Alphonse Island



Alphonse Island


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Alphonse Island is a little known gem that’s located in the heart of the St. Lawrence River. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and it has been designated a nature reserve. The island is home to an abundance of plant and animal life, and it’s a great place to explore if you’re looking for a quiet getaway.

The island is also a good place to go fishing, and there are many trails that lead through the forest. If you’re planning on visiting Alphonse Island, be sure to check out our blog for tips on what to bring, what to wear, and more!

Alphonse Island


Alphonse Island was first discovered by a group of French fur traders in the 1670s. At the time, it was known as Isle aux Coudres (Island of the Furriers). In 1762, Captain John Dennis became the first European to set foot on Alphonse Island. Over time, it has been inhabited by various groups of people, but it has remained an unspoiled wilderness until quite recently. Today locals are visiting Alphonse Island to try and preserve it for future generations.


Alphonse Island Climate

The climate on Alphonse Island is temperate and humid. The average temperature in the summer is around 21 degrees Celsius, and the average temperature in the winter is around 7 degrees Celsius. Precipitation also fluctuates, but it is generally between 400-600 millimeters a year.

The area has been designated as part of the Laurentian Dark Sky preserve. This means that it is a special location where no artificial lights are allowed and you won’t have to worry about light pollution. You will be able to see an incredible number of stars in this unique environment!


Alphonse Island Culture

There is no permanent population on Alphonse Island, but there are a number of residents who live there year-round. While the culture is based around nature and wilderness, it does have its own customs and traditions. Visitors should be aware that pack animals aren’t allowed on the island, so you’ll need to bring your own supplies if you’re planning on hiking or camping. Archeological evidence suggests that there was a permanent settlement on the Island more than 1,000 years ago. It is probable that it may also have been inhabited earlier by Great Lakes tribes in North America long before Europeans arrived!


Alphonse Island is a part of the Unorganized Territory of Nunavut. As such, it is not subject to any laws or regulations that are specific to Canada’s other provinces. This means that you can bring your own booze and smoke on the island if you want. However, don’t think that this is a paradise for snowmobilers: there are NO designated trails or routes for recreational fireplaces allowed! You will need to find someplace dry and unpopulated in order to risk yourself on the wrong side of government regulation!

Government Services

There is no permanent government presence on Alphonse Island, but the Canadian military does occasionally conduct training exercises there. In order to reach the island, you will need to fly into Iqaluit or Ottawa and then board a ferry that will take you there. While this isn’t an ideal solution if you’re looking for basic services like grocery stores or pharmacies, it is perfect if you’re interested in spending time in nature without having to worry about intrusive government bureaucracy.


Alphonse Island is slowly beginning to experience a surge in tourism, largely due to its unique natural features and lack of commercialization. There are currently only a few tour operators that offer limited day-trips to the island, but this number is likely to grow as word gets out about this beautiful gem! Getting there

The easiest way to reach Alphonse Island is via a flight into Iqaluit, which can be made with Air Inuit. The airport side of the island has twelve airstrips naturally scattered across it that are ideal for small planes and helicopters alike.


The only way to get around the island is by foot or boat, which means that you will need to pack your hiking boots and fishing rod if you’re looking to spend time there! It’s also possible to travel there by aircraft, which has been proven challenging with the presence of blizzards (though one pilot who spent a month on the island in 2015 made it successfully!). Fishing

Alphonse Island has long been a center of activity for hunters and fishers, many of whom still have day-to-day relationships with those that inhabited the island hundreds of years ago.


There is currently no food available on Alphonse Island, but this is likely to change in the near future as the island begins to experience more tourism. Visitors are already finding great local cuisine nearby in Iqaluit and Ottawa, so it’s only a matter of time before there’s a plethora of options for hungry travelers! History

The history of Alphonse Island goes back to the late 1700’s, when early explorers discovered a small piece of land that they named Île-à-Pierre. The island grew quiet and isolated over time, but was visited by numerous Inuit families as well as Europeans who wished to begin logging operations or claim indigenous lands through government formalities.


Alphonse Island is home to a variety of different animals, both terrestrial and aquatic. You’re likely to see arctic foxes, snow geese, seals, reindeer, and even wolverines on your journey there! Climate

Alphonse Island gets a little warmer than it is at other locations due to its northerly latitude, but similar weather patterns still prevail. It has an oceanic subtropical climate with long cold winters and short cool summers (which makes the temperate climate of the island perfect for many animals!).

Once you get off the island there’s not a whole lot to do besides exploring or taking pictures, as it doesn’t have many transportation options. If you’re in Ottawa however and wish to explore nearby areas then hop on a bus at one of several locations around town (such as Tunney’s Pasture).


Alphonse Island is a small and uninhabited island located north of mainland Newfoundland in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The island was named after the French explorer Jean-Baptiste-Alphonse de Monts, who reached it in 1763 as part of his search for a Northeast Passage to the Atlantic Ocean.


Is Alphonse Island Accessible By Car?

There is no public access to the island, and visitors must either walk or use a boat to get there. There is limited parking on the island, so it’s best to arrive by ferry orplane.

Can I Camp On Alphonse Island?

Yes, there are several designated camping spots that can accommodate up to 50 people. Visitors should be aware that there are no bathrooms on the island, so campers will need to make arrangements for their own toilet use.

Can I Swim On Alphonse Island?

Yes, there are several designated swimming spots that can accommodate up to 150 people at a time.

Is Alphonse Island Accessible During The Winter?

No, the island is closed to visitors from December 1st to March 31st.

What Is Special About The Island?

There are several unmarked trails that visitors can explore if they have a map and compass. There’s also an observation deck across from the television tower, which allows up to 200 people to take in views of all three sides of the island at once!

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