Travel Blog Road Trip in Canada with AVIS | Making Memories on Self-Drive Cars
It was such a great experience to host this super explorer mother-son duo. They aim to inspire other parents with their travel experience and top tips to travel with your little ones.
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Monisha hired a self-drive rental car from Avis to travel across Canada for a road trip of a lifetime. She has shared the amazing story about her road trip across the endless variety of landscapes. Check out her blog to catch the travel bug, which can inspire you to go on an adventure yourself.
Canada is famous for its great outdoors. Dense rainforest, majestic plains, towering peaks… it is what draws most tourists to this vast country every year.
How much of Canada’s outdoors is accessible with smaller children? Surprisingly, quite a lot. The diverse terrain also makes for a fantastic playground.
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Canada has been high up on our agenda for just as long as I can remember. Glass mirror lakes, lush forest, rolling blue mountains, intriguing wildlife and adventure activity galore, it was the best place to travel with my son.
I do not know why we have not made it a priority sooner. I mean who doesn’t want to drive through Canada.
So, the best way to explore the country, we figured out, was by a car through a self-drive tour. To travel a country extensively in just 14 days you need someone that allows you the freedom and is greatly reliable.
With AVIS self-drive Canada car services, we planned the trip according to our preferences and conveniences. We had planned so much to do every day and driving on our own had saved us a lot of time.
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Spontaneous plans and halts in suburbs on the highway were possible only because we had chosen to drive.
Taking the trip with a rental self-drive car from Avis is the best way to find tiny little towns, majestic mountains, amazing countryside, and off-the-beaten-track places.
We took a tour of 14 days and visited the cities of Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City & Mont Tremblant. We took a flight from New Delhi and as we were flying straight to Toronto, we made it our starting point and mapped out our epic road trip across Canada from there.
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At the scheduled time, we landed at Toronto Pearson Airport. The immigration was a little chaotic however; the waiting time was not much.
In ten minutes, we get to the corresponding window, where we show the passport. They ask us a couple of questions and immediately we go to collect the suitcases, which arrive without problems.
Then we cross the terminal to pick up our Avis self-drive rental car at the airport. They had many options & car types for all budgets. Out of all the car options, we choose an SUV type car, as I wanted the abundance of comfort & space for my son while traveling.
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Without wasting any precious time, we rushed out to make the most of the day. The biggest city of Canada surprised us with its fast-paced life and diverse beauty.
With residents from around the world and scores of languages, foods, customs, and celebrations, this city does not know how to disappoint. Toronto has an outstanding list of museums and galleries, from the Frank Gehry–redesigned Art Gallery of Ontario to the delightful Bata Shoe Museum – which is why it is one of the great cities to explore in the world.
After breakfast, we load the bags in the car and head for Gananoque, a small town from where the Thousand Islands excursions start. The sites for the thousand islands excursion are Kingston, Ivy Lea, Rockport, and Gananoque. We decided on the latter because it is a small town and there are no parking problems.
It was the perfect place to rest your eyes after a long day of squinting at the furry green islands on the misty St Lawrence. The dainty Victorian town, deep in the heart of the Thousand Islands region, was filling up with cruise-loving tourists like us.
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Fishing, hiking, and generally enjoying the islands on a boat are some of the exciting things you can do in this city and what draws most of the visitors. We saw large mansions to small islets with wooden houses.
Despite the boat check-in dramas, the journey was beautiful. In any case, the excursion, which lasts an hour, was fun and interesting.
Arriving in Montreal, the navigator takes us through a toll bridge. There are no toll roads in Canada, except the 407, which serves to decongest the Toronto bypass. In this case, there are no toll booths, only license plate readers located at both ends.
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In Montreal, witness a French-infused city that is all about the celebrations of life, festivals, the arts, good food, living well and enjoying life to the end & back.
We had the whole day to discover Montreal so we started with the town hall. In the opposite is the Ramezay castle, which according to the Canada travel guide we have is one of the recommended places to see.
On the same side is the historic center of Montreal, specifically Jacques Cartier and St. Paul square are the most emblematic places.
A little further, we find the Bonsecours, an old market that today houses some commercial galleries with the majority of international clothing franchises.
We arrived at the Notre Dame Cathedral and had the feeling of being inside a French cathedral. The difference is on the outside, surrounded by large skyscrapers and the contrast is quite impressive.
Our next stop was Mont Tremblant. After finishing our breakfast, we got into our Avis car and go out on the road towards our destination. In about three monotonous hours, we reached the park gates.
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The Park is an extensive enclosure in which we can see several species in semi-freedom on a signposted route.
Tremblant is a ski resort in winter and summer has several activities such as zip lines, kayak rentals, among others. It also has a kind of little town atmosphere but in reality, they are hotels, restaurants, and shops.
We took several turns before finding the right places because when we look for Mont Tremblant in the GPS, it takes us straight to the town & ended up at the resort in the middle of a mountain.
We walked for a while, entering the shops, trying to buy a souvenir, until finally, we reached the top of the area, which is where the activity center is. The truth is that we did not plan to do any it but ended up enjoying it so much that we even had a bonfire under the stars.
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After having breakfast and loading our bags in the car, we set off on our way to Quebec City. We arrived there at noon, so we took advantage of the opportunity to explore the city.
Soon we arrive at a privileged viewpoint over the San Lorenzo River and the lower part of the old town of Quebec.
The old Quebec is unmistakably European, French more specifically. Undoubtedly, this is where the French descent of the city is most visible. Québec is one of North America’s oldest and most magnificent cities, which is the oldest French-speaking city.
With a living museum of narrow cobblestone streets, 17th- and 18th-century houses and soaring church spires, with the splendid Château Frontenac hotel, this picturesque Old Town is one of the UNESCO World Heritage site.
The next morning we got up early & after 170 kilometers, we reached Ottawa. Ottawa quickly became one of my favorite destinations in Canada. It could have been because of the way we started it or the way we ended it. Whatever it was, we only got 2 days to discover this gorgeous city.
This is the political heart of Canada, a storied area with sweeping views, steeped in history, and the perfect place to begin travels in Canada.
This means it’s also home to the seat of the Canadian government with sightseeing and attractions that are to some degree, rich in history.
It was a great introduction to Canadian history, whilst still being engaging for locals and non-Canadians alike. We stopped by the Fairmont Château Laurier, which is a remarkable piece of history worth exploring from its decadent indoor pool to its delicious pastry kitchen.
It was time for us to say goodbye to Canada so we traveled back to Toronto to catch our returning flight. Taking a road trip across Canada was an experience that I will describe, as once in a lifetime, and driving the reliable Avis self-drive all the way through was simply amazing.
As we on-boarded a beautiful Self Drive car, we had all the freedom to stop at the local villages, click beautiful pictures of the serene landscapes and most importantly spend some quality time together amidst the picturesque natural backdrop, which I will cherish forever.