The town was named after the Italian saint Bonaventure.
- Tourist Office (on Route 132 near the Musée acadien and on the banks of the Bonaventure River estuary), ☎+1 418-534-4014, e-mail: email@example.com. June to the beginning of October. Picnic tables overlooking the barachois (a coastal lagoon separated from the ocean by a sandbar). A computer station with Internet access is available during business hours and wireless access is also available 24 hours a day. (updated Apr 2019)
Prior to permanent settlement, the Bonaventure harbour had often been visited by Europeans and was the location of temporary camps and posts for many years before.
After the British began expelling Acadians from the Maritime provinces in 1755, refugees who had avoided the expulsion became the first permanent European settlers of Bonaventure in 1760. Some of these early settlers were present at the Battle of Restigouche in July 1760, where a mixed force of French navy aided by Acadians were defeated by the Royal Navy. Many of today’s Bonaventure residents are of Acadian descent.
At the time of settlement, Bonaventure was in French territory, but in 1763, after the Treaty of Paris, all of New France was ceded to Britain, and Bonaventure became part of British colony of the Province of Quebec. Later, some of the lands already settled by the Acadians were granted to anglophones. After decades of petitioning the Quebéc government, some of the Acadian settlers were able to gain title to the lands they occupied. However, even as late as 1891, more than half of the homesteaders in this region had no legal title to the lands they lived on.
Bonaventure was raided by Americans during the War of Independence.