Audley Travel has launched a new sample itinerary for its tailor-made trips to Canada that is perfect for people who want to get off the beaten track and explore a lesser visited region of rural Québec. Highlights of the suggested itinerary include the beautiful scenery on the self-drive route as well as some amazing whale watching opportunities.
The trip starts in Québec City, with time to enjoy a dinner in the historic walled city (the only one in North America) after arrival. Clients then spend a full day in the city, with a walking tour visiting the landmarks and learning about its history.
Clients then drive themselves to Carleton on the shores of Baie des Chaleurs to explore the scenic Gaspé Peninsula, with more than 40 lighthouses lining the shore. On arrival in Percé, guests join a small group for a whale watching tour with an expert marine biologist guide – with 13 different species of whale in the region (including humpback, fin and blue whale) there are lots of chances to see these amazing animals. Audley’s specialists recommend that clients stay three nights in Percé to give them time to explore Rocher Percé, with a cruise taking them right up to this impressive rock, before continuing on to Bonaventure Island National Park to marvel over one of the world’s largest colonies of northern gannets.
Audley’s Canada specialists also recommend taking a day trip to Forillon National Park from Percé. Clients will enjoy scenic views, beautiful beaches and a wide range of walking trails as the national park marks the northern terminus of the International Appalachian Trail. History lovers won’t be disappointed, with a preserved general store that dates back to the 1900s and Fort Peninsula, the only World War Two shore battery in Québec that has been completely preserved and is open to the public.
The trip continues with a drive along the scenic coastal road to Gaspésie National Park – a stunning route with views of the peninsula’s mountains to the left and whales often seen surfacing in the Saint Lawrence to the right. Audley’s specialists say this is not a drive to be rushed – with many historical and unique lighthouses dotted along the shoreline, a day can be well spent exploring them all. The National Park itself is home to some of Québec’s oldest mountains and a thriving moose population. Visitors to the National Park can enjoy walking trails to suit all abilities or, for water lovers, canoes can be rented to explore the pristine lakes.
The penultimate drive takes clients to the small Le Bic National Park. En-route, a popular stop is the Pointe-au-Pere Maritime Historic site which is home to Canada’s second tallest lighthouse, a Cold War submarine and a museum dedicated to the Empress of Ireland, a luxury ocean liner which sunk in 1914.
James Butler, Product Manager for Canada, says: “This is a fantastic area of Canada and we are delighted to be able to introduce it to our clients as a sample itinerary to inspire their travel plans. As with all of Audley’s suggested itineraries, it gives a basis on which our specialists can develop a client’s own personalised trip to Québec, taking into account their interests, tastes and budgets.”
An 11-day tailor-made trip, Québec’s Grand Gaspésie self-drive, costs from £1,995 per person (based on two sharing) and includes flights, car hire, accommodation and excursions. For more information visit audleytravel.com/canada or call 01993 838700.