Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Three hours North East of Quebec City you will find the surprisingly interesting stop of Rimouski.  Right on the water’s edge, you will find Pointe-au-Père Site Historic.  If you are looking for a really fun time that doesn’t exclude your pup entirely, and you’re able to do a bit of a hand-off (two people or caravan) it is well worth it. This is how we went about visiting this incredible site.

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Rimouski as seen from the water the St. Laurence River.

The site is broken down into three main attractions:

The Empress of Ireland Museum

This huge interactive exhibit is divided into sections to tell the heartbreaking story of the sinking of the steamship. It covers the diving expeditions to the wreck, then a listen to the testimony of passengers and their descendants, and of course, the actual sinking in 1914 which killed 1 012 people in only 14 minutes.

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

The museum from the outside is unassuming…

It showcases objects from the past illustrating life on board and there is a presentation on the construction of the ship in 1906. Finally, a multisensory show will immerse you in the Empress of Ireland’s last voyage.

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Some fun discoveries had during the “hand off” walk!

Dogs not allowed so you will need to do a handoff. For this, I recommend you grab a little picnic lunch or snack and like us find a table to relax at while the other does the tour. It takes less than an hour if like Mom you just like to wiz through.

The Onondaga Submarine

Canada’s first publicly accessible submarine. You can enter and tour the 90-meter monster and come to appreciate the close quarters of the day-to-day lives of the 70 men (yes in those days it was just men) confined to this steel … well kinda like a coffin!

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Bring a picnic the view is pretty darn great! Waiting for Dad to finish his tour.

Mom is SUPER claustrophobic so it was an Oh heck no for her. That worked out well for me since dogs are not allowed. So while Dad enjoyed the self-guided audio tour, Mom took me out to the side and we had a fun little photo shoot!

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

The money shot! Hand off time is a great opportunity to take all the “for the blog” photos!

The Village

This is the part that is more pet-friendly and we totally enjoyed it. We visited the old buildings of the lighthouse station (one human at a time since no dogs inside – although since I am SO small many of the employees chose not to see me in my pouch.

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

I love that it was all coordinated with a single colour scheme!

Mom liked the keeper’s house and the foghorn shed. But it’s the lighthouses that are the draw. How many people have heard of lighthouses for a river? Not an ocean or sea…?  Yep!

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Up UP UP and away! The Pointe-au-Père lighthouse in Rimouski Quebec


The St-Lawrence River and all the sound signals. Erected in 1909, the Pointe-au-Père lighthouse is the 2nd highest in Canada. Its guided tour allows you to climb to the top and enjoy the view!

Pointe-au-Père lighthouse

Beach time at sunset! See the lighthouse?

Personally, I was much happier on terra firma and visiting the small but really lovely little beach.

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Ooooh what treasures may I find here?

Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

Shhhhhh…. birds hiding in those tall grasses. Sand pipers!

So if you happen to be in the area, you really should stop. It’s well worth it. You really don’t know who you might bump into!

Pointe-au-Père lighthouse - Travel with a small dog Quebec

This gentleman was doing a tour of the Maritimes on an authentic – fully restored – WWII bike. He kindly posed for us!

24 Comments on “Lighthouses and Submarines a Dog Travels To Rimouski Quebec

  1. I love light houses, where I grew up as a kid in Cape Town there is one and of foggy nights you would hear it, it is still going today. Maritime museums always fascinate me and I would love to go in a submarine although like you am claustrophobic. Sounds like an amazing place to visit.

    • Super fun place to visit. Not a “stay overnight” kinda stop – but certainly a wonderful place to stretch ones legs on the way to or from Gaspe.

  2. Looks like a nice place to visit. I’m from Montreal but I have to admit I’ve never traveled anywhere around Quebec. I would have avoided the submarine and hung outside with the dog as well – too claustrophobic for my taste.

  3. Jasmine would have loved any place that has water. I don’t think she’d care about the lighthouses but certainly about the water 🙂

  4. I love lighthouses and beaches! I don’t like small spaces but probably would have tried the submarine just to have the experience. Thanks for introducing these to us.

    • I was told it was really worth the audio tour. And you can go at your own pace so if it gets to be too much you can speed up and get out. 🙂

  5. Umm, yeah I’m totally claustrophobic, too, so would not have able to go in the submarine either.

    Looks like a lovely quaint town and reminds me of similar towns in Maine.

  6. Hmm I’ve never heard of this small town, but it sure has some history. Wow I never heard about that Museum and to know that catastrophic accident resulted in the loss of so many lives… smh. Canada is definitely a place I want to visit too. I have it on my bucket list. It’s even sweeter to know this town is dog friendly so the whole family can visit.

  7. I have a passion for lighthouses and love them to bits. The story of the sinking is terrifying. 14 minutes and all gone * shudders * What a terrible loss of life.

    I love the pictures of the village. It is all so perfectly ordinated isn’t it! No blue house there.

    Did you use a tilt-shift lens for the lighthouse image. It looks spectacular.

  8. What a lovely trip! I would have skipped the sub too, but I’m glad your dad enjoyed that tour. That’s so sad about the sinking of the Empress Of Ireland. I was unaware of that event.

  9. Beautiful pics! And guess what?! I am so excited that this armchair traveler has actually been to Canada – twice! Love Old Quebec City! My paternal ancestors are from Canada, originating from France. According to family history, my paternal great-great-great-grandmother traveled from Canada to New York via horse-drawn wagon! I did not know about the Empress of Ireland Museum. Will have to put that on my to-visit list! I, too, am fond of lighthouses – growing up we saw the ones out on Long Island, New York, and here in upstate New York we have them all along the Hudson River that I have photographed from our boat. There is something mystical about them…a shining a beacon to the past. Great post!

  10. I remember going down into a submarine and turning back around to leave because I was so claustrophobic. I don’t know how they do it for such long periods of time.

  11. Great trip! And beautiful photos! My husband and I are hoping to make it to Quebec this summer with our Aussie:)

  12. Hi there.
    Thanks for sharing about lighthouses and submarines. I like most of the lighthouses near my house. Although the light signal from the lighthouse tower left much to be desired until that happened. You shared very interestingly content.

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