Pascal and Valérie spend 18 days on the road in Canada. Here, some of their impressions.
Our trip to Canada started at Frankfurt Airport with a direct flight Frankfurt to Montreal. After picking up our car at the airport, we drove to the city centre to our hotel. Visiting major Canadian cities and open spaces was the goal of our trip. After Montreal our plan was to visit Quebec City, Mont Tremblant, Ottawa, Huntsville and Algonquin Park, Niagara On the Lake, Niagara Falls and Toronto. All in 18 days. Our stay in Montreal began the next day with a visit to the city, the old port and the Notre Dame Basilica of Montreal passing through Chinatown.
The main language of Quebec is an old French. It is a little different from the French we speak in France but understandable after a little adapting. Montreal is the largest French-speaking city in the world after Paris. Montreal is a big, very green city with skyscrapers, the metro and its underground pedestrian network along the St. Lawrence River. After 2 days in Montreal we took the road to Quebec City. After arriving at our hotel near the Chateau Frontenac we visited the old town, its restaurants and typically Canadian houses. The city of Quebec is a fortified city such as Carcassonne, located on a plateau near Sant Laurent. It is a pretty little tourist town with the Petit Champlain district. There are traditional houses and the plain of Abraham, a huge park in the heart of the city where festivals are held all summer long. The Petit Champlain is a very lively district with its shops, restaurants and bars as well as many activities located at the foot of the Chateaux Frontenac. The Petit Champlain is also accessible by the funicular located near the castles.
The second day we took the road to the Montmorency Falls Park. Montmorency Falls are thirty meters higher than Niagara Falls and are can be explored on foot. Stairs give the possibility to observe the different angles of the falls. We had to climb 487 steps to reach the top of the falls. The summit offers a superb view of the falls, the St Lawrence River and far away the city of Quebec. Back in town we met expatriate friends in Quebec. Early the next morning we headed back to Ottawa via Mont-Tremblant. Mont-Tremblant is a small town surrounded by forests and lakes where we had lunch. After lunch we headed back to Ottawa where we arrived late afternoon. Crossing the Ottawa River, we arrived in Ottawa Ontario, which is also the capital of Canada. On Parliament Hill, every night in the summer, a light show tells the story of Canada. The next day, after the changing of the guard near Parliament, we went to see the Canal Rideau which is one of the main attractions of the city with the Canadian Museum of History.
After three days in Ottawa we hit the road towards Huntsville via Algonquin Park. Huntsville is a small town surrounded by lakes with its typical restaurants, boutiques, sports stores, canoe and quad bike rentals. The Algonquin park is a huge park where you pay entrance fees. It is a huge park with its 2400 lakes, more than 2000 bears and has hiking trails. Shops allow you to take small meals to buy souvenirs or to rent all the camping equipment and accessories you may need as well as quad bikes and canoes. On the third day we hit the road for Niagara Falls via the magnificent village of Niagara on the lake. It is a town located near the place where the Niagara River meets Lake Ontario. Very touristic city with its beautiful colonial houses and its hotels. The city is surrounded by plains and vineyards. When we left it was raining cats and dogs. In the late afternoon we arrived at the Hilton hotel opposite the casino. We had a room on the 44th floor with a view of the falls. It was a room with a large panoramic window where you could see the Canadian and American falls. The next day we headed for Toronto. It is one of the main cities and the capital of Ontario with its CN tower and its Blue Jays baseball team. A railway museum is also located in the city centre. 1.5 km from the city centre are also the Toronto Islands which are easily accessible by Water Taxi or Canoe in a few minutes.