When to visit
- Very Favourable
What to do
- Worth the detour
- Must see
The Saguenay Fjord is an attraction in and of itself: a spectacular glacial valley now occupied by the majestic Saguenay River.
There are so many ways to enjoy its magnificent banks and dizzying cliffs... hiking, sea kayak, sightseeing cruise, sailing...
The Fjord is also home to a number of charming villages just waiting to be discovered.
SAGUENAY FJORD NATIONAL PARK
Season: Daily from late May to mid-October
For over 30 years, Saguenay Fjord National Park has protected and showcased the Saguenay Fjord, unique in Quebec. The park offers awe-inspiring scenery created by the colossal forces of nature.
If you are physically able, don't miss the chance to hike the Sentier de la Statue trail up to the Notre-Dame-du-Saguenay statue, which has been watching over the fjord since 1881 from the top of Cap Trinité in the Baie Éternité sector of the park. The hiking trail leading to the statue is about 7 km round trip (about 3-4 hours) and is rated intermediate to difficult. The view from the top is simply breathtaking.
The charming village of L’Anse-Saint-Jean is a member of the Association of the Most Beautiful Villages of Quebec, and for good reason!
Tucked between the mountains and the Saguenay Fjord, Anse St-Jean offers legendary hospitality and incredible views of the fjord.
It is the only village on the south bank of the fjord.
SEA KAYAKING ON THE FJORD
Season: mid-May to mid-October (mid-June to early September for children aged 3 to 14)
One of the most spectacular ways to explore the dizzying walls of the fjord and observe the belugas who call the fjord their home all year round.
The sea kayak lets you get close and personal with nature, accompanied by an experienced guide. And why not take in a spectacular sunset?
Fjord en kayak :
359 Rue St-Jean-Baptiste, L'Anse-Saint-Jean / 418-272-3024
CRUISE ON THE FJORD
Season: June 1 to early October, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The most comfortable way to capture beautiful photos of the fjord: on board a "bateau-mouche" sightseeing boat.
During this guided cruise, you will learn about the history and legends of the fjord as you explore its majestic capes and impressive cliffs.
Croisières du fjord: Departure from the ticket office on the municipal pier,
355 Rue St-Jean-Baptiste, L'Anse-Saint-Jean / 418-543-7630
Nestled between the capes on the north bank of the Saguenay Fjord, the small village of Sainte-Rose-du-Nord (409 residents), known as "La Descente-des-Femmes" (The Women's Descent) until 1942, hides shyly along the Saguenay fjord in a small grassy valley away from the main highway.
A member of the Association of the Most Beautiful Villages of Quebec, Ste-Rose-du-Nord is surrounded by wooded mountains and capes that give easy access to outstanding panoramas of the fjord and village. An Authentik favourite!
SITE DE LA NOUVELLE-FRANCE
Season: June 20 to August 26, 2018, Tuesday-Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (last admission at 3 p.m.).
Pay a visit to 17th century New France! Discover the Aboriginal and French cultures of the time: colourful characters, guided tours, carefully recreated period buildings, archaeological digs, home-cooked 17th century meals, a patio with a view of the fjord, and much more. Also available 90-minute guided tour. Departures at 9:15, 11:30, 12:30, 1:30 and 3:15.
370 Du Vieux Chemin, Saint-Félix-d'Otis / 418-544-8027
Season: late May to Thanksgiving (2nd Monday in October) each year
Imagine yourself high in the air, on one of five courses that include 73 aerial bridges, winding your way through a majestic pine forest as you admire the beauty of the Saguenay Fjord in all of its splendour far below...
All of the courses, which vary in difficulty, will take you from treetop to treetop in a variety of ways: vines, swings, nets, rope bridges, zip line and much more.
Parc Aventures Cap Jaseux :
250 Ch. de la Pointe-aux-Pins, St-Fulgence / 418-674-9114
Tadoussac is listed as one of the 50 most beautiful bays in the world. It is also the oldest village in Canada. In fact, it celebrated its 400-year anniversary in 2000. But above all, Tadoussac is an internationally-renowned whale watching site. Don't miss it!
Where to eat
- $ Inexpensive
- $$ Moderate
- $$$ Upscale
- $$$$ Fine dining
1- LA CUISINE ($$$)
La Cuisine has a carefully created menu offering a wide range of dishes such as pretzel-crusted salmon fillet, beef tartare, General Tao chicken, seafood risotto and the Black Angus burger, to name just a few. Something for all tastes and appetites! Open Monday-Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. and every evening from 5 p.m.
387-A Rue Racine Est, Saguenay (Chicoutimi) / 418-698-2822
2- OPIA ($$$)
Diners go to Opia for its relaxed atmosphere and for its menu filled with culinary delights such as cassoulet with duck confit, ox cheek, seafood chowder, Thai shrimp and lamb tajine. A gem to discover. Open Tuesday-Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Tuesday-Saturday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.
865 Rue Victoria, Saguenay (La Baie) / 418-697-6742
3- LE DOYEN (AUBERGE DES 21) ($$$$)
Le Doyen is reputed for its sublime dishes with flavours that hint at the forest and nature, prepared with local gourmet and specialty products. As an added bonus, the elegant dining room offers a superb view of the bay. Open daily from 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
621 Rue Mars, Saguenay (La Baie) / 418-697-2121
4- BISTRO DE L'ANSE ($$)
Bistro de l'Anse, a local favourite, is a certified "Ambassadeur de Saveurs" restaurant, meaning that your meal is prepared from local and regional ingredients. The menu features dishes that are simple and unpretentious, but always tasty. Open mid-May to mid-October from noon to 1 a.m. and in low season from 5 p.m.
319 Rue St-Jean-Baptiste, L’Anse-St-Jean / 418-272-4222
5- AUBERGE LA FJORDELAISE ($$-$$$)
If you find yourself in l'Anse-St-Jean, be sure to stop for dinner at Auberge la Fjordelaise. Your hosts Rita and Denis will be happy to serve you flavourful typical regional cuisine. You will love their game, fish and seafood specialties. Note: as priority is given to guests of the inn, reservations are necessary.
370, rue St-Jean-Baptiste, L'Anse-St-Jean / 418-272-2560
Where to sleep ?
Les Grandes Veillées
Date: August 24 to 26, 2018
Description: 3 days of music and dancing that will have your toes tapping to the rhythm of the Fjord. Beside the main shows, the storytellers are a real crowd favourite as they spin their tall tales, enchanting old and young alike and conjuring up the spirit of a traditional evening of music and storytelling.
In La Baie : www.lesgrandesveillees.com
- Very Favourable