I’m back from two wonderful weeks in Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Quebec! Yes, it was our third time going there (now officially tied with trips to Iceland!) and there is a reason we keep going back- we love it!
So first, the question I am always asked when I say we are going there- where is that? Here is not the best map but Iles-de-la-Madeleine is circled in the green. Kind of wedged between PEI and Newfoundland. Getting there is a little convoluted- a five hour ferry from Souris, PEI. But it is well worth the ferry ride and the two days of driving!
The first two times we went we stayed on the island of Grande Entrée. This time we stayed instead on Havre-Aubert which is at the other end of the archipelago. We rented the best cottage ever- right on the beach! The sound of the ocean waves was a constant and we could hop down to play in the sand at any time. Even better was the big deck that we could sit out on and enjoy the view. So even if the little guy was napping you could sit outside and still not miss a thing.
The goal of this trip was relaxation. And we got that in spades. Lots of days at the beach just hanging out and watching the kids play. Lots of evening walks on the beach, a trip to the aquarium, and clambering on the red sandstone rocks. We completely lost track of time and at one point we lost track of the days. A sure sign of a great vacation!
We couldn’t have asked for better weather. It rained the total of about an hour one day and overnight a couple of times. The rest was sunny and warm. And a nice warm- none of this horrible humidity we have here in Ottawa. Just the right temperature with warm ocean breezes.
There is beauty everywhere you look. A real maritime feel with lots of colourful houses, sand dunes and grazing cows.
The past two trips we have driven around looking for the traditional Madelinot barns and this time there were two right behind our cottage. It was nice to look out the back window and see them there.
Another theme of the trip was food. Oh the local foods are to die for. Of course there is the seafood- lots of lobsters, mussels, scallops and oysters were consumed by my husband and I (the kids are not fans). Then there is the honey flavoured with island wildflowers. And the Pied de Vents cheese that we absolutely adore. My husband enjoys the local beer that he can’t buy here. Croissants from the bakery became our go-to breakfast. And on one of our last days we enjoyed some fresh island cream with some strawberries and bananas. It was fantastic.
One of my favourite treats was the local apple cider. We frequented the little store so often that the owner began giving us complimentary jars of “les pommettes”- basically little apples in syrup. We were to put them in our glass to enhance the taste. Lets just say we may have brought home a few pommettes and bottles of cider. 🙂
It was such a great trip. I was so sad to leave, but I feel rejuvenated and refreshed. And my time there wasn’t all relaxation- I did take some work with me as my exhibit date is looming. I worked on that in the evenings once the kids were in bed and also during the long, long, car ride back home. I also did some plein air hooking that I will share here soon (I think I have found my new addiction!) and I went on the trip loaded with art activities for the kids and will share the results soon!