Depart London Heathrow – 13:00
Arrive Montreal – 15:20
Journey Time – 7 hours 20 minutes
Arrive into Montreal where you will pick up your rental vehicle and drive just 25 minutes to your downtown hotel.
Between a majestic mountain and a sparkling river lies Montréal, whose first settlers came ashore more than 350 years ago and founded what has become one of the world’s most exciting metropolises today.
Canada’s most cosmopolitan city – Montreal, welcomes you. From the amazing underground city centre to the top of the Olympic tower (the world’s tallest leaning tower) with its view of the city, the excitement is everywhere.
Downtown Montréal, is an attraction in itself and everyone’s preferred place to be. Montrealers live and love their centre-ville, where chic boutiques, galleries and trends converge amidst an eclectic architectural medley of soaring skyscrapers, church spires and the Quartier international’s futuristic spaces.
Overnight – Montreal
A day to explore the city and its surroundings, including the Olympic stadium and botanical gardens. Modern shopping areas vie for your attention with the peace of Mount Royal Park with its horse-drawn carriages. Step onto Old Montréal’s cobblestone streets and feel time shift, as every turn reveals a cachet of history, like the breathtaking Notre-Dame Basilica and the silver-domed Bonsecours Market. Still popular since colonial times, Place Jacque-Cartier’s summer spoils include flowered sidewalk cafés, street entertainers and artists. Or how about a boat ride on the Lachine Rapids… or dinner in a sidewalk café?
Overnight – Montreal
Montreal to Quebec City
A jewel of the Laurentian region is La Mauricie National Park, which preserves the best of the Laurentian hills. Canoeing and hiking are good ways to enjoy the park, as are visiting the scenic viewpoints, or relaxing on a lakeshore.
If Montreal is Canada’s most cosmopolitan city, Quebec is its most classical and historical – the first city in America to be named an UNESCO world heritage site.
As you explore the winding side streets, on foot or in a horse-drawn carriage, the romance of the city will enrapture you. It’s the only fortified city in North America, and history comes alive as you stroll through its oldest neighbourhoods and tour its museums and historical sites.
Overnight – Quebec City, QC
You now have a full day to discover Quebec City .Stroll through the old city within the original fortifications; visit the promenade, which gives a magnificent view over the port below, and the Battlefield Park where the future of America as English-speaking was decided. Also on the city’s doorstep lay natural wonders and gorgeous parks, be sure to visit breathtaking Montmorency Falls.
Other sites around the city worth visiting include Place Royale – This famous town plaza is the heart of historic Lower Town and has been an important social centre since the city’s founding. Citadel – Constructed by the Duke of Wellington to fortify the city following the War of 1812, this huge old fort can be toured. Basilique Cathedrale – Notre-Dame-de-Quebec – This famous 17th-century cathedral has been restored several times but still provides visitors with an ambiance of centuries past.
Overnight – Quebec City
Quebec City to Tadoussac
Follow the north shore of the St. Lawrence River through the holiday region of Charlevoix. Travel past the wildly beautiful cliffs of Baie-Des-Rochers and the resident Beluga Whale population of Baie-Sainte-Catherine to Tadoussac, where the first 17th century ”trading post” was established. In the evening you may wish to join a whale-watching tour (Evening tour operates in Summer only) – ask for more details.
Overnight – Tadoussac, QC
Tadoussac to Matane
Follow the coast, which gradually becomes more rugged as the St. Lawrence River valley enters the Gulf, then cross the river by ferry (ferry included). The route gives a dramatic view of the St. Lawrence River wilderness.
Overnight – Matane
Matane to Gaspe
The road curves eastward through spectacular landscapes of sea and mountains. At the easternmost tip of the Gaspé Peninsula you will come to ForillonNational Park. In this breathtaking landscape, discover the various ecosystems of the gulf and the history of its fishers. Forillon also boasts Canada’s tallest lighthouse, in Cap-des-Rosiers. The presence of ten different rock formations, colonies of seabirds and enigmatic arctic-alpine plants give this park its unique character.
Overnight – Gaspe
Gaspe to Bonaventure
Driving further west from village to village and discover Gaspésie’s multicultural mosaic: English Loyalists, Acadians, the Basque, the Irish, Jersey Islanders and Aboriginal peoples along with their vibrant cultures are still present. When Jacques Cartier first visited this region in 1534, the warm summer weather led him to name this area Baie-des-Chaleurs, today considered as one of the most beautiful bays in the world.
Overnight – Bonaventure
Bonaventure to Caraquet
After exploring the magnificent sea and mountain scenery of the Carleton area, you continue along the north shore of the Baie Des Chaleur to Miguasha Provincial Park, where you can search for fossils before continuing to New Brunswick.
Overnight – Caraquet, NB
Caraquet to Shemogue
Kouchibouguac National Park has the warmest ocean water you will encounter on your trip. Lagoons and salt marshes attract seals and large numbers of wild Canada Geese in season. Shediac, with its warm water beaches, is also known as the ”Lobster-Capital” of Canada.
Overnight – Shemogue
Shemogue to Charlottetown
An 8 mile long crossing of Northumberland Strait on the ”Confederation Bridge” (the longest in the world crossing ice-covered water) brings you to Prince Edward Island, with its endless sand beaches, tiny farms, and picturesque country roads (Note: You do not pay a toll to get on to PEI – you pay upon leaving i.e. by Car Ferry tomorrow). Explore Charlottetown today, the capital (and only city on the island) and the birthplace of Confederation. Experience the enthusiasm that surrounded the 1864 Charlottetown Conference where the Fathers of Confederation met for the first time to discuss the possibility of uniting British North America and discover today’s vibrant culture of PEI’s only city.
Overnight – Charlottetown
Charlottetown to Mabou
Ferry to Nova Scotia (not included). River estuaries in this region are rich with fish, and these attract large numbers of Ospreys which can often be seen diving for fish. Cormorant nests can be observed from the roadside. The rolling hills lead to the wilder scenery of Cape Breton Island.
Overnight – Mabou
Mabou to Ingonish
Visitors can take in a morning whale-watching cruise or enjoy the drive around the Cabot Trail, one of east Canada’s most popular scenic drives. Waterfalls and swift running streams can be found near the road, and chances for seeing moose are excellent.
Overnight – Ingonish
Ingonish to Liscomb Mills
A side trip leads to the Fortress of Louisbourg, Canada’s largest National Historic Site, and the strongest French fortress ever built in the Americas. Between June and September, costumed ”animators” live in the fortress, making it come alive as it was in the summer of 1744. Continue back to mainland Nova Scotia and to Liscomb Mills.
Overnight – Liscomb Mills
Liscomb Mills to Halifax
105 miles (then depart for UK)
The “Marine Drive” leads through the forest at the head of the harbours and over low hills. Many excellent ocean views are available from small side roads to the shore. Smoked salmon (they can be taken home), mackerel, and eels can be purchased in the area.
With late flights from Halifax Airport as detailed below you have plenty of time to enjoy your day before returning your rental vehicle at the airport and boarding your flight back to the UK.
Depart Halifax – 23:45
Arrive London Heathrow – 09:35 (Next Day)
Journey time – 5 hours 50 minutes