In Quebec you will find Old World charm and sea mountains

In Quebec you will find Old World charm and sea mountains

The drive to Gaspe is picturesque. This section of the Lawrence River is salty, so seeing beluga whales is not uncommon, nor are snow crabs on the seabed. It is a power of time that has not changed at all since my last visit 20 years ago. Homes with dashed coastline color line.

We stayed at Auberge's festive seaside hall. The bungalows were sprinkled along the sea cliffs and the seafront Tiki Bar held bands until late at night. This inexpensive hostel made us perfect for day trips to Quebec's Parque de la Gaspésie - with outstanding hiking trails and wild natural mountains.

The next morning, we hiked Mont-Albertini at 3776 feet, rising from the valley of the sea to over 2700 vertical feet, just under 4 miles. We were hoping to see the caribou moving around in the area, but we didn't. After the hiking morning, however, we were bathing at the peak under the ideal sky, which has no interesting summit. Rather, the peak is a 13 kilometer square plateau, which is an ideal pasture for caribou.

The next day we headed to the valley below Mont Xalibu and hiked a few miles to a simple Roseline hut. There are no services in the hut, so you need to pack your bedding, stove, water purifier, and everything else you need for a fun time in this rustic shelter.

In the morning we embarked on a 6.6-mile round trip to the summit of the Mont Xalibu tundra. Called Algonquin, the word caribou, or literally "the one who scrapes the land" (as caribou do when they feed on lichens), is an impressive summit that overlooks the vast sea of ​​conifers. & Nbsp; Below the summit is a small mountain lake resting in a circle of glaciers where we would descend. We would enjoy freeze-dried chilli and chat with fellow guests.

The next day we drove back to Quebec under the perfect sky. This time we headed into Frontenac early in the morning, where there was ample time to soak in the pool and enjoy the property. The chateau is imposing. It was located on a hill adjacent to a citadel and was built in 1893. The 610-seat hotel has a Turrets cap. It has hosted honor and political summits, and it was the setting for Alfred Hitchcock's film. & Nbsp; This is a stunning castle, the city's most iconic landmark.

We bubbled through stone arches at a Swiss restaurant called La Grolla. There we baked a certain bread for rich fondue and walked down the streets back to the outdoor music festival. French lyrics bounced out of historic architecture and Parisian-style cafes fired up. The children ran on the streets, obstructing car traffic during the event. Artists created portraits of passers-by. Horse-drawn carriages pulled tourists from us, racing along the historic streets that make up the Old Town.

Belly full, we dropped ourselves off at the chateau for our last night. The glow of the Old Town was sifting through the curtains in our room. The intimate, warm lighting of the streets and the trattorias in the castle cast a peaceful glow on the ceiling.

When Andy fell asleep, he said a few words. “This place is special. Maybe I'm going to university here, Dad. "I said, 'This is a big world, Andy. But when you find a special place, you don't have to let it go.'" There was silence.

Accommodation: Le Chateau Frontenac starting at about $ 450. 1-800-257-7544 (free). Sea Shack www.aubergefestive.com Starting at around $ 26 per person. Note that this is indeed a festive hostel; quieter and more comfortable accommodation can be found in Gite du Mont Albert for around $ 173. 1-800-727-2427 (free).

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