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Gulf of St. Lawrence

As the estuary extends east, it widens from its mostly linear shape to a huge body of open water between Anticosti Island, Newfoundland, the Gaspé Peninsula and the maritime provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island.

Whales and windsurfing

In the middle of the Gulf, Magdalen Islands protect a shallow bay that has become the windsurfing and kite surfing mecca of eastern Canada. Whales are likely to be seen in the Gulf, although fewer and farther between than in the Tadoussac area.


Currents and tides are much easier to deal with in the Gulf than they are in the estuary or further upstream on the St. Lawrence River. Weather patterns are simpler, and the Gulf’s water is warmer than it is in the estuary. Due to its size and weather conditions, however, the Gulf is a serious body of water for those wishing to perfect their knowledge of mid-shore cruising.

The crossing to Magdalen Islands from the famous town of Percé or the nearby fishing village of L’Anse-à-Beaufils is roughly 125 nautical miles, and sailing the gulf is therefore an excellent introduction to offshore sailing.

Occasionally, life on board takes on a particular character due to the organization of shifts and navigation 24 hours a day. The stopovers are just as enchanting: Gaspé, Percé, Anticosti, Mingan, Natashquan, Cap-aux-Meules (Magdalen Islands), Port aux Basques (Newfoundland), Saint-Pierre-et-Miquelon, among others. Sailing the Gulf is an excellent way to discover small endearing ports of Eastern Quebec and the Maritimes.