Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Canadian Vacation: Quebec, Quebec

Note:  With this post we'll conclude our Canadian Vacation.
I'm sort of rushing things but I have a First Day of School post which needs to go up
(especially since today was the second day of school!)

After visiting the Boldt castle we drove across the border again back into Canada.
After driving for awhile we drove across the border from Ontario to Quebec.
The highway signs in Ontario were in both English and French but once we drove into Quebec it was French and only French.
We had our work cut out for us.
(read: We don't speak French.)

Matt's business meeting was in Sherbrooke, QB (2 hours East of Montreal.)
Sherbrooke is not a touristy town so we had a hard time communicating...especially at dinner.  I used some Spanish language knowledge to translate but we mostly pointed at pictures and hoped they could understand a little bit of English.
The kids LOVED the language barrier, especially Lauren.  She would get giddy when people were speaking French.  I think it amazed her and unbeknownst to her, broadened her horizons.  She now really wants to learn a second language and I told her Aunt Mili should be the one to teach her.
(for those who do not know, Aunt Mili speaks Spanish as her first language)

Our Hotel in Sherbrooke

The pool was freezing cold but we had to check it out.

Sherbrooke was a charming little town.  We stayed right in the downtown area but were also walking distance to many restaurants, a lake, walking paths and playgrounds.  All just steps from our hotel.

After two nights in Sherbrooke we drove NE for 2 hours to Quebec City.

We stayed at the Hilton just outside the  wall of Vieux-Quebec (Old Quebec.)

We immediately took to exploring this awesome walled city.

 a side street we took to avoid the crowds

Meals in Quebec take a long time.
We found out they don't bring the check until we request it because they don't want to rush the customer.
The wait didn't bother Tyler.

The next day we really put on our walking shoes and explored the walled city all day.
We walked down a number of quaint little streets...

and rested on benches in many cute little garden parks.

We also did some people watching along the Fleuve Saint-Laurent (St. Lawrence River.)

Looking back into Old Quebec on our way to the hotel.

Tyler enjoyed more than one piggy-back ride during our trek through Old Quebec.

On the third day of our trip to Quebec City we finally ventured away from Old Quebec.

 This was an amazing park with hiking trails, sky-lifts, playgrounds, bridges, picnic areas and amazing views of the falls and everything around them.

We took advantage of everything.
Here  Lauren and Tyler play on one of the many playgrounds.

Looking over the Falls from the bridge.

 his view

The view after hiking Up and Over and half-way Down

At the bottom of the falls Matt took Lauren and Tyler to get even closer.

Before we left the kids took their turns "holding up the bridge."

Bright and early the next day we packed up and left Quebec, Canada for the United States.  We were flying out of Burlington, Vermont so we decided to take a day to explore the city.
 It was hippy and happy; full of bike trails, bike lanes and bikes.  It was a total college town with street-side charging stations for electric cars, and it totally reminded me of Eugene, Oregon.  (Where I grew up and went to college.)

 Playing in a fountain downtown.

Burlington, Vermont was great and I'm glad we decided to include it as party of our vacation.

We all really enjoyed this family vacation.
I had hoped to get us all a stamp on our passport but that just doesn't happen if you drive into Canada.
The kids' passports are good for 5 years so we'll have to plan another international trip soon.


Gloria said...

RE: Another international trip soon - - Peru is open for business - and you won't need a hotel. And - bonus - Lauren can practice her second language.

brian said...

Vacation looked pretty neat. I bet the kids made some good memories.

Anonymous said...

I love your vacation pictures & narrative. Great journal of a fun vacation! G. Jan