When to visit
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According to National Geographic, Kamouraska has "the second most beautiful sunsets in the world after Hawaii".
The name "Kamouraska" comes from an Algonquin word meaning "where rushes grow at the water's edge". In addition to its rich history and architectural heritage, Kamouraska is renowned for the beauty, diversity, harmony and serenity of its landscapes.
The first French settlers arrived around 1692. They built their first church in 1709, two kilometres to the east of where the village now lies, on the site known as the "Berceau de Kamouraska" ("Cradle of Kamouraska"). Their graves can still be seen in the old cemetery.
The village of Kamouraska extends along the south shore of the St. Lawrence Estuary. Numerous houses overlook the river from the top of cliffs with magnificent panoramic views.
Along the coastline, eel nets are staked out across the tidal flats, stretching for several hundreds of metres into the water. For centuries, since before the arrival of the first European settlers, the autumn tide has brought with it a bountiful harvest of migrating eels. To learn more about traditional eel fishing, pay a visit to Gertrude Madore, the first woman to have a commercial fishing permit, at the Site d’interprétation de l’anguille (Eel information centre) located in the village centre.
When you look at the Kamouraska archipelago at high tide, you can easily appreciate the immensity of the St. Lawrence River against the distant backdrop of the Laurentian Mountains to the north. The tide retreats quite far from the shoreline when low, allowing access to some of the Kamouraska islands on foot. But be careful: many an unsuspecting visitor has been caught off-guard by the fast incoming tide! Further to the east, in Saint-André, the Îles Pèlerins can be seen randomly scattered along the horizon.
Picturesque Avenue Morel is lined with traditional homes decorated with dormer windows and arched dripstones, as well as the former Kamouraska courthouse. Built in 1888 in a hybrid style that reflects the unique architecture adopted for prestigious buildings during the era, the courthouse now houses an arts and historical centre. The 1754 Lebel-Langlois house is a few kilometres to the west. The seigneurial domain of Taché House leans comfortably against Cap Taché, just off of highway 132, a few hundred metres from the village exit.
Kamouraska offers a host of activities to enjoy: visit the Musée d'histoire, d'ethnologie et de traditions populaires (Museum of History, Ethnology and Popular Culture), which is housed in an 1851 convent; sample some smoked fish at the eel interpretation centre, Lauzier fishmarket or Ouellet Fisheries; be tempted by the fragrant breads and pastries of Boulangerie Niemand,baked in a charming early 20th century home just north of the church; and revel in the old-world charm of the cafés, bed and breakfasts, and inns.
What more can we say? Kamouraska is a must-see destination and one of the most beautiful villages in Québec!
For more information, visit the Kamouraska tourism website.
Carrefour mondial de l’accordéon
Date: September 1 to 5, 2016
Description: The Carrefour is a charming musical rendez-vous that explores the versatility of the accordion while highlighting its important place in our collective musical heritage. Each edition celebrates a diversity of musical styles, with activities for everyone: outdoor concerts, conferences, exhibits, children's activities, a museum and evening dances.
Festival de l'Oie Blanche
Date: October 6 to 10, 2016
Description: Montmagny, the snow goose capital, invites visitors to celebrate the arrival of 600,000 snow geese in the region. Bird watching, sampling and interpretation, theme-based days (folklore, family), meals with goose recipes and various competitions make this a fun festival for the whole family.
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