It was a little hard to leave Montréal. I had intended to depart a week before I actually did but the pull of the city kept me there. I had made some good friends during my time there and had lots of fun – so in the end I needed to drag myself away in order to continue my journey. I think I could have stayed there for a long time… well probably until it got silly cold.
My time in Montréal continued to be busy and included gay pride parade, an art gallery, a city break camping trip with my friend Carly, an electronic music festival and plenty more partying. It was great to get a little settled after being on the road for so long.
My first gay pride festival
Camping at Mauricie National Park
My next stop after Montréal was Mauricie National Park to decompress after being in the city – a few lake swims did the job nicely! Next was Québec City which did not disappoint as the historical heart of Québec. The highlight of the city is the Citadelle which towers over the rest of city. I had a little wander in the evening and was able to get some great night shots of the city.
Chihuly at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
Following the Saint Lawrence River East which quickly widens into a huge inlet and I had my first taste of the ocean since leaving the West coast over four months ago. I initially followed the North shore route which was a bit of a disappointment except from the Montmorency Falls just outside of Quebec City. So I then took a ferry across the wide river and continued my drive along the South shore which was much more scenic as the road hugs the water. Stopping for lunch at a picnic area I took my first lung full of ocean air and was treated to some casual whale sightings right from my picnic bench!
Quebec City at night
You can’t take your lawn mower up there!
I continued along the coastal road to the Gaspésie and Forillon National Parks for some camping and hiking which was a nice way to set the pace of the East coast part of my trip.
A taste of the ocean… whales included
After having Jim accompany me on my trip and then meeting so many great people during my time in Montréal, being by myself in the van again has required a bit of an adjustment. This also feels like the last chapter of my trip so I have been thinking quite a lot about returning home – which is a bit of an odd thought after being away for so long… much longer than I would have ever thought. I am excited to see what the Maritimes has in store for me, but I must admit I am beginning to feel ready to return home.
My first East coast sunset