Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean is a large region with more than fifty municipalities in its territory which covers almost three times the area of Belgium. Its main urban centers are Saguenay, Alma, Roberval, Saint-Félicien and Dolbeau-Mistassini. These towns and villages are presented on this page by sector. To discover each sector, click on the one you plan to visit:
Around the lake from east to west
A lake that looks like the sea, soft and warm waters for dipping and lots of activities. Producers who are passionate about cheese and beer. Monks who love chocolate. And blueberries by the ton. Lake Saint-Jean is that and more. With 210 km of shores and 42 km of beaches, the lake is a seaside destination to discover from east to west, or vice versa, on two or four wheels.
Saint-Bruno was founded in 1885. Located strategically between Saguenay and Lake Saint-Jean, Saint-Bruno has established an enviable place in the industrial and agricultural sectors throughout the years. Crops of grain cereal, hay, and wheat can be seen for kilometres on end. Milk production is also quite prevalent. The larger dairy farms stand out across the landscape, and the region’s cheese making has an excellent reputation. With their strong spirit of entrepreneurship, the Brunois (residents of Saint-Bruno) have encouraged the creation of numerous businesses and service companies. Today, Saint-Bruno is undergoing a sizeable expansion, becoming a new suburb popular with families who value quality of life above all, but still want to be close to the region’s major city centres.
Hébertville, the first area of Lac-Saint-Jean to be colonized, has preserved its historical heritage. As he traveled the shores of Belle-Rivière, the parish priest Hébert was certainly charmed by this village on the fur trade route. Audio guides for Hébertville’s heritage circuit are available at the welcome desk of Maison du curé. The tourist industry started at the Mont Lac-Vert ski station where downhill skiing, snowboarding, and tubing are offered, in addition to hiking and ATV-ing on marked trails in the fall. Winter is busy with snowmobiling, ice fishing, and snowshoeing. Summer brings cyclists who connect with the Véloroute des Bleuets on the Horst de Kénogami bicycle network. Visit the cheese factories, the church, and the Maison du curé Hébert. Find accommodation in bed and breakfasts, inns, and campgrounds on the lake that also offer kayak and bike rentals.
Hébertville-Station emerged with the arrival of the railroad. The first settlers moved onto the plains to take advantage of the best land in the area. In the course of its history, however, three great fires reduced Hébertville-Station to ashes. Every time, the inhabitants buckled down and gathered the courage to rebuild everything anew. Located near routes 169 and 170, twelve minutes from Alma, Hébertville-Station occupies a strategic position in Lac-Saint-Jean. It’s a friendly place with a lot of fresh local produce thanks to the emphasis on agriculture. When there’s a job to do, the people of Hebertville-Station are proud and they stick together. At the end of February, don’t forget to stop by the Festival des Gaietés hivernales.
The beaches and beautiful sunsets of Saint-Gédéon-de-Grandmont are gifts of nature that are truly a sight to behold. One of the most popular vacation resorts, this municipality will please fans of fine cheese, homemade baked goods, and local microbreweries. Boating, fishing, sailing, kayaking, kitesurfing, beach-going, golfing (18 holes), and camping are part of daily life. Saint-Gédéon has a very busy marina at the mouth of Belle-Rivière. Birdwatchers appreciate Petit Marais (120 hectares), renowed as a great place to observe hundreds of bird species, some of which are extremely rare. The town is also an enjoyable stopover on the Véloroute des Bleuets and offers numerous services for cyclists. In winter, Festival des glaces takes place as well as cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and ice fishing. There are a number of bed and breakfasts and an inn on the lake for those looking to stay the night.
The Innu named this place “meeting point,” and today visitors flock to the area for its many charms. The shore of Lake Saint-Jean is easily accessible via the Le Rigolet recreation and tourism centre, equipped with a parking lot beside the Véloroute des Bleuets bike path, and a 1.5 km nature trail. Camp Musical hosts concerts and features a belvedere overlooking the lake. In the Lac-à-la-Croix area, you can pay a visit to the Centre d’interprétation de l’agriculture et de la ruralité to find out about the area’s agricultural heritage. Amateur geologists will find what they’re looking for at the Cristal du Lac mine. In the plains, the Arboretum de la presqu’île Croft will teach you about trees that are native to the area. The area also boasts a lake scuba diving site and access to a heated public pool. In the summer, head to Maurice Kirouac park at lunch to watch some outdoor shows.
Nestled on the shores of Lake Saint-Jean, at the mouth of the Métabetchouane River, the town of Desbiens has a variety of natural, cultural, and historical attractions. Parc de la caverne Trou de la fée combines caving, dazzling shows, and hiking while the Poste de traite de Desbiens historical centre takes us back to the origins of the first settlements in the region. La Route des Poteaux pays tribute to celebrities from the region along the main street. White sandy beaches invite cyclists to relax as they ride through Desbiens on the Véloroute des Bleuets, while the most adventurous visitors can go rafting at H2O. Don’t miss the Festival Desbiens Extrême and the Festival de l’Iceberg. Winter is perfect for snowmobile enthusiasts and anglers hoping to snag monkfish.
Not far from the Laurentide Park, SaintAndré-du-Lac-Saint-Jean is a charming hamlet intersected by the spectacular Métabetchouane River where you can see the remains of the old pulp and paper mill that burned down in 1901. The village church, with its cubic architecture is surrounded by pretty traditional Québec houses. It’s a perfect place for outdoor adventures. There’s a rest area kiosk, a small cabin for rent, a camp site, and an observation tower at the foot of an amazing waterfall. Shop for local honey, fruit, and vegetables and make use of the convenience store, gas station, restaurant, and quad and snowmobile relay station. The local residents make up a tight-knit community and proud of their roots.
Chambord, a railway hub, is also known as a holiday haven and a service centre. Located at the crossroads of routes 155 and 169, visitors who explore this municipality more thoroughly are rewarded by the connection they find with Lake Saint-Jean. Fishing enthusiasts come to Chambord to catch landlocked salmon and walleye. Others come for its beaches. Cyclists enjoy the lake’s immense size and the vast natural areas along the Véloroute des Bleuets. This specific section of the bike trail was previously next to the road and is now a much safer bike trail. The view from the roadside stop is simply spectacular! The Village historique de Val-Jalbert is located in the Chambord area, which has many accommodations, places to eat, a campground, and a health centre with spa. Every summer, the Festival du Cowboy comes back to town. There is a pump-out station near the visitor information centre.
A small and peaceful community right on the edge of the Lac-Saint-Jean region, Saint-François-de-Sales is part of Domainedu-Roy county. Founded in 1888, it’s located on route 155, just south of Chambord. Its name comes from François de Sales, a 16th century French bishop and theologian. The Salésiens, (residents of the village) offer travellers a full-service campground as well as turnkey camping. The campground has been equipped with a new waterpark for summer, which is accessible daily free of charge. If you’re just passing through, stop awhile at the forest garden and discover a wide variety of edible nordic plants. Delicious wild blueberries abound here and you can pick your own! It's a fun and delicious family activity!
The municipality of Lac-Bouchette was named after Joseph Bouchette, a land surveyor who, in 1828, led an official expedition in the region to open new territories to colonization. He discovered a vast territory of more than 900 sq. km. It was the ideal spot for a place of worship and pilgrimage. In 1907, Father Elzéar Delamarre built a house and a small chapel dedicated to Saint Anthony of Padua. The first pilgrims arrived in 1912. In 1915, another chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes was added. Ten years later, the Capuchins took over the shrine, where they built a monastery in 1948. The Ermitage Saint-Antoine is one of Québec’s five national shrines. All year round, vacationers love to stay at Auberge Éva. And in the centre of town, you will find stores, places to stay, and quality restaurants.
Tourism got started in Roberval in 1888 with the arrival of the railroad and the legendary Hôtel Beemer, a destination for rich fishermen. Since 1955, the city has occupied an important place on the world stage of open-water swimming with the Traversée internationale du lac Saint-Jean, a competition and festival held in late July. In the colder months, the Winter Festival, the Traversée du lac Saint-Jean à vélo, and the Ice Village attract crowds. The marina buildings are a great place to meet up and there is a downtown beach at Pointe-Scott. The Véloroute des Bleuets bike trail goes right through the town where you’ll find all kinds of accommodation and restaurants and, just outside of town, the Mont-Plaisant campground. Don’t miss the Ursuline garden, the Boulangerie Perron, bread making ÉCONOMUSÉE®, and the heritage walking circuit and its architectural treasures.
Nestled along the foothills of the lush Laurentian mountain range that encircles Lake Saint-Jean, Sainte-Hedwidge is a typical village that depends primarily on agriculture and forestry. In this bucolic setting, the Ouiatchouaniche River flows in cascades and whirlpools. The charming white church, tidy homes and luxurious gardens, the lively park, the cross illuminated at night—all of these elements attract visitors looking for peace and fresh air. The vast majority of its backcountry is located within the limits of the ZEC de La Lièvre conservation area and attracts a large number of hunters and anglers. Snowmobilers and quadders can get their fill of the limitless outdoor expanses for rides. Sainte-Hedwidge is a great place to try wilderness canoeing activities. Visitors will find many services, places to eat, and bed and breakfasts to stay in.
The Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean territory was first inhabited by the Pekuakamiulnuatsh (Montagnais), the only Indigenous community in the region that still lives in Mashteuiatsh. Every summer, the hospitality and gathering tradition continues during the Grand rassemblement des Premières Nations of Québec, culminating in a colourful pow-wow. Immerse yourself in the culture at the Carrefour d’Accueil Ilnu or experience the Indigenous way of life by staying in the natural surroundings of the Pekuakamiulnuatsh community. Mashteuiatsh is an ideal location to witness the glorious sunsets of Lake Saint-Jean. Boutiques and galleries carry a variety of traditional and historical items, arts, and handcrafts. You’ll also want to visit the Musée Amérindien de Mashteuiatsh, which tells the history of the Pekuakamiulnuatsh. At the Nikuishkushtakan (welcome centre), when arriving, say “kuei” (Hello!) and when leaving, say “niaut” (Goodbye!).
As your travel the road around Lake Saint-Jean, make a stop at the village of Saint-Prime. Agriculture, forestry, and dairy production and processing have always played a key role in Saint-Prime. La Vieille Fromagerie Perron pays tribute to the past, when there was a dairy farm along every rural road. In those days, Saint-Prime residents became skilled in cheese-making and still produce cheddar that is renowned even in Europe. There’s even a cheese festival held here every August. It’s an energetic community and some high-tech industries have now established themselves in the area. Visitor services include a marina, a boat launch, a free supervised public beach, a campground, and a golf course along Lake Saint-Jean. The Véloroute des Bleuets bike trail also passes through this rural area.
Bordered by 3 rivers, Saint-Félicien has a lot to offer in the way of impressive natural panoramas, especially if you take a walk through Chute-à-Michel Park. Connected to the Véloroute des Bleuets bike trail, it leads to the planetarium, go-kart track, stadium, and car-racing track. From the river bank, watch people raft or kayak down the rapids. Venture out on the water on a paddle board or pedal boat, take to the skies for a scenic flight, and much more! Find great downtown evening entertainment at the Féliscène or discover local history at the Sacré-Coeur Park. The Tobo-Ski site has great mountain biking and in winter, there’s downhill or cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, fatbiking, and tubing. Many snowmobile trails lead to the river, where the Village Boréal awaits you. Try our seasonal local delicacies and don’t miss the Zoo sauvage, a great destination for the whole family.
La Doré is a fishing and hunting paradise with wide open spaces where you can experience the true beauty of nature! The Moulin des Pionniers is a cultural, recreational, and tourist site that brings the history of the logging industry in the area back to life. Go for treks on trails designated for hiking, horseback riding, quadding, snowshoeing, or dog sledding. Take a stroll through the western branch of the SaintMaurice watershed, or near the Petite chute à l’Ours lookout tower, where you can see the power of the Ashuapmushuan River on full display. La Doré also hosts the famous Festival des camionneurs in the summer and the Rallye des loups (snowcross competition) in the winter, where thousands gather to socialize. As a member of the Fédération des Villages-relais du Québec, La Doré provides travellers with all the services they need: restaurants, cottages, and hotels.
In the heart of the vast agricultural plain in northern Lac-Saint-Jean, Normandin is the perfect place for visitors to discover stunning natural surroundings on its ecotourism tours, as well as local products and attractions that truly highlight the entrepreneurial character of the residents. The Chute à l’Ours tourist site, which is now open year-round, is the gateway to the Parc régional des Grandes-Rivières du lac Saint-Jean and provides easy access to the Ashuapmushuan River and its majestic rapids. You can also take in its rural landscapes while biking on the Véloroute des Bleuets. And you won't want to miss the historical Parc du Centenaire, ÉCONOMUSÉE® du Pelletier-Bottier et de la Taxidermie, the Bergerie du Nord, and the Fromagerie La Normandinoise. During winter, the former Grands Jardins site offers trails for hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing as well as an outdoor skating rink.
Go fishing or hunting, enjoy the wildlife, the river, the lakes, the Lac au Foin marsh, and the forest. Pick blueberries, hop in a canoe or kayak, go swimming and have fun on the beach, or go snowmobiling or quadding. The activities Saint-ThomasDidyme has to offer are always related to nature in some way. On the shores of the area’s biggest lake, Centre de villégiature Lac-à-Jim offers campsites, cabins, and a restaurant. But best of all, it boasts a magnificent lake where you can fish landlocked salmon and walleye or go yachting. There are two belvederes with two different views: Portage des Aulnaies looks onto Ashuapmushuan River, while two kilometres away from the village, on the banks of au foin Lake, you can watch waterfowl. At the Portage des Aulnaies and Portage de la Dalle interpretation sites, you can learn about the area’s Indigenous history and logging industry.
Saint-Edmond-les-Plaines has many surprises for those who like to get off the beaten track. With a strong attachment to the history of its pioneering farmers and lumberjacks, the village has several picturesque attractions, especially Héritage Agricole Lac-Saint-Jean, where you can admire hundreds of agricultural implements that showcase our ancestors’ know-how. You can also visit the Vieil Art park where, surrounded by the flower beds, you'll find an exhibit of full-scale models of historic looms and tools. In the village, admire the old Val-Jalbert presbytery, which moved here in 1938. It’s now an inn and restaurant. On June 24, don’t miss the Festival de la Saint-Jean with its two days of activities and all kinds of competitions. The village of Saint-Edmond is also linked to the quad and snowmobile network.
Albanel is located at the starting point of the 45 km Au fil des rivières bike path, which stretches out all the way to Girardville through forests and blueberry fields. It also connects with the Véloroute des Bleuets cycling circuit. From the bike path or Route du Premier, you can reach Mistassini River’s incredible ninth waterfall. In the centre of the village, come and admire the century-old SainteLucie church and visit the Délices du Lac-Saint-Jean ÉCONOMUSÉE®. Enjoy all-season camping in rental cabins. Head over to Association des sportifs to make the best of winter on cross-country ski and snowshoe trails (1493, Route 169).
Girardville: where the road ends, adventure begins. Located in northern Lac-Saint-Jean, the municipality is the gateway to the heart of the boreal forest in all its expansive glory. Set out on a voyage of discovery or an expedition, for a few hours or a few days, and enjoy the wide range of activities Girardville has to offer all year: canoeing, kayaking, hiking, ATVing, wolf watching, dog sledding, fishing, kicksledding, snowmobiling, and snowshoeing. Don’t forget our section of the Véloroute des Bleuets bike path, Au fil des rivières, which runs along rivers, boreal forest, and blueberry fields! Girardville has all the basic amenities you need (grocery, pharmacy, restaurants, gas station and garage, convenience store, etc.) and accommodations to suit any taste: motels, bed and breakfasts, cabins, and camping at Centre plein air Lac-des-Coudes.
In the land of rushing rivers and endless forests, you’ll find the legendary welcome of the “Nord du Lac” all year round. Discover the pastoral charm of Vauvert-sur-le-lacSaint-Jean with its miles of beaches, water sports, a four-star campground, rustic cabins, and a service centre with a restobar, patio, and live entertainment. In winter, the site turns into a snowmobile station (no. 367) where you can also go snowshoeing or cross-country skiing. The Véloroute des Bleuets bike trail goes right through the city and there’s even a downtown campground, Camping des Chutes, right by the spectacular Chute des Pères waterfall. Dolbeau-Mistassini, the world blueberry capital, pays homage to this exquisite wild fruit during the Festival du Bleuet. You can pick them at the blueberry farm and also taste them covered in chocolate at the Chocolaterie des Pères Trappistes.
Northwest of the Lac-Saint-Jean region, a small cluster of homes stands out in the hills. You can easily spot the church spire before you arrive in this peaceful village, just before the wayside cross. Notre-Damede-Lorette is the last stop before the boreal forest. Stop by on Labour Day of any given year and enjoy the Festival du Bûcheron. All year round, visit the heritage site that pays tribute to the logging industry at the Lac-aux-Rats lock and stop by Domaine L’Orée des bois to taste local alcoholic beverages. There are also plenty of quad and snowmobile trails (Relais Notre-Damede-Lorette) as well as snowshoeing and cross-country skiing opportunities. In summer, go for the adventure trails and magnificent beaches. Hunting, fishing and canoe-camping enthusiasts will love the Rivière-aux-Rats recreational area, a controlled wilderness zone recognized for its wild beauty.
This municipality, located on the Péribonka River at the mouth of Lake Saint-Jean, will charm you. With the arrival of warmer weather, the village comes alive to cater to visitors of every stripe. Nature lovers and sports fans will be spoiled by such easy access to the water, to the nearby Véloroute des Bleuets, and to Parc national de la Pointe-Taillon. Highlights of the local culture include the Louis Hémon Museum, where visitors can immerse themselves in the world of famous novel Maria Chapdelaine. Auberge Île du Repos puts on a beautiful concert series that will thrill music-lovers. The area has all the services you need to guarantee a pleasant stay: a marina, a ferry, a convenience store, a campsite, and a recreational equipment rental shop. At Bistr’eau Pub Péribonka, indulge in the tastiest potatoes—a favourite local dish—and enjoy the incredible view.
The municipality of Saint-Augustin was founded as a result of the Lake Saint-Jean colonization boom around 1895, which attracted settlers and farmers. As more and more families moved there, the road network and institutional structures evolved. Saint-Augustin is now spread over 105 sq. km. It’s a good place to live where forestry, transportation, and agriculture play a major role in development, namely thanks to the cranberry and blueberry trade. In winter, the Érablière du Lac Ceinture maple farm turns into a snowmobile lodge, while in June, the Festival de la note en folie attracts a great number of visitors. In town, you’ll find a food market, a hardware store, a mechanic’s shop, a gas station, a hair and beauty salon, and a massage parlour as well as a post office.
Saint-Ludger-de-Milot was founded in 1931, north of Lac-Saint-Jean, between Alex River and Petite Péribonka River. The municipality relies on the holiday season to attract a great many visitors. In August, fans of all things country never miss their chance to take part in the Milot en Rodéo festival. Thanks to its beach, the Saint-Ludger-de-Milot municipal campsite is also a big hit. Beyond its 78 camping spots, there are also a few rustic log cabins to choose from. Fishing fanatics can take advantage of direct access to the ZEC des Passes conservation area, which features 10 rivers and 600 lakes where you can go fishing. With a direct connection to the 236 km-long Passerelle du 49e ATV and snowmobile trail, Saint-Ludger-de-Milot is an all-season paradise in the heart of the boreal forest.
Sainte-Monique-de-Honfleur is surrounded by natural attractions: Péribonka River, Parc national de la Pointe-Taillon, Lake Saint-Jean, and Île du Repos. The municipality has added a few major attractions to the list of suggestions for visitors, which include the panoramic walk overlooking Péribonka River, the Véloroute des Bleuets that travels through town, the marina, and the municipal wharf equipped with a boat launch ramp. The visitor information centre offers accommodations in cabins or at a campground with a pool. Pond fishing and bike rentals are also available. Sainte-Monique also has a variety of bed and breakfasts. Recent upgrades have improved the ATV trails for all seasons.
Saint-Henri-de-Taillon was previously known as “La Pipe” because the pioneers stopped at this location to smoke a pipe and relax. Located along the shores of a true inland sea, the municipality invites guests to sit back, take a beat, and relax. With two major natural attractions—splendid beaches that continue for kilometres on end and Parc national de la Pointe-Taillon—it is a true paradise for swimming, camping, and cycling. Wiggle your toes in the soft sandy beaches of Plage Belley, Plage Wilson, or the national park. Dive and splash around in the warm waters of Lake Saint-Jean. See sunsets that will stay forever etched in your memory at our marina. Bike along a 45 km long cycling network and along the Véloroute des Bleuets for 16 km. At the end of the day, fall asleep to the ebb and flow of the soothing waves… Saint-Henri-deTaillon welcomes you with open arms!
Labrecque Lake has become a refuge for many vacationers, nature enthusiasts, and fans of fishing, water sports, snowmobiling, quadding, hydroplaning, hiking, snowshoeing, and wide open spaces. Cottages were built around this large body of water and vacationers come from all over to enjoy the laid-back environment. Labrecque offers a campground, year-round quad trails, and a snowmobile track at Massif aux trois lacs, out of which 18 km of trails were restored for hiking and snowshoeing around Tommy Lake and Chabot Lake. Several shelters, picnic tables, and benches are available along the trail. In early July, Labrecque holds its country festival with gymkhana competitions, rodeos, and live music. The main services are located in town and there is a pump-out station at the municipal wharf.
Northeast of Lac-Saint-Jean, Lamarche attracts countless tourists eager to discover Tchitogama Lake and the Péribonka River. With its 130 km of waterways, it’s the perfect place for water sports. There are several sandy beaches to choose from, waterfalls, the Tchitogama campsite, and forests teeming with an abundance of game and fish. Did you know the region’s biggest blueberry farm is located in Lamarche? Nature lovers won’t want to miss the hiking trails around Tchitogama lake. The Chutes Blanches and Montagne de la Tour trails can be accessed from the lake. The Centre plein-air Mont-Vilian, located on the site of the former Abitibi-Price sawmill, is an all-season tourist resort for discovering the land’s natural beauty. In wintertime, it’s where snowmobilers meet to enjoy the plentiful snow.
The dynamic community of L’Ascension-de-Notre-Seigneur relies on the agroforestry, industrial, and commercial sectors, in addition to services and known tourist attractions. Its vast territory is mainly bordered by northern Alma and Péribonka River. The horticultural company Jardin Scullion is worth a visit with its bountiful flower gardens, games for children, and boreal forest. Water sport enthusiasts can use the boat launch to navigate up the river to the Péribonka IV dam over a distance of almost 100 kilometres. For snowmobile and quad lovers, it’s a destination of choice with its restaurant and snowmobile/ATV track. The L’Ascension en Fête festival takes place in mid-August and the winter carnival in mid-February. There is a campground and a pump-out station on 4th Avenue (near the municipal garage).
Near Lac-Saint-Jean, the small municipality of Saint-Nazaire is truly of its time. Stroll throug the Boréal neighbourhood and you'll understand why. This eco-neighbourhood with a Scandinavian look contains many green spaces. Of all the things to see and do there, don’t miss the Base plein air de Saint-Nazaire campsite, a snowmobile lodge in the winter, and l’Orée des Champs, a booming agricultural business with country-style dining and a sheep farm. L’Orée des Champs even does takeout if you want to take some home with you. In mid-February, don’t miss the Fest’hiver, and look forward to mid-August to enjoy the L.M. Country festival.
Dubbed the “hospitality city,” Alma is located at the intersection of major roads, cycling routes, rivers, and Lake Saint-Jean. The Odyssée des Bâtisseurs museum reflects the city’s industrial history and the major role played by water in its development. At the nerve centre of the Véloroute des Bleuets bike trail, you’ll find an information kiosk, free parking for “Le Maligneau,” the ferry boat which takes cyclists across the Grande Décharge, access to the urban bike trail network, and one of five public Wi-Fi zones. The Dam-en-Terre resort has a beach, campground, summer theatre, and lake cruises. Many festivities are held year-round, including the popular Festival des bières in July, which highlights the fine quality of the three local micro-breweries. Art lovers will appreciate the local public art circuit. The city is certified “5 Fleurons du Québec.”
The urban spree
Cultural and trendy, Saguenay vibrates to the rhythm of all the pleasures in a concentrated formula. While festival-goers invade the city, shopping enthusiasts and nature epicureans take the best addresses by storm.
In addition to getting your fill of the pleasant cafés and patios along Staint-Dominique Street and strolling through the Carré Davis shops in Arvida, you'll want to visit the Rivière-aux-Sables park and the Centre d’histoire Sir-William-Price Heritage and Memorial Park. Cyclists can enjoy the 120 km bike path, including the Horst de Kénogami section (45 km), which connects the Véloroute des Bleuets and Véloroute du Fjord du Saguenay cycling circuits. Hikers can choose between the Sentiers du Saguenay (14 km) and Centre touristique du Lac-Kénogami (45 km) trails. Snowmobile fans will find quality tracks heading towards the Monts-Valin mountains. In the winter, the Saguenay en Neige festival displays its dazzling snow sculptures. Jonquière offers a wide range of fine dining and popular restaurants in addition to various accommodations and campsites, not to mention the splendid Lake Kénogami.
There's so much to see in the Chicoutimi district and its surrounding areas. In March, the international short film festival, REGARD, features cinema’s short masterpieces. In the spring, the Jazz and Blues Festival plays host to international artists. During the summer, feel the beat of Festival International des Rythmes du Monde. Many popular events take place right downtown, including Festival des Bières du Monde and Festival des vins de Saguenay, both of which attract crowds of beer and wine connoisseurs. Visit the historic site of La Pulperie de Chicoutimi and its regional Museum for an enriching experience. Nearby is the historic Bassin area, home to the famous Petite Maison Blanche (little white house) that withstood the great flood in 1996. And if you're looking for a great place for a family outhing, Parc Mille Lieux de la Colline is the place to be!
On the shores of the Saguenay Fjord, downtown La Baie is a prized commercial and tourist destination. The many thriving small businesses and artists and makers who live there make it a festive place to be all year round. The theatrical extravaganza, La Fabuleuse, has been running for 30 years now and tells the story of the region. Traditional music takes over in August with the Grandes Veillées festival. The port area, where international cruise ships dock, attracts thousands of tourists. The Véloroute du Fjord du Saguenay, a bike trail, runs through the port village as far as the Musée du Fjord, where you can discover the natural and historical heritage of the region. In winter, on the frozen fjord, 1,200 cabins are erected to create an ice-fishing haven. Also there’s downhill and cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and kitesurfing.
In the heart of Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean, halfway between Saguenay and Alma, the municipality of Larouche is brimming with lakes and rivers and enjoys easy access to the Saguenay River and Lake Kénogami. Founded in 1895, the city is nonetheless resolutely modern, as its slogan suggests: L’avenir s’imagine ici (A place to envision the future). You’ll find an industrial park— accessible by highway and railroad—and many housing developments that, year after year, bring new residents to Larouche. Here, we’re proud to draw inspiration from the land—88 square kilometres of natural beauty—that provides us with an exceptional quality of life surrounded by nature. Larouche also has quick access to quite a few snowmobile and ATV trails.
This picturesque hamlet sprung up during the construction of the Chute-à-Caron dam when it was rebuilt on higher ground in 1915. A handful of quaint homes form the Place des Ormes heritage complex, nestled between the small church built in 1915 and the surrounding fields with views of Saguenay River. Saint-Charles-de-Bourget has a wharf and (free) boat launch ramp for easy access to the river, with a rest area, overnight campground, and bathrooms all in close proximity. The church houses a lovely exhibit of paintings by the artist Linda-Pierre Bélanger. In the surrounding area, the Marais du Lac Duclos marsh (at the intersection of rang 3 and route Racine) is an ideal location for birdwatching. An interpretation trail will bring hikers to a rocky plateau with magnificent views and a natural terrace overlooking marshland.
In 1870, the settlers of Saint-Ambroise were attracted by the quality of the farmland. Even today, the potato fields seem to stretch out to the foothills of the Monts-Valin mountain range and the blueberry and canola fields are proof that the land is still fertile and ideal for growing crops. The many lakes have attracted vacationers, and the municipality offers a multitude of services. Quad and snowmobile trails criss-cross the area, and a bike trail allows cycling enthusiasts to ride through the town, which is equipped with recreational and cultural amenities, in addition to a dynamic commercial sector. In the backcountry, discover the hiking trail of the powerful Gagnon falls. In mid-August, the Festival de la chanson de Saint-Ambroise has entertained people of all ages. Camping, live performances, camping services, and pump-out stations are available.
Bégin is a village located off the road that connects the northern sector of the Chicoutimi district to Lac-Saint-Jean. Located beside Saint-Ambroise, Bégin is a friendly and hardworking municipality. It boasts a recreational centre with one-ofa-kind amenities. Club Perce-Neige is the perfect place for all kinds of family fun, no matter the season. There are around 30 kilometres of marked and well-kept trails for hiking, snowshoeing, and cross-country skiing. On your way, you might stumble upon some sculptures of animals and other critters, along with a suspension bridge and belvederes where you can take a break and have a picnic. The quad and winter snowmobile trails make Club Perce-Neige a year-round stop. Bégin also offers a lush nine-hole golf course near a campground with services including a pump-out station and propane.
What to do in Bégin
The economy of this village is based on forestry and recreational tourist activities. A popular holiday destination, Saint-Davidde-Falardeau has over 1,000 cottages, including nearly 600 located in the alpine village at Le Valinouët ski station. Fans of sledding, snowshoeing, dogsledding, and snowmobiling love the impressive snow cover on Monts-Valin, an area that offers many options for quality accommodations (inns, bed and breakfasts, and cabins), places to eat, a Nordic spa, and a variety of services (snowmobile rental, long-term parking, and food supplies). An elaborate snowshoeing circuit has been created in the Valinouët sector. At the Zoo de Falardeau, visitors can observe young animals. A few kilometres from this centre, a family-friendly hiking trail criss-crosses the area and continues along Shipshaw River to the spectacular Chute-aux-Galets site.
At the foot of the Monts-Valin peaks, 10 minutes away from Saguenay, the city of Saint-Honoré has a variety of facilities and services that support its vibrant and diverse economy. The Microbrasserie Saint-Honoré is a mandatory stop to try some locally produced craft beers. You’ll also find excellent products from the Boreal region in the city’s deli. The Niobec mine—the only niobium mine in North America—is in Saint-Honoré. Located halfway between Tadoussac and Saint-Félicien, Saint-Honoré is the perfect home base for tourists wishing to take advantage of its hiking trails, inns, bed & breakfasts, and campgrounds. Its airport (CYRC) can also accommodate air tourism. Saint-Honoré has direct and easy access to nearby ZEC conservation areas for fishing and vacationing—on top of being connected to the central snowmobile and ATV trail.
Playful and Pohotgenic
Did you know that the shores of the Saguenay Fjord are home to some of the most beautiful villages in Quebec? It is even one of the few fjords in North America whose shores are inhabited. Cruisers and kayaking or sailing enthusiasts borrow it on the surface of the water, others will travel its peaks on foot or by bike.
Ferland-et-Boilleau was founded in 1978 when the municipalities of Ferland and Boilleau merged. The peaceful village stretches over dozens of kilometres along the breathtaking Route 381. Its growth has been fuelled by the forest industry since 1890, an industry that is still providing the livelihood of Ferboilliens (local inhabitants) today. Residents love the town's spectacular natural setting between Saguenay and Charlevoix, in a region of high mountains and picturesque lakes. The municipality offers two campgrounds, one without services at Grand lac Ha! Ha!, and the other one with services and cabin rentals at Petit lac Ha! Ha!. Sea kayaking, canoeing, hiking, fishing, and snowshoeing are available. The covered bridge of Lac Ha! Ha! can be seen from Route 381. The rest stop belvedere overlooking Montagne Dufour provides a magnificent view of the landscape.
During the summer, the population of Saint-Félix-d’Otis nearly triples with all the tourists. In this immense area south of the Saguenay Fjord, there are 189 lakes for anglers and fans of water sports to enjoy. Those interested in hunting, snowshoeing, hiking, snowmobiling, and quadding will find everything they’re looking for in the woodland areas. At the heart of the action, Lac Otis remains a major destination close to the town of Saguenay. The only public beach in the area is at the municipal campsite. Saint-Félix-d’Otis is a beautiful and charming village that has seduced some of the greatest Québec and foreign filmmakers. Site de la Nouvelle-France is established in l’Anse-à-la-Croix, where the Saguenay Fjord and Baie des Ha! Ha! meet, with a major historical attraction that recreates Québec City in the 17th century.
At the entrance to Parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay and to the breathtaking natural sites of Baie-Éternité and Cap-Trinité, the municipality of Rivière-Éternité has been charming cruise passengers and artists for over two centuries. Visitors are spellbound by the area's beauty, and outdoor enthusiasts come from all over for the camping, fishing, hiking, sea kayaking, climbing, and via ferrata. The statue of Notre-Dame-du-Saguenay is a national monument. The long walking circuit of Notre-Dame-Kapatakan, a 215 km “mini Compostela,“ starts at Rivière-Éternité. In winter, visitors can go ice fishing, hiking, skiing, snowshoeing, and snowmobiling. Visit Parc des Artistes to admire the giant nativity scene in the centre of town. A contemporary art symposium is held in October. Accommodations are available at bed and breakfasts, inns, and campgrounds.
L’Anse-Saint-Jean is a “Village-relais” located on the shores of the Saguenay Fjord. Come for the wide variety of outdoor activities and great places to stay. Climb up to the belvedere of Anse-de-Tabatière for a great view of the fjord, then head back down and explore it by sailboat, motor boat, kayak, or ferry. You can go hiking, bike riding, mountain biking, fishing, and horseback riding, or stop in to view the painting symposium in the fall. The village is full of architectural treasures including a covered bridge and period houses. The Mont-Édouard ski station has downhill, high altitude, and cross-country skiing as well as tubing and snowshoeing. Édouard-lesBains also has a beautiful and relaxing Nordic spa. The whole area is a playground for snowmobiling, dog-sledding, and ice fishing. There’s also a wide variety of shops.
With its spectacular view of sunsets over the fjord, the quay is the perfect place to appreciate the beauty of the Saguenay. At l’Anse-Saint-Étienne, you can spot belugas in an enchanting setting and hikers will find lots of trails that are accessible year-round. Adventurous visitors can go salmon fishing, sea kayaking, and sailing in the summer and hunting in the fall. In winter, guests can go snowshoeing, skiiling, or snowmobiling, leaving their mark on the immaculate white landscape. In the fall, the painting symposium celebrates the autumn colours. Craftspeople and farmers sell a variety of local products and there are plenty of inns, bed and breakfasts, and charming cottages to curl up in after a busy day.
Saint-Fulgence has a rich natural environment and a few unusual features. A recognized “Village-relais,” it offers ecotourism, agritourism, and culture. Be sure to see a play put on by La maison coupée en deux summer theatre, whose stage is the cross-section of a house! L’Anse aux Foins has a sandbar that marks the beginning of the Saguenay Fjord. Many anglers and kitesurfers are drawn to this location. Saint‑Fulgence’s tidal flats are a paradise for birdwatchers. Parc Aventures Cap Jaseux welcomes lovers of the great outdoors, kayakers, anglers, and campers. Families enjoy its non-traditional accommodations, via ferrata course, and Fjord High Ropes Treetop Adventures. Saint-Fulgence is the gateway to Parc national des Monts-Valin and the ZEC Martin-Valin–outdoor adventure site.
Known as “the pearl of the fjord,” Sainte-Rose-du-Nord is a member of the Association des plus beaux villages du Québec. Located in a charming valley on the north shore of the Saguenay Fjord, Sainte-Rose-du-Nord is reached by a winding road, lined with woodlands and majestic mountains.The village of 440 inhabitants was formerly known as “La Descente-des-Femmes.” A historic anecdote tells of Indigenous women who travelled to the towering cliffs overlooking the river to await the return of the men on fishing expeditions. They would slide down the banks instead of taking the winding paths to reach their loved ones. Sainte-Rose-du-Nord is the perfect hamlet for artisans and tourists. The location’s panoramic splendour attracts many photographers, painters, and nature lovers in every season. Many boats dock at the wharf in summer, and ice fishing brings anglers out in winter.
Sacré-Cœur-sur-le-Fjord-du-Saguenay is an ecotourism destination waiting to be discovered with its natural attractions and a multitude of activities. Located at the heart of the biodiversity valley, it’s the home of Centre d’interprétation du béluga in the Baie Sainte-Marguerite area, the starting point of short and long hiking trails. Visitors can look for belugas at the belvedere with a naturalist guide from Parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay. There are so many activities to try: sea kayaking, cruising on the fjord, horseback riding, quadding and snowmobiling, riding along the bike trail, black bear watching in the forest, and watching Atlantic salmon being caught in Saint-Marguerite River. Enjoy farm stays and family activities. The detour to the L’Anse-de-Roche wharf will give you a view of the fjord at its best. A wide variety of accommodations are offered at Sacré-Cœur.
Tadoussac is famous for its whale watching. Aboard tour boats or zodiacs, tour guides will tell you everything about the species of marine mammals in the St. Lawrence River. Climb the dunes, one of the best spots in North America to see the migration of more than 80 bird species. Tadoussac has many hiking trails and is also the starting point of the long-distance Fjord trail, operated by the Parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay. History buffs will want to stop by the Chauvin trading post replica and the Petite Chapelle, the oldest religious building in Canada made entirely of wood. Don’t miss Festival de la Chanson, the Happening de peinture, the Festival des oiseaux migrateurs, Biblio‑Plage—the first beach library in Québec—and the local farmer’s market every Saturday of the summer. And let’s not forget sea kayak tours, camping sites, bed & breakfasts, shops, and a variety of restaurants.