If you’re like me, you’ve probably gone on at least one whale watch in your life. Maybe it was a big tour boat, while at the Jersey shore. But if you are ready to up your game in some serious adventure-quality whale watching, then you need to take a ride to Les Escoumin in Quebec. It’s about a 12 hour drive due north of New York City so a four day weekend, is definitely doable.
Les Escoumin is a little town of about 2000 people located on the St Lawrence River that offers so much for the adventure seeking parent. It’s one of the oldest “high north country” towns on the river. There’s fishing, hiking, mountain biking, camping, scuba diving, kayaking, and blueberry picking, but today we’ll focus on whale watching. In my opinion, whale watching is particularly awesome in Les Escoumin. For starters you can take a ride in a zodiac, the kind you see GreenPeace zipping around in to get between the whaling ships and whales. They are rubber dinghys with a motor and they allow you to get super up close to whole pods of whales. Here’s a good video I found that shows what you can expect. The boat launched from a nearby town.
For your adventure you’ll don an survival suit (The St Lawrence is super cold with Arctic water). Yes, a survival suit. The next thing you’ll do is zip out with the crew to find the whales. There are minkes, blues, beluga, orca, dolphins, and seals. When I went I didn’t know which way to look first. If you really want to get eyeball to eyeball with a whale this is the place.
At LES ÉCUMEURS DU SAINT-LAURENT, the season is from May 30 to early October. Prices at start at $48 Canadian for adults and $38 for kids under 14.
When you are finished with your amazing whale tour, you’ll be happy to know you are in French Canada. And what are the French known for? Food! There are wonderful restaurants, cafes and bakeries in Les Escoumin.To book a room or find out more about Les Escoumin, click here.