Easy
Difficulty level
Multisport
Activity (Bike)
6 Night, 7 Day
Duration

Canada, Québec: Magdalen Islands Multi-Activity Tour

Six nights; seven days of adventure by bike, sea kayak and on foot, with an introduction to kite-buggying and many optional activities, including cave swimming, kite surfing, and sailing. Excellent for private groups, families, or combined with Prince Edward Island tours.


“…a wonderful experience … the best vacation we’ve ever had!” – Silberlicht family

 

WHY THIS TRIP?

  • Remote island culture.
  • Red cliffs and sandy beaches everywhere!
  • Clean, invigorating, salty, sea air.
  • Great French and maritime cuisine; lots of seafood available!
  • Kite surfers flying across the water, and kite buggies zooming on big beaches. You can try this!
  • Acadian hospitality and French pride.
  • Artistic, culinary, and musical culture.
  • Activities inspired by wind, including tailwind biking!
  • Kayak into sea caves.
  • Walk to the peak of Île d’Entrée – the barely-inhabited anglophone island.
  • Evenings at Café de la Grave.

 

ROUTE EXPECTATIONS:

The easiest routes we offer, these are generally flat and cover relatively relaxed distances. You will be comfortable riding a hybrid bike, walking in sneakers, or paddling a light kayak, and will normally have time to take many photos and enjoy extended lunches.


The activities are moderate, cycling 32-100km/day on lightly rolling paved roads (there is one short gravel section), walking for 3-4 hours, or relaxed ocean kayaking. Power kiting/kite buggy ease depends on wind and your aptitude. We ride bikes downwind as much as we can, especially on the long day. You should be able to swim and at ease in the water to enjoy the kayaks. Children under 14 must be in tandem kayaks with a parent.


Daily Distance:

  • DAY 1: Introductions
  • DAY 2: Variable
  • DAY 3: 5 km + options
  • DAY 4: 39 km + options
  • DAY 5: 40-100 km + optional hike
  • DAY 6: Variable
  • DAY 7: Farewells

Elevation Profile:

 

Start: Charlottetown, PEI, The Great George11:00, day one. Please contact us to arrange alternate pickup location in Charlottetown, or a 13:00 pickup in Souris, PEI.

Finish: 14:00 Souris or 15:00 Charlottetown, day seven.

Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

1

Arrivals and introductions

Transfer from Charlottetown before noon, or meet in Souris at 13:00 for the 14:00 ferry to Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine. After dinner, visit the Café de La Grave, where the locals gather in the evening for music and laughter. D (Meal inclusions provided for guided trips. Self-guided trips include breakfast only)

Auberge Chez Denis à François, Havre-Aubert

2

30km bike ride or 15km walk, and an afternoon of kayaking

Morning ride or walk around the roads of the southernmost island, Île du Havre Aubert. The natural harbour at Havre Aubert is surrounded by round hills called “Les Demoiselles”. The nearby historical site of La Grave is a fascinating highlight to a morning on quiet rolling roads, grassy seaside meadows, and sandy beaches. In the afternoon explore gorgeously red sandstone cliffs and calm lagoons by kayak. Reward yourself with a drink and pastry at a café before choosing from exquisite restaurants for dinner. BL

Same lodging

3

5km hilly walk and island exploration, with optional alternatives

Cross to Anglophone Île d’Entrée by small boat, for exploration on foot of this hilly, emerald island. The unobstructed view from the pinnacle of the island is the finest. If you prefer, you can have a day to yourself, to play nine holes of golf, go horseback riding, or try swimming through sea caves. BD

Same lodging(same as last night or tomorrow night’s inn based on availability)

4

39km bike ride and kite buggying

Ride northward to Île du Cap aux Meules with a stop in L’Étang-du-Nord for a picnic at the scenic lookoff at Cap du Phare – Lighthouse Cape. After lunch, get ready for an exciting afternoon of kite-buggying. This new and increasingly popular sport will leave you wanting more, and the Magdalen Islands are the perfect spot to try it out. Kite buggies can be enjoyed by everyone, no matter what level of experience, after an introduction to power kiting. Some may choose a tandem experience with an instructor. Those who pick it up quickly may have the chance to attempt kite surfing. Power kiting is addictive and you will probably want more. Tonight’s dinner options are amongst the finest of Atlantic Canada. BL

Domaine du Vieux Couvent, Havre aux Maisons

5

40-100km ride plus optional hike at the Point de l’Est Wildlife Area

Cyclists will ride north along the beach and dunes to Ile aux Loups, Grosse Ile, and the Point de l’Est bird sanctuary. You will have a French picnic lunch in an idyllic meadow with a panoramic view, on the northernmost populated island of the archipelago. Walkers will transfer to the Point de l’Est bird sanctuary, and will spend the day walking the perimeter of the sanctuary on wide, gorgeous sand beaches, with forays into the interior to look for birds among the woods and barachois. BL

Same lodging

6

Various activities available

As you will have realized by now, this is a place to linger and savour. We include an extra day with limited structure for you to pursue whatever options make you happiest. Many want more kite buggying and kayaking. Some want more cycling or beach time. Others want to re-visit their favourite café, to play in the waves and bask at the beach, or walking on the cliffs. Your inn is in a central location, within reach of most islands by bike or van. You choose; we facilitate! This can be the most enjoyable day of your holiday, and we look forward to helping make it satisfying for you. If you prefer, leave the choice to us and we will surprise you with a carefully considered combination of activities guaranteed to leave you pleasantly tired and ready for a final dinner on Les Iles. BD

Same lodging

7

Farewells

Early morning ferry back to PEI. After lunch on board, you will arrive in Souris by 14:00, and will commence the 45-minute drive to Charlottetown right away. Finish in Charlottetown by about 15:00. B

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.

WHAT’S INCLUDED IN THE COST OF YOUR TRIP?

Not sure about difficulties, and support level? Check out our What to Expect page!

Guided: C 4095 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 7 days, 6 nights, 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners, ferries, luggage handling, van and guide support, maps, route instructions, sea kayaking, Île d’Entrée excursion, kite flying and buggy introduction, sales taxes

Does not include bike rentals & single supplement charges (pricing can be found in next booking step), airfare to/from tour, and guide(s) gratuities.


Self-Guided: C 3395 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 7 days, 6 nights, 6 breakfasts, ferries, luggage transfers, essential transfers, maps, route instructions, on-call emergency support, guided sea kayaking, Île d’Entrée excursion, kite flying and buggy introduction, taxes

Does not include bike rentals & single supplement charges (pricing can be found in next booking step), airfare to/from tour, and support driver gratuities.

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


2022 Guided dates:

  • Jul 15-21
  • Aug 12-18

2023 Guided dates:

  • Jul 14-20
  • Aug 11-17

Self-Guided available any dates, except for those listed above. New dates are also welcomed for guided or private departures.

Interested in custom or private departures?


Please see above for accurate pricing and inclusions, unless we have proposed a customized trip for you and those details are provided in your custom proposal.

1. Choose an advertised date to join a small group, or see our Join a Group page to see where groups are already forming.

2. Pick your own dates. We will confirm quickly, and are happy to talk with you as you make your choice. If you would like a private guided date, price remains the same as advertised if you have at least six. If you prefer self-guided, we usually only require two participants to initiate a new date at the advertised price, and can sometimes reduce prices for you if you have four or more.

 
PLEASE NOTE: Trip Cancellation Insurance is highly recommended. Please ask us for a no-obligation quote from our insurance providers: Century Insurance, or CSA Travel Protection.

More Reading:


This is a fascinating active holiday with pleasure and thrills in the magical Îles de la Madeleine. Connected by long, thin, sand dunes to form a crescent in the middle of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, this archipelago is a summer paradise for activity, shrouded in the mystery that comes only with the isolation these islands enjoy.

You will explore a new island each day, using a mix of activities. As well as the familiar cycling and walking, you will have opportunities to surf on the waves in your kayak, and to harness the wind for an exciting ride on the sand in a tiny, kite-propelled buggy! There are so many to choose from, you can also mix activities based on your whims if you prefer not to follow the plan.

The adventure starts with a ferry trip from Prince Edward Island across the warm Gulf waters, in time for a wonderful introduction to the fabulous French cuisine. Your guided exploration will commence the following morning, and your days will give you an appetite for the fabulous cuisine you’ll enjoy each evening. The landscape here is wild and fragile. The people, mainly of Acadian descent, mixed with shipwreck survivors who never left, have a strong heritage: French is the first language of the majority of the Madelinots, with an Anglophone minority population, and fishing is still their predominant way of life. Honest, hardworking, and friendly, they welcome visitors to share the special pleasure of their uniquely isolated, very Acadian lifestyle. Superb food, good humour, unusual thrills, and some of the longest and nicest beaches you’ll ever see, are the highlights. Come and discover the magic.

To learn more about the culture and heritage of the Magdalen Islands watch Legends of Magdalen, a documentary about the shipwrecks, myths, and legends surrounding the islands.

Trip history:
Freewheeling directors Cathy and Philip are involved with a bicycle advocacy board, whose mission leads it to follow the excellent example made by Quebec’s bicycle network – la Route Verte. Studying la Route Verte led to the discovery of some wonderful routes, perfectly suited to Freewheeling’s week-long holidays. Some of our past guides came from Quebec and helped us discover the little things that make a trip outstanding. We now frequently travel to Quebec for biking and skiing, and having become familiar with some fine inns and cuisine in rural Quebec, have developed five unique itineraries in superbly scenic and fascinating regions.