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2 weeks ‘corridor’, lowbudget daytrips by public bus, book on the spot?

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Apr 13th, 2017, 06:03 AM
  #1
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2 weeks ‘corridor’, lowbudget daytrips by public bus, book on the spot?

Hi there!
I’m arriving to Toronto next month, my 1st trip ever to Canada, for 2 weeks
The costs will be basically at the ‘low budget’ side (public transport, hostels etc), and plan to travel the so called ‘corridor’, up to Quebeck, stoping a little bit on the way, or doing some side-trips ex the big cities.
I understand that even public transport can be expensive, and distances are bigger than they look on the map on first sight
(I was thinking to skip taxis, tours etc forms of comfortable but expensive travel)
Do you think I could book everything on the spot (middle - end of May) if the prices are lower and there is availability, or should I prebook bus-train rides and hostels to save costs and guarantee a place?
I already own a guideboock, just started reading it, though your expertise would be valuable, to point me to right direction, also about choosing a few good stops outside the 4 big cities, easily accesible with public transport.
Thanks in advance guys!!
Happy travels
Nikolaos
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Apr 14th, 2017, 04:38 PM
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The area you plan to visit is well served by public transport. Via Rail offers frequent service between all the large cities and intermediate points while bus service is even more extensive schedules. Most cities and towns in southern Ontario are served by Greyhound and in Québec, Orléans Express offers service between Montréal and Quebec City and to other destinations. I like travelling by Via Rail, but to get the best prices you need to reserve some time in advance. So if you want the flexibility of booking at the last moment, the bus would be the best way. The bus is relatively Inexpensive as well (eg $20 Ottawa to Montréal). You can check the websites of these carries for schedules and fares.

Where to go? I think Toronto needs a minimum of 3 days, plus a day trip to Niagara Falls. You should plan on at least two days in Ottawa and maybe a day in Kingston en route. Like Toronto, Montréal needs at least 3 days, and Quebec City 2, more if you want to visit such nearby attractions as Montmorency Falls, the Île d'Orléans and the Charlevoix. That's your two weeks when you add in travel time.

Your guidebooks will give you a good idea of the attractions in each place.
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Apr 15th, 2017, 07:33 AM
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laverendrye many thanks for the very to the point info!
I check these individual companies to see what they offer
Generally they give good prices if booked well in advance, what probably I'll do, although it is not flexible for last minute impulses, it will keep the cost lower
Strange that Quebec is a bit less serviced than the other cities, and for the connection to Ottawa I only found direct service by train...
Many thanks especially for the very practical tip of how to spread my time between these cities, it's almost an itinerary!
I 'll check for details into guidebook, also hoping to learn more local info during the trip, at the tourist information offices. I hope I might find about short daytrips using (near-)city public transport, since I don't have my own wheels...
I'll try to finalize my plans as soon as possible!
Thanks again! In case anybody wants to contribute with more ideas please do, I' ll keep watching this thread!!
happy travels to all!
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Apr 16th, 2017, 09:51 AM
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Greyhound Bus has frequent service between Ottawa and Montreal
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Apr 20th, 2017, 10:13 AM
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VIA Rail's prices can sometimes be competitive with the bus lines. There's lots of bus services out of Montreal. Orleans Express runs about once an hour last I checked to Quebec City from Montreal (you can also take Orleans Express to Trois Rivieres, Quebec's second oldest city as well as other locales). Similarly, Greyhound runs about once an hour from Montreal to Ottawa, a more popular way for doing that route than the train as it's city center to city center. (Ottawa's train station requires an extra city bus to get downtown, not a big deal if you like trains.) There are also other companies such as Limocar that services parts of the eastern townships like Sherbrooke and Magog. I forget which bus line services the Laurentians but I know that is possible as well.

If you take the train from Toronto to Montreal, I've quite liked the days I've spent at the intermediate stops of Kingston and Brockville. Brockville is quite charming (loved the pub culture there) with some 1000 Islands tours if that interests you and it's an easy walk from the train station to the pleasant riverfront; Kingston's city center is quite lovely but will require a taxi or bus to get from the train station to city center--has more activities for tourists than Brockville (Queen's Campus is quite beautiful).

You'll have a great trip. What will be hard will be deciding what of all the great places possible you will need to omit.

Best wishes Daniel
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May 7th, 2017, 01:13 AM
  #6
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thanks Daniel for the very detailed info!
I am totally depended on public transport, since I cannot rent a car, and I try to avoid tours to save some costs....
When I am in every city I'll check for the more local connections as you suggest, so to see other places outside the big cities
And truly you make a good point, it's hard to choose what to omit, ha ha!!!!!
thanks again, all the best!!
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May 7th, 2017, 01:50 PM
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You're most welcome, nikosk.
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