The Coast (La Côte) is a region of the Gaspé Peninsula in Quebec. The Gaspé Coast comprises the south bank of the Saint Lawrence river in the southwest of the peninsula. It is the gateway to the Gaspésie. It includes the regional municipalities of La Matanie and La Mitis.
- 1 Grand-Métis — home of the Jardins de Métis historic gardens, a National Historic Site of Canada
- 2 Matane — chief town of La Matanie and important economic and administrative centre for the region
- 3 Métis-sur-Mer — home of the Pointe-Mitis lighthouse, one of the oldest reinforced concrete lighthouses in Canada
- 4 Mont-Joli — largest city in the west of the peninsula including the largest airport in Gaspésie
- 1 Matane Wildlife Reserve — an area of more than 1,200 km² of nature in the Chic-Chocs Mountains, includes one of the largest concentrations of moose in Quebec
The coast runs from Sainte-Flavie to Méchins along the St. Lawrence estuary, describing an immense curve. Matane, whose average altitude is 160 m, is the largest city in this region. Three rivers flow into the St. Lawrence and cross the landscape perpendicularly: the Mitis, Matane and Cap-Chat rivers. These rivers are famous for salmon fishing. The landscape is mainly composed of hills shaped by agriculture and more or less wooded areas. Towards Les Méchins, the relief becomes more abrupt. The local population lives from agriculture in summer and logging in winter. The town of Matane (town) accounts for most of the population of this region.
From Montreal, Quebec City or Rivière-du-Loup, take Autoroute 20 east until it ends, then continue on Route 132 east, you will enter the region at Sainte-Flavie. If you take the second portion of Autoroute 20, you will arrive in Mont-Joli.
From Quebec , it is a 3½-hour drive to get to Sainte-Flavie. From Sainte-Flavie, Route 132 is divided in two: both directions head east. Route 132 makes a loop that circles the Gaspé Peninsula. The majority of tourists visit the Gaspé by going around in one direction or the other. You have to continue straight on to reach Matane and turn to join Mont-Joli.
It is also possible to reach the region by car from the North Shore by taking the Camille-Marcoux ferry from Baie-Comeau or Godbout (see the By boat section below).
- Airport Mont-Joli (YYY IATA), 875, boulevard Jacques-Cartier, Mont-Joli, ☏ . Air Canada Jazz ☏ flies from Baie-Comeau and Montreal (Trudeau). Pascan Aviation ☏ flies from Bonaventure, Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Îles-de-la-Madeleine, Montréal (Saint-Hubert), Québec City, Rouyn-Noranda, Sept-Îles, Val-d'Or, Wabush.
- Traverse Matane - Baie-Comeau - Godbout, 1410, rue de Matane-sur-Mer, Matane, toll-free: . Ferry service between Matane in the Gaspé and the North Shore. Book in advance, especially if you plan to cross with a vehicle
Route 132 is the main highway in the region. It follows the coast of the St. Lawrence River. Matane and Mont-Joli, the two main cities in the region, are approximately 65 km from each other by road.
Matane offers a lighthouse and maritime museum, a salmon ladder observation centre, botanical gardens (with a butterfly aviary), a moose interpretative centre, and a recreation of a fur trading post.
Mont-Joli has 36 murals scattered around the city.
1 Reford Gardens (Jardins de Métis), on Route 132 in Grand-Métis. Jun-Oct: daily 08:30-17:00. A National Historic Site of Canada displaying over 3,000 species of plants. Adults $22, students $19, youth (14 to 18) $11, children (13 and under) free.
The Circuit of the gardens and covered bridges is a tourist circuit along routes 132 and 195 allowing you to discover the flora and heritage treasures of the region.
Salmon fishing is a popular sport in the region's river. There are guides who will organize excursions from Matane.
Hikers will want to take advantage of the Appalachian-Québec International Trail, which runs for 100 km through the Gaspésie before connecting to the Appalachian Trail in the United States.