Over the past ten days we have had the opportunity to see and experience some of the great variety that Quebec has to offer, provided from the vantage point of two very different rivers. The mighty St. Lawrence, with its broad and often pastoral views, is perhaps known to many, however the Saguenay, which is deep and fiord-like, we expect is much less familiar. The pictures in this post are from the St. Lawrence only; the pictures from the Saguenay will follow in the next instalment.
Our stops along the way – Sorel, Trois Rivieres, Portneuf, Quebec City, Cap-a-l’Aigle, Grandes Bergeronnes, and tonight, Anse-Saint-Jean – range from large cities to regional centres to very small and out of the way villages. Perhaps because we are cruising on the other side of our county, our boat and port of origin have raised as much curiosity here as anywhere. Despite our poor French language skills (the English we encounter is always better than our French) we are usually able to explain that we haven’t cruised the vessel all the way from B.C. via the Panama Canal, only from Florida. And as has been our experience when travelling in Quebec in the past, everyone has been most friendly and helpful (offers to drive us to the store, or even lend us the car, are typical).
A particular highlight of this part of the trip is that we are travelling through the Saguenay – Saint Lawrence Marine Park, renowned for its biodiversity, particularly the opportunity to observe a wide variety of whales (belugas, minkes, humpbacks, fins and blues) in their natural habitat. We have had both distant and some close up views of belugas, minkes and fins, and hope we`ll be rewarded again before we leave the area.