Did you know domestic tourism in Canada grew 5% in 2021? That number may sound small, but it also means domestic tourism grossed over 10 billion dollars in 2021.
Due to factors like the pandemic, more and more Canadians are hitting the road and exploring marvels within our own country. But, which areas should you check out? And, how do you get started with the planning?
We have put together a complete guide for your road trip from Toronto to Quebec City. We have included tips and tricks to ensure that you hit all the towns and sights that you can't miss. Make sure your bags are packed and you have everything on your road trip checklist.
The Distance Between Toronto and Quebec City
You will drive approximately 805 kilometres, or 500 miles, on your trip from Toronto to Quebec City. The trip back will be approximately the same distance, meaning you will drive a grand total of 1610 kilometres, or 1000 miles Of course, these numbers will vary, depending on the number of detours and stops you make along your journey.
If you are planning on stopping to see the sights, you can expect to drive 1800 km or 1,118 miles.
Toronto to Quebec City Drive Time
The drive from Toronto to Quebec City could take anywhere between 7.5 and 10 hours, depending on traffic. Your trip back will double those numbers, leaving you with anywhere from 15 to 20 hours of total car time.
But don't let those numbers scare you. The key to a good road trip is taking your time and making a lot of stops along the way. Consequently, we don't recommend that you rush your journey.
We highly recommend that you slow down your trip and spend some time getting to know the adorable towns dotting your path to Quebec City.
How Much Will Gas Cost?
It can be tricky to estimate a road trip budget. However, gas is certainly a huge part of your road trip spending. The amount you will spend driving to Quebec City will vary, depending on the size of your car and where you choose to fill it up.
These days, gas in Toronto costs around 140 cents per litre. Meanwhile, in some smaller towns across Ottawa, prices dip as low as 125 cents per litre.
In Quebec City, however, gas prices are much higher. There, you can expect to spend up to 157 cents per litre at the pump.
Which Cities Are Between Toronto and Quebec City?
The destination does not matter as much as the journey. This phrase may sound a little cliché, but it rings especially true when it comes to road trips.
The major benefit of driving from Toronto to Quebec City is getting the chance to explore some of the amazing stops along the way.
Below we have listed a few of our favourites.
Prince Edward County
We love this destination because it truly has something for everyone. Dotted with gorgeous farms, wineries, and restaurants, Prince Edward County is filled with small-town charm.
Foodies will get a kick out of the fresh local eats. Hit the farmers' market on Saturday mornings for a taste of the area. There you can find treats ranging from fruits and veggies to maple syrup and fresh cheese.
You can even stop by a few of the farms to learn more about how they operate. In the spring, you can head to Nyman Farms to see lamb, chickens and pigs.
Vaders Maple Syrup also allows visits to their 100-year-old maple farm. You can even swing by their store to purchase some tasty maple syrup products.
Prince Edward County also boasts forty wineries.
Terra Estate Winery offers tastings with a gorgeous view of Consecon Lake. Karlo Estates offers a much more boutique experience with an artisanal wine list.
If you are in the mood to enjoy the local cuisine in a more formal setting, Prince Edward County has plenty of restaurants.
Bantam PEC offers an incredible farm-forward lunch menu. Amelia's Garden boasts a seasonal menu, which changes to include the area's freshest eats.
This is a city that will appeal to the cultural vultures in your crew. Kingston has one of the most popping art scenes that you could imagine, thanks to the active Kingston School of Art.
The Agnes Etherington Art Centre has a fantastic collection of classical, contemporary, and non-Western Art. The museum displays pieces of superior quality, including paintings by the likes of Picasso and Rembrandt.
If your party is more interested in contemporary artists, you won't be disappointed. Kingston offers fifteen different art galleries. Visit Modern Fuel, where artists gather to educate the public about their profession.
Afterwards, you can grab a bite to eat in one of the town's many restaurants. AquaTerra offers fine dining with spectacular waterside views. Or, head to the cozier Amadeus Cafe for some delicious Austrian eats.
If you want to grab a drink before you end the day, you may enjoy a beer at Skeleton Park Brewing.
This is the perfect stop for the most adventurous groups. Gananoque offers activities like skydiving, boating, helicoptering, swimming and bicycling.
The 1000 Island Helicopter tours will give you the chance to check out the island with an incredible view. Alternatively, you can jump aboard the Gananoque Boat Line to check out the local area by sea.
The most fearless folks will love the Ganonoque Skydiving experience. Experience what it's like to jump out of a plane and look out at the spectacular river.
Gananoque, however, isn't just a great place to get an adrenaline rush. The city is also super family-friendly.
In the summer months, your children will love cooling off in the splash pad. You can also take the kids on relaxing bike rides by the riverside.
Finish the day at one of the city's great international restaurants. For East Asian food, check out the Pho Hut or Sushi Sun. Or, try some European treats at Grekos Pizzaria or the Old English Pub.
Upper Canada Village
Have you ever wondered what life was really like in the 1800s? Swing by Upper Canada Village to find out. The town is a historical gem, full of 1860s log cabins, horses and people dressed in historically accurate attire.
Start your day at the Village Store, where you can taste freshly baked bread. Next, wander the property and enjoy the ornamental gardens. Snap photos of traditional livestock, as you unplug from nature. Then, you can head over to the farm area to learn about nineteenth-century farming techniques. Learn about lost arts like spinning wool, churning butter and even weaving.
If you are worried that you won't have access to the restaurants of our modern world, fear not! You can enjoy some rustic dining at the Harvest Barn.
It almost goes without saying that Montreal is a world-famous city with a rich history and international culture.
For a taste of Europe, meander through Old Montreal. Walk over the adorable cobblestone streets and ogle at the surrounding architecture. The whole area is reminiscent of the French colonial period.
To feel like you have been transported to Italy, stop by the Mary Queen of the World Cathedral. This spot is a beautiful replica of St. Peter's Basilica in Rome, complete with patron saints and plenty of gold.
In terms of places to eat, Montreal offers restaurants with international cuisine. However, the city is most famous for its brunch spots.
For an innovative brunch, check out Foiegwa. Their blueberry pancakes and croque-monsieur are some of the best in town. For something more tropical, head to Junior for coconut waffles.
Nature lovers will be in awe of the stunning views in Charlevoix. The area was marked 400 million years ago by a meteor shower that left a unique landscape.
In the summer months, guests can enjoy the Saint Lawrence River. Rent canoes or jump on a local cruise ship. This way, you can experience the water from up-close.
The winter season offers plenty of activities, as well. Rent snowmobiles to enjoy extensive trails with impressive views of nearby hills.
If you'd like to hit the slopes, you should head over to one of the area's ski resorts. Both Mont Grand-Fonds and Massif de Charlevoix boast some wonderful powder.
Stop by Le Bercail for a more modern dining experience. However, if you're looking for something cozier, you can hit the Resto Pub de l'Auberge.
Interesting Stops Between Toronto and Quebec City
While Eastern Canada is full of fun cities, it also offers some stunning rural activities. If you are looking to see some sights off the beaten path, we have got you covered.
The following stops are sure to add a cool twist to your trip.
The Big Apple
No, we don't mean that big apple. We are referring to the literal giant apple located on the Southside of the Ontario Highway 401 at interchange 497.
This structure stands at over 12 meters tall and spans 11.5 meters wide. It's the perfect place for a pleasantly kitschy family photoshoot. You can also take advantage of this stop for a much-needed snack break, as there are plenty of apple pie vendors in the area. You can also find a petting zoo, free mini putt, and an unreal selection of candy, apple snacks, and cidres.
Presqu'ile Provincial Park
Located on the edge of Lake Ontario, this is a fantastic spot to soak up some waterfront views.
In the summer months, you will notice that the clear lake water assumes a sea-green tinge under the sunlight. It's the perfect place to take a quick dip in the chilly waves.
Year-round you can explore the boardwalk. This wooden trail winds over 800 meters through a dreamy marshland. It connects to 400 meters of dirt trail, forming a 1.2-kilometre loop.
The park also is a great spot to spend the night. Presqu'ile has an active campsite, where you can pitch a tent or park a trailer. Be sure to make a reservation as spots fill up quickly.
Sandbanks Provincial Park
If you are hoping to soak up a bit of sunshine, this is the perfect stop for you. True to its name, Sandbanks Provincial Park offers some truly stunning lake-side beaches.
Nestled on a peninsula that juts out into Lake Ontario, the park boasts lovely views of the natural waters. Climb on the sand dunes, throw your towel on the ground, and look out at the spectacular view. Alternatively, you can head to the Westlake Willy Waterpark for some active family fun.
History buffs may enjoy the Salmon Point Lighthouse. Snap some photos of the landmark, before heading to the nearby Lighthall Vineyards.
Long Sault Parkway
Located on the edge of the St. Lawrence River, the Long Sault Parkway is one of the most scenic drives in Canada. In the autumn months, you can enjoy the spectacular fall colours. You'll always find spectacular views of the river.
There are also plenty of places to stop along the route. Mike and Jenny's Paddle Fit offers activities, including kayaking, canoeing, and SUP boarding.
Head to the Lost Villages Museum to see ten restored heritage buildings.
Mount Royal Park
This Montreal park brings a taste of the outdoors to a bustling city.
You can enjoy this space during all four seasons. During the warmer months, this park is the ideal spot for picnics, long walks and bird watching. In the winter, it's a hot spot for tobogganing.
For amazing views of the city, scale the park's hill and stop at the summit. Known as the Kondiaronk Belvedere, this viewpoint is a popular spot for marriage proposals.
If you are interested in the park's history, stop by the Smith House for some information on how the preservation project got started.
Parc National de la Mauricie
Are you the type of person who is always chasing waterfalls? If so, you might enjoy le Parc National de la Mauricie. This park is the home of the famous Chutes Weber falls and plenty of other water activities. Take a dip in one of the area's many lakes, or glide across the surface on a canoe.
In the winter months, you can try your hand at ice fishing. Alternatively, you can head to one of the area's breweries for some fresh beer.
Pack Your Bags for Your Toronto to Quebec City Road Trip Today
Get excited to hit the road! There are so many amazing things to do on the journey from Toronto to Quebec City. From big cities like Montreal to adorable lake-side parks, this road trip offers you a truly unique view of Canada. Pack your bags and be sure to secure some travel insurance. Insurdinary can help make the process simple and fast.