The Québec maritime Blog
At sunset, the light shifts gradually as the sky turns brilliant shades of pink, orange and deep red. All you have to do is sit back and admire the free show. In the Îles de la Madeleine, spectacular sunsets are everyday occurrences and provide ideal photo opportunities. In addition, each island offers different landscapes as backdrops to these natural masterpieces. Here are some of my favourite spots to see sunsets on the archipelago.
1. Parc de Gros-Cap
Wherever you happen to be in Parc de Gros-Cap on Cap aux Meules Island, from the well-spaced tent platforms to the terrace in front of the youth hostel, you are guaranteed a good view of glorious sunsets. Watch light fall over La Martinique Beach or photograph the golden hour on the cliffs, with your feet in the sand. This time of day is also perfect for a lobster picnic (such a feast is known locally as a lobster mess).
Ask a Madelinot where to go to see impressive sunsets and chances are he or she will mention the Borgot Lighthouse (also known as the L’Étang-du-Nord Lighthouse) on the cape in L’Étang-du-Nord on Cap aux Meules Island. The lighthouse offers a view of the colours of the Islands that is beautiful by day or by night: admire the red and white lighthouses and fishing boats, the green rolling hills, the red cliffs and the blue of the water that meets the sky at the horizon.
3. Belle Anse
Another favourite spot is Belle Anse in Fatima, also on Cap aux Meules Island—the changing colours of the cliffs at sunset are breathtaking. Take advantage of your visit to go for a short stroll.
4. La Grave
After wandering around the La Grave historical site on Havre Aubert Island, stop along the water’s edge to appreciate the beauty of Anse Painchaud and the Buttes des Demoiselles hills in the distance as the sun is reflected in the water.
5. Entry Island
Entry Island is one of my favourite spots in the Îles de la Madeleine, whether by day or by night. I was lucky enough to spend a night on the island and got to watch the sky turn purple and light up the small church after illuminating Big Hill with spectacular colours—a sight I will never forget!
I was quite surprised to see a stunning sunset as I left a restaurant in Grande-Entrée. I’ve never seen such colour gradations in the sky before, but apparently this sight is quite common in the archipelago.
7. Butte Ronde
For an unforgettable view of Havre-aux-Maisons, climb Butte Ronde just before sunset. You can admire the entire area, which is dotted with colourful houses. This is also a perfect opportunity to photograph Cape Alright.
8. While enjoying a beer
The À l’Abri de la Tempête microbrewery has a first-rate terrace offering a 180° view of the surrounding plain, including Corfu Beach, a local favourite, which is beautiful at this time of day.
9. From the water
Who said you have to be on land to appreciate sunsets? Head out on a boat to watch the fading light transform the shoreline. The boats at Cap-Vert and the birds on Rocher aux Oiseaux (Bird Rock) will only add to your enjoyment.
To make sure you don’t miss any sunrises or sunsets, find out the exact time of each for the upcoming month. The weather forecast on the Environment Canada website will also be useful.
Enjoy your stay on the Islands!
Moi, mes souliers (in French only)