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Outdoors in Quebec: Activities to Try Beyond Montreal

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Quebec is renowned for the city of Montreal and its many attractions. However, the province covers an area almost the size of Mexico! With such a vast territory, there are plenty of Quebec landscapes yet to be discovered. In this article, we share our recommendations for outdoor activities in Quebec, ideal for nature lovers seeking adventures beyond urban confines.

The Eastern Townships: Scenic Routes and Golf Courses

Saint-Benoit-du-Lac Abbey in the Eastern townships
Photo credit: Cédric Lizotte

The Eastern Townships have spectacular maple forests that are only surrounded by gigantic lakes and splendid mountains. In this region, you can find the most picturesque villages of the province. It also has the most scenic roads, perfect for a weekend getaway.  

Provincial road 108, between Magog and North Hatley, is exquisite, while road 147, between Lennoxville and Coaticook, has two covered bridges that are still used today. There’s even an abbey which provides quite a treat to visitors. Saint-Benoit-du-Lac, on the shores of the lac Memphrémagog, welcomes tourists year-round and makes great cheese.

Another reason to spend your Quebec vacations in the Eastern Townships is the golf courses. Two primarily stand out: the Royal Bromont and Owl’s Head.

The Royal Bromont hosted the Canadian PGA championship in 1994. It is clear that the owners take pride in its upkeep. Plus, the course itself offers challenges that are compatible for even the most seasoned players. The clubhouse’s restaurant, Le Cellier du Roi, serves delicacies such as oyster ravioli, pistachio crusted rack of lamb, and lobster with black truffles.

The golf course at Owl’s Head was designed by renowned architect Graham Cooke, and features multifaceted challenges among the water hazards and silica bunkers.

Other vacation destinations in this region that are worth the trip are Mont Orford and Lac-Mégantic. You clearly have a lot of areas to choose from for outdoors activities in Quebec!

Côte-Nord – Manicouagan and Duplessis, Vast Virgin Lands

Limestone Parc-de-la-Minganie
Photo credit: Cédric Lizotte

From the town of Tadoussac to the island of Anticosti, from the Manitou River to the coast of the Saint Lawrence River, the Côte-Nord (North Coast) awaits to be discovered.

The island of Anticosti is a hunting paradise. People from all over the world flock to the secluded, uninhabited island for the most spectacular deer hunting in the world. The rivière Manitou and its grandiose waterfall, on the other hand, are a great stop on the scenic route 138 between Sept-Îles and Havre-Saint-Pierre.

Tadoussac is a beautiful small town with picturesque architecture. It’s also a great spot where you can take a boat trip and indulge in some whale watching. The best way to go see the huge marine mammals, however, is take a tour with the Innu, the Native Americans who have lived in the area for centuries.

The Parc de la Minganie is a national park that features an archipelago of unique limestone islands that have been carved by water and time. Its colours and shapes are simply stunning and the tiny town of Baie-Johan-Beetz is one of the most picturesque on the East Coast of North America.

The above is just a taste. There are so many choices of outdoor activities in Quebec!

Quebec and Charlevoix : Beer and Canyoning

View of the Saint-Lawrence in Baie-Saint-Paul
Photo credit: Cédric Lizotte

The touristic regions of Quebec and Charlevoix include the city of Quebec, but there’s so much to do outside of it! From Baie-Saint-Paul to Île d’Orléans, this part of the province has plenty to offer.

Beer tasting can certainly be included as an outdoor activity, since so many of the craft breweries of the region have wonderful open-air terraces! The must-stops include: the pub Mitan, on Île d’Orléans; the Saint-Pub, in Baie-Saint-Paul; and the Micro des Beaux-Prés, in Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré. All three offer beers brewed in-house.

It might come as a surprise to many Quebec outdoor enthusiasts, but canyoning is also a popular activity in these parts. There are four different canyoning destinations in Charlevoix. If you are in good physical shape and seek challenges, you might want to try it!

Finally, the picturesque town of Baie-Saint-Paul is an ideal location for anyone who’d like to sample the region and want to explore this Quebecois vacation destination.

Gaspésie : Out-of-This-World Fishing

Grilling fish on the beach in Gaspesie
Photo credit: Cédric Lizotte

Clearly, fishing is not the only reason to head to Gaspésie. The world has seen the quaint town of Percé and its scenic views of the iconic rocher. Hiking and camping are head and shoulders above the competition, but the fishing in Gaspésie is difficult to beat and the true gem of the region.

The golfe du Saint-Laurent is where the ocean and the river meet. Saltwater fishing in these parts is a very popular activity. Mackerel is the most sought-after species, not only is it delicious, it’s also an environmentally-friendly choice. Eel and capelin are also in abundance. There are also plenty of opportunities for river fishing, and fishing for salmon in the rivers York, Dartmouth and Saint-Jean is a wonderful Quebecois outdoor activity!

Finally, the scenic views of this part of the province can be taken in from a quaint little inn on the river called Manoir des Sapins. It’s affordable, and the communal atmosphere makes it an ideal stop for couples and families alike.

The comments and contributions expressed are assumed only by the author. The recommendations, intentions or opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Transat AT Inc. or its affiliates. See terms of use of the Air Transat website.

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