The River Road (Route des Rivières in French) is a touristic route in the Mauricie region of Canada. Over 250 kilometers (155 miles), it crosses several rivers, including the Saint-Maurice, and is surrounded by a wilderness that dominates the landscape.
Where is Route des Rivières located?
This road, located 90 minutes from Montreal and Quebec City, in the heart of the “pays de la pitoune”, is at the top of the most beautiful road in the region.
You can situate the road on the map below:
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Facts about the Rivers road
This is a paved 2 lines road.
Route 155 (R-155) is a Quebec national highway running north/south on the north shore of the St. Lawrence River. It serves the administrative regions of Mauricie and Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean.
Always full of animation, the road is the meeting point of motorcyclists and motorists on weekends during the summer. The old Trois-Rivières and the old port are the places to be if you want to stroll along the river. From Trois-Rivières, just head north on route 155 towards Shawinigan. The route des Rivières is from Louiseville to La Bostonnais.
Several inns, B&Bs and restaurants line the route if you want to take a break and stretch your legs.
History of the road:
The project to link the Mauricie region and Lac St-Jean is very old. It was not until the early 1930’s that the Quebec government decided to put forward the project of a road between La Tuque and Lac-St-Jean.
In 1936, Romulus Ducharme, Member of Parliament for the riding of Joliette, led a delegation of elected officials to Premier Maurice Duplessis to obtain the construction of a road between La Tuque and Roberval. It was not until 1939 that the Ministry of Colonization of Quebec authorized the work.
The post-war period allowed the Chicoutimi, Lac-St-Jean, and Mauricie Chambers of Commerce to revive the project. The efforts were to bear fruit as in 1966 the La Tuque Lac-Bouchette road was officially inaugurated.
In March 2000, the Quebec government, through the Minister of Transport, Mr. Jacques Brassard, announced investments of $17.5 million to improve the road between the municipalities of Chambord and La Tuque.
Things to do nearby the Rivers road:
Located in La Bostonnais, it is considered the northernmost point of the official Route des Rivières itinerary. This park preserves one of the few covered bridges that have survived the years. This bridge, built of spruce, is 42 meters (145 feet) long and has spanned the Bostonnais River since 1946, the year it was built.
Parc of waterfalls of “la Petite Rivière Bostonnais”:
The park in La Tuque is home to waterfalls with a 35 meter (115 feet) drop and an observation tower along its hiking trails.
Grandes-Piles rest stop:
Located along the river. The view of the Saint-Maurice River is simply breathtaking.
How to get to the Rivers road ?
By car or motorcycle, you must take Highway 55 North which becomes road 155 at the height of Shawinigan. From there, you will find indications for La Tuque, which is about 1h30 of pure happiness!
If you are coming from Montreal or Quebec City, take highway 40 to Trois-Rivières, then take the direction of Shawinigan where the road starts.
You visualize how to get there on this map of the drive:
A preview of this legendary road:
Also, you can explore this road without even going there. Here is a YouTube video that shows this road:
If you are looking for a fun road trip near Montreal or Quebec, it can be definitely a great idea to drive the Rivers Road. This road will offer you amazing landscapes. Indeed, this itinerary is often named one of the most beautiful roads in the region! You will surely enjoy the landscapes and the drive!
Pictures sources: Axel Drainville on flickr.com
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