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22 Most Beautiful Lakes in Quebec

Along with its culture, millions of tourists are drawn every year to the natural beauty of Quebec, Canada. Vast stretches of lush forests, snowy mountains, and pristine rivers flowing through valleys — the scenic beauty is everywhere.

Vast clear water lakes mirror sky and clouds in heavily forested area, Mont Tremblant, in Quebec's Laurentians

Tourists sometimes find themselves overwhelmed by everything they must experience in Quebec. There is so much to see! This blog is here to help. One unmissable experience in Quebec is spending a few hours by the lake.

Quebec is home to an estimated 500,000 lakes. While many are tucked in remote areas, some and very accessible and attract visitors from all over the world. Every season at a lake has its charm. The summers are warm, with the sun shining on the calm waters. Lakeside picnics are just serene. In the winter, people enjoy hiking high up in the surrounding mountains and skiing their way down. Witnessing the snow-covered landscapes, while sipping on a hot beverage, is a real Canadian treat. And of course, the colours of the autumn are breathtaking.

The travel experts at Canadian Train Vacations help visitors plan their trips to Canada. This guide lists some of the best lakes in Quebec, Canada.

1. Lake Saint Jean

Known for its clear water, Lake Saint Jean is one of the largest lakes in Quebec, Canada. It is located in the Saguenay Lac Saint Jean region. The lake has nearly 42 kilometers of beaches and over 250 islands.

The lake hosts the swimming competition Traversée Internationale du lac St. Jean, and the lake’s shallow waters are also suitable for young children to play and splash around. You can go boating and fishing.

Ripples in the waters of shallow Lake Saint-Jean gleams, in broad daylight, by lakeshore

2. Lake Kipawa

Located in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region, Lake Kipawa is right next to the Kebaowek Reserve. The lake has deep bays lined with innumerable beaches. There are many large islands within Lake Kipawa. Its clear waters provide diving opportunities and amazing landscape views from the islands and shores.

In addition, the lake is the source of the Kipawa River, which is known for its excellent white-water rafting recourses.

People boating in large Lake Kipawa in the Abitibi-Temiscamingue region of Quebec near North Bay, Ontario

3. Lake Massawippi

This lake is situated in the heart of the Massawippi Valley, among rolling hills and lush green forests. Lake Massawippi is a popular spot for boating, swimming, birdwatching, and fishing. The lake is home to various fish species, including bass, pickerel, and pike.

Several small towns and villages in the Eastern Townships lie along its shores. They offer a variety of amenities and activities for visitors to indulge in.

Woman stands in shallow area of clear lake, while holding a glass of wine, during sunset at Lac Massawappi in Eastern Townships' Ayer's Cliff

4. Cabonga Reservoir

Cabonga Reservoir is a large man-made lake located in Quebec. It is surrounded by green forests and offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains. It is recognized all over North America as a great spot for lake trout fishing.

The lake is quaint and quiet, making it a great location for those looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life. Although it is not ideal for swimming, it's a prime place for boating and canoeing.

5. Lake Témiscouata

This lake is known for its beautiful scenery and recreational activities. There are dozens of species of wildlife, fish, and birds that reside here. If you’re lucky, you may also witness preying birds, like the Bald Eagle, in action. There are many ancient historical sites to explore near Lake Témiscouata.

The region also offers cycling paths, golf courses, and hiking trails. It is also known for ice fishing and cross-country skiing in the winter.

Person on boat with, fishing equipment, looks out towards shore landscape in the Bas-Saint-Laurent region while sun sets

6. Lake Blue Sea

The serene atmosphere at Lake Blue Sea is one-of-a-kind. The best time for a swim or pleasant picnic is in the morning when the sun has its most enjoyable shine.

As the name suggests, it really does look like a blue sea. A wide variety of fish and wildlife make up its rich biodiversity. This site is known for its hiking trails, which take you through the woods and offer some of the most breathtaking views in Canada.

7. Magog Lake

Magog Lake in Quebec is a natural gem. The lake is surrounded by lush greenery, making it a glorious spot for a picnic or a stroll. Magog Lake has some unique walking paths to offer. These trails let you explore the marshlands and vineyards in the area.

Lake Magog also has several historical sites, winter sports, and even a grape harvest festival. It is a must-visit for anyone looking for some low-key activities and tranquillity.

8. Lake Meech

Lake Meech is a picturesque lake that is loved and visited by locals and tourists alike. It is surrounded by beautiful mountains and green woodlands. The lake has two peaceful beaches. You can even spot wildlife, including beavers, otters, and deer.

One thing you can't miss in Quebec is Lake Meech’s remarkable scenery, which includes waterfalls that cascade into the lake. In the autumn, the scenic beauty is jaw-dropping. It is a photographer’s paradise; don’t forget to bring your camera!

Lake Meech north of Ottawa and in forested Gatineau Hills appears behind rocks by tree trunk

9. Lake Walker

Lake Walker is a stunning location that gives its visitors a sense of peace and calm. It is the deepest lake in Quebec and you can explore its deep waters by boat, kayak, or canoe. It is a famous spot for camping and grilling by the spectacular lakeside.

Lake Walker is surrounded by steep cliffs, which are perfect for rock climbing. They offer a bunch of other recreational adventures, including water skiing. Here you will also find natural hot springs, which are said to have healing properties!

10. Lake Timiskaming

Surrounded by steep mountains on one side and gentle hills on the other, Lake Timiskaming is made for nature sightseers. It is home to a wide variety of fish species and attracts anglers (serious fishing hobbyists) from all over the world.

The lake is also a popular spot for boating, kayaking, and canoeing. They host multiple festivals around the year, most of which are held in the summer. These include farm tours, local food festivals, and music concerts.

11. Gouin Reservoir

Gouin Reservoir in Quebec is located in the heart of the boreal forest and is picture-perfect for hiking, fishing, and camping. It houses a variety of wildlife, including moose, deer, and black bears.

The waters are abundant with trout, pike, and walleye. Anglers come from all over the world and spend their days fishing, relaxing on the sandy beaches, and having an exclusive stay on houseboats. The lakeside also offers a variety of outdoor activities.

Man, wearing fishing waders, lifts pike fish partially submerged in the shallow waters of Gouin Reservoir lake located in south-central Quebec

12. Lac Sacacomie

Lake Sacacomie is located in the Matawinie Regional Park. You can tour this majestic lake on a canoe, pedal boat, or motorboat. They even have traditional rabaska boats which can seat up to 12 people. The lake is home to several species of fish, including the elusive brook trout.

You can hike or even take ATVs into the woods and explore the lakeside for yourself. Lake Sacacomie is one of the best places in Quebec to see the colors of autumn.

Sun shines on deserted island standing in Lac Sacacomie located in forest of Quebec's Mauricie Region

13. Pink Lake

Pink Lake in Quebec is not actually pink. It is actually green. In fact, it is known for its vibrant green tint, which comes from a high concentration of algae in the water.

Pink Lake has a very unique composition, making it possible for rare fish like the three-spined stickleback to live here. It is believed that some of the fish species may even be prehistoric. Although swimming is not advisable here, it is known for its short and easy hiking trail. It is a brilliant place to be in autumn, and during sunrises and sunsets year-round.

Trees line green-tinted meromictic and algae-abundant Pink Lake in Gatineau Park

14. Lac aux Américains (Americans Lake)

Lac aux Américains in Quebec is an absolutely wonderful lake, located in the Parc national de la Gaspésie. Here, you can view the scenic Chic-Choc Mountains, dense forests, and rolling hills.

With its rich flora and fauna, any spot by the lake is a good spot for a picnic. It is popular for salmon fishing in the summer. The region also offers many hiking trails, both easy and hard. Some of the challenging ones take you high up in the mountains, where you have a spectacular view of the lake.

15. Lake Mistassini

Located in the Cree region, Lake Mistassini is the largest and one of the top, best lakes in Quebec. While boating in the lake, you'll see more islands than you can count! The waters are packed with lake trout, brook trout, pike, and walleye.

Several river tributaries flow into Lake Mistassini. Dense evergreen forests of birch, spruce, and fir complete the scene. It's also a great spot for blueberry picking.

16. Lake Abitibi

Lake Abitibi is the second-largest lake in Quebec, Canada, and is a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. It is located in the Lake Abitibi Islands Provincial Park. While there are no other activities here, the lake's scenic beauty is worth the visit.  

Lake Abitibi is actually two lakes, joined by narrows. Its southern shores blend with the Abitibi River. The lake's lush green vegetation and wildlife make it a true oasis in the heart of Quebec. It has many islands, which are home to various bird species like the bald eagle, great blue heron, osprey, and double-crested cormorant.

17. Pipmuacan Reservoir

Pipmuacan Reservoir is a deep, manmade basin located in the Haute-Mauricie region. The lake is a tourist favorite because of its beautiful surroundings, which include towering cliffs, lush greenery, and crystal-clear water.

The lake is home to diverse aquatic life. The nearby forests offer seasonal mushroom picking. You can have a special lunch on the shore, prepared from what you catch.

18. Lake Tremblant

Lake Tremblant is a long and narrow lake that sits between mountain ridges. It is right at the foot of Mont Tremblant. The lake offers many beautiful bays and beaches, each giving a different view of the grand mountain.

While the northern side is private, the southern side is developed as a recreational area for tourists. Lake Tremblant is a picture-perfect location for canoeing. It is surrounded by mountains and lush greenery, with valleys of deciduous forests on one side, and the dense Canadian boreals on the other.

Open waters in Lac Tremblant in Quebec's Mont-Tremblant in the Laurentians region

19. Lake Wapizagonke

This serene lake is located in the Mauricie National Park, which is known for its rugged beauty and natural splendor. A 2-hour drive from Quebec, the lake is surrounded by dense forests and is a popular spot among local people for some peaceful bliss.

Lake Wapizagonke has many campsites along its long shore. A must-have experience here is canoe camping. You can also take your canoe all the way up to the Waber Lake in the north, to sit and relax by the Waber Falls. This is also one of the Quebec lakes that have trails for hikers of all levels.

20. Lake Saint Pierre

Lake Saint Pierre is a widening of the Saint Lawrence River. It is known for its rich biodiversity. In the wetlands, you can find over 290 species of birds, 90 species of fish, and 27 species of rare plants here. Lake Saint Pierre is a significant stopping point for migrating birds – especially herons – you will see more here than anywhere in North America!

The shallow waters are ideal for swimming, boating, and fishing. The lake is also popular for windsurfing and kiteboarding, thanks to the gushing winds.

21. Lake Mégantic

Lake Mégantic, located in the Appalachian Mountains near the U.S. border, is a popular spot for nature enthusiasts. There are over 500 kilometers of walking trails, which take you through the lakeside forests, up into the mountains and down into the valleys. It is ideal for many water sports, including swimming, boating and fishing.

22. Lac Memphrémagog

Lac Memphrémagog is a fresh-water, glacial lake sitting between Quebec and Vermont, USA. It is a great lake for open-water swimming. Lake Memphrémagog is rumored to have its own lake monster. Go for a dip yourself and see if you can spot Memphre. The lake is neighboured by several mountains, including Owl’s Head, Elephantis, and the Hog’s Back.

The Lake Memphrémagog area is famous in Quebec for agrotourism. You can take your time trying regional authentic products.

Person paddles on board in calm waters in Lake Memphremagog in the American state of Vermont and Magog, Quebec

Frequently Asked Questions

Which is the cleanest lake in Quebec?

Lac Brome is the cleanest lake in Quebec, with sparkling waters that clearly reflect its underwater world.

Which is the most beautiful part of Quebec?

Parc du Mont-Megantic, Tremblant Village, the village of Old Quebec, Montmorency Falls, and Parc National de la Jacques Cartier are some of the most beautiful parts of Quebec.

Which is the largest lake in Quebec?

The Mistassini Lake is the largest lake in Quebec with a length of 160 km and a width of 19 km.

Which is the cleanest lake to swim in?

There are many clear lakes in Quebec that are ideal for swimming but the best one is Lake Témiscouata as it has more than one beach to swim in.

Which Great Lake is the most polluted?

Out of all the Great Lakes, the most polluted is Lake Erie, with a large number of industrial activities happening along its shores.

Which lake causes the most deaths?

Lake Michigan is considered the deadliest lake as it leads to 20-30 drownings a year.

Do the Great Lakes freeze?

Out of the Great Lakes, Lake Superior, Lake Huron, Lake Erie, and Lake Ontario freeze completely, while Lake Michigan never freezes.

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