In Quebec, we are fortunate enough to be surrounded by vast areas of protected wilderness, each region offering a unique landscape for those who wish to trek out and appreciate the beauty of it all. Hiking through a park is an easy and inexpensive way to get in touch with nature and the great outdoors. Thanks to the work of dedicated park planners, these areas are full of trails ready to amaze you with their breathtaking views. So, here are our top 5 hikes to check out at least once in your life!
1. White Mountain, Saguenay Fjord National Park
A real hidden treasure, this little-travelled trail in the majestic Saguenay region will take you along lakes, rivers, and cliffs before leading you to an incredible panoramic view of the impressive fjord. The last kilometer and a half that crosses a bare ridge offers a 360-degree view of the mountains. And as if that weren’t enough, this 14 km trail offers a good chance of catching a glimpse of a family of moose or a couple of peregrine falcons. Want to discover even more? The 41 km Fjord trail, linking Baie-Sainte-Marguerite to Tadoussac, will awe you with its stunning capes, and exciting seal and beluga whale sightings.
2. Mount Albert, Gaspésie National Park
At an altitude of 1,151 meters, Mount Albert is the highest peak in the province. Part of the incredible
Chic-Choc mountain range, it is located near the small town of Sainte-Anne-des-Monts. Why is it so incredible? Because when you stand on the mountainside, you’ll find it hard to believe that you are in Eastern Canada, especially in winter, when the backcountry skiing areas make their powdery slopes available to you. By snowshoe or on foot, Mount Albert is worth a visit all year round!
3. Pic Champlain, Bic National Park
Located in the Lower St. Lawrence region, the Pic Champlain trail offers the most beautiful view of the St. Lawrence River. The highest point of Bic National Park is only 3 km from the parking lot. Get there at the end of the day to have a front-row seat to the sunset! Looking to explore even more? The Grand Tour is the picturesque extension of this magnificent hike between beaches and bogs.
4. Mont du Lac des Cygnes (Swan Lake Mount), Grands-Jardins National Park
A timeless outdoor classic in Charlevoix, the Mont du Lac des Cygnes, or swan lake mount, may not offer the opportunity to see the ravishing bird whose name it bears, but it will give you the opportunity to see the impact of the meteorite that struck its region up close. If you still haven’t had your fill of wonder after your picnic at the summit, go back by the Pioui trail and count the isolated lakes that dot the horizon. You may even come across a porcupine or little salamander on the way!
5. Mount Andante, Jacques-Cartier National Park
The Scotora trail is the one to take to get you to the peak of Mount Andante, at over 809 m in altitude! It’s a historic trail once used by native peoples and missionaries, and will lead you to an unbelievable view of the Jacques-Cartier Valley. Going in the heart of fall will give you a panorama of coloured foliage that will leave you utterly breathless!