Sable Island: The Graveyard of the Atlantic

Though barely any Haligonians ever get to visit the sandy, windy shores of Sable Island, the small 34 kilometre-long sandbar is, in fact, part of HRM, falling under District 13 of the municipality.

The narrow, crescent-shaped, curious and very historic island sits about 175 kilometres off the coast of Nova Scotia, and is home to about five people year-round.

What makes this teeny, seemingly-insignificant island so fascinating is both its shipwreck history and its natural wildlife.


For hundreds of years, hundreds of ships have crashed into the sandbars surrounding the small island, leaving behind a haunting network of watery graves.

Take a look at this map showing some of the island’s recorded wrecks:

Some pretty somber statistics.

Some pretty somber statistics.


And, remnants of the Andrea Gail – the vessel that tragically fell victim to the elements in the 1991 “Perfect Storm”  — have been found on the shores of Sable, including an empty life boat and an emergency radio beacon, nine days after the crew was last heard from.



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