Viewing the workings of this major Canadian port from a waterfront boardwalk, no one would guess this was once a quiet fishing village. The place boomed after World War II, when large companies decided Sept-Îles would make a good base for expanding northern Québec’s iron-mining industry. But all of the massive infrastructure can’t trump Mother Nature. Beautiful beaches line the coast, and the islands of an archipelago park sit just offshore. Campers and bird-watchers flock here, in part to spot the colorful beaks of the puffins.
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A cruise of the archipelago offers visitors front-row seats to a unique spectacle, with the blue sea and sky as a backdrop and the cries of the seabirds as the musical accompaniment to complete this magic tour. Discover the flora, fauna, history and mysteries of the archipelago during an unforgettable adventure!
Depart the pier and walk to the marina where you will board the zodiac. Don a life jacket and get ready for an unforgettable two hour zodiac experience on this Silver Shore Expedition tour.
During tour the guides will tell the sad history of two shipwrecks that occurred in the area, the Le Corossol and the Jean-Marc Soucy.
Navigate around Manowin Island, also a bird sanctuary. This island owes its name to the Innu word manouan, meaning "where we collect eggs." This island is known not only for its unique bird-nesting cliffs, but also for its limestone rock formations.
Marvel at the myriad seabirds (murres, eiders, ducks, razorbills, Atlantic puffins, auks, black guillemots, long-tailed ducks and more) that occupy the Île du Corossol bird sanctuary. This sanctuary is one of the most important protected marine bird sanctuaries in Eastern Canada because of the diversity of species present.
Corossol Island also has one of the many lighthouses built in the area to help navigate the mighty St. Lawrence, one of the last vestiges of the golden era of maritime trade.
Enjoy a close-up look at marine mammals whose fleeting yet extraordinary appearances linger fondly in the memory.
Petite Basque and Grande Basque Islands were named in honor of the Basque people, who for more than one hundred years came to the region to fish, hunt whales and trade furs.
Return to the marina and walk back to the pier.
Please note: This tour is recommended only for guests in good physical condition. The walk to/from the boat is approximately 300 metres. Although little walking is required, guests must be able to manoeuvre in and out of the zodiac which involves a high step. Ocean ride involves fast acceleration and may be a bumpy at times. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility, back/neck/hip problems or those who suffer from motion sickness, or guests who utilise a wheelchair. Dress in layers, bring a jacket, wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes and appropriate outdoor clothing is recommended as Sept-Îles has a subarctic climate despite its location at around 50 degrees latitude. The operation of this tour is subject to wind and weather conditions. Space is extremely limited. Guests must book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
Experience the spectacular natural splendour of Sept-Iles from a unique perspective during this exhilarating helicopter flight-seeing excursion.
Sept-Iles, Helipad, Helicopter Flight-Seeing Tour
Depart the pier for the scenic, approximately 0.6-mile (about one-kilometre) walk to the helipad. Upon arrival, meet your pilot and receive your safety and flight instructions, then board your awaiting helicopter and begin your approximately 20-minute flight-seeing tour.
Landscapes, Shoreline, Rivers, Backcountry, North Coast, Boreal Forest
Along the way, marvel at the breath-taking panoramic vistas over Sept-Iles. Whilst its spectacular shoreline gives Sept-Iles a strong maritime character, the backcountry and boreal forest of the north coast also define this region's personality. At the conclusion of your unforgettable helicopter flight-seeing adventure, return to the helipad and commence the approximately 0.6-mile (about one-kilometre) walk back to the pier.
Please note: This tour involves an extensive amount of walking for approximately 1.24 miles (about two kilometres) with a few steps to negotiate to board/de-board the helicopter. This tour is not suitable for guests with a fear of heights, guests prone to motion sickness, guests with limited mobility and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Guests are advised to wear warm, layered clothing with flat, closed-toe walking shoes, and bring sun protection and a weatherproof coat from the ship. This tour operates in a five-passenger helicopter. Due to weight and balance limitations, as well as individual safety and comfort, seating is assigned at the pilot's discretion. A window seat cannot be guaranteed. The total flight time is approximately 20 minutes; however, times may vary based on flight conditions. The tour sequence may vary. Operation of this tour is subject to weather conditions, and may be cancelled on short notice. Space on this tour is extremely limited; we suggest you book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
Capture the exquisite beauty of Sept-Iles through the eyes of professional photographer Jean-Philipp Grenier during this picturesque photo excursion.
Sept-Iles, Photography Tour and Techniques
Depart the pier with your guide, professional Sept-Iles photographer Jean-Philipp Grenier, for a unique photo tour of this beautiful city. Jean-Philipp specializes in landscape photography and astrophotography. Following a six-month road trip a few years ago in the United States, he fell in love with photography, and has been training and working professionally ever since.
Sept-Iles Bay, Rapid Lake Belvedere, Monaghan Beach
During your photo tour, Jean-Phillip offers unique, in-the-field, photographic experiences and techniques. He also shares his best shooting spots, and provides technical advice about lighting, shutter speed, aperture and angles. Depending on the weather and time-of-day, some of the possible viewpoints to be visited may include Sept-Iles Bay, home to approximately 29 miles (about 47 kilometres) of splendid waterfront views, the Rapid Lake Belvedere, which features breath-taking panoramic landscapes, and Monaghan Beach, which offers exquisite views of the many islands surrounding the city. At the conclusion of your tour, commence the short drive back to the pier.
Please note: This tour involves a moderate amount of walking for approximately 547 yards (about 500 metres), at times over inclines, with a few steps to negotiate to get on/off the coach and at the Rapid Lake Belvedere. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility and guests who utilise a wheelchair. Guests are advised to wear warm, comfortable clothing in layers with flat, closed-toe walking shoes, and bring sun protection and a waterproof jacket from the ship. The tour sequence may vary. Space on this tour is extremely limited; we suggest you book well in advance to avoid disappointment.
Surrounded by sea and forest, Sept-Îles boasts breathtaking scenery and a rich history that has been forged over centuries. The Sept-Îles region has been known and visited by Europeans for almost 500 years and the presence of Native tribes dates back more than 7,000 years.
Old Trading Post
Depart the pier by school bus and drive to Old Trading Post via the Innu community. Ever dreamed of traveling back in time? Relive the past by visiting a unique site: the Vieux-Poste (Old Trading Post). Immerse yourself in 1842, at the time of the Hudson's Bay Company, in the replica of the old trading post occupied successively by the French and English from 1673 to 1842. This fur trading post was the first European establishment in Sept-Îles. It was initially used for trading fur with Innu hunters. Later, during its heyday, fur was exported to European markets as well as salmon from the Moisie River and oil from seals hunted in the Sept-Îles archipelago. In this place of meeting and trade, you will discover the daily life of the postmaster, woodsmen and Innu hunters.
Next visit the Regional Museum. The rich and fabulous history of the North Shore of the St. Lawrence River is told at the Musée régional de la Côte-Nord. The museum's permanent exhibition, Land of Discovery: The Great Journey, invites you to explore 8,000 years of history. Whether your interests tend toward nature, industry or culture, the exhibition will help you discover the true character of the region, providing a glimpse into the courage, tenacity and pride of the local inhabitants.
Enjoy brief photo stops at the magnificent sandy beaches-one reason the city of Sept-Îles is renowned for its beauty. Only minutes from downtown, with the sea on one side and the forest on the other, Sept-Îles's enchanting beaches stretch endlessly along the shore.
Return to the pier where the ship is awaiting.
Please note: This tour involves a moderate amount of walking approximately 120 metres (96 metres) on dirt path and uneven ground. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility or those who utilise a wheelchair. Dressing according to the weather; sturdy shoes no sandals, a windbreaker and appropriate outdoor clothing is recommended as Sept-Îles has a subarctic climate despite its location at around 50 degrees latitude. Transportation will be in a local school bus.
Immerse yourself in the Takuaikan Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam, the Innu First Nation Community of Sept-Iles based in Quebec Cote Nord Region.
The Innu are a millenary people with over 10,000 years of history. They are one of the most populous First Nations in Québec. Before the Europeans' arrival on the continent, the Innu were nomadic people living in tents made of animal skins. They followed species such as the caribou in order to survive, and rivers were their main pathways.
The Innu way of life has always been a seasonal cycle of activities based on harvesting resources as they become available: wild berries in the fall, caribou in the winter, salmon and geese in the spring. Caribou were used in many different ways. Their meat, skin, bones, antlers and teeth were used for food, clothes, shelter, tools, weapons, ornaments and toys. Summer was a time for gathering and heading to the banks of the St. Lawrence to trade fur with Europeans and buy food.
This tour is the perfect opportunity to learn about their way to immerse yourself in the many aspects of history, beliefs and traditions as well as their traditional and contemporary culture and lives.
Visit their traditional Shaputuan (housing), hear stories, learn about their spiritual rituals, their natural medicine, the hunting and trapping and different crafts work made from animal skin or bark. Also, sample some freshly cooked salmon and wild goose prepared in a traditional manner. End your tour with traditional Innu music and chants.
The know-how of the Innu community goes back a thousand years, and they are proud to share their knowledge with you.
After enjoying the culture of the Innu board the school bus for the short journey back to the pier.
Please note: This tour involves a moderate amount of walking approximately 425 yards (388 metres) on uneven and slightly inclined. This tour is not suitable for guests with limited mobility or those who utilise a wheelchair. Dressing according to the weather; sturdy shoes no sandals, a windbreaker and appropriate outdoor clothing is recommended as Sept-Îles has a subarctic climate despite its location at around 50 degrees latitude. Transportation will be in a local school bus. This tour requires a minimum number of guests in order to operate.