Get ready to be dazzled. A true natural wonder, the Saguenay River (Sag-uh-NAY) Fjord is the fourth largest fjord in the world and the southernmost navigable fjord in North America. Sculpted by ancient glaciers, the 60-mile-long, one-mile-wide fjord is lined with towering cliffs up to 1,150 feet tall, and it plunges to depths of up to 900 feet. Slipping through this magnificent fjord will be one of the highlights of your trip, whether you visit in summer when the hillsides are shrouded in green or in autumn when the scenery is bathed in russets and gold.
A trip through the fjord -- perhaps with a beluga sighting or two -- will be your introduction to the port. Saguenay itself is a city with several boroughs, linked with nearby Lac Saint-Jean as a tourism region. The area is a true outdoor playground for Quebecoise, drawing folks from more urban areas like Quebec City, 130 miles to the south. The port area is called La Baie, while the downtown and cultural districts are in nearby Chicoutimi, about a half-hour drive from the cruise terminal.
Figuring out where you are and where you want to go might be confusing if not for the helpful, friendly folks who welcome you to the port and the resources available in the cruise terminal. Although there are interesting cultural attractions -- including a rousing musical show staged by volunteers that's been running for 27 years -- you'll probably be captivated by the wild, woodsy beauty of the national parklands along the fjord and the myriad cool ways you can explore the fjord -- on foot, by land tour, via kayak or even by helicopter. Can't decide? There's always the option of the hop-on, hop-off bus, a great way to get an overview of this engaging area.