Île d'Orléans

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Île d'Orléans (French for Orleans Island) is located in the Saint Lawrence River about 5 kilometers (3 mi) east of downtown Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. The island was one of the first parts of the province to be colonized by the French, and a large percentage of French Canadians can trace ancestry to early residents of the island. The island has been described as the "microcosm of traditional Quebec and as the birthplace of francophones in North America."[1]

The island is accessible from the mainland via the Île d'Orléans Bridge from Beauport. Route 368 is the sole provincial route on the island, which crosses the bridge and circles the perimeter of the island. At the village of Sainte-Pétronille toward the western end of the island, a viewpoint oversees the impressive Chute Montmorency (Montmorency Falls), as well as a panorama of the St. Lawrence River and Quebec City.

Île d'Orléans is twinned with Île de Ré in France.

Contents

Geography

Orleans Island is situated between the Laurentian Plateau or Canadian Shield to the north and the Appalachian Mountains to the south. Its north-eastern point marks the boundary between the St. Lawrence River and its estuary (the largest in the world), where fresh water begins to mix with salt water.[1]

Of irregular form with jagged coves and capes, Orleans Island is 34 kilometers (21 mi) long and 8 kilometers (5 mi) wide at the widest point. It is 75 kilometers (47 mi) in circumference, with a total surface area of 190 square kilometers (70 sq mi). It has a hilly relief, small valleys, and gradual crests that reach a maximum height of about 150 meters (490 ft) at Sainte-Pétronille and Saint-Laurent in the south.[2][3]

Geopolitical

Administratively, the island is within Quebec's Capitale-Nationale region, and constitutes the L'Île-d'Orléans Regional County Municipality. It is further subdivided in the municipalities of:

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