On the Sorel Islands with JiCi Lauzon

“I discovered the Galapagos Islands and the Greek Islands off the Sorel Islands,” JiCi Lauzon tells me during a guided tour as a captain with “nature hiking,” as we often tend to do to distant destinations rather than back home to drive. in Quebec.”

On the 12-person boat, the actor, musician and former GO captivates us from the start with his local knowledge and his anecdotes. With this nature lover we explore the World Biosphere Reserve Lac Saint-Pierre, whose archipelago is known as the Sorel Islands.

Lac Saint-Pierre, JiCi notes, comprises 40% of the St. Lawrence’s wetlands. This makes it a valuable natural area favorable for birds, fish or amphibians.


JiCi Lauzon, captain of the nature hike, starting from the Regard-sur-le-fleuve water sports park.

Photo by Alain Demers

JiCi Lauzon, captain of the nature hike, starting from the Regard-sur-le-fleuve water sports park.

The leadership

From the Regard-sur-le-fleuve water park in Sorel-Tracy, we first sail to the Île de Grâce. We learn that the families who once lived there were decimated by floods from a height of five meters.

On the Chenal du Moine, as in the days of the Reign, a cable ferry is used to transport cows to the communal pastures of the Ile du Moine. The route runs along the Ile aux Fantômes just after Îlette-au-Pé, where the chalet of the late Germaine Guèvremont, author of the novel, is located. The appearance.

After taking the Chenal des Raisins, the boat takes us across the St. Lawrence. Off the coast appears the famous sandbar, a stopping point for many boaters, whose formation comes from the dredging of the seaway. Several chalets are lined up on stilts along the Île Plate.

The journey continued in the archipelago along the Grande-Île Nature Reserve, home to one of the largest colonies of gray herons in North America with around 600 nests. What is striking everywhere is the wild look of the islands, crowned by willows, silver maples and majestic poplars.


The interactive model that you can see in the biophare before boarding to find you during the excursion.

Photo courtesy of Philippe Manning

The interactive model that you can see in the biophare before boarding to find you during the excursion.

The Gibelot

After the boat trip, I went to the Ile d’Embarras to eat a dish of gibelotte, a dish made with vegetables and bullhead, at the Chez Marc Beauchemin restaurant. The small building, reminiscent of old summer chalets, has withstood flooding since the 1940s. It’s rustic and friendly. You have to reserve.

NATURE HIKING

  • Reception at the Biophare: Temporary exhibition with nature photos, permanent exhibition The observatory of the Saint-Pierre lake with an interactive model
  • Duration of the guided boat tour: 3 hours
  • Prices : $46 per adult, $26 per child (7-17 years)
  • Season : until early October
  • reservation needed
  • www.randonneenature.com

OTHER EXCURSION IDEAS

Orford by Electric Bike

The municipality has set up the Vélopartage Orford in its village center, a station with 10 self-service electric bikes. To rent it, you must first download the free mobile application.

picking hazelnuts

Near Rawdon, the Walnut Garden is open to pick hazelnuts until they’re gone. The company also produces black walnut nuts. shopping and picnic areas.

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