The Observatoire d’Oiseaux de Tadoussac (OOT) is the first bird observatory in the province of Quebec and one of the most northerly in Eastern North America. More than 4.5 million birds were counted and 9 500 hours of surveillance were completed over a ten year period.
The observatory is situated in the parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay, above Moulin-à-Baude Bay. It is an exceptional site, situated as it is on the migratory route of the little-known boreal owl. The OOT has set up a surveillance programme to monitor boreal owl migration. Part of the programme includes a night-time activity whereby ornithologists capture and band northern saw-whet and boreal owls. This activity is well worth the experience during the Festival des oiseaux migrateurs (Migratory Bird Festival). The observation and capture of migratory birds takes place atop one of the sand dune plateaus, 60 metres above the Lower St. Lawrence Estuary.
Observatoire des oiseaux de Tadoussac
Tel: 1 877-MER-1877 or 418 232-6249
Tel: 418 236-4886
Observe black bears in their natural forest habitat in complete safety eight kilometres from Tadoussac. An experienced guide will greet you on site in a shelter mere metres from this strong, cunning and intelligent animal. Your guide will teach you about its way of life and shed light on the ancient beliefs of the Innu, the indigenous people of the North Shore, that hold this animal as sacred.
Tel: 418 233-2266 or 1 888 868-6666
Wildlife Observation in a Natural Setting
Observe beavers, their habitat and their working zone by way of a guided ATV excursion.
Learn to read animal tracks in the forest. Enjoy an evening around a camp fire with a guide telling native legends and calling wolves.
Tel: 418 235-4723
Le Jardin de la Grève (The Shoreline Garden)
The garden, situated between the Marine Mammal Interpretation Centre (CIMM) and the dry dock, presents approximately 60 000 typical North Shore perennial plants that are well acclimatized to maritime conditions. It’s free and accessible at all times. This relaxing spot hosts five life-sized beluga whale sculptures. A guide to the plants of the Jardin de la Grève is for sale at the CIMM’s gift shop. It is also a place where free whale-related activities are frequently animated by CIMM naturalists.
Tel: 418 235-4701
Balanced on a giant spider web, rappelling or on a rope bridge, discover the forest from a different perspective. The Finnish Hebertism Course covers approximately two kilometres in the boreal forest near the Domaine des Dunes.
A few steps from your chalet or campsite, 23 challenges await the entire family. There are challenging exercises to be attempted on cedar modules and ropes above the woodchip-covered ground, as soft as moss in the forest. The course is interspersed with views onto the St. Lawrence and interpretation panels explaining local flora and fauna.
Tel: 418 235-4843
An exceptionally scenic location, ideal for contemplating the St. Lawrence, relaxing and daydreaming. Travel six kilometres from the centre of the village to reach the dunes area that dominates Moulin à Baude Bay. Take time to observe seabirds, birds of prey and marine mammals as they swim offshore.
Often referred to simply as “the dunes”, this area incorporates two immense marine terraces made of sand that the last glacial melt deposited approximately 10,000 years ago. It is also where the first village of Tadoussac was established. The inhabitants were farmers, which led to the deforestation of the area. When the village disappeared, a desert-like appearance prevailed.
In the 1940s sand skiing became all the rage in Tadoussac. It was the only place in the world where one could practice this sport at the time. The dunes were the theatre for popular ski competitions, attracting participants from all over, right up until the 1980s. In 1983, the parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay bought the dunes sector from the Molson family to create a conservation and interpretation area.
One of the most beautiful bays in the world lies at your feet from a multitude of vantage points throughout the village. You can admire it from the boardwalk, the beach, a hilltop or while relaxing on a terrace. Tadoussac Bay is a proud member of the Most Beautiful Bays in the World Club, which regroups 41 bays all over the world.
Tel: 418 235-4446, ext. 229 (Municipality, Tadoussac Bay Club)
A Birds-eye View
Fly over the St. Lawrence River, the Saguenay Fjord, coastal villages and the back country, with its lakes and boreal forest, aboard a float plane. Boarding takes place at Long Lake, 10 kilometres east of Tadoussac.
Tel: 1 877 235-4640 or 418 235-4640
Saguenay Fjord Tours
Come aboard for a two-hour cruise through the magnificent scenery of the Saguenay Fjord. A naturalist guide will reveal the creation story of the Saguenay fluvial valley, the history of its villages and describe its fauna and flora.
It is one of the longest and most southerly fjords in the world. One hundred kilometres in length with an average width varying between one and 3.5 kilometres wide, the Fjord occupies a deep notch in the Laurentians, bordered by steep cliffs that average 150 metres in height. However, in certain places, they reach over 400 metres. It was carved out by the glaciers and invaded by the sea.
It is protected and showcased by two parks: the parc national du Fjord-du-Saguenay provincial park and the Saguenay–St. Lawrence Marine Park.
Tel: 1 866 856-6668