St.-Pierre and Miquelon, France
For Serious Francophiles
Dying for a perfect baguette? No need to book a flight to Paris. Just zip up to the tiny French islands of St.-Pierre and Miquelon—the last remaining bit of colonial New France—not far from Canada’s cod-rich Grand Banks. That location explains the islands’ abiding French-ness. Under the 1763 Treaty of Paris, France signed off on all North American possessions, except St.-Pierre and Miquelon, ensuring their fishing rights. During Prohibition in the United States, however, bootlegging actually beat out fishing, with nearly 2 million gallons of illegal booze passing through the tiny islands.
Go in summer, to catch the local Basque Festival (watch, but don’t attempt to compete in, the stone heaving or lumberjacking competitions), or try to catch Miquelon’s luscious Seafood Festival in August. Snap photos of the lighthouse. Take a boat tour to the Grand Banks. See wild horses and alpaca. Visit the small museum and local craft shops. Hike through rugged landscapes, relishing the quiet. Book rooms at the cozy Nuits Saint-Pierre, and try tiny local restaurants for fresh lobster, or cod cooked with French flair.