• Photo: Gremi357Wikimedia Commons

Peugeots, Renaults and Citroëns drive down the road. ATMs spit out euros. The French flag snaps crisply in a strong west-Atlantic Ocean breeze. And it’s all just 25 kilometres from Newfoundland. Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, a self-governing territorial overseas collectivity of France, offers a real taste of Europe in North America, yet many Canadians likely never consider it a tourist destination.

Before you take in the sights and sounds of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, read these eight travel tips.

  1. No passport required. Canadian citizens visiting the islands need only an official government-issued photo ID.
  2. Locals speak European French, though many are also fluent in English.
  3. The euro is used on the island, although Canadian currency is accepted by most businesses. Expect change in euros. There is no tax.
  4. Most businesses close between noon and 1:30 p.m. daily, and most shops are closed on Saturday afternoons and Sundays.
  5. Reservations are recommended at restaurants.
  6. Saint-Pierre and Miquelon are part of UTC-3 time zone, meaning they are 30 minutes ahead of Newfoundland, two hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time.
  7. Electrical outlets on the island are 220 volts. Canadians should bring adaptors for their electronic devices.
  8. There are no car rentals available on the islands.

For more information on Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, visit spm-tourisme.fr.