rock, probably volcanic, which has a harder texture than most of the material in the islands. In the photo, you can see that it is taking the brunt of the ocean attack, while its weaker neighbours are slowly giving ground. This was the view from the...more
Almost at the very southern tip of Rte. 199, in Havre-Aubert, you will find the Musee de la Mer perched on a small hill overlooking the town. For the entry price of C$5 each, it is well worth a look because it has tons of interesting facts about the history of these islands, as well as various relics of their battles for survival against the sea....more
Although it does not look like much from the outside, we found that a look through the Aquarium des Iles was well worth the C$5 each cost of admission! We first of all enjoyed their large outdoor holding tank at the rear where they had a couple of young orphaned seals. It was very enjoyable to watch the curious expressions on their faces and to...more
La Grave is a group of old fishing village houses and buildings located along a narrow spit of land with a pebbly beach ( 'greve' is French for pebbly or sandy terrain) at the southern end of Rte. 199. It is interesting to walk around this area of small tourist shops, museums and restaurants. This was the only historic spot like this that we came...more
Towering above the town of Havre-Aubert are two treeless and grassy peaks, known as Les Demoiselles. The lower one has a large cross on it but the higher hill is devoid of any structure. There is actually a rough road almost to the top of the higher peak (or you can walk up). It is worth the effort for the amazing views! Photo taken looking out...more
On every one of the Madeleines, you will find world-class sandy beaches, backed by tall dunes. Havre-Aubert is no exception, so we spent an afternoon on its western coast, at the lower end of the Dune de l'Ouest. We pulled out our folding chairs and sat on the windward side of the dunes, admiring the long sandy beach and the view of the ocean as we...more
While exploring the interesting historic buildings at La Grave in the village of Havre-Aubert, we decided to have a light lunch before carrying on for further explorations. Although rather non-descript looking from the outside, once you enter the restaurant you catch the liveliness of the place! Although it was 2 PM, there was still a nice buzz...more
We decided that, for ease in getting from one island to another, we would take our car on the ferry with us (C$73 each way for it). Also, because the weather on the Madeleines is so unpredictable and changeable, out in the Gulf, it gave us some flexibility in case things turned out to be wetter than anticipated! We also thought about doing some...more
Because the majority of the islanders are of Acadian descent, they like to have colourful and neat houses. You will see interesting combinations everywhere you look, and we saw a lot of people out with the paint brushes as we drove around. Not far from Cap Noir, this house caught our eye because of the old derelict fishing boat beached beside it, way up off the coast.
We wanted to have a closer look at the shallow water lagoon, called Baie du Havre-aux-Basques, trapped between the two sand dunes that connect the islands of Havre-Aubert and Cap-aux-Meules. As a result, on the west side of the island we took a gravel road (to Pointe des Canots) through the woods in this area. However, it finally degenerated into a...more
Everywhere you go in the Madeleines, there are warnings about getting too close to the edges of their cliffs. Most of these are red sandstone cliffs, a very weak rock that you can crumble in your hands. Sometimes the rock has given away but the grass surface appears solid from above - in reality you could be 'hanging' in space until it gives way....more
The day that we drove out into a farmer's field and then walked to the edge of the cliff (see Transportation) was our most enjoyable experience. A rock outcrop, called Rocher de la Vache Marine, is located close to the cliffs, and we noticed four lobster boats at one time busy chugging around as they dropped their traps into the water. Later, as we sat there on the grass, we noticed that a flock of Northern Gannets (3-foot wing span) were plunging head first into these waters, sending up great plumes of water as they dove at what must have been a school of fish. While I was watching the Gannets, my wife spotted the black back and pointed dorsal fin of a Minke whale briefly surfacing. Sure enough, as we switched our attention, we saw a number of whales surfacing every few minutes as they too obviously were feasting on the fish here. We managed some good video shots but I really miss a telephoto lens!