Only 40 minutes away from Quebec City is hidden the beautiful Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area. I have always lived in Quebec and have done many hikes in the area, but I had never heard of this place until recently. A few days ago, my boyfriend and I decided to explore the area, and we discovered a hidden hiking gem.
Cap-Tourmente is located near Saint-Joachim, a few kilometers away from the renowned Basilica of Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré. The Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area is a protected site by Environment and Climate Change Canada.
The fees are 6$ for adults, 5$ for students, and free for children under 12 years old. During the summer season, it is open from 8:30 to 5:00. For business hours outside of the summer season, click here. There is an interpretation center with restrooms as well as many picnic areas.
The Cap Tourmente National Wildlife Area offers many hikes for all levels. I enjoyed this place because the trails are not too long, which allows you to discover to do a few of them during your outing. The most popular trails are La Falaise and Les Chutes, which are the ones that we did.
La Falaise is 4,2 km long and is 1h30-2h00 long, depending on your speed. It is very steep, so I was initially discouraged but quickly realized that it was just a part of the trail. Plus, the view is so worth it. The lookout point gives you a fantastic view of l’Ile Orleans, Ile Madame, and the St-Lawrence River.
Les Chutes follows the trail of La Falaise for a while, so it is a great combo to do. Les Chutes is 4,8 km and is 2h long. Les Chutes means waterfalls in French, so there are three waterfalls at the trail’s end. Again, the lookout points on the waterfalls are impressive.
If you do La Falaise and Les Chutes combined, it is a little bit more than 5 km. Both trails are considered level difficult.
Finally, since it is a Wildlife Area, you’ll also get to see various bird species. Indeed, there are more than 180 species of birds in the area and 30 mammal species. I got to see birds that I had never seen before, such as two peregrine falcons.
This is it for this short post about my most recent discovery in Quebec! I hope you enjoyed it and it made you want to discover this place. Of course, what we did is only a sample of what the park offers. There are, in total, 16 different trails, ranging from 0.4 km to 9,2 km, so there is something for everyone!
For more information about the Cap Tourmente National Wildlife area and to plan your visit, click here!
For other unique destinations in Quebec, click here.