Mighty Saint Lawrence Cruise

Canada
Ship Tour
Highlights

Highlights

  • Explore the unique history of New France
  • See hundreds of thousands of seabirds nesting at Bonaventure Island
  • Cruise Percé Rock by Zodiac for unbeatable views
  • Seek the thirteen species of cetaceans found in the Gulf
  • Visit three provinces and the French island of Saint-Pierre
  • Enjoy music, dance, and stories with our bilingual cultural guides
  • Discover the rich cultural heritage and stunning red sandstone cliffs of the Magdalen Islands
Map

Map

Map for Mighty Saint Lawrence Cruise

Tour Overview

The Gulf of St. Lawrence is Canada’s historic gateway. Nature and culture are outstanding. We’ll tour four provinces and the French island of Saint-Pierre!

Springtime in the Gulf is brilliant. Birders love the northern gannets, common murres, razorbills, puffins, and more. And we’ll all be on the watch for whales—there are thirteen species of cetaceans in the Gulf.

Geological wonders. World-famous Percé Rock. Saguenay Fjord. Newfoundland’s south coast.

Layers of culture. Mi’kmaq, Algonquin, Québecois, Acadian, English, and Scots influences. Our multilingual guides love to share—immerse yourself in music, dance, arts, and crafts.

Tour the Gulf of St. Lawrence aboard the Ocean Endeavour. Enjoy the sea breeze from a Zodiac. Feel the beating heart of Canada’s history!

Itinerary

Day 1: Quebec City and Tadoussac

Founded in 1608 by Champlain, the beautiful city of Québec is the capital of the province of the same name. Predominantly French-speaking, Québec retains strong European influences in architecture, cuisine and culture—and is truly a fascinating city to explore!

We meet in Québec City and travel by coach to the charming community of Tadoussac, where we will board Ocean Endeavour.

At the mouth of Saguenay Fjord, along the north shore of the Saint Lawrence River estuary, salt water meets fresh water. In the morning we will explore Tadoussac, once an Innu sealing camp, later—in 1599—the site of the first trading post in what is now Canada.

In the afternoon we'll cruise Saguenay Fjord National Park, searching for the fin, minke, blue, and beluga whales known to frequent these nutrient-rich waters.

Weather permitting, we’ll visit the famed Reford Gardens, a National Historic Site. Scenic walks wind among 15 distinct gardens offering more than 3,000 species and varieties of flowers and plants. The expansive site includes art installations, sculptures, a museum and a restaurant.

The spectacular natural sculptures of the Mingan Islands are formed of limestone, shaped by the action of the sea. At 50° N, these islands owe as much to the north as to the east for their character. Atlantic puffins and Arctic eiders vie for the attention of birders, while harp, harbour, and grey seals cavort in the waters. Not to be outdone, the flora of the islands is wildly diverse, including 450 plant species, 190 lichens and 300 mosses!

The Gaspé Peninsula (Gaspésie) separates the mouth of the Saint Lawrence estuary from Baie de Chaleur. Remnants of the Appalachian Mountain chain form stunning sea cliffs here, jutting above the tree-line.

Forillon National Park is an important bird and marine mammal habitat, with excellent hiking, including a walk to Canada’s tallest lighthouse. Grande-Grave National Heritage Site tells the story of the fishing families who once made their homes here.

Today we'll visit Parc National de l’Île-Bonaventure-et-du-Rocher-Percé, where we'll enjoy a Zodiac cruise of Percé Rock and Bonaventure Island.

Percé Rock is a huge natural arch within a mass of reddish limestone and sandstone, with a large sea stack at one end. Thousands of Northern Gannets and other seabirds nest at nearby Bonaventure Island.

Prince Edward Island is a realm of rolling hills, wooded glades, ocean coves, and famously red soil. Canada’s smallest province, often abbreviated to P.E.I. retains a slow-paced lifestyle in its small, rural settlements. The island gained international fame by Lucy Maud Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables. We'll call in at the province's iconic sites and visit Lennox Island Mi'kmaw First Nation.

Though a part of Quebec, the Magdalens (Les Îles-de-la-Madeleine) in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence are closer to Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island. Approximately 12,000 residents live on the archipelago. Dramatic red sandstone cliffs are among the most striking features of the Magdalen Islands.

We will overnight here and spend two days exploring the robust Acadian heritage, culture, cuisine and language of the islands. Look for handicrafts, seafood, and local wines and beers!

Fjords, cliffs, and islands offer excellent Zodiac cruising territory—and hiking may be an option as well. We’ll be watching for puffins and other seabirds, and of course, keeping a close eye out for whales.

Just off the shores of Newfoundland lie the islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon—an official territory of the French Republic. Having traced Canada’s French history and culture, it’s appropriate that we wind up in France!

You will have an opportunity to explore the charming, colourful town of Saint Pierre. French food, wine and shopping await! There you will end your trip by joining our charter flight to St. John’s, NL.

What's Included

Tour Includes

  • Passage aboard the Ocean Endeavour
  • Applicable taxes and credit card fees
  • Complimentary expedition jacket
  • Contribution to Discovery Fund
  • Special access permits, entry, and park fees
  • Expert expedition team
  • Guided activities
  • Sightseeing and community visits
  • All Zodiac excursions
  • Port fees
  • Pre-departure materials
  • Educational program
  • Nikon Camera Trial Program
  • Interactive workshops
  • Evening entertainment
  • All shipboard meals

Tour Does Not Include

  • Fuel surcharge $44 USD per day per person
  • Commercial and charter flights
  • Program enhancements/optional excursions
  • Gratuities (suggested $15 USD per passenger per day)
  • Personal expenses
  • Mandatory medical evacuation insurance
  • Additional expenses in the event of delays or itinerary changes
  • Possible fuel surcharges and administrative fees
  • Pre- and post-trip hotel accommodation

What to Expect

Our small ship cruising programs allow you to experience the best of the natural world, while enjoying the comforts of our friendly floating hotel. The ship generally makes crossing between islands at night, so every morning you awake to new vistas and discoveries. Every day we offer a combination of interesting shore excursions and fun shipboard activities. You can choose which elements of the program you want to participate in.

Our excursions onshore will involve a relatively low level of exertion, but you will need a reasonable level of mobility to get up and down the gangway and climb into and out of Zodiacs (with assistance). Some of our shore landings will be 'wet', requiring waterproof boots. Once you have left the zodiac, you'll find our shore excursions accommodate both those who wish to enjoy a gentle stroll and those who prefer more active hikes. Our onboard specialists will join us on these shore excursions to provide interpretation and narration to these wonderful landscapes and experiences.

Each evening we will gather in the lounge to recount the day’s events and share memorable stories. Our onboard musician will provide some lively entertainment during happy hour and the expedition leader will outline the following day’s schedule. Our resource staff of naturalists, historians, and other guest speakers will give informative talks at various times throughout the voyage.

Meals in the ship's dining room are a great opportunity to meet new friends and recount the day's adventures. Special diets can be accommodated with advance notice. Safety is also a top priority with Eagle-Eye Tours – our team has extensive experience in the field, and all of our Voyages are run in conjunction with operators with the highest safety standards.

When the ship is underway, it is a wonderful time to join a naturalist on deck, take photos of the stunning scenery, or get caught up on some reading in the library.

We know that everyone travels for different reasons. Over the years, however, we have found one common element among the guest who choose to travel with us - a thirst of knowledge and authentic experience. Knowing this drives us to ensure the highest quality learning experience on our trips, by taking time to carefully design each trip we offer.

Ship & Deck Plan

Ocean Endeavour

Ocean Endeavour

Sailing with a maximum of 198-passengers, Ocean Endeavour is the perfect vessel for expedition cruising. Outfitted with twenty Zodiacs, advanced navigation equipment, multiple lounges and a top deck observation room, she is purpose-built for passenger experiences in remote environments. The Ocean Endeavour boasts a 1B ice class, enabling her to freely explore throughout the Arctic summer.

Launched in 1982, she has had numerous upgrades, most recently in 2010 and 2014. At 137 meters (450ft) in length, Ocean Endeavour has plenty of interior and exterior space. Enjoy multiple decks offering comfortable lounge chairs, outdoor dining, a swimming pool, sauna and even a hot tub! The spacious interiors allow for multiple workshops and presentations to occur simultaneously. Community is at the heart of Adventure Canada’s expedition experience. We gather together to learn, enjoy a drink, sing a song or share a yarn – connecting with one and other. The three lounges aboard Ocean Endeavour are fantastic public spaces for seminars, events and dialogue.

The Ocean Endeavour’s private spaces are stylish and comfortable. All cabins have private washroom facilities, a phone for internal calls, radio, TV and air-conditioning.

Ocean Endeavour’s crew is experienced, and friendly. Her shallow draft and maneuverability allow her to access isolated fiords, bays and secluded communities. The stylish vessel is at home among the glorious settings we seek. Enjoy the class and comfort of a boutique hotel, while venturing to some of the world’s last great frontiers aboard the Ocean Endeavour!

Learn More

Featured Wildlife

Even though we cannot guarantee a sighting of the animals below, we feel quite confident that an encounter with the ones listed below is quite likely.

  • Northern Gannet
  • Atlantic Puffin
  • Common Eider
  • Fin Whale
  • Minke Whale
  • Blue Whale
  • Saguenay Beluga

Past Tour Checklists

View the list of birds and other wildlife we encountered on our past tours.

Tour Reviews