The First Day of our Eastern Canadian Adventure

The morning started out later than expected. We had hoped to be on the road for 5 am, that was not going to happen. We left once our house sitter and pet sitters arrived, when you have as many pets as humans in your family you need a team to take care of them in your absence.

Approximately 4.2 kilometers from our home, a small voice from that backseat called out to me, “Mommy, I am sorry I spilled a little bit of my drink on your purse”. It turns out that Beckett’s entire iced lemonaide had been mercilessly dumped into my large, packed to the top, silver coach purse. My hands, feet and shoes were sticky with frozen lemonade and the heat of the day began to make me smell like rotten produce and sugar. Our first lesson had been discovered, no sugary beverages in the car!

We are driving a diesel  Mercedes SUV. It fits 5 comfortably including camping gear, suitcases, a power generator and air mattress. We do not travel light, but being comfortable is important to all of us.

Our first stop was at the Quebec Tourism and Visitor Centre approximately 300 kilometers from Ottawa. As our vehicle is a diesel, we do not have to stop as often meaning we need to build in activity breaks for ourselves. Luckily, our first stop had built in activities for the kids to burn off some energy.

Beckett conquering the bug! 

Active spinning play at the Tourism rest stop for all three 

Later that rainy afternoon we arrived just outside of Quebec City. We wanted to make this stop in Quebec City memorable and active. On the advice of family friends, we decided to park the car in Levis and take the ferry across. It cost approximately $30.00 for return tickets on ferry and $6.00 to park for the day. We put on our running shoes, grabbed some water for the trip and in 15 minutes we were standing in Lower Town. From an educational standpoint, everything I would need to teach Grade 7 & 8 Geography is here, this place brings the Ontario Intermediate Geography curriculum to life. 

It was humid, hot and busy on the street when we exited the ferry station. Turning left as you exit the ferry station and walking past several restaurants brings you to Lower Town
The girls and DH decided to do some shopping while Beckett and I explored the cobblestone streets and people watched. 
We then began the trek to Upper Town using the Frommer’s Guide. This walk is not difficult but steep. I saw many strollers bumping along the streets, and the babies laughing out loud in happiness. The streets were busy with people and occasionally cars, DD11 mentioned how lovely it would be with no cars at all. 
DH & AndiePandie brought up the back of the Guthrie Pack as we ascended the street to Upper Town. We soon arrived at the massive steps leading the offical top of Upper Town. The graded steps made thwacking sound each time the kids feet touched the steps. AndiePandie had energy to burn so she ran these steps twice. 
We toured the Fairmount Chateau Frontenac which seems to be the centre and cultural heart of the city. We walked the long boardwalk, watched street performers and learned about the historical Fort Saint-Louis. It was at that point that DD11 decided she wanted to come back to this beautiful place. She thought a long weekend here would be a perfect way to spend a winter weekend, coupled with skiing of course. DD11 also wants to stay at the Chateau Frontenac and promises to speak french the entire time. 
Beckett enjoyed one last climb as we returned to the ferry to start the next leg of our journey. The ferry ride back was a little quieter as the kids were tired from the Quebec City Adventure.

A note of caution, be flexible in your planning! I booked a hotel in Trois Riviere for our first night. After feeling the vibe in the vehicle, meaning the high decibel of AndiePandie’s voice and the total number of OMG HE IS TOUCHING ME screams coming from the back seat I knew I need a quick change in plan. We decided to stay in Riviere Du Loup at Hotel Universel.

We were pleasantly surprised by the size of the room, pool and water slide. As tired as the kids were after our 9 pm arrival they decided to swim & slide till the pool closed at 10 pm. The posted rate wat 149.00 however upon check in we were again happy with the 129.00 room rate.

Alexander checked us in and humoured me at my broken southern Ontario french. He was very helpful and patient as my three ran around the lobby. Check in was fast and efficient and within 10 minutes the kids were in the pool, tormenting each other.

We slept soundly in Queen sized beds, 2 in one bed and three in the other with no complaints. DH even mentioned how comfortable the beds were. I headed down for breakfast early as  and I was not disappointed.

My three love fruit for breakfast and I knew that this would make them very happy and full for the second day of our adventure. The breakfast buffet had fruit, sausages, bacon, toast, cereal and of course coffee, pots of coffee. The breakfast was not included with the room, however the 6 and under set eat for free, DD9 & DD11 each cost $5.95 and for adults the cost was $14.95. In my opinion well worth the cost for a healthy buffet that the entire family could enjoy.  Marie-Helen took care of us in the hotel restaurant, I asked her what she enjoyed the most about working at Hotel Riviere du Loup. Marie-Helen said that the people here are like her family and every day she sees the most beautiful sunsets. This hotel is family friendly and is close to shopping & gas stations. We were very pleased with our stay. Now, on to day two! 

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