The striking thing for me about Iles de la Madeleine is its richness of color.
Red cliffs are topped by green grass against a blue sea. Sandstone rocks jut out on the beaches. A red, white and blue Acadian flag flaps in the breeze.
Equally as colorful are the people. It’s clear that this is an island of fishermen, who made their living from the bountiful sea.
But the sea was not always kind. You can visit the home of a fisherman who nearly drowned during a shipwreck. He abandoned his profession to create a miniature village that interprets traditional life in Iles de la Madeleine and also an exhibit that tells his own harrowing story. Rarely do tourists get first-hand accounts of such stories.
I enjoyed my visit to La Grave Historical Site, a charming village situated on a spit of sand, with restaurants (where I enjoyed a delicious seafood platter) and boutiques that don’t feel touristy. Iles de la Madeleine certainly has a feeling of authenticity — combined with charm and vivid, unforgettable, color.
Iles de la Madeleine is an Avid Cruiser Recommended Destination on Saint Lawrence Cruise Itineraries.