Anticosti

Baie de la Tour (Tower Bay)

Anticosti is a large but sparsely-populated island in northeastern Quebec, in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. While the island is over a hundred miles long, the only settlement of note on Anticosti is tiny Port-Menier (pop. 250) on the western coast. Much of the island is devoted to parkland or nature conservation.

Visitors to Anticosti come to fish for salmon on the Jupiter River or hunt white-tail deer. Anticosti Provincial Park straddles most of the island.

Understand

Aboriginal peoples visited the island for fishing and hunting. Jacques Cartier 'discovered' it for Europeans in 1534, although it remained without any permanent population until Louis IV gave it to the Jolliet family in 1680, who retained it until 1753. Since then it was used for only for timber harvesting until it was sold to French chocolatier Henri Menier in the late 19th century. He built Port Menier and introduced a deer population, who without natural predators expanded exponentially. Today there are more than 100,000 deer on the island, for a density of approximately 14 deer per km².

Talk

French is spoken by the inhabitants. In the hunting and fishing tourism industry, English is also widely used.

Get in

The closest access by boat or plane is typically from Havre-Saint-Pierre, Sept-Îles, or Baie-Comeau. Regular flights to Anticosti (IATA: YPN) are offered by Air Liaison (+1-877-589-8972) and SkyJet (+1-877-677-0033). It is possible to charter aircraft; outfitters have packaged flights from Mont-Joli, Sept-Îles, Havre-Saint-Pierre and occasionally Québec or Montréal as part of hunting expeditions.

It is possible to reach the island by ferry.

Get around

The island is 222 km (135 miles) in length and mostly parkland or wilderness. It is possible to bring vehicles on the ferry or rent them in Port Menier; guided package tours may also include transport.

See

Do

Hunting and fishing are just about the only activities; both require a provincial license. There is trout and salmon in the area.

Buy

There is an artisan's boutique, a caisse populaire (Desjardins credit union, but with no ATM), a garage and a fuel station in Port Menier, the only village on the island.

Eat/Drink

There are restaurants in Port Menier and at the Auberge Chicotte and Auberge McDonald inns. A picnic area is beside the "Info Anticosti" house at 7, ch. des Forestiers (ile-anticosti.com, +1 418-535-0250).

Sleep

Stay safe

Anticosti is off the beaten path. There is no hospital on the island and just one small clinic in Port Menier, so in some areas the nearest help of any kind is over a hundred miles away.

If driving on the island, watch for wildlife. Deer are plentiful even in the village and can do substantial damage in a vehicular collision, while hitting a moose can be deadly.

The waters around the island have also been the site of hundreds of shipwrecks over the years, so caution is advised.

Connect

There is no mobile telephone infrastructure on the island. There are a few Telus (3G UMTS) base stations on the mainland in Havre-Saint-Pierre; there is no Rogers, no GSM and no CDMA.

Go next

This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Tuesday, January 19, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.