Tourisme Cantons-de-l’Est Announces Inauguration of the Summit Drive

2008-09-08, De Tourisme Cantons-de-l'Est

Sherbrooke, September 3, 2008 – Tourisme Cantons-de-l’Est is pleased to announce the inauguration of the third designated tourist route in the Eastern Townships - the Summit Drive (Routes des Sommets). This large-scale project was designed in collaboration with the CLD (local economic development centre) of the region of Granit. The Summit Drive, which links the highest accessible mountain peaks in the Eastern Townships, stretches for 157 kilometres (97 miles), linking 15 municipalities - from La Patrie to Stratford, via Lake Megantic.

The tourism commissioner, Nil Longpré, and his team, combed the Granit region to make sure that no point of interest would be omitted from the Summit Drive. Granit is a veritable playground for outdoor lovers, hikers, snowshoers and cross country skiers and it encompasses eight mountain peaks that are accessible on foot or by car. Within the region lie 11 hiking trails (a total of 328 kilometres/204 miles), 20 tourist attractions (including two national parks - Mont-Mégantic and Frontenac), four lookout towers, 10 scenic viewpoints, five lakes suitable for swimming and more than 20 establishments with campsites and overnight accommodation.

.. and bringing you even closer to the heavens!

Granit is the ideal region to observe the clear, starry nights that are characteristic of this part of the Eastern Townships – one of the reasons that it it is the site of the first designated International Dark Sky Reserve. The Mount Megantic National Park, with its ASTROLab, its popular observatory and its astronomy themed evenings, brings you even closer to the heavens!

A mountain of activities….

You need good strong calves to pedal along the Summit Drive but cycling enthusiasts will enjoy the choice of bike routes - the ‘Grand tour du lac’ (a 50 km/31 miles ride around a lake), ‘Eau Sommet (24 km/15 miles)’, ‘Baie des Sables’ (6 km/4 miles), a 35-km/22 miles network of bike trails through the Frontenac National Park and a 16 km/10 miles route around the municipality of Stratford.

Boat buffs can opt for a cruise around Lake Megantic with Croisières le Coudrier Mégantic (the company that operates a local sightseeing boat), or on Lake Aylmer with Croisières du lac Aylmer, which operates from the Pavillon de la faune (a wildlife interpretation centre) in Stratford.

Those who want learn more about the region can visit the Maison du Granit (House of Granite) and Argus Bleu (an insect museum) in Lac-Drolet, Moulin Bernier (a former grain mill) in Courcelles, or the Centre d’interprétation de la mine d’or (gold mine interpretation centre) in Chartierville.

It is with great pride that Jocelyna Dubuc, president of Tourisme Cantons-de-l’Est, announced the inauguration of the third (and most recent) designated tourist route in the Eastern Townships.

« The very first, the Wine Route, which was inaugurated in 2003, connected 16 wineries and brought to the forefront the region that has become the centre of wine-making in Quebec, » said Ms. Dubuc.

« That route was followed in 2007 by the Townships Trail, themed around the Townships’ history and heritage and which highlighted the role that the Loyalists played in developing the region.

« The Summit Drive builds on our extraordinary natural assets, unique in Quebec, and makes the mountains more accessible to visitors - to the point where they can almost touch the stars! In all manner of ways, these three themed routes sum up the Townships philosophy of ‘the art of living well’ »

The programme of designated tourist routes was initiated by the Quebec Ministry of Tourism. It allows each region of the province to create three different routes or themed circuits that tie in with their own particular tourist attractions.

Tourisme Cantons-de-l'Est has been promoting the Eastern Townships since 1978, which, dating back to the mid-1800s, has been one of the leading tourist destinations in the province of Quebec. The 700-member association is made up of tourism-related organizations, individuals and enterprises that operate tourist attractions, golf courses, ski centres, agritourism businesses, restaurants, hotels, country inns, resorts and B & Bs. The Townships’ tourism industry generates annual revenues in excess of $500 million and provides jobs for more than 10,000 people.


Source:
Danie Béliveau
Media Relations
Tourisme Cantons-de-l’Est
(819) 820-2020 / 1-866-963-2020
db@atrce.com  

 
 

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