Discover Canada’s French province like an old friend who show you! Quebec, a province where its unique history mixes the Old World with the New, is filled with beautiful parks, mountains, and wilderness. Follow your local guide through magnificent open spaces offering exceptional landscapes of ridges, valleys, glaciers, fjords, rivers, lakes and boreal forests. The Charlevoix region, where majestic massifs dip into the St Lawrence River, will astound you with its unique vegetation. The Grands Jardins Park is covered with taiga forests, trees that are normally only found in the Quebecois Great North. Perhaps we’ll even be able to spot black bears and moose who call this wooded wilderness home. We’ll explore the Jacques-Cartier Valley, winding through the Charlevoix Mountains and the Monts-Valins massif, visiting the Saguenay Fjord. In Tadoussac, is one of the world’s best locations to see 12 different species of whales, like belugas, blue whales, and humpbacks. The forests and lakes also offer home to beavers, dears and black bears.
Your journey will take you to some of the most charming and picturesque villages, famous for their local artists, delicious handcrafted products like cheese and meats, spectacular views, or ancient history. The adventure will be complete with a visit to both Montreal and Quebec City! Quebec City, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is the only fortified settlement in North America. This excursion is a fabulous journey in the heart of the Quebec wilderness, and a chance to be welcomed by the famously warm and friendly Quebecois!
- Hiking Quebec’s National Parks with its wildlife : beavers, moose, black bears, etc.
- Tadoussac, one of the world’s best whale observation location
- Visiting the oldest settlement in North America – Québec city’s old quarters
- Meeting with local artists and local producers
- Taste of local culinary delights
- The warm « Québécois » welcome of your hosts
- The unique variety of accommodations, including 2 nights on a lake shore
Downtown standard hotel ***
Arrive in Montreal and check into your hotel. Free time in the city depending on flight times. RDV with your guide for trip presentation. Free time for dinner. Night at the hotel.
Note: We recommend extending your stay in Montreal to experience the city’s many attractions: Old Montreal, Quartier des Spectacles, the Olympic Stadium, Mont-Royal Park, the Botanical Gardens, and more.
330 km, 3,5hrs
This morning we leave vibrant Montreal for the Quebec wilderness. Our first stop will be Jacques Cartier National Park, one of the most beautiful glacial valleys in the province. We picnic along the river, then begin our first hike. Your guide introduces you to the local fauna and flora on the Coulées Trail. Other shorter and/or easier hikes are possible. We check into the multi-share chalets in the heart of the Laurentides Wildlife Reserve. B, L, D
200 km, 2,5hrs
We continue our journey towards the beautiful Charlevoix region, stopping in the artist’s village Baie-St-Paul. We stroll through its many galleries displaying works inspired by the local landscape, and visit small boutiques selling local products like craft beers, cheeses, chocolates, organic cold meats, and more. We then continue to Grand-Jardins National Park and hike the Arthabasca region in the heart of the park’s oldest boreal forests. This area is undergoing natural regeneration after a devastating fire in 1991. We settle into our multi-share chalets where we will spend the next two nights. B, L, D
30 km, 30 min drive
Today we hike in the heart of Charlevoix, a mountainous region with taiga forest covered peaks, vegetation normally only found much farther north. We reach the top of Mont du Lac des Cygnes, where we can appreciate the mountainous terrain and experience spectacular views of the Saint Lawrence River. It is possible to continue the hike by completing a loop via the Pioui trail. Upon our return, relax at the chalet or near the lake. We take a walk before sunset and hope to see wildlife. B, L, D
150 km, 2hrs drive
This morning we head out for Lac-St-Jean, an enormous lake in the heart of Quebec. We have a short visit in Saguenay where we refill on groceries and continue on toward Monts-Valin National Park. We settle into our multi-share chalets right on the water for the next two nights where you can take some time to relax in Quebec style! B, L, D
Looming at 984 metres high, the Monts-Valin National Park dominates the landscape in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean. We hike the Sommets trail and see the massifs covered in taiga and shrubs. Enjoy the spectacular view of the Saguenay fjord. Another possible hike is the Pic Dubuc trail, climbing to the highest points of the park. We return to the chalets in the afternoon. B, L, D
140 km, 2h drive
This morning we head back down the Mont-Valin massifs as we hit the road towards Tadoussac. We stop along the way to visit Saint-Rose-du-Nord, considered to be one of the Québec’s most beautiful villages. Hike the Saguenay Fjords to Baie-Saint-Marguerite. Possibility for beluga sightings so keep a lookout! We arrive in Tadoussac in the afternoon and visit this ancient trading post, a small village flanked by mountains, the Fjord, and the Saint Lawrence River. Option to hike from Tadoussac to the Fjord’s mouth and the beautiful sand dunes. At the end of the day we check into our comfortable condos in Sacré-Coeur and visit the adjacent farm. B, L, D
50km, 1h drive
Today we visit the Saint Lawrence fauna and flora Interpretation Centre before embarking on our zodiac whale watching excursion this afternoon. The fresh watered fjords collide with the salted estuaries, creating a krill rich environment and an ideal place to go whale watching. Whale sightings could include belugas, blue whales, porpoises, and humpback whales (2h-2h30 depending on the season). Enjoy some free time in Tadoussac to admire the typical red roofed Canadian houses, the pretty chapel, and stroll along the river’s boardwalk. Return to Sacré-Coeur for the night. B, L, D
Downtown standard hotel ** or ***
240 km, 3,5hrs drive
We take a scenic drive back to Quebec City through the Charlevoix countryside and it’s beautiful villages. We arrive in the city for an afternoon of exploration. Perched high above Cap Diamant overlooking the Saint Lawrence River, Quebec City is a pillar in North American history. The Old Town, named a UNESCO historic site in 1985, is the only fortified city in North America. Its famous monuments include the Château Frontenac, the Plaines d’Abraham, the Petit Champlain neighborhood, and more! Enjoy some free time in Quebec and meet up with the group in time for our final dinner (not included). B
Depending on flight times, free time to visit the city. End of tour. B
Note: We recommend extending your stay in Montreal and in Québec city at the end of the tour to fully appreciate what these two beautiful cities have to offer.
Dates & prices
26 July 2020 2780 $CA available
9 August 2020 2780 $CA available
16 August 2020 2780 $CA full
6 September 2020 2780 $CA available
27 September 2020 2780 $CA full
- Accommodation : 2 nights in a standard hotel, 2 nights in comfortable condos, 5 nights in chalets with multiple occupancy and shared facilities
- Transport: 12 passenger’s minibus with trailer for luggages from 8 participants
- Bilingual driver-guide (French-English)
- Meals: 9 breakfasts, 7 picnics and 7 dinners prepared by the guide
- National Parks entrance fees
- Parks & villages visits and orientation tour in cities
- Wildlife viewing with our guide
- Whale Watching excursion (2,5h)
- Cooking equipment to prepare meals in chalets and pic-nics
- Airport meet and greet and transfers
- Optional activities
- Meals in Montreal and Quebec
- Personal expenses
- Flights and travel insurance
Groups are comprised of people from various part of the world, with different nationalities and backgrounds. Bilingual tours are given in both French and English. Some participants may not speak English.
A fluent bilingual (French & English) driver-guide who knows the area will lead the group of 5 to 13 participants. Please note that it is expected of you to actively participate in the daily chores, like the preparation of picnics, the loading and unloading of the minibus with luggage and participating in suggested activities.
Information about activities and hikes
Easy hiking and discovery tour with 1 to 5 hours of walking each day. Hikes are mainly within forests, near a river or small mountains. Summer climate is comfortable, but it can get quite cold at night during the month of September.
There is no suggested physical aptitude needed for this trip, beginner to moderate level hikers and walkers are welcome. However, you should be able to walk for 1 to 5 hours with an average of 0 to 960 meters elevation gain, and enjoy walking
The accommodations on this trip are varied and authentic, many out in the wilderness:
Montreal: 3* standard hotel, located downtown
Laurentides Wildlife Reserve: multi-share chalets (up to 4 people / chalet with 4 single beds located in 2 rooms with shared facilities) no single rooms. Electricity is available. No single rooms available.
Grands Jardins National Park: 1 or 2 chalets in multiple shared occupancy (up to 8 people per chalet with 8 single beds located in 3 rooms with shared facilities). Chalet is powered by propane gas (lighting and cooking). No single rooms available.
Monts-Valin National Park: 1 main chalet (8 people spread out into 4 rooms each with 2 single beds, shared bathroom, kitchen and living room). We add smaller chalets depending on group size, for 2 to 4 people each. Electricity is available. No single options available.
Sacré-Cœur : family style chalet/condo, double and quad rooms, shared bathroom, with or without kitchenette
Quebec: Standard 2-3* hotel, downtown, in double room
Note: chalets are simple, in the middle of nature with few to no people around. These accommodations offered basic service with propane light or electricity, but no wi-fi available! All linens are included.
For all transfers, we use a 12-passenger minibus. The luggage will be transported inside the minibus or inside an enclosed cargo trailer, depending on the number of group members.
Meals in the chalets and condos are all included. These will be prepared by your guide, help from participants is always welcome. For lunch we mostly prepare picnics. Breakfast is generally prepared in a buffet style, dinner cooked hot with local ingredients. All cooking equipment is included. Meals in Montreal and Quebec City are not included. For not included meals, plan on a budget of: 15$-20$ CAD for lunches and 18$-30$ CAD for dinners (tips and alcohol not included in prices).
Quebecois weather experiences four very different seasons. The spring is calm and short and the fall quite colorful. Summer are hot and often humid, while winter is freezing and filled with snow. We operate this itinerary when the temperature is predominantly pleasant, mostly in the summer and fall. Though it’s usually hot during the day over the summer, nights by the water or at higher altitudes are cooler. In May and September it is cooler during the day and fresh at night. At night, September nights can be quite cold. Flies and mosquitoes are present during warmer periods, especially in the forests. Fall colors will appear around mid-september.