Charlevoix stretches along the St. Lawrence’s northern shores from Baie-Sainte-Catherine, on the west bank of the Saguenay, to Petite-Rivière-Saint-François. Besides the coastal communities, it also includes Ile aux Coudres and several inland localities. The region was settled from around 1675 onward with the arrival of such families as the Tremblays, the Bouchards, and the Simards. It today boasts 30,000 inhabitants. Charlevoix has a well-defined character. It stands out through its varied landscapes, due in part to the rugged terrain of the Laurentian Mountains and in part to the impact of a giant meteorite 350 million years ago. Its landscapes are, in fact, an asset to the tourist industry. For 200 years, the region’s scenery has aroused admiration from vacationers and tourists alike, be they from Quebec, the rest of Canada, or the United States. Charlevoix is today continuing to develop its tourist industry. Its natural attractions are being enhanced through ecotourism. Its inhabitants are also asserting their cultural identity. Through production of works of art, through folk festivities, through heritage conservation and development, and through culinary specialties, they recall their past while not forgetting their present.
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