Canadian Itineraries to Try This Summer or Fall: First Stop, Quebec

Saint-Benoit-du-Lac AbbeyWith new nonstop service from Boston to Calgary and Vancouver, it’s a great time to explore the Canadian Rockies and British Columbia. Closer to home, you can drive from Boston to St. Andrews, New Brunswick or Montreal in less than 6 hours and not have to be tested for COVID coming back into America. We’ve been fortunate to design over 100 Dream Day Itineraries to Canada this past decade and we have many more on the books this summer. It helps that I wrote more travel stories about Canada than any other country outside of America and continue to add to the collection, like this article on the expansion of the Fundy Trail Parkway last September. These are the Canadian destinations ActiveTravels members have loved the most:

Cross over the border from Vermont and the first stop is on the shores of 28-mile-long Lake Memphremagog in Quebec’s Eastern Townships, where an impressive monastery sits high atop the waters. At Saint-Benoit-du-Lac Abbey, some 50 Benedictine monks create homemade cheeses and cider. Head to the store to sample the crumbly blue cheese known as L’Ermite, among Quebec’s most popular. Then it’s on to Montreal, the city of summer festivals, including comedy, jazz, and electronica. Montreal is home to one of the finest botanical gardens in the country and the fascinating Insectarium, which just reopened after a 2-year closure. Walk the cobblestone streets of the Old Quarter to snack on crepes at the outdoor courtyard of Le Jardin Nelson and buy French wares straight out of Paris. Quebec City is a 3-hour drive to the northeast, where you hopefully booked a room at the classic Le Chateau Frontenac, perched high on the hillside above the St. Lawrence Seaway. Walk the narrow streets to sample the patisserie at Paillard and visit the always intriguing Musee de la Civilisation before heading just outside the city to hike or zipline at Montmorency Falls. Most people stop their trip in Quebec City, but you should continue north to stop in the charming town of Baie-Saint-Paul and sea kayak with beluga whales in the Saguenay Fjord.

Sea Kayak with Beluga Whales in Saugenay