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C.T.M.A. Ferry to the Magdalen Islands


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I’ve always thought of Islands as neat places to visit....especially if you have to take a ferry to get there and all the better if it’s two ferries each way!

And for me......close to home is the Magdalen Islands....or Iles de la Madeleine. An archipelago of six main islands linked by dunes and sand bars....stretching 80 km in the middle of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The islands are a part of Quebec but the inhabitants are mostly Acadian ......and the culture, food and scenery make for a great trip!

http://www.tourismeilesdelamadeleine.com/en/

Map......

http://tinyurl.com/MagdalenIslandsMap

Here’s a shot of the islands reflecting in the morning sun I took from an Air Canada flight last year.

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So a week ago I left home for the 55 minute drive to Caribou NS where I caught Northumberland Ferries ‘Holiday Island’ over to Prince Edward Island. This is a former CNR Ferry that was transferred here when the Confederation Bridge opened in 1997.

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After the 75 minute crossing ....I had another 55 minute drive to Souris PEI (sounds like Surry) for the C.T.M.A. (Cooperative de Transports Maritime et Aerien) Ferry over to the Magdalens. The ‘Madeleine’ was originally built in Ireland in 1981 for the Dublin<>Liverpool run and had a couple of operators and name changes before coming to C.T.M.A. in 1997.

http://www.traversierctma.ca/en/

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The 5 hour afternoon crossing was a bit wet and foggy......

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.....but giving way to sun the next morning for a couple of days touring the islands. The main road.... Quebec Hwy #199 leads to some great scenery and white sandy beaches where the water temperatures in late August reach the 70s.....especially in the lagoons along the dunes and sandbars.

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Here’s the ‘Gare Maritime’ in Cap aux Meules (Grindstone Harbour) and the C.T.M.A.’s freight ferry ‘Voyageur’ . It was originally built in Norway in 1971 as a train ferry. The ‘Madeleine’ can be seen approaching the harbour with Ile d’Entree in the background

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Saturday evening it was time to head home on the 8pm crossing......docking in Souris PEI at 1am. I then drove down to the Caribou ferry....threw the sleeping bag in the back seat and waited for the first crossing a 6:30am. ......arriving home at 9 on Sunday morning.

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And there are other options for travelling to the Magdalens. The Island bus company, Les Sillons has a route thru PEI and New Brunswick to Quebec City.....with the bus doing some advertising along the way...

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Autobus Les Sillons has upgraded since I last heard from them! They use to operate their route with a TX3 semi-coach.

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I saw the CTMA Vacancier (hybrid cruise/cargo ship between Montréal and Cap-aux-Meules) depart Montreal last friday. It seemed way bigger than CTMA Traversier, although their specs seem about the same.

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@Everyone: I'm not sure if this should've went into Atlantic Canada Transit Discussion, Québec Transit Discussion, or even Marine Transportation Discussion, but anyways... I'm the main concered here, since I live on the Magdalen Islands... There is also a bus system, which sucks... We're in a no LFS zone, which is rare in Québec... Could somebody on here confirm which brand of minibuses are there in RéGîM (which is called "RéGîM" because there's a diet (régime) on bus service)? I'm not too sure, but Autobus des Sillons has some Blue Bird minibuses leased to RéGîM... I think the RéGîM minibuses are Dodge (RAM?) buses... Could someone confirm, please? Thanks. -Oli

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@Everyone: I'm not sure if this should've went into Atlantic Canada Transit Discussion, Québec Transit Discussion, or even Marine Transportation Discussion, but anyways... I'm the main concered here, since I live on the Magdalen Islands...

And what a beautiful place to live! I completely enjoyed my trip.

I did the Islands by motorcycle a few years ago....and finally made it back. Won’t leave it so long the next time!

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@Everyone: I'm not sure if this should've went into Atlantic Canada Transit Discussion, Québec Transit Discussion, or even Marine Transportation Discussion, but anyways... I'm the main concered here, since I live on the Magdalen Islands... There is also a bus system, which sucks... We're in a no LFS zone, which is rare in Québec... Could somebody on here confirm which brand of minibuses are there in RéGîM (which is called "RéGîM" because there's a diet (régime) on bus service)? I'm not too sure, but Autobus des Sillons has some Blue Bird minibuses leased to RéGîM... I think the RéGîM minibuses are Dodge (RAM?) buses... Could someone confirm, please? Thanks. -Oli

There is a topic on the RéGÎM in Québec Transit Discussion.
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@webfil: Got that, I will post future RéGÎM posts in that RéGÎM topic. @Everyone: Anyways, I'm surprised to hear CTMA Madeleine/Traversier is originally from Ireland! I did not know that, even if I went into that ferry more than 15 times (six times since 2012)! Good day. -Oli

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