The decision to go to Quebec was made for us, one day, when the Globe and Mail travel section landed in Chadd’s lap one Saturday in October. I know this, because I still have the newspaper clipping. He handed me the article, saying, “We have to go here.” I read the beginning, which described a foodie-heaven in a place called Charlevoix. It sounded right up our alley, but inwardly I groaned. Any place that was capable of describing food that good had to be over the pond, at least in France by the sound of it. One word? Expensive, especially when the next trip was supposed to be the family trip.
I kept reading, and was surprised to realize that Charlevoix is in Quebec. Perfect! Oh, so perfect, because I had been nagging to “go east” for our next vacation! (I’d never seen anything past Niagara Falls, and was eager to get somewhere closer to the east coast.) Not too bad either, as the girls would get to practice their French.
Quebec is a very unique province in Canada, mostly due to the fact that the first (and only, at times) language spoken is French. The cultural pride is very strong in Quebec; Quebecers are very proud of their history and heritage, and of their language. That does lead to Quebecers being at times terribly uninformed about the rest of Canada, (the separatist movement had a lot to do with that as well) but as one local optomistically put it, “maybe in a couple generations, maybe there will be change.”
In the meantime, it is a wonderful place to visit; a great place for a family vacation. (And we got used to the hills after a while!) We had a fabulous time in Quebec, visiting the countryside as well as the city. We took a train out to the country, did a hiking trip, visited the local agritourism, took a ferry ride, strolled through Old Quebec, rode in a horse drawn carriage, talked to the locals, and had a day trip to Isle de Orleans. Quebec has no shortage of friendly locals, talented artisans, incredible food, and lovely scenery. A good, good trip all around!