Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is the overseas community of France

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Saint Pierre et Miquelon 2019

partizan ” May 17, 2020, 03:38

A trip to these islands in the fall of 2019 was part of our big trip to America and Canada. Traveling through South Africa in 2017, we agreed on a trip to Canada on principle. I love the islands. So I suggested adding St. Pierre and Miquelon as well as Bermuda to our trip. The offer was accepted. As my traveling companion Alexandre’s French friend said, he doesn’t know a single Frenchman who has visited Saint-Pierre. And Bermuda is one corner of the famous Bermuda Triangle. I will not describe America and Canada, as there are many good reports about these countries and I can not add anything new. I will only say that we were very lucky and we won the lottery to visit the famous Canyon “Wave”. On the Internet, we each of the four of us made an attempt at two days, but we missed out. In fact, only 20 people a day are allowed there, 10 raffled off online and 10 in person. We were lucky and out of 300 applicants we were in the lucky 10. A little bit about the logistics. We flew to New York, took a car and drove around Northeast America and Southeast Canada. In Canada our program included Halifax, which has flights to Saint-Pierre, so it was a pity not to go there. After renting a car in New York, we flew to Las Vegas, where we rented an SUV and drove around the West. From Las Vegas we flew to Bermuda with a connection in Boston. The ticket New York – Las Vegas – Bermuda was only 20,000 rubles. This is relatively inexpensive if you consider that the flight from New York to Bermuda was at least 8,000-9,000 one way. For me, the best flight in terms of cost and time was Moscow-New York and Bermuda-Moscow by British airlines. But the return flight was connecting in different airports in London. Well, I decided to stay in Britain for 10 days on the way back, especially since the stop did not affect the cost of the ticket. It turned out that I needed four visas for this trip. And if the French Schengen visa was no problem, then about the others, I can not say that. With the Canadian visa, I was frankly in trouble. I thought that, as usual, I would get out of my travel history and the financial component. Didn’t bother uploading a bunch of extra documents. As a result, it was rejected. I had to take this with all seriousness. I wrote a penitential cover letter, gathered a bunch of documents and applied through the visa center. I was given a visa for 4 years in a new passport, although I expected to get as fellow travelers to the end of the passport. Then the epic with the rest of the visas began. American visa was already the third, so I applied for a simplified visa. I had no illusions that they would give me a visa without an interview, after I honestly pointed out a bunch of dangerous countries I had visited, from the Americans’ point of view, I did not build. And so it turned out. I got an email saying they were calling me in for an interview. All that was left was to choose the dates. I saw that there were a couple of empty slots, and chose the closest date. In my haste I did not pay attention to the selected month. I was about to go, but accidentally saw that instead of April I chose May. And in May I was supposed to be somewhere in the Balkans, where I was going on a month and a half trip in my car. Usually, when I travel by car, I only outline the places I want to see, but I don’t schedule anything by day. I called to support with a request to change the dates, they answered that they can, but in this case, I will find myself in the general queue with all the ensuing consequences. The second option was offered is to reapply.

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After thinking about it, I decided to fly to Moscow for a day and after the interview to fly back. It was a good thing that I was in Athens and took a convenient night flight to Moscow and back. The consul did not ask any questions, except what I did in Somalia, Libya, Sudan and other places. The emphasis for some reason was on Afghanistan. To my cautious answer that I had already got two U.S. visas after my visit to Afghanistan, she said that it didn’t matter. In the end, she decided that she couldn’t make a decision by herself, gave me some form, and told me to wait for the request for additional documents. True, a couple of weeks later I got a message at the post office to send me the passport. In general, the epic with a visa lasted three and a half months. It seems that the Americans have a common base with the British, otherwise it’s hard to explain why I, having in my passport visa U.S., Canada and the long Schengen, and previously received a British visa, managed to get into the top 1% of those with visa applications reviewed for two months. Bottom line, three English speaking visas – 7 months.

A little about Saint Pierre et Miquelon. Saint Pierre et Miquelon is an overseas community of France, located on small islands in the Atlantic Ocean, 20 km south of the Canadian island of Newfoundland in the Cabot Strait. It is the only territory left to France from the former colony of New France. The area of the islands is 242 km². Population – 6080 people, according to the census of 2011. The largest island is Miquelon (216 km², 624 people), and the bulk of the population (about 90%) lives on the second largest island – Saint-Pierre (26 km², 5456 people), with almost all – in the city of the same name, the administrative and economic center of the territory. The islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon are formed by ancient rocks, in addition, there are sediments of the ice age. The coasts are highly indented, precipitous and difficult to reach. The interior of the islands is hilly. The highest point – 240 m – on the island of Miquelon. Many streams and small rivers. The climate of the islands is cool. Winter due to the influence of the ocean is fairly mild (average temperature of the coldest month – February – is -2.7 ° C), but snowy. The annual rainfall is more than 1400 mm. Cloudy weather with precipitation and strong winds is typical for most of the year. Fog holds about 120 days a year. Features of the relief (numerous outcrops of crystalline rocks, steep hillsides, abundance of boulders, large areas of dunes and swamps) and climate make it difficult for woody vegetation to grow. Forests grow in valleys, on gentle hillsides, as well as in areas sheltered from the wind. They consist mainly of spruce, with thickets of dwarf spruce on the windward slopes of hills. Among deciduous species, only the birch can be found. Another type of vegetation of the archipelago is swampy meadows and sphagnum bogs (peat bogs). They are very similar to the tundra vegetation. Since the islands have been inhabited (since the 17th century), the area of forests has greatly decreased due to logging for firewood. As a result, Saint-Pierre Island and the northern part of Miquelon are today almost devoid of any woody vegetation in a very harsh climate. We parked our car near Halifax airport, left our things in it, and took a free shuttle to the airport. There we met Eugene, who had to be a little late due to some urgent work, and we took an evening flight to Saint-Pierre. Only the local airline, Air St. Pierre, flies to the island from three Canadian cities. From Halifax three times a week. We flew to St. Pierre on the evening of October 10, back on the morning of October 12. The day was free enough for us to see the two islands. I can’t help but describe the ticketing scheme on the company website. The ticket from Halifax to Saint-Pierre is first ordered on the website by filling out a special form. Then in two days you get a link, which takes you to the payment site. The cost of a round trip ticket is about 280 euros. Ticket to Miquelon just booked the same way by filling out a special form. But the payment is made at the airport during check-in. And the bank card data is not entered. All calculated on the integrity of the passengers, because if the passenger is not on the flight, then the airline can not take money from him. The round trip flight price is 29 euros. There is one small plane. Two flights in the morning one after the other and two in the afternoon. We arrived in St. Pierre in the late afternoon. It was about an hour walk from the airport to the hotel. We wanted to drive up in something.

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Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is the oldest French territory outside of France itself.

But there is no transportation. All those arriving are met and immediately leave. Nothing to do, we prepared to walk. Seeing our problems, the steward on our plane kindly offered his services and drove us straight to the hotel. He categorically refused to pay. We checked into the apartment we had booked. It is a simple house where the owners live, and some rooms are for rent. We had a regular twin with facilities in the hallway. And the fellow travelers had a double with specific amenities in the room. Why it was impossible to change places of a shower and a toilet is unclear. I have not seen this even in wild Africa. There are often no doors, but at least the curtain hangs. In the morning the hostess called a cab, and we went to the airport. Cost 7 euros We paid for the tickets and went to the boarding. The whole flight with takeoff and landing took about twenty minutes. In a few minutes the plane flew in the opposite direction.

Miquelon from the air.

Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is the oldest French territory outside of France itself.

Everyone on the plane except us were locals. The airport of Miquelon was completely empty, but to our surprise there was an information center and there was a man there. True, Madame did not speak English, as the vast majority of the population of this French Overseas Territory. But she understood at once that we need a car. Came to the car the man in a suit, took us to the store and there for 60 euros gave us the same car on which he arrived.

The highest point of Miquelon is 240 meters – the Grande de Montagne. There we went. The view from the mountain on different sides of the island.

Lake

The scenery of Grande de Miquelon.

Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is the oldest French territory outside of France itself.

Along the spit we moved to the island of Langlade. While Grand Miquelon is dominated by sand dunes and vegetation very similar to that of the tundra with the absence of trees and shrubs, Langlade has forests. They consist mainly of spruce, with thickets of dwarf spruce on the windward slopes of the hills. Of deciduous species, only the birch can be found. Another type of vegetation of the archipelago is swampy meadows and sphagnum bogs (peat bogs).

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Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is the oldest French territory outside of France itself.

Such animals are found in the forest.

On the plain, too.

It remained to fulfill the cultural program and we drove to the village of Miquelon.

The village has all the necessary infrastructure for life: store, club, a couple of cafes, school, etc. In addition, there is a port where ships and passengers from Newfoundland arrive. The passenger terminal was closed, but there was a schedule hanging.

Gas station. Another gas station near the store.

Visited the gift store and bought some change there. Since cafes were not working or already closed after all the locals had lunch, we bought some groceries at the store. Ate on the bench. Rented a car. We declined the offer of a ride to the airport and walked to the airport. The plane from St. Pierre arrived on time. Ten minutes was enough for disembarkation – landing and 15 minutes after takeoff we were already in the airport of Saint-Pierre. There was no point in going to Saint-Pierre, so we walked. We walked around the city, went to a souvenir store and a grocery store. The souvenir shop is not bad, I bought there everything I needed. The grocery store was stocked up for the evening. That was it. The program is over.

I think that many will ask: was it worth the trip or not? For me I think that it was worth to lose only one day and some money, though there is nothing to see there. Here everyone decides for himself. From Montreal, I probably wouldn’t have flown on purpose. And the ticket is almost three times more expensive, and the flight once a week.

P.S. I wanted to continue the report on Bermuda, but it will not work. The memory card with photos is out of order.

partizan Honorary traveler Messages: 3633 Photo: 4043 Registration: 06/25/2010 City: Bryansk Thanked (a): 342 times. Thanked: 629 times. Age: 60 Countries: 204 Reports: 45

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Saint Pierre and Miquelon

Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is an overseas community of France, located on small islands in the Atlantic Ocean, 20 km south of the Canadian island of Newfoundland in the Cabot Strait. It is the only territory left to France from the former colony of New France.

The area of the islands is 242 km². The population – about 7 thousand people.

The largest island is Miquelon (216 km²), and the main part of the population (about 90%) lives on the second largest island – Saint-Pierre (26 km²), almost all – in the city of the same name, the administrative and economic center of the territory.

Contents

Geography

The islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon are composed of ancient rocks, in addition, there are sediments of the Ice Age.

The coasts are highly indented, precipitous and difficult to reach. The interior of the islands is hilly. The highest point – 240 m – on the island of Miquelon. Many streams and small rivers.

The climate of the islands is cool. In summer, average temperatures reach only 13-14 ° C. Winter due to the influence of the ocean is fairly mild (average temperature of the coldest month of February – -2.7 ° C), but snowy. The annual rainfall is more than 1400 mm. Cloudy weather with precipitation and strong winds is typical for most of the year. Fog holds about 120 days a year.

Features of the relief (numerous outcrops of crystalline rocks, steep hillsides, abundance of boulders, large areas of dunes and swamps) and climate make it difficult for woody vegetation to grow.

Forests grow in valleys, on gentle hillsides, as well as in areas sheltered from the wind. They consist mainly of spruce, with thickets of dwarf spruce on the windward slopes of hills. Among deciduous species, only the birch can be found. Another type of vegetation of the archipelago is swampy meadows and sphagnum bogs (peat bogs). They are very similar to the tundra vegetation.

Since the islands have been inhabited (since the 17th century), the area of forests has greatly decreased due to logging for firewood. As a result, Saint-Pierre and the northern part of Miquelon are today largely devoid of any vegetation.

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History

A French expedition led by Jacques Cartier discovered Saint-Pierre and Miquelon in 1536.

The first permanent settlement was established by the French in 1604, natives of Normandy and Brittany.

Until 1713 the islands were part of Acadia, the French colony in North America, which occupied the territory of the present Atlantic provinces of Canada. Under the terms of the Peace of Utrecht (1713) the French possessions on the shores of the Gulf of St. Lawrence and the island of Newfoundland were ceded to England.

From 1763 to 1778, many settlers from Acadia fled here, and in 1778 the islands were attacked by the British, and their entire population was exiled for the French support of the American Revolution. The islands did not finally return to French jurisdiction until 1816, and since then they have been the last fragment of that European power’s once vast North American possessions.

Since 1946, the islands received the status of an overseas territory of France, since July 19, 1976 – the status of an overseas department of France, and since June 11, 1985 – the present status of the overseas community of France.

Governance

The Department of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon is governed by a prefect appointed by the president of France.

The local government is the Territorial Council (19 members elected by the population for a 6-year term).

The population of Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon elects one French senator and one deputy of the French National Assembly.

Economy

The basis of economic activity is fishing and fish processing.

Fishing, mainly cod, is carried out by small vessels in coastal waters. Fish and fish products (including animal feed) are exported in small quantities.

Agriculture is not developed because of low soil fertility, high humidity, lack of solar heat and light. Vegetables are grown in small quantities for own consumption, and chickens, sheep and pigs are also raised on a small scale.

Much of the food, as well as manufactured goods and fuel, is imported.

The annual financial grant from France is comparable in size to the GDP and the budget of St. Pierre et Miquelon.

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