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12-Day Canadian Autumn

Ship: Seabourn Quest

Departs: Montreal, Quebec - Sep 22, 2020

Arrives: Montreal, Quebec - Oct 4, 2020

Cruise round trip from Montreal to the Saint Lawrence River and Gulf at its most colorful season. Visits to Cap-aux-Meules and Saint Pierre & Miquelon highlight your cruise

Full Itinerary:

Day 0: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

  • SEP 22, 2020
  • DEPARTS 05:00 PM

The City of Montreal is a striking union of old-world charm and new-world attitude. Its name refers to the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city, Mount Royal. The site has been occupied for 4,000 years and was originally home to First Nations people and known as Hochelaga. It began its current life in 1611 as a fur trading post established by the ‘Father of New France’, Samuel de Champlain. With over 4,000,000 inhabitants, today it is the world’s second largest French-speaking city, after Paris.

Day 1: Saint Lawrence River Cruising

  • SEP 23, 2020

The majestic Saint Lawrence River drains the entire Great Lakes Basin from its outflow at Lake Ontario, and remains tidal as far inland as Quebec City. Where it narrows, the banks are decorated with charming villages, which from the ship appear reminiscent of towns along the Seine or the Loire in France. In autumn, the hardwood forests on either shore ignite in extravagant displays of red, gold and orange fall foliage that draws visitors from around the world. In short, the Saint Lawrence has interest and beauty enough to rival any river cruising experience anywhere.

Day 2: Havre-Saint-Pierre, Quebec, Canada

  • SEP 24, 2020
  • ARRIVES 08:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 06:00 PM

Havre-Saint-Pierre (Harbour St. Pierre in English), is a small town of 3,300 inhabitants, situated along Quebec’s North Shore. To the south is Anticosti Island and the great expanse of the Gulf of St. Lawrence. It was settled in 1857 by six Acadian-French families originally from the Îles de la Madeleine. Here they found a land rich in lumber and a sea rich in fish. Today’s inhabitants speak a dialect of Acadian French different from the French spoken in the rest of the Province of Quebec.

Day 3: Cruising Gulf Of St. Lawrence

  • SEP 25, 2020

The broad Gulf of Saint Lawrence funnels imperceptibly from the Atlantic into Canada’s most important river, which remains tidal as far upstream as Quebec City. It is the largest estuary on earth, draining the Great Lakes Basin from the outflow of Lake Ontario some 800 miles inland. At the Gulf end, it is home to a known ten species of whales from giant blue whales to sperm humpback, fin, minke, right whales the small, porcelain-white belugas. Half of Canada’s ten provinces border the Gulf of Saint Lawrence: New Brunswick, Labrador and Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Quebec and Prince Edward Island.

Day 4: L Anse Aux Meadows, Newfoundland, Canada

  • SEP 26, 2020
  • ARRIVES 06:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 05:00 PM

At the tip of Newfoundland’s Great Northern Peninsula is the first known evidence of European presence in the Americas. Over 1,000 years ago, Norse expeditions sailing from Greenland built a small encampment of timber-and-sod buildings. Known as L’Anse aux Meadows, from French ‘bay of the grasslands’, it was rediscovered in 1960 and is one of the most celebrated archaeological sites in North America. It is most noted for its connection to the legendary Vinland colony established by Leif Erikson, and to Norse exploration in the Americas. Prior to 1960, it was believed that Christopher Columbus was the first European to land in America. Now it is accepted that almost 500 years prior, Viking long-ships sailed into the Gulf of St. Lawrence. L’Anse aux Meadows is the farthest known extent of Viking settlement in the New World. In 1978, the remains of its eight sod buildings were declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Day 5-6: St Johns, Newfoundland, Canada

  • SEP 27, 2020 - SEP 28, 2020
  • ARRIVES 01:00 PM
  • DEPARTS 05:00 PM

St John’s, the capital of Newfoundland, is our last port of call. As the ship squeezes through the ‘narrows’ and enters into the inner harbour, the cultural and traditional flavour of the city quickly becomes apparent. The two towers of the Basilica of St. John the Baptist are amongst the tallest buildings on St. John’s skyline. Heritage and culture are an important way of life here and enter into all facets of life. From the height and color of buildings, to a vibrant pub, folk and classical music scene, St. John’s has a style distinct from the rest of Canada. Its steep, hilly terrain is often compared to San Francisco. St. John’s is the oldest settlement in North America, having been discovered by John Cabot in 1497 and appearing on maps as early as 1519. It displays an architecture befitting one of the first British colonial capitals. Seventy-seven percent of the population is of English and Irish origin. Buildings are painted in the same vibrant colors of Greenland albeit, Canadian-style.

Day 7: Saint Pierre And Miquelon

  • SEP 29, 2020
  • ARRIVES 09:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 04:00 PM

The tiny archipelago of St. Pierre et Miquelon is a territorial overseas collectivity of France, just 16 miles from the coast of Newfoundland, but nearly 2,400 miles from continental France. The islands were unoccupied when a Portuguese explorer stumbled on them in 1520. But by the time Jacques Cartier claimed them for France in 1536 they were already being visited by Basque and Breton fisherman exploiting the fertile fishing grounds of the Grand Banks. The intermittent dominion and tenuous but tenacious history of the islands is explained at L’Arche Museum in St. Pierre. Suffice it to say that the British and the French quarreled over and ceded control between themselves for centuries. However the population remains mostly descendants of Basque, Breton and Norman fishermen. They speak a metropolitan, rather than Canadian form of French, and their customs, foodways and personalities are firmly Gallic. Stroll the sloping streets, marveling at the vividly colored houses with bright, contrasting trim. The economy of the islands has traced the roller-coaster path of the fishing industry, with a healthy surge during the American era of Prohibition, when whisky and wine smuggling thrived.

Day 8: Cap-Aux-Meules, Iles De La Madeleine, Quebec, Canada

  • SEP 30, 2020
  • ARRIVES 10:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 06:00 PM

This island in the archipelago in the Gulf of St. Lawrence offers scenic fishing villages and wind- and water-sculpted coastlines of eerie beauty. The church of St. Pierre at Laverniere was constructed from the wreckage of ships that foundered on the offshore shoals. A lighthouse now warns others away.

Day 9: Cruising Gulf Of St. Lawrence

  • OCT 1, 2020

The broad Gulf of Saint Lawrence funnels imperceptibly from the Atlantic into Canada’s most important river, which remains tidal as far upstream as Quebec City. It is the largest estuary on earth, draining the Great Lakes Basin from the outflow of Lake Ontario some 800 miles inland. At the Gulf end, it is home to a known ten species of whales from giant blue whales to sperm humpback, fin, minke, right whales the small, porcelain-white belugas. Half of Canada’s ten provinces border the Gulf of Saint Lawrence: New Brunswick, Labrador and Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Quebec and Prince Edward Island.

Day 10: Quebec City, Quebec, Canada

  • OCT 2, 2020
  • ARRIVES 08:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 11:00 PM

Founded in 1608, Quebec City is the capital of the Canadian province of Quebec and the cradle of French Canadian civilization. With its historic ramparts, churches and Old Town, it is considered one of the most beautiful cities in North America.

Day 11: Trois-Rivieres, Canada

  • OCT 3, 2020
  • ARRIVES 06:00 AM
  • DEPARTS 06:00 PM

The early French outpost in Canada has many historic buildings, including the Ursuline Convent built in 1697. Tour the Old Prison, or visit the Sanctuary of Notre Dame du Cap.

Day 12: Montreal, Quebec, Canada

  • OCT 4, 2020
  • ARRIVES 07:00 AM

The City of Montreal is a striking union of old-world charm and new-world attitude. Its name refers to the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city, Mount Royal. The site has been occupied for 4,000 years and was originally home to First Nations people and known as Hochelaga. It began its current life in 1611 as a fur trading post established by the ‘Father of New France’, Samuel de Champlain. With over 4,000,000 inhabitants, today it is the world’s second largest French-speaking city, after Paris.


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