Gaspésie is one of those places you visit that you hardly ever forget. I still remember the first time I visited the region. During the summer of 2006, I had a student job that allowed me to visit most of the regions of Quebec. That’s when I discovered Gaspé, Percé and more for the very first time. Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to go back and discover many beautiful places that I will share with you in this article. Don’t forget to write down your favourite places to build your next dream holiday in the region.
This article was created in collaboration with Bonjour Québec and Tourisme Gaspésie as part of my role as Bonjour Québec ambassador.
What to do and see in Gaspésie?
Fill up on art at the Centre d’art Marcel Gagnon in Sainte-Flavie
Located directly at the entrance of Gaspésie, the village of Sainte-Flavie is a sight to behold as soon as you arrive in the region. The first stop I recommend is the Centre d’art Marcel Gagnon. On site, you will find works by several renowned artists, including the most popular and well-known work “Le Grand Rassemblement” by sculptor Marcel Gagnon.
Explore the modern and traditional side of the Jardins de Métis / Reford Gardens
In Grand-Métis, a few minutes drive from Sainte-Flavie, you will find Les Jardins de Métis. It is a fabulous place where you can easily spend a whole day without having done the tour. In fact, I already talked about my experience there in this article. I strongly recommend you to try one of their restaurants, I really enjoyed the culinary offer there.
Hiking at Parc régional du Mont Saint-Joseph
In the Baie des Chaleurs, the perfect place for hiking enthusiasts is the Parc régional du Mont Saint-Joseph. You will find several trails of different levels offering breathtaking views of the region.
Local shopping and homemade pretzels at Chope sur Mer
Are you looking for a place to stock up on good local products during your stay in the Baie des Chaleurs? Look no further than Chope sur Mer. Don’t forget to grab a homemade pretzel before you leave!
Gin tasting at Distillerie des Marigots
A newcomer to the world of spirits in Quebec, Distillerie des Marigots began operations in late 2020. The Caplan-based distillery seems to have figured out how to seduce its clientele: refined and carefully developed products made in a beautiful wooden building that will probably win awards for architecture. Their “seaside gin”, Récif, features 100% Gaspesian flavours and is meant to be enjoyed slowly, like a whisky.
Site historique national de Paspébiac
Did you know that at one time Paspébiac was an economic hub in Quebec? In the 19th century, Paspébiac was one of the largest export ports for dried cod. At the Site historique national de Paspébiac, you can relive some of that history by visiting this open-air museum, which still has several buildings from that era.
Distillery La Société secrète
Gin lovers, you know how difficult (if not impossible) it is to get a product from La Société secrète in the major centres. This is the perfect opportunity to stock up on their famous gin during your holiday in Gaspésie. As a bonus, you can see the production site of their products which is located in a beautiful old white church.
Taking pictures at Mont Saint-Anne to see the Rocher Percé from the best angle
If you like to take pictures like I do when you travel, I recommend you go to Mont-Sainte-Anne in Percé, it’s one of the places with one of the best views of the Rocher Percé. For the more adventurous, you can even go down by zip line!
Where to eat in Gaspésie?
Sunset dinner at the Centre d’art Marcel Gagnon
You followed my recommendation earlier in this article and went to the Centre d’art Marcel Gagnon? Enjoy a good meal at their restaurant. The dining room is completely full of windows and you’ll be treated to a great sunset during your dinner. Seafood lovers, you will be delighted since a large part of the menu includes seafood. I opted for the cocktail shrimps and the delicious Coquille St-Jacques, a pure delight.
Matane shrimp poutine at the Cantine Ste-Flavie
Want to eat the best poutine in Gaspésie? It’s at the Cantine Ste-Flavie. The place has gained in popularity over the years but still offers the same great taste and undeniable quality. The poutine aux crevettes de Matane is without a doubt my favourite dish at the canteen.
Scallop and cod bites at Dixie Lee
Every time I visit the Bas-Saint-Laurent or Gaspésie, I absolutely must visit a Dixie Lee. It’s a fast food chain known for its fried chicken and seafood. Try a scallop snack, you won’t be disappointed!
Buvette Thérèse in Percé: a memorable and gourmet meal
Buvette Thérèse has been open for only a few months and is already getting a lot of buzz. I was very excited to get a table at this restaurant in Percé as I had heard great things about it. My experience was exactly as I expected and even better. A very tempting menu, a full house while maintaining a very intimate atmosphere and impeccable service. I had a great time at the Buvette Thérèse and fell in love with the shrimp plate with Thérèse’s secret cocktail sauce. Book in advance and let yourself be charmed for an evening by the best of Gaspesian hospitality and dining.
The best accommodations in Gaspésie
Le Gaspésiana is a hotel located directly at the gateway of Gaspésie. As most of the rooms have a terrace, you will have access to a superb view on the beach and the St-Lawrence river. Leave the patio door of your room slightly open, as I did, to fall asleep peacefully to the sound of the waves hitting the rocks of the beach.
Géodômes Desjardins at top of Mont Saint-Joseph
Glamping has become increasingly popular in recent years in Quebec and Gaspésie is no exception to the trend. During my most recent visit to the region, I had the opportunity to stay in the superb Géodômes Desjardins du Mont-Saint-Joseph in Carleton. To get there, you drive up a very steep road. When you arrive at the reception pavilion, you are given the option of going to your geodome by all-terrain vehicle or on foot. If you have a lot of luggage to carry, opt for the all-terrain vehicle option, you won’t regret it! Each geodome is fully equipped with everything you need for a comfortable stay: bedding, crockery, induction cooker, etc. There is no shower directly in the accommodation, however, you can shower in the sanitary block located at the reception pavilion. The view over Carleton is breathtaking and the sunrise was simply majestic.
La Ruelle Fourrure Hébergement
As soon as you arrive, you feel that you will have a pleasant stay at La Ruelle. The business was founded a few years ago when Serge and his wife Marie-Josée decided to settle in Saint-Siméon-de-Bonaventure. They began by highlighting Serge’s work as a fur artisan, a trade that today is mainly aimed at recovering and reworking existing furs to make brand new creations with a contemporary look. Lodging was added to the company’s offer in 2017 when they decided to rehabilitate the stable on their land to create two tourist accommodations for short-term rental. If you are planning to spend a good amount of time in the area, this is the ideal place to rent as stays are for a minimum of 7 nights.
Le Riôtel Percé
In my opinion, Riôtel Percé is one of the accomodations with the best view of Rocher Percé. Having stayed at this hotel in the past, I was very happy to see that they have done extensive renovations and updated the rooms. I didn’t get a chance to try their restaurant but I heard great things about it.
Pour plus d’informations à propos de la Gaspésie
Do you have a lot of time on your hands? Take the opportunity to explore the surrounding areas as a complement to your trip in Gaspésie: Bas-Saint-Laurent, Acadian Peninsula of New Brunswick and South Eastern New Brunswick.