Last fall, I flew to the Gaspé Peninsula to visit the city of Gaspé and its surroundings. Inspired by my discoveries, here are my best places to help you plan your next vacation on the eastern tip of the Gaspé Peninsula.
Gaspé, the largest tourist city in the Gaspé Peninsula
Gaspé, or Gespeg in the Micmac language, means “the end of the land”. Its legendary bay, protected by mountains, salmon rivers, and spectacular Forillon National Park, makes it a true outdoor paradise.
Gaspé also greatly impressed me with its culinary and brewing gems – crabs, lobsters, shrimp galore, local products, craft beers and gin.
The largest city in the Gaspé tourist region is also a unique cultural place, stemming from its cosmopolitan Irish, Jersey, Acadian, French and Micmac origins. We must not forget that everything started here, with Jacques Cartier’s cross planted in 1534, which gave Gaspé the title of the cradle of Canada.
At my destination, it was on board a rented car that I drove solo along a part of the picturesque route 132. This main road of the Gaspé Peninsula runs along the sea and offers breathtaking panoramas. The town of Gaspé is located about 45 minutes from Percé and 2h30 from Bonaventure.
How to go to Gaspé
Il est bien sûr possible de s’y rendre en voiture. Il vous faudra environ 8h de route depuis Québec. Nous vous recommandons alors d’utiliser une carte de crédit adaptée pour l’essence telles :
If you decide to go by air, you can find round-trip tickets with Pascan from $481 CAD from YQB or $843 from YUL with PAL Airlines.
What to see and do in Gaspé
1501, boulevard Forillon, Gaspé
Thirty minutes east of downtown Gaspé, Cap Bon-Ami is part of Forillon National Park. You must go to the North Sector entrance to access it. Cap Bon-Ami offers, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful panoramas in Quebec, with its pebble beach and its splendid waterfall.
Ascent to Mount St. Alban<br>
1501, boulevard Forillon Gaspé
This 5.4 km hike to an observation tower with a 360-degree view is worth the effort, especially since the climb is pretty easy. The Mont Saint-Alban loop starts at the Petit-Gaspé beach.
The many trails include many stops to admire the landscape. Then, they lead to this famous observation tower located at 283 m of altitude, offering an exceptional panorama of the cliffs, the forest landscapes and the sea.
Museum of Gaspésie<br>
80 Bd de Gaspé, Gaspé
The Musée de la Gaspésie is currently offering a brand new exhibition, “At the confluence of worlds”, which benefits from impressive technological means. The exhibition is ideal for the whole family and takes us on a journey through the history of the Gaspé Peninsula, from 380 million years ago to the present day.
Micmac interpretation site of Gespeg,<br>
783 Pointe Navarre Blvd, Gaspé
Between the sea and the mountains, this cultural site offers a dynamic and enriching visit to the traditional way of life of the Mi’kmaq of the 17th century.
There is a reproduction of a camp on site, allowing visitors to plunge into the heart of the Mi’kmaq universe through the four seasons. A charming store sells various art objects made by the Micmacs.
Whale watching cruise (Croisières Baie de Gaspé)<br>
2448 A Bd de Grande Greve, Gaspé
It would be a shame to pass through Gaspé without experiencing the observation of these impressive marine mammals. Aboard the Narwhal lll, a 47-passenger boat, I had the privilege of observing and hearing not only these famous whales but also seals and dolphins.
Here too, you will be treated to spectacular scenery. The duration of the cruise is 2 hours 30 minutes. Dress warmly!
Gaspé-Haldimand bicycle path<br>
8 de la Marina Street, Gaspé
The Gaspé-Haldimand bicycle path is a 10 km (20 km round trip) paved circuit with picnic stops linking the Gaspé tourist information center to Haldimand beach. The trail offers a view of Gaspé Bay and the Forillon Peninsula. If you leave from the intermodal station, the beautiful Haldimand Beach is an excellent reward at the end of the tour.
Cultural Center le Griffon<br>
557 Bd du Griffon, Gaspé
Located in the charming village of L’Anse-au-Griffon, this Cultural Centre is a former cold storage facility on the seafront that includes the Café de l’Anse, an exhibition hall on the second floor and a performance hall that hosts artistic and cultural events.
Lovely stop at the seaside. There are also beautiful trails nearby.
Accommodation in Gaspé
Credit cards for accommodations
Si vous choisissez de séjourner dans un Airbnb ou VRBO, nous vous recommandons d’appliquer des points sur votre réservation avec les cartes suivantes :
Inn under the Trees<br>
146 Rue de la Reine, Gaspé
Dating back to the 19th century, the “Auberge sous les Arbres” is a charming place. Inside, there are common areas and rooms or suites decorated in the old style with great taste. Outside, the wooded grounds offer gardens and a lovely terrace with colourful chairs. Moreover, the Inn has a prime location within walking distance of Gaspé’s restaurants, cafés and specialty stores.
Rooms feature antique furniture, free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges and Nespresso machines. We serve a complimentary continental breakfast, including delicious pastries from “Oh les pains” bakery on the same street.
137 Jacques Cartier Street, Gaspé
Located in downtown Gaspé, this colourful hotel, with a waterfront exterior, is within walking distance of the shops and restaurants on Rue de la Reine.
The hotel has an indoor pool with a whirlpool, a gym, a lovely terrace with a view of the Bay of Gaspé, wireless high-speed internet, a business center and a laundry service. All rooms are equipped with a fridge, and some have a kitchenette.
Credit cards for restaurants and bars
Voici les différentes cartes de crédit que milesopedia conseille pour les restaurants et bars:
Bistro le Brise-Bise downtown<br>
135 Rue de la Reine, Gaspé
This friendly downtown lounge restaurant is a must in Gaspé. The establishment offers hearty eclectic dishes and a stage where independent musicians perform. Be sure to try the famous shrimp poutine.
6 Rue des Cerisiers, Gaspé
For gin lovers, visit O’Dwyer Distillery, which produces gin, whiskey and liqueurs from carefully selected grains and spices. You probably won’t want to leave without a bottle of the famous Radoune.
The Artists' Coffee Shop<br>
101 Rue de la Reine, Gaspé
For a bite to eat in downtown Gaspé in a traditional setting, go to the Café des Artistes. There is a terrace with a view during the nice season. The warm and friendly atmosphere and the Café offer a free wireless Internet access area.
Microbrewery at Frontibus in Rivière-au-renard<br>
41 Rue du Banc, Gaspé
Founded in 2017, Au Frontibus Microbrewery draws inspiration from the surrounding regional flora in a creative brewing process. We love this microbrewery with its friendly atmosphere and staff!
Café de l'Anse<br>
557 du Griffon Blvd, Gaspé
The Café de l’Anse is located in the Centre Culturel Le Griffon, a building with a rich history of the fishermen’s cooperative of the picturesque village of L’Anse-au-Griffon. During my visit, I could feast on a generous portion of lobster guédilles. In summer, guests can enjoy a terrace with a sea view.
Le Paquebot Café<br>
123 Rue de la Reine, Gaspé
The Café Paquebot Gaspé was opened in the spring of 2021. Located in downtown Gaspé, this particularly friendly café offers a selection of award-winning coffee, natural wine and delicious reinvented grilled cheese. There is also a store corner.
TÉTÛ Taverne Gaspésienne<br>
178 Rue de la Reine, Gaspé
For a more modern bar atmosphere, try Tétû located on the first floor of the Baker Hotel. This Gaspesian tavern offers dishes, most of the classics revisited, prepared with local products. The menu features codfish accras, pan-seared scallops and maple bacon chompers.
Cap Gaspé Microbrewery<br>
286 Boulevard de York S, Gaspé
Close to downtown Gaspé and located in a former Molson warehouse, this warm microbrewery offers German and American-inspired beers and seasonal beers with local ingredients, offered on draught or in bottles.