Île d’Orléans is a small island just outside of Québec City known for its amazing produce and rich francophone history. All over the island you’ll find little villages and big farms growing some of the best strawberries and blackcurrants in the summer and apples in the autumn. Although not very big there are many great places to discover and it’s an easy day trip only 30 minutes Québec City.
After visiting Québec City a few times in the last several years we decided to go a bit further on our little summer road trip and drive up through the Bas-Saint-Laurent region of Québec. We took the day and drove from Québec City to Grand-Métis where we visited the Jardins du Métis the next day. We made many stops along to way to eat, explore and hike. We really only scratched the surface on what there is to do in this region since we only had the day but here is our road trip through the Bas-Saint-Laurent.
During our Québec City/ Bas-Saint-Laurent road trip this past summer we wanted to spend as much time as possible outside since we wanted to enjoy the nice weather but also because of covid. So we planned to do a hike in Parc national du Bic, one of Québec’s national parks. The park is right on the Saint-Laurent River and really easy to access if you’re travelling through the Bas-Saint-Laurent region. We chose to do Le Grand Tour hike which is 8.7km (about 3 hours) and listed as the most difficult and longest hike in the park. The hike also has unique time restraints since you need to complete it during low tide as it is mostly right along the coastline over the rocks.
With pandemic restrictions starting to loosen up across Canada we decided to take our summer vacation close-ish to home still. Since it’s still not a normal summer we decided just to do a small trip and to try to remain outside as much as possible. What better place to do that than a beautiful garden. I’ve wanted to visit the Jardins de Métis / Reford Gardens in Québec’s Bas-Saint-Laurent region for a long time so we decided to basically plan a little trip around visiting it.
If you’ve visited this blog before you’ll know that I love Prince Edward County, it’s the perfect country escape in Ontario with wineries, breweries and good food galore! Although we have plans to visit at the end of September with family we couldn’t resist doing a little day trip in PEC. We told ourselves it was to scout places to visit with our family but that was really just a lame excuse. On this trip we did make a point of visiting some new places, or at least new to us. So come along for a little review of our day in PEC. I’ll also be updating my full PEC Travel Guide and my PEC Winery Guide in September after our next visit.
While going through some old photos I came across slides that my Grandpa took decades ago in Paris, probably in the 1970s. It made me think about my first trip to France about 10 years ago in 2011. I thought it would be fun to share some of my old photos from the amazing trip around France with my family. It was really a dream trip, 3 weeks around France. We started in Paris and then went north to Giverny, Honfleur and Mont Saint Michel. Then we traveled south to the Loire Valley to see chateaux then to the walled city of Carcassonne and to Provence. There were visited Arles, Nimes, Avignon the Pont du Gard and Orange and continued to Nice for some riviera sunshine. To finish off we head back north to Chartres before flying home from Paris again. It’s always fun looking back on old photos and memories from great travels. I’d love to return to France and see more of this beautiful country.
Prince Edward County is one of Canada’s best (and littlest) wine regions with so much to offer, and only 3 hours from Ottawa. We’ve visited the County 4 times and there is still so much to explore in this great area. Now that I’ve had the chance to try more wineries and breweries, some great restaurants, do some shopping and spend some time just exploring the region I’m ready to share my favourite spots in PEC! You can also check out my complete updated Prince Edward County Winery Guide!
Prince Edward County has now become an annual trip with so much to do and so many lovely places to visit. The region has really exploded in the last 5 years and now there is just so much to do. One of the big draws is all the wineries, there are now over 40! Between my four trip I’ve visited a good number of wineries and vineyards. This guide has my favourites, some other solid places, ones we won’t be back to and ones I hope to go to on my next visit. I’ve also thrown in a cider house, distillery and brewery that are too good to miss. Be sure to check out my complete PEC travel guide too!
Back in the fall we visited beautiful Prince Edward County. It’s one of our favourite places to travel and it was the perfect little getaway during the pandemic where we could easily spend time outdoors and distanced from people. This was our fourth time in PEC (you can see my other posts here!). You can also read my PEC Travel Guide and Winery Guide updated for 2021 with full details on the best places to visit. But here’s a rundown of our lovely weekend in Prince Edward County (better late than never!)
Since I’ve been unable to travel for over a year I’ve enjoyed exploring my own city. Even though I’ve lived in Ottawa my whole life there are areas of the city I’ve never explored and new things that I’ve discovered. One of the fun things I’ve been doing is seeking out public art around the city. Unity by Yasaman Mehrsa is a recent installation on the steps down to the Rideau Canal in between the National Arts Centre and the new Senate of Canada building. This beautiful artwork has a lovely message too. The houses represent humans and the pathways represent nature, but together they symbolize unity. Ottawa has so much to offer and there is so much to explore in this wonderful city, especially at times like these. Now that the weather is getting warmer I can’t wait to get back out exploring.