- If you're looking for a cheap alternative to flying to Europe for your next vacation, consider one of these very Europesque Quebec towns for a road trip from Montreal.
- These towns in Quebec all have the charm and character of Europe, without the big flight price tag.
- Take a look and consider one of these for your next Quebec road trip!
I come today bearing the gift of 11 Quebec towns that are perfect for a road trip from Montreal if you're itching to go to Europe on vacation but maybe don't have the budget.
As much as I am craving a trip to Europe, I just know it's not in the cards. I'm still paying for the last time I spontaneously decided to fly to Prague and then drive to Croatia - so staying put is kinda my only choice right now.
This made me consider the history, culture, architecture and stunning natural landscapes that are abundantly available right here in Quebec. So, I went looking for the oldest towns in Quebec that could potentially give me that taste of the old world, without costing me two months rent.
It turns out that there is a lot of really old town in Quebec... like a lot. Narrowing it down was pretty difficult because this list could easily be 50 towns long no problem.
But, if you do decide to visit one of these towns, the drive could very well be long enough that you could hit a couple of stops along the way.
Yes, the undeniable downside of travelling around Quebec is that it is essentially the size of all of Europe with far less accessible transit. Getting around without a car to some of these places is... well, forget it. But, if you can make a roadie out of it, you should. Otherwise, you could just fly... although getting to Europe might be the same price.
Not all of these towns are two days away, though, some are just outside Montreal! So, take a look at these 11 Quebec towns that will make you think you're in Europe upon arrival.
Where: Cantons de l'Est
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour & 45 min drive
Why you should visit: Stunning homes and neoclassic buildings, like the Haskell Free Library above, which is located smack in the middle of the Quebec/Vermont border.
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour & 55 min drive
Why you should visit: Monasteries, cathedrals and the nearby town of Champlain, one of the oldest settlements in Quebec.
Where: Québec Region
Distance from Montreal: 3-hour drive
Why you should visit: Ok sorry, this is kinda Quebec City, but also better. It is one of the oldest European-founded communities in Canada and makes you feel like you could be on a German river cruise.
Distance from Montreal: 4 hours & 40 min drive
Why you should visit: Just as good as cycling in the Balearic seas of Spain, Notre-Dame-du-Portage has beautiful boardwalks, wildlife reserves, and a Catholic church that was built in 1859.
Distance from Montreal: 4 hours & 15 min drive
Why you should visit: Historic architecture and breathtaking landscapes from the foothills will have you feeling like you're in Austria.
Distance from Montreal: 2 hours & 50 min drive
Why you should visit: Chosen as one of the "Most Beautiful Villages Of Quebec," this small rural town looks out at the Saint-Lawrence and Île d'Orléans, replicating towns on the River Loire in France.
Distance from Montreal: 6 hours & 10 min drive or 1-hour flight
Why you should visit: If you didn't to Iceland before WOW air crash, consider this one hour flight to Tadoussac where you can get a taste of the Nordic life right here in Quebec, complete with whale watching.
Distance from Montreal: 6-hour drive or 1 hour 35 min flight
Why you should visit: Located on the banks of the Saint-Lawrence river, this riverside town feels like it's essentially seaside on one of the British Isles.
Distance from Montreal: 10 hours & 40-minute drive or ~3-hour flight
Why you should visit: A community outside the city of Percé, L'Anse-à-Beaufils looks like a town next to the Cliffs of Moher.
Île du Havre-Aubert
Where: Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine
Distance from Montreal: ~4-hour flight or 2+ day cruise
Why you should visit: These island communities are hard to compare to anywhere else in the world, but you certainly will feel like you're in another world with breathtaking cliffs, rollings hills and historic homes.
Distance from Montreal: 5-hour drive or 1-hour flight
Why you should visit: The Chute Ouiatchouan and surrounding village of Val-Jalbert feel like you're in ancient Bohemia, with stone buildings and beautiful forests.
So, clearly, there's no need to fret when it comes to where your next vacation should be.
Make it an almost-staycation and explore Quebec!