La Ronde

La Ronde is a fairly impressive amusement park on the other side of the St Lawrence river from Montreal, about 10 minutes from downtown. I had specifically planned on NOT going to La Ronde, but Ben has been incredibly well behaved and REALLY wanted to go, so I changed our plans a bit, foregoing time at La Mauricie for La Ronde. So we took off from La Mauricie very early (by our standards – meaning, we were actually driving by 8 AM) and got to La Ronde by 10:45 or so (later than I had hoped – bad traffic in Montreal as usual, and a somewhat strange seeming route thru sidestreets).

Ben has his heart set on The Goliath, which is a fairly impressive roller coaster, and we managed to sneak past the 54″ detector (he is about 53.75″). The Goliath looks very similar to The Behemoth at Canada’s Wonderland. It was pretty intense. Then we did the log flume ride, the wooden roller coaster (Le Monstre – quite huge and throws you up on a 90 degree angle for much of it, unusual for a wood coaster), The Vampire (like Top Gun), and Toboggan (like the Wild Mouse). We also watched a half-hour live high-dive show, which was pretty good, though it was completely in French.

La Ronde is a Six Flags park and AFAIK the only one in Canada. It was VERY expensive, eg. $35 for parking, $30 each for fast passes,$38 entrance pass, $10 for a locker, etc. But all in all, pretty good, certainly 10x more than Playland or even the Six Flags in Seattle. (Their fast pass is a BIG ripoff though – it’s high-tech and technically impressive, but when you buy it they conveniently fail to mention that it works on less than half of their rides. This is very sleazy of them and if I were more motivated I’d send in a formal complaint).

After La Ronde we hit the highway to Ottawa and arrived there at around 8:30. We were on fumes by then and were forced to stop for the biggest gas fill of my life: $245, and that includes that Ottawa’s gas prices were MUCH lower than either Quebec’s of BC’s.

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