Quebec discoveries for group tours
The Receptour team went out in the field this summer 2023. Its goal? To meet existing partners, but also to unearth new gems for your groups in Quebec. From Gaspesie to the Eastern Townships, via Charlevoix, here’s a look back at the authentic experiences your groups will soon be discovering !
Gaspésie, between land and sea with Vanessa and Léna
Why visit Gaspésie ?
Gaspésie is a peninsula in eastern Quebec, bordered by the St. Lawrence estuary, the Gulf of St. Lawrence and Baie des Chaleurs to the south. For the team, the Gaspé Peninsula is an ideal region to visit as a group, as it offers :
- Discover Quebec in a new way, with its typical villages and fishing harbors.
- Enjoy a wide variety of landscapes: inland forests and mountains, coastal valleys, ocean and aquatic activities.
- Get away from the “classic programs” while experiencing Quebec over a vast territory.
“This region is best visited in summer and autumn, to enjoy the fine weather and autumn colors. This is a very seasonal tourist region. Before June and after October, many tourist facilities are closed, so there’s no point in taking travelers there. It’s also vital to understand that the Gaspé Peninsula is a vast territory located 6 hours’ drive from Quebec City. Such a trip naturally entails longer driving times, but it’s well worth the detour! The road is really part of the trip.” Léna and Vanessa
Did you know?
Administratively, the Gaspésie region is linked to the Magdalen Islands. With a surface area of 20,000 km, the region is home to 92,000 inhabitants, making it a far cry from the frenzy of Quebec’s well-known urban centers! The region relies on key activities such as fishing, forestry, marine technologies and tourism.
What products should you recommend to your groups in Gaspésie ?
From June 4 to 9, Léna and Vanessa toured the Gaspé Peninsula and met with no fewer than 25 key suppliers. Here’s a closer look at the top 3 activities they tested on site:
- Paspébiac National Historic Site : The open-air museum of one of the world’s largest cod export ports.
“Not having a specific interest in cod fishing, the visit looked fairly standard, but it was not.This site has been really fascinating. The people who welcome us are descendants of the workers who worked on this port, and they are incredibly kind and helpful. The passion of these guides makes the visit extremely interesting. We’re already offering it to some groups, but I’ll definitely be offering it again after I’ve discovered it for myself.” Léna
- Cap Aventure : Kayak with seals, whale safaris, paddle boards… there’s something for every group!
“A 3-hour kayak trip with a seal colony is memorable ! This activity requires a group with a minimum of physical fitness, but you’re sure to make a lasting impression with such an unusual outing. It was a superb moment with these seals swimming just a few meters from us. What’s more, they have enough kayaks to offer group outings. Sunset trips are also planned, which must be even more magical.” Vaness
- Micmac interpretation site in Gaspeg : A very cultural activity to learn more about the Micmac aboriginal community of Gaspé
“A truly enriching visit with guide Tim, an aboriginal himself, who taught us a great deal about his community. We could spend hours talking to him and learning more. The representation of the traditional village is top-notch and gives us an idea of their way of life. It’s an activity that works very well in a group.” Léna
Charlevoix, the rising star, with Gwendoline
Why visit Charlevoix ?
Charlevoix is a segment of the Capitale-Nationale administrative region, seat of the Quebec government. The municipality is located northeast of Quebec City. For Gwendoline, Charlevoix is best known for..:
- A wide range of cultural, sporting, gastronomic and natural attractions
- Its 2 magnificent SEPAQ parks, a must-see !
- An ideal location just a stone’s throw from Quebec City and on the Whale Route
- A real effort to improve the tourism offering, with new features such as Le Vol de l’oiseau Mécanique and Le petit Train de Charlevoix
“This region truly has a lot to offer. There’s something for everyone in the Charlevoix region: sport, culture, nature, gastronomy… With the charming town of Baie-Saint-Paul at its heart, Charlevoix has all the assets of a great tourist region. Although it’s open and accessible in winter, this period is more suited to FIT customers. I would therefore recommend this region from May to October, to make the most of the surrounding greenery. ” Gwendoline
Did you know?
Microbrewery, mead factory, farms, fishery, cider house, dairy, restaurants… Charlevoix has developed a veritable route of flavors along the St. Lawrence River.
What products should you recommend to your groups in Charlevoix ?
From June 12 to 15, Gwendoline criss-crossed Charlevoix and met with no fewer than 22 key suppliers. Here’s a closer look at the top 3 of our favorite local discoveries :
- Parc des Hautes-Gorges-de-la-Rivière-Malbaie : A must-see Sepaq park
“A wonderful discovery during the fly boat trip to Hautes-Gorges park, a breathtaking view with very informative guided commentaries on the history of the log drivers and the flora and fauna!” Gwendoline
- The Three Duck Inn : Renowned inn-restaurant located in La Malbaie, less than 1 hour from Quebec City
“This inn offers top-quality cuisine in a peaceful country setting, with a view of the St. Lawrence River during our meal. A doe can even be seen crossing the garden at the same time every day, according to the butler.” Gwendoline
- The Bootlegger’s House : Bar – Restaurant with daytime guided tour (from June) taking visitors through secret passages of the house…
“What a pleasant discovery for the whole famtour team, a real bubble out of time, the tour of the building with its various secret passages, making it a very fun and atypical activity. The venue welcomes groups for simple tours, but also for dinners, at the end of which guests are invited to an evening of rock’n’roll. Truly incredible!” Gwendoline
The Eastern Townships, finds by Camille and Alvin
Why visit the Eastern Townships ?
Located east of Montreal and along the border with the United States, the Eastern Townships belong to the administrative region known as Estrie. This region is known for its rural villages, Victorian houses and abundant nature.
Sherbrooke and Magog, its main urban centers, are less than 2 hours from Montreal and less than 3 hours from Quebec City. It’s easy to include a few days/nights in the itineraries between the two cities, for an off-the-beaten-path getaway ! For Camille and Alvin, the region has many assets :
- The region is well-suited to groups, as suppliers are willing to welcome them and retain an intimate charm
- Relatively short distances between points of interest
- Attractive region in both summer and winter, with a preference for summer, around May to October.
- Soft and varied landscapes with a real authenticity and many local producers to discover
“To sum it up in a few words, I’d say: local produce, diversity and off the beaten track. It’s truly an area that’s still not very touristy, with charming little towns, a wide range of gastronomic delights, original activities, an exceptional starry sky, national and regional parks, and much more. A very “nature painting” experience, yet so close to Montreal.” Camille
Did you know?
Throughout the region, there are many producers of local products who present their products and offer tastings. Vignoble le Cep d’Argent and Fromagerie La Station are just two examples, combining discovery and delight for the taste buds.
What products to recommend to your groups in the Eastern Townships ?
From June 19 to 22, Camille and Alvin criss-crossed the region and met with no fewer than 21 key suppliers. Here’s an overview.
- Mont-Mégantic international dark sky reserve : The first of its kind in the world, inaugurated in 2017 !
“With the Astrolabe, it’s possible to better understand the origin of stars, planets, rainbows and other phenomena, but also to take part in astronomy evenings to directly observe the sky. In April 2024, they will be organizing a special event for the Solar Eclipse, which will be directly visible from their site.” Camille
- Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook, its suspension bridge and Foresta Lumina activity
“Foresta Lumina is an immersive, illuminated night-time trail that is both impressive and easy to access. It is renewed every year and adds an unusual and magical touch to the stay of a group or FIT traveler.” Alvin
- Siboire Dépôt restaurant in Sherbrooke: Famous microbrewery since 2007
“Located in a former train station, this renowned microbrewery offers a highly original setting. The restaurant features their famous fish and chips, as well as a production plant for tasty beers.” Alvin
- Espace 4 season : Just a stone’s throw from Mont Orfort, efficient 4-star accommodation with 82 rooms !
“We were lucky enough to stay at Espace 4 saison. With a direct view of the Mont Orford ski slopes, the hotel is in a quiet, restful setting, just a few minutes from downtown Magog. Between the pool, spa, gym, full buffet breakfast, etc., we really enjoyed our experience at this 4-star hotel. We definitely recommend it to groups.“ Camille
Organizing a group trip requires an excellent knowledge of the terrain, which changes every year. Contact the Receptour team to benefit from over 40 years of expertise in organizing group trips to Canada! Contact our team or download our brochure.