- Beach / Seaside Resort
- Nature Reserve / Wildlife Observation / Safari
- Park and garden
Percé was the final stage on our Canadian road trip before returning to Montreal. This village of just 3,360 inhabitants is very attractive to tourists, with a "downtown" area that's full of souvenir shops. Percé is famous for the stunning Percé Rock and for Bonaventure Island, which is home to the world's largest gannet colony.
A narrow track leads to Mont Sainte-Anne, which rises to an altitude of 340 metres, giving panoramic views over Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé National Park. The trail is easy to follow, with a number of different places to stop and enjoy the view on the way up. My tip is to go there to see the sunset - it's awesome!
When walking to Percé Rock, check the times of the low tides. On the way, I was impressed by the variety of different colours of rock. Keep your eyes open while walking - there are lots of lovely fossilised shells. A pretty souvenir that you can take home from Percé Rock!
If you want to try the local Pit Caribou beer, head to the similarly-named bar and microbrewery. If you love lobster, the Sacs à Vins bistro is the place to go, with delicious local food, with a warm welcome and a great atmosphere guaranteed.
I just loved Percé, and I loved the whole of the Gaspé Peninsula, it's unlike anywhere else in Canada. You need to travel through the entire Gaspé Peninsula and its amazing natural park to get to this city. You come round a bend and suddenly the majestic Atlantic Ocean with the incredible pierced rock arising from the waters appears before you.
I thought that the city itself wasn't particularly memorable, but the natural landscapes of the surrounding area are fabulous.
I remember walking around the amazing Parc National de l'île de Bonaventure which is home to more than 100,000 northern gannets. A great aerial spectacle!
Gaspésie, which is on the easternmost point of Quebec, was a backpacking destination in the 70s and 80s. Nowadays, you can get to Quebec's "ends of the earth" by car or bus to meet genuine local people and see the sea. Taking the road to Pierced Rock we explored Bonaventure Island and its northern gannets, went diving and also saw our first whale.
Most of the hotels and motels have a view of the sea but you should get up early and walk along Percé quay in order to see the sun rise behind the rock. Some people are lucky enough to see the sun through the hole in the rock. 10,000 years ago there were two holes in the rock but a rock slide filled one.
Divers who are visiting Canadawill adore the sea beds around Percé and Gaspé, and should also stop at Escoumins on the way back to Quebec. You can even be a winter tourist and visit by snowmobile. The dream trip is to leave Quebec and do the 750 km of prepared trails in a week or 10 days.
It's been my pleasure to drive lots of tourists there. I have great memories of eating lobster and drinking white wine overlooking the sea and then finishing the day in a spa with a view of the Rock.
The beautiful, but domesticated, natural environment and the smallness of the city make Percé an interesting stop off with family when travelling across the Gaspé Peninsula. Two days in the summer or just one in winter are enough to see it all.
Having finished some hikes such as those in Forillon National Park, you'll be happy to see the unobstructed view over Percé Rock and over the river from the promenade with five observation points.
Everything here is turned towards the water, adults and children alike will be delighted to go on a trip to observe whales and fin whales... And what emotion I felt when I spotted, sometimes very close up, the big cetaceans: a magical experience!
You can also enjoy the view over the waves and the rock from the shuttle boats which go to and from Bonaventure Island, a nesting place chosen by thousands of northern gannets during their migration. From April to September, the impressive show of the magnificent diving birds will guarantee that you have a nice trip on the island.