Five Best National Parks in Quebec
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If you love exploring the great outdoors, you’ll be blown away by the beauty of Quebec’s wilderness. Known for its open spaces, lush forests, rivers and lakes, Quebec’s national parks offer some of the best outdoor experiences in the country. Whether you’re planning on camping, hiking, or simply looking for a great view, you’ll enjoy discovering one of Quebec’s many national parks.
Quebec is Canada’s largest province as it covers over 1.6 million square kilometers. It has an incredibly diverse geology – from the arctic tundra to the lush boreal and temperate forests. Quebec also shares its border with the United States, Ontario, New Brunswick and Newfoundland.
In this article, we’ll discuss some of the top Quebec national parks. From scuba diving and whale watching in Gaspé’s Forillon National Park to luxury camping in Mauricie’s Laurentian forest, there are so many things to do and to discover.
1. La Mauricie National Park
Explore the Laurentian forest and discover La Mauricie National Park’s sprawling fauna and wildlife. This national park is near Montreal – less than two hours away. It’s about the same distance from Quebec City as well, making this beautiful park easily accessible.
La Mauricie National Park has over 150 lakes and over 90% of its surface is covered by trees. Whether you’re visiting with your significant other, a group of friends or family, you’ll truly enjoy this national gem. Many activities are offered and include canoeing, hiking, swimming, recreational fishing, and trail bicycling. You can also stay overnight at one of the several campsites or Parks Canada accommodations, including the oTENTik tents and cabins.
This national park falls under the purview of the Canadian government. Learn more by visiting the Parks Canada website.
2. Fjord-du-Saguenay National Park
Nature’s incredible force can be witnessed at the Fjord-du-Saguenay National Park. Home to the world’s longest low-altitude fjord (it’s over 100 km-long!), this truly is one of the best national parks in Quebec.
Watch the landscape transform with the daily tides and even catch a glimpse of a majestic white beluga. In addition to offering hiking trails, rustic camping grounds, and sea kayaking, you can also explore the park from an aerial view thanks to the Via Ferrata activity. Using cables and anchor points, climb and walk across one of the three outdoor courses.
The Fjord-du-Saguenay National Park has several lookouts, one of which is accessible by car. For more information, visit the Parks Quebec website (SEPAQ).
3. Bic National Park
The Bas-du-Fleuve region is truly one to be discovered. Home to one of the most breathtaking national parks in Quebec, the Bic covers 33 square kilometers. Approximately half of the surface is water and offers beautiful views of the St. Lawrence River coastline.
Park activities include hiking, walking, cycling, and camping. You can also reach one of the park’s lookouts by car, where you will discover magnificent views of the St. Lawrence estuary.
The park is over 5 hours away from Montreal and 3 hours from Quebec City. Since it’s a little far for a day trip, you can always stay overnight at the Gouverneur hotel in Rimouski. Rimouski is a charming town located on the south shore of the St. Lawrence estuary where you can enjoy fresh seafood and a wide number of outdoor activities.
Learn more about Bic National Park.
4. La Gaspésie National Park
The Gaspésie region of Quebec is known for its beautiful seaside, epic mountain views and a stunning array of wildlife. Home to world-famous Percé Rock and Chaleur Bay, the Gaspésie Peninsula truly is a destination worth visiting.
La Gaspésie National Park is approximately 8 hours away from Montreal. If you want to cross one of the best national parks in Quebec of your list, this one is definitely it. Access is free for children under 17 years old – which is why it’s a great destination for families. Activities include hiking on the Jacques-Cartier and Ernest-Laforce mountains, kayaking, canoeing, paddleboard, and camping.
Interesting fact about La Gaspésie National Park: it was created in 1937 to protect the local caribou and salmon population.
Learn more about La Gaspésie National Park.
5. Forillon National Park
Since Gaspésie is such a beautiful region, we couldn’t resist including the second recommendation in our guide to Quebec’s national parks. Forillon National Park is located on the Gaspé Peninsula, about 10 hours away from Montreal and 8 hours away from Quebec City.
This seaside destination is ideal for those who like to relax and discover amazing plant and wildlife. Forillon National Park offers a wide range of activities, from hiking to walks on the beach, scuba diving, fishing, kite surfing, whale watching and so much more. It also has many dog-friendly trails so you can take your pooch along for the visit too.
Camping is also permitted on the site, and you can rent Parks Canada’s oTENTik tents for a more comfortable experience.
This national park falls under the purview of the Canadian government. Learn more about Forillon National Park.
Plan Your Next Vacation Today
Although there are many more parks that didn’t make our list of 5 Best National Parks in Quebec, it’s easy to see why Quebec is a must-see destination for those who enjoy the great outdoors. Quebec’s national parks offer such a wide array of activities for people of all ages, including families.
If you’re thinking on exploring any of these parks, you can start planning your getaway by visiting the Parks Canada and Parks Quebec (SEPAQ) websites. User-friendly and very practical, they contain all the information you need, including lists of activities, lodging options and itineraries.
Some activities and lodging options are only available during certain seasons, so ensure you verify availabilities beforehand. If you’re planning on camping, you can reserve your spot on either the Parks Canada or Parks Quebec (SEPAQ) websites. We hope you enjoyed reading our Quebec national parks recommendations, and hope you get to experience them soon.