Trois-Rivières, Quebec’s second oldest city, is situated at the confluence of the Saint Lawrence and Saint-Maurice Rivers. Its name, in fact, means “Three Rivers,” because it has three mouths along the St Lawrence River. The Saint-Maurice River divides the city in two, with the city center and the old city on the south bank. On both sides of the river, however, there are things to see and do in Trois Rivieres.
Trois Rivieres: The Cultural Center Of The Maurice Region
Trois-Rivières, located halfway between Montreal and Quebec City, has the rhythm of a port city cradled by St. Lawrence and Saint-Maurice rivers. The city pampers its historic district, where several museums, art galleries, and shops explore the memory of the beautiful tercentenary.
Trois-Rivières is the cultural center of the Maurice region, as well as one of Canada’s oldest industrial cities. Nonetheless, its history is what puts it on the map, with the ‘old city’ being the main draw for tourists.
Best Time To Visit Trois Rivieres
Here is some information to assist you in making your decision:
- May, June, July, August, and September are the best months for good weather in Trois-Rivières.
- July and August are the warmest months on average.
- January and February are the coldest months.
- April, May, June, July, August, and October are the wettest months.
Best Things To Do In Trois Rivieres, Quebec
Explore The Lac-Saint-Pierre Biosphere Reserve
The Lac-Saint-Pierre Biosphere Reserve, designated by UNESCO, is located just across the St. Lawrence River. Explore the reserve and become one with nature.
The Lac-Saint-Pierre Biosphere Reserve is well-known for its heron nesting, which is the largest in the world. The reserve is home to over 5,000 of these incredible birds, as well as a variety of other bird species.
The reserve also has 27 rare plant species and 79 fish species. In fact, approximately 90% of the area has remained untouched, making it a true haven for nature lovers.
Visit An Island
Three islands are located at the confluence of the Saint-Maurice and St. Lawrence Rivers. Though Saint-Quentin Island has the most to offer.
Visit this island and spend the day relaxing on the beach or cycling or hiking along one of its trails. There is also a park and a marina on the island.
You can stay overnight on Saint-Quentin Island if you wish, as it has camping facilities. It also hosts a variety of annual festivals.
Visit The Birthplace Of The Iron Industry
Forges du Saint-Maurice, located just north of the city, is the birthplace of Canada’s iron industry. It was built on March 25, 1730, and is now a National Historic Site.
The forge employed approximately 100 Burgundy artisans as well as 300 to 400 laborers. Pots, stoves, and pans were among the first iron products manufactured here.
The Forges du Saint-Maurice is now a park and historic village, with trails winding through the beautiful grounds. It’s a wonderful place to spend an afternoon.
Explore Boucher-De Niverville Manor
The historic Boucher-De Niverville Manor is located near Old Town Trois-Rivières. Explore the manor and learn about the city’s history and culture.
Explore the manor’s permanent collection of clothing, artwork, food jars, and furniture belonging to Marie-Josephte Chastelain and Joseph-Claude Boucher de Niverville. Learn about this bourgeois couple and the French regime’s days.
Every year, the Boucher-De Niverville Manor hosts a temporary exhibition.
Go To The Basilica of Notre-Dame-du-Cap
You don’t have to attend a service to admire the Notre-Dame-du-Cap Basilica, though the Catholic Church still receives thousands of pilgrims each year. It is a Norman Gothic structure on the north bank of the river.
The Basilica of Notre-Dame-du-Cap is a magnificent 1720 church. The church has some lovely stained glass windows and one of the largest organs in the country.
The basilica’s central dome rises 38 meters above the sanctuary. The building’s exterior is just as impressive as its interior.
Return To The Past
Despite being much smaller than the old towns of Montreal and Quebec City, Trois-Rivières’ old town is its main draw and a must-see for any visitor.
Travel back in time by strolling along the city’s oldest street, Rue des Ursulines. It also has a number of buildings that have been designated as cultural properties.
It is a quiet and picturesque neighborhood. The old city contains over 50 buildings that date back to 1650.
Research The Musée Des Ursulines
Ursulines are religious institutions of the Catholic Church that once had a strong presence in Trois-Rivières. Visit the Musée Des Ursulines to learn more about the Ursuline life.
The museum is located on Rue des Ursulines in the old city. It’s housed in a former school, hospital, and monastery.
Explore the various buildings and exhibits at the Musée Des Ursulines. As you walk through the exhibits, you will be transported back in time over 300 years.
Discover The Québec Museum of Folk Culture
The Québec Museum of Folk Culture has everything in true Québécois style. The museum hosts a variety of exhibitions that highlight the province’s distinct culture.
The museum’s collection contains over 60,000 items, all of which were donated. More than half of the collection was donated by Robert-Lionel-Séguin, and it includes artifacts from all eras of history.
The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions, all of which highlight the culture of the province in some way. This could range from a local artist exhibition to a historical doll collection.
Go To The Old Prison of Trois-Rivières
The Old Prison of Trois-Rivières can be visited, but not literally. The prison is adjacent to the Québec Museum of Folk Culture, and many people combine their visits.
The old prison opened its doors in 1822 and remained in operation until 1986. It is now designated as a historical monument.
Tour the prison with a guide and learn about the building’s history and its inmates. You can even spend the night in jail, complete with breakfast and a t-shirt to take home as a souvenir.
Attend The Grand Prix de Trois Rivieres
Trois Rivieres hosts the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières each August. This event is not to be missed if you enjoy car racing.
The three-day racing event includes a number of races along the Circuit Trois-Rivières. Other thrilling events at the Grand Prix de Trois-Rivières include an unforgettable fireworks show, a tuning show, and the opportunity to get up close and personal with the race cars.
Rallycross races, super quads, motocross, and, of course, NASCAR races are held throughout the event. Throughout the month, the circuit is also used for other events.