Where to go in Quebec?
August 11, 2007 10:57 AM   Subscribe

I've got a couple of days between appointments in Montreal in late August. I could stay in the city but I'm feeling like it could also be nice to get a car and drive somewhere peaceful, interesting, or beautiful where I could relax. Any recommendations?
posted by jasper411 to Travel & Transportation around Quebec, QC (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Do you want to stay somewhere or just drive around? If you mean to stay over, drop by the tourist bureau and get their book of B&Bs - it's a useful resource. There's a bureau around back of the largish building at Peel and Ste-Catherine, facing the square, and another on Place Jacques-Cartier in Old Montreal.

You could go to Quebec City, which is three hours northeast downriver, and stay over there for a night in the old town. It's very different from Montreal – older, more maritime, more colonial, and the old part of town is better preserved. Some decent cafés and restos also, and you can do excursions to see the Ile d'Orléans and the Montmorency waterfall.

You could drive north into the Laurentians and stay in a resort town or just spent a little time walking around in one. They're mostly geared toward skiing so are, I gather, fairly laid back in summer.

Drive east, you get into the Eastern Townships, which some say are more reminiscent of New England. Again, you could stay there in some inn or other. There are lakes, small mountains, etc., all very picturesque.

Are you American? You're not too far from Vermont's Green Mountains, which also have their charm.
posted by zadcat at 11:15 AM on August 11, 2007

To follow up on the suggestion with regards to staying in the Laurentians-- there's a really nice trail system that been built from a 200 km stretch of decommissioned railway tracks. The official name is "Le p'tit Train du Nord" (google for more info). The whole trail is peppered with all sorts of activities in small towns (hiking, biking, canoeing, restaurants, small artisan shops). So its particularly good if you're into the outdoors, but still lots of fun to explore by car. There are a ton of B&Bs along the trail as well, and the couple we've stayed at have always been super friendly.
posted by ThinkNut at 12:51 PM on August 11, 2007

Hotel Sacacomie is gorgeous, on a lake, surrounded by forest, and has incredible food. Roughly 2.5 hrs outside Montreal.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:59 PM on August 11, 2007

The Laurentians are really easy to get to, they start at St Jerome and get good about an hour north of the city, with towns connected by one main highway. Good chance you could get by without a car if you went someplace like Shawbridge or Val David - there are very regular buses from the main downtown station at Berri/de Maisonneuve. Up there you could stay in a B&B or motel and just hike around the lakes and hills.
posted by Flashman at 2:13 PM on August 11, 2007

Hovey Manor in North Hatley. 1.5 hours south into the Eastern Townships. Lovely place, amazing gardens and oldy-worldy feel. Like out of the movie version of The World According To Garp crossed with Great Gatsby. One of the best small hotels in Canada. Steve Stafford owns the place. Walk around Lake Massawipi. Sample the local Brome Lake duck. Antiques, rail trail walks, various little towns, etc.
posted by Mrs Hilksom at 3:14 PM on August 11, 2007

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