One of the highlights of any trip to the province is the charming city of Quebec on the banks of the St Lawrence. Still having fame as the only remaining walled city in North America it was the center of New France (Nouvelle France) and is today the capital of the Province. Spend some time seeing the lovely Old Town (Vieux Quebec). I especially was impressed with the Museum of Civilization.
Please see my Quebec City pages for more about this beautiful city, click here
The main city in Quebec province. There was a lot to like about the city. Montreal gives you the opportunity to savor the old and new, the European and the North American, the modern and the traditional. I was especially fortunate to go when the city is dressed in autumn colors. I got there right about peak time for the leaves, it was magnificent! There was the big city vibe, but not so frenetic and hurried, the pace was great here. People took time to enjoy.
Don't miss Mont Royal! Give yourself some time to just relax up there and soak in the great views of the city.
Please visit my Montreal pages here
To test ourselves at the beginning of the season, we decided to ride from our house to our family's cottage in lac St-Joseph, a nice 50-km ride on the Corridor des Cheminots. This actually is an old railway that was transformed into a bike path about 10 years ago. It is large enough to accommodate cyclists, joggers and rollerskaters without making it inconvenient for any of its users. From downtown Quebec City it goes northwest, first taking cyclists through the surburb of Charlesbourg and then through the more picturesque countryside, also running through the Huron reserve in Wendake. We stopped to eat lunch in the village of Shannon, which is quite convenient since cyclists have access to picnic tables and public restrooms, This nice little rest area is located right next to the bridge that crosses the beautiful Jacques-Cartier River. From there we followed the path that leads to the lake.
A popular thing to do is to bike all around the lake (which is what we ended up doing), but you should know that you'll need to ride on the road (the path doesn't go all the way around). This isn't too much of a problem since traffic isn't that bad and drivers usually are quite respectful. A bigger problem might be how hilly the road gets after a while, you'll definitely get a good workout out of it! And here's a bit of personal trivia, the road that goes around the lake (chemin Thomas-Maher) was named after my husband's great grandfather :o)
For those looking to spend some time - or even a night - in the area, there are a few nice options in the town of Fossambault. For sleeping and fine dining, there's the Chaumière Jucheau-Duchesnay, for even more outdoors activities there's the Station touristique Duchesnay, for access to the lake and nautical activities there's La plage du lac St-Joseph, and for a good dinner in a casual atmosphere there's Resto Le Baladeur (418-875-3070). Enjoy!
The very first time I went on a biking trip was back in October 2007, when Sylvain and I drove to l'Île-aux-Coudres and then biked our way around the island. This small island is located about 120 km east of Quebec City (plus a short ferry ride), in the beautiful Charlevoix region. Cycling is the most popular thing to do in l'île-aux-Coudres, and the short 23-km road that goes around the island feels more like an unofficial bike path than an actual car road! I've already built a whole travel page about that trip so I won't repeat all of the information I'd put on there, but if you're interested you can access it by clicking HERE.
I didn't really grow up with autumn, but it is by far my favorite season. In my journey around the province I realized I was very lucky to arrive just at the right time. Farther north in Tadoussac the colors were just starting to come out in full force. In the Laurentians they were just right and by the time I got back down to Montreal the treees had gone to full on oranges and reds. There was something in the air, the aroma, the energy. The Canadians were getting ready for their Thanksgiving. The time was right!
Battle of the Chateauguay National Historic Site marks where a small force of Canadian troops and Indians repelled a large American force on its way to capture Montreal during the War of 1812. This, in combination of the British victory at the Battle of Crysler Farm, near Morrisburg, Ontario, ended the American St Lawrence Campaign of 1813.
The south-western part of the Eastern Townships is where a number of boutique wineries are located. The area has a mild microclimate and is not all that different than the northern French or German wine growing areas. A number of these wineries have been going for the past 15 or 20 years and they are producing some very nice wines using both classic European grapes as well as some northern hybrids like the Marechal Foch and Frontenac varietals.
There are also cideries - we were told that the local ciders were a blend of four varieties of apples; MacIntosh, Spartan, Cortland and IdaRed to get that balanced taste.
Quebec, Quebec is the jewel of the province. It's old town has been placed on the UN's World Heritage List. It's old city is the only walled city remaining in the US and Canada. A visit to Quebec City is like a trip to Europe!
The Old Town's narrow cobblestone streets and staircases wind up and down steep hillsides. In the Upper Town, you can visit the 1820's fortified Citadel and the huge Battlefields Park that runs alongside it. You can also walk a 4.6km circuit atop of the old city walls and of course you can't miss the castle like Chateau Frontenac. It is said to be the world's most photographed hotel and you can see why. It was built in 1893 and today you can tour the inside for a fee. In the lower town, I enjoyed walking through the maze of narrow laneways and admiring the charming houses and views of the Upper Town.
Hull lies adjacent to Ottawa separated only by the Ottawa River. The most popular reason to visit Hull is to see the Canadian Museum of Civilization.
This huge, 100,000 sq m complex is Canada's largest and most popular cultural institution. It has many exhibits explaining the history of Canada and Canada's Native peoples.
I was impressed by the unusual wavy design of the building. It is the work of architect Douglas Cardinal and it was designed to resemble geological shapes eroded by wind and glaciers. I love how the main staircase in the photo looks like a winding river.
If you enjoy rugged coastal scenery like I do then a drive around Quebec's Gaspe Peninsula is a worthwhile detour on your way to the Maritime Provinces. This rounded peninsula juts out from southern Quebec, south of the St. Lawrence River and north of New Brunswick. Locals call it La Gaspesie.
The landscape on the northern coast of the peninsula is particularly stunning as rocky cliffs plunge into the sea and the hills and mountains of the Appalachians can be seen for miles. You will also pass picturesque scenes of farmland and lighthouses. This lighthouse was located near Riviere au Renard.
The old port is a great place to stay with the kids. There are many hotels there including the Marriot Spring hill inn. Also, check out ispymontreal.com for an updated list of family friendly activities.
Leave the car seat and stroller behind! BebeGoGo (www.bebegogo.com) rents items like cribs and strollers if you need any gear while staying in Montreal.
In the summer of 1990, Hydro-Quebec, the provincial power company in Quebec, hosted a number of technical people from eastern Canada and the northeastern USA at their massive hydro-generation facilites at Radisson on James Bay. They have their own fleet of turbo-prop airplanes to fly staff back and forth between Montreal and this location 600 miles to the north. In addition to our regular group meeting, we had a very informative tour of the dams, their power houses and associated control equipment.
However, we were also treated to a one-day fishing trip even further north on the shore of Hudson Bay (see my 'Transportation' tips for a look at the two rugged de Haviland 'Otter' float planes that took us on that side trip). As the photo shows, I have proof that I did indeed manage to catch a nice sized trout! Not having really been prepared for this, on the return trip to New Brunswick, I wrapped it in newspapers, threw it into my luggage for the flight home and then cooked it up as soon as I arrived! Although my wife was not too impressed, the fish was delicious!
It was interesting to see what the landscape looked like on the eastern shores where Hudson and James Bay meet each other (2nd photo). The weather was quite pleasant in June and the bugs were not yet out in full force. There is a very long highway that can be used to reach the Radisson area, but flying is definitely so much easier if you want to actually try this for yourself!
Her Majesty's Canadian Ship Onondaga is an Oberon-class submarine that was decomissioned for the Canadian Forces in July of 2000. Oberon-class submarines are British built, diesel-electric submarines with a total of 27 being built and serving in 5 different nations navies. It's located on the St. Lawrence river in Pointe-au-Pere which is now incorporated into Rimouski. After it was decomissioned, there was several plans for it including selling it for scrap metal. Instead it was purchased by Site historique maritime de la Pointe-au-Père for $4 plus tax. I would have paid twice that much for my own submarine. Now it's Canada's only sub that is open to the public. You enter from the rear of the sub and work your way to the front. Those things that tell you a story when you press a number that corresponds to the signs that are place throughout available. It was done in a way where it was a grandfather telling his grandson all about the Onondaga. Obviously on submarines, space is limited so it can get crowded in certain spots.
Rimouski is not a destination on it's own but if you are travelling along highway 132, it's an excellent place to stop for a couple of hours and wander around. It's a city of around 40,000 people in the Bas-Saint-Laurent region. The main street area along St. Lawrence River is where I spent my time and has a decent church, nice park, several restuarants and some shopping. It's an older city (at least by Canadian standards), founded in 1696.
There is more than cities to see, Go north off Montréal, there are beautifull mountain and so many thing to do Rafting, boat, fishing,... You can go also to see the whales at Tadoussac. I am tours leaders in Quebec than if you want more infos just tell me.
Have a good tripp
Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Taylor got married here. If it was good enough for Liz and Richard...it...more
Stayed as guest of the Quebec Saint Malo race organisers. Good continental breakfasts. Coffee -...more
We have spent many vacations at Sommet de Neige in Mont Tremblant mountainside village. The...more