Adventure Bear, the SATW Traveling Teddy, explored a wonderful patch of Quebec, starting off with a breakfast train chugging out of Quebec City.
The Train of Le Massif de Charlevoix runs a 140-kilometer/87-mile course between Quebec City and La Malbaie in the Charlevoix region of Quebec. Much of its track follows the St. Lawrence River through forest and hamlets.
The excursion train leaves the station at Montmorency Falls, a dramatic landmark west of Quebec City. The waterfalls are 83 meters/272 feet high, one-and-a-half times higher than Niagara Falls.
Adventure Bear travels for the third-grade class of Meredith Schroeder at St. Joseph Consolidated School in Hamilton, Ohio, and the kindergarten class of Barbara Hill at Crawford Street Playschool in Vicksburg, Miss.
Breakfast along the rails
Travelers on the breakfast train from Quebec City sip orange juice and nibble on fresh rolls, watching the route unfold on each table’s iPad.
Servers balance plated breakfasts of spinach quiche with pepper sauce, tomato salad with sausage and pesto mayonnaise, and bread pudding terrine with tarragon and honey.
During breakfast, the scenic train follows a historic pilgrimage path to Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre, a small town with an immense basilica. It was here that a man with a handicap named Louis Guimont was said to have been healed after placing three stones on the church’s foundations. The first chapel was built in 1658, and the current Roman-style basilica in 1923.
Catching a ferry to Isle-aux-Coudres
After arriving in Charlevoix, Adventure Bear relaxes for a bit before taking the ferry to Isle-aux-Coudres, an island discovered by Jacques Cartier in 1535. Adventure Bear took the ferry called Joseph Savard for the 15-minute trip.
On Isle-aux-Coudres, Adventure Bear visited a one-of-a-kind spot, the only site in Canada with a fully functional watermill and windmill. Both are very old, the watermill from 1825 and the windmill from 1836. Artisans still grind wheat and buckwheat into flour here.
At the end of his trip, the bear set out for a grand adventure, looking for whales on a boat trip with Groupe Dufour out of Baie-Sainte-Catherine.
The Saint Lawrence River is a rare point where blue, fine, minke and humpback whales can meet with belugas. Just a few minutes out, Adventure Bear spots a beluga whale and her young on the portside. The whale spotting is the perfect finale to one bear’s Quebec adventure.