Québec is the largest province in Canada.
Located in the country’s eastern region, it is a predominantly French-speaking province. It is a popular tourist attraction destination, owing to its rich history and beautiful landscape. One of its cities, Québec City, is a recognized UNESCO World Heritage Site. Its historic walls and buildings from the 17th and 18th centuries are still intact.
Québec’s beautiful and rich landscape makes it one of the most popular camping destinations in Canada. This article will give you a look into Québec as a camping destination by giving you guides and tips for Camping Québec.
Why Camping Québec?
Camping in Québec is made possible, especially, by its location. Camping grounds can be accessed from whichever direction. This is a fact that has made locals embrace camping in their province. In return, the camping culture has attracted visitors from all corners of the world who are eager to see why the region is such a popular camping destination.
So, why is camping in Québec so popular?
Québec has over 980 campgrounds and over 7,000 camping sites. They are all distributed across national parks, visitor centers, and wildlife reserves.
These camping sites are covered in forest vegetation, which is one of the most attractive things about camping. The forests are so massive making Québec Province home to the grandest forest cover in Canada.
Apart from forest vegetation, the province’s landscape is also characteristic of rolling hills, valleys, mountains, streams, and lakes.
There are over 1 million lakes in Québec alone.
This is another factor that makes camping in Québec popular. Exploring the region is mainly done through canoes because of these lakes.
The forests, valleys, mountains, hills, streams, and lakes make camping fun and exciting. These natural formations make the experience worthwhile because they offer a wide variety of activities for visitors who seek a camping thrill.
Another factor that makes camping here so popular is the wildlife.
The region is home to over 650 animal species and over 300 bird species. Campers have the thrill of seeing these animals as they camp here and go about activities like hiking and boating in the lakes.
Things to do while camping in Québec
Camping in Québec offers a wide range of activities for adults and children. It is an ideal destination for people of all ages.
- Hiking: Hiking is one of the most popular activities you will experience in camping Québec. This is all thanks to the hills, valleys, mountains, and forests in the region. There are over 3,000 trails distributed across the campgrounds.
- These trails are perfect for people of all hiking expertise. If you have children, there are trails ideal for them. If you are a professional hiker, you will also find trails that match your needs. These trails are also ideal for mountain biking and backpacking.
Some of the top hiking areas include:
L’ Acropole Des Draveurs Trail: This is a steep trail that takes visitors to the top of Mont des Erables.
The trail winds through forest vegetation to get you to various peaks of the mountain where you will have a spectacular view of the landscape around you and River Malbaie valley.
This hike is ideal for more experienced hikers.
Wolf Trail 62 Loop via Blanchet: This is a moderate 8 kilometers trail. It is close to Chelsea and features a lake.
The trail is ideal for running, hiking, and snowshoeing. It is moderate enough for young children.
Round Top and Lake Spruce Loop: The trail is in Sutton. It is 7.1 kilometers long. It features a lake and is ideal for children and new hikers since it is moderate.
The Dos d’Orignal Loop: This is a difficult-level trail located close to Sutton. It is ideal for expert hikers and takes three hours to complete. It features a river and is a favorite among hiking lovers and backpackers.
The trail has less traffic compared to other trails. This could be as a result of its elevation.
Other hiking trails include The Wolves Trail, Le Pioui and Mont du Lac des Cygnes Loop, Mont Chauve Trail, and more.
- Wildlife Watching: Québec is home to hundreds of wild animals and birds. You will enjoy watching them around your camping area or during your hikes.
You can also take whale-watching trips in any of the lakes. You will see whales and other sea mammals.
The best time to go camping if you love whales is between May and October.
Whales are migratory and any time after or before this period means the whales will not be around.
- Water Activities: You can enjoy a wide range of outdoor water activities while camping in Québec.
- The lakes are ideal for water activities such as kitesurfing, scuba diving, swimming, kayaking, canoeing, fishing, boating, rafting, sailing, and more.
Swimming is ideal during the summer season. It is a perfect way to cool off the Canadian heat after a long and hot day of hiking.
Some of the lakes where you can enjoy these activities are Meech Lake, Lake Magog, Lac Superieur, Lac Saint-Thomas, and more. Some of these lakes also offer lakeside camping. Rivers include Restigouche River which is ideal for canoeing; Magpie River, which is perfect for river kayaking; the Jacques Cartier River, which is ideal for rafting; and more.
- Horseback Riding: The beautiful trails in Québec Province are also popular horseback riding spots. You can take up a horseback riding camping vacation or simply go on a one-day horseback riding session. Either way, you will enjoy exploring the mountains and forest on a horse.
- Climbing and Mountaineering Activities: You can enjoy climbing and mountaineering activities like rock climbing, canyoning, rappelling, ziplining, and more.
- Winter Activities: Camping in Québec during the winter season is also quite common. Winter is not an excuse not to enjoy the outdoors. You will enjoy activities like ice fishing, winter zip line, ice canoeing, skiing, snowshoeing, and more.
- ATV and Quad Biking
- Mainland ball games like volleyball, football, basketball, and bowling
What’s the best time for Québec Camping?
Each season in Québec has its own advantages that you will enjoy while camping.
During the spring season, the weather is great; not too hot and not too cold. Vegetation thrives during this season and forests look very much alive.
If you love forest camping, this is the best period for you to visit. You will have a great time exploring all outdoor activities.
Summer is hot and humid. You will embrace and appreciate swimming in the lakes and rivers during this season. After a long time spent outdoors in the scorching heat, a dip into the lake will do you some good.
If you enjoy hiking, be warned that you will break so much sweat hiking in summer because of the heat.
Fall is cool. Trees are at the height of their glory. The landscape is covered in color as a result of the multi-colored trees.
Winter is extremely cold and temperatures remain below frozen.
Most camping grounds are closed during this season. But this is also the season for winter activities like skiing, snowshoeing, and more. You can try cabin/cottage camping in campgrounds that are still open.
In a nutshell, the best time for Québec camping is between May and October.
Québec Camping Grounds
Whether you are into RV camping, tent camping, or turnkey camping, you will find something to match your needs in this province.
- RV Camping: RV Camping is very popular in Canada. It is a type of camping that many people have embraced with time. It gives you the freedom to explore and still enjoy your personal comfort even in new places.
There are many campgrounds in Québec, if not all, that offer camping sites for RV campers. Some of them include:
- Camping la Cle des Champs RV Resort
Entry fee: $70 for the regular site, $81 for a regular VIP site, $86 for pull-thru VIP site
Address: 415 Mnt Saint-Claude, Saint-Philippe, QC J0L 2K0
This RV camping site in Québec has its own setup RVs distributed around the site. It is in South Montreal. It is only a 20-minute drive from the United States Border.
It has BBQ grills, a heated swimming pool, and more.
- Québec City KOA
Camping fee: $17 per person for anyone aged above 17 years
Address: 684 Chem. Olivier, Saint-Nicolas, QC G7A 2N6
Québec City KOA is an RV camping site located in Québec City. It is one of the leading campgrounds in the region. It can accommodate RVs up to 65 ft. in length.
Its amenities include electricity, water, wireless internet, showers, laundry areas, and more.
Other RV campgrounds include Camping Du Quai, Royal Papineau, Camping Transit, Aztec Camping Québec, and more.
- Tent Camping: Tent camping is the most common type of camping in the province. It is offered in both public camping sites and private ones. Some people will argue that this is the real form of camping since you are in nature, away from the comfort of things such as electricity, hot showers, the internet, and other comforts.
Some of the campgrounds offering tent camping are:
- Mont-Tremblant National Park
Camping fee: $9 per adult (18+), $81 for an annual pass,
Address: 3824 Chem. du Lac Supérieur, Lac-Supérieur, QC J0T 1P0
It is the second-largest and one of the most popular national parks in Québec. It has over 800 camping sites which include cabins, huts, and yurts.
This camping site has 400 streams and lakes and six rivers.
- La Mauricie National Park
Address: Chem. de Saint-Jean-des-Piles, Shawinigan, QC G0X 2V0
It is located within the Laurentian Mountains and is home to over 150 lakes.
It has beautiful forests that feature hardwoods and conifers. The campsite is open through winter and offers visitors an opportunity to enjoy winter activities such as snowshoeing.
- Turnkey Camping: Turnkey camping is gaining popularity among people who want to get that camping experience without going through the hassle of buying or carrying camping gear or setting up a tent. Turnkey camping uses a ready-to-camp formula.
- Batiscan River Park
Camping fee: $110 to $130 for one adult and four children
Address: 522 Rang des Forges, Sainte-Geneviève-de-Batiscan, QC G0X 2R0
Batiscan River Park is one of the Québec Camping grounds that offer ready-to-camp experiences.
It is a good spot for thrill-seekers and offers a wide variety of activities including, Via Ferrata, kayaking, paddleboarding, fishing, and more.
- Adventure Center Mattawin
Address: 3911 Rte 155, Saint-Roch-de-Mékinac, Québec G0X 2C0
This is a four-season campground that also offers a ready-to-camp experience in Québec.
It offers canoeing, rafting, and more.
Québec Campgrounds are also ideal for visitors who want to experience solo camping, group camping, or family camping, including camping with children.
The region also offers island camping, lakeside camping, and forest camping.
The choice is yours to decide what you want your experience and view to be. But, whatever you choose, you are assured of having the best camping experience here.
Québec Camping in Public Land
Camping on public land is allowed. Visitors are, however, encouraged to use temporary and mobile gear. These are easy to carry after camping.
You should also clean the camping site before leaving. Most of the public camping sites are free to camp.
Every municipality has different rules. You should check out camping requirements for each before setting up a tent on public land.
Some islands in Varennes prohibit camping even where the land is public. Some of them include, Île au Veau, Île au Cochon, Île aux Hérons, Île Sainte-Thérèse, Île aux Vaches, and Île aux Crapauds.
Camping is not allowed in municipal parks and rest areas.
The cost of Camping in Québec
The cost of camping in Québec varies from one campground to the other.
Your choice of camping is one of the cost determinants. For example, tent camping is more expensive than turnkey camping.
The cost of camping is also dependent on the number of people per tent, available amenities and services, the location of your camping site, and other factors.
Overall, camping in this Canadian province is worth every cent you will spend.
– As you looking for Canada’s best places for camping you shouldn’t miss Manitoulin Island Camping, It’s heaven place 🙂
Wednesday 15th of February 2023
Reading your article helped me a lot, but I still had some doubts at the time, could I ask you for advice? Thanks.