Adventure and Ecotourism Québec (AEQ), a regional association recognized by Tourism Québec, has ceaselessly been one of the best associations when it comes to adventure tourism. Once a vision and now a successful association, AEQ endlessly works towards promoting and developing Québec as a hub for adventure and ecotourism in the best way possible.
Québec province is every bit of beauty that one can imagine it to be and probably beyond. Surrounded by the kind of flora and fauna that flourishes in Québec, no doubt it is one of the most sought after destinations for adventure tourists.
While talking to Annie Levesque from AEQ, we asked what is that one thing that makes Québec the best and with a passionate nostalgia she said, “When we say you are really out with the nature, it is exactly what it sounds like. Imagine seeing a beaver right next to you while Hiking. That is what Québec and adventure tourism here is about!”
She goes on to say:
No matter what your preparation is, no matter what your preference is, Canada has some adventure in store for everyone. And you don’t always have to drive for days to ﬁnd it. As our country is pretty large, in some point during outdoor activities, you’re more likely to see animals than people. More benign adventures can be sought closer to cities in bucolic location, kayaking on quiet lakes, cycling through regions, or sailing around on Fjord.
In Québec, you will find 30 national parks and lots of protected area where outdoor activities can take place. Now here we are talking about more than 1.6 million sq. km of land, lakes and rivers. Our goal is to offer you the most enriching nature experiences in Québec. Summer or winter, for a trip or an expedition for two to five days, our network has the adventure that suit your needs. Novices, beginners or insiders, just follow the guide to enjoy the fresh air and experience the great adventure! Whether for hiking, kayaking, biking, climbing, dog sledding and more … You will be amazed at the variety of possibilities! Whale-watching cruises along the St. Lawrence River to eco-safari hikes to our mountaintops, You name it Québec has it for you.
Safety has always been a major concern for any traveller, let alone an adventure tourist. What has been AEQ’s role in addressing this issue?
Our outfitters offer a multitude of activities year-round; from sea kayaking to hiking to dog sledding. Thus, Aventure Écotourisme Québec ensures the quality and safety of the services offered by member companies by accrediting them according to a strict criteria.
Aventure Ecotourisme Québec has developed an accreditation program in order to evaluate the professional and safety standards of Québec’s adventure outfitters. At first, it is an administration process where organizations have to demonstrate that they meet all applicable standards that we have established (as information on client-to-guide ratios, levels of difficulty, guide qualification). Basically, we have 60 minimal norms. Then, specifics norms about each activities must be applied (hiking, rafting… or dogsledding don’t have the same risk), and instructions for completing the accreditation request. A rigorous evaluation is conducted for ALL businesses in Aventure Ecotourisme Québec network to ensure the level of quality of services offered. After the compliances are followed and verified the outfitters are awarded with an AEQ Quality Safety Certificate
At the end of accreditation process, all organization get consultant visit who evaluates the applicant’s compliance with Aventure Écotourisme Québec standards.
While traveling to Québec, which adventure activities are a must experience?
- Whale-watching in sea kayaking on St.Lawrence river (from May to October Québec is been visited by 13 species of whales)
- Sailing, sea kayaking on the Saguenay fjord
- Hiking on the first GR (Grande randonnée trails) in North America long of 650 km
- Be in the wild during canoe-camping trip
These are just some of the activities from an entire array of adventure sports that awaits you in Canada!
For more adventurous and outdoor ideas visit Adventure Tourism Quebec
Image credits; Michel Levesque