Sherbrooke is a lovely little town in Quebec, Canada. I spent some time there a few years ago when I was visiting my friend while she was studying abroad. As it was during the school year, I had a lot of free time to myself to explore Sherbrooke. And let me tell you, it is beautiful! Charming streets with beautiful old buildings, and in October, the Autumn colours were out in full swing! I’ve decided to share with you some of my favourite pictures I took from Sherbrooke, Quebec. (I’m going back to Canada in a couple of months, can you tell I’m excited?!)

Sherbrooke Quebec

(Not So) Fluent in French

Sherbrooke, Quebec is a French-speaking town.ย It took a couple of days to psyche my 21-year-old self up to not being self conscious about (trying to) speak French. I wrongly assumed that everyone would be able to speak French AND English. I had just come from a couple of days in Montreal where everyone would say “Bonjour, Hello” to greet you. But Sherbrooke is a small town, and there were definitely times that I was met with blank stares after a pathetic, thick Scottish accent attempt at “Parlez-vous Anglais?” I got it eventually though. And successfully managed to order food and coffee on multiple occasions! Thank you High School French Class.

Sherbrooke, Canada

Sherbrooke, Canada

Little Town in Canada, Major City in Scotland

Sherbrooke, Quebec has such a quaint, small town feel to it, and I guess it is by Canada’s standards. But when reasearching for this post I found out that it has a population of roughly 150,000. Compare that to Aberdeen, one of the major cities in Scotland, which has a population of 230,000 and you’ll see what I mean. But then again, Canada is 41 times bigger than the UK, which is in turn 3 times bigger than Scotland. So bascially I think I’ve just realised how big the world is!

Sherbrooke, Canada Sherbrooke, Canada Missing Home

One of the days I was in Sherbrooke staying at a BNB I wasn’t feeling like going out and struggling to talk to people. With the help of Google I saw there was a McDonalds in town. Finally, something familiar! (You would think I was in Malaysia or something and not a country with basically the same culture as home. I was so young ha) I got ready and excitedly followed Google Maps to the address of McDonalds. Can you guess what happened next? Go on, guess.

I rock up to the address and to my utter dismay… it’s a salon. Deflated, I walk to the nearest shop I could find, bought some crisps and chocolate and made my way back to the BNB where I set up camp for the day and watched Ellen. Needless to say my first solo travel experience was pretty much meย overwhelming myself with stress. I like to tell myself that everyones first solo travel was probably the same. It makes me feel better.

Sherbrooke, Quebec Sherbrooke, Quebec

All in all, Sherbrooke, Quebec is a charming little town. It’s a bit out of the way – an hour or two on the bus from Montreal – but I would definitely recommend a visit! I would love to go back now and explore some more as a (slightly) more confident traveller.

Sherbrooke, Canada

Linking up with FarawayFiles

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54 thoughts on “Exploring Canada: A Photo Essay of Sherbrooke, Quebec”

  1. The autumnal colours look absolutely gorgeous – I’d love to return to Canada in the autumn one day to see the autumnal colours in one of the national parks. My boyfriend spent his year abroad in Canada, and I was so envious of his pictures of Algonquin National Park in late September/ early October… I can imagine that going from a bilingual city like Montreal to a predominantly French-speaking town would throw some people; even as someone who speaks French, the Quรฉbรฉcois accent had me stumped on occasions!

  2. I always hoped my Australian accent speaking French was as charming as the French speaking English! Sadly I dont think that’s the case. Good on you for giving it a go while you explored beautiful Sherbrooke Chiera

    1. I was once in Paris trying to find my way on the Metro. While reading the map of all the stations I said ‘Les Halles’ in a pretty broad scottish accent (I was lost and stressed and was only talking to my friend) Then a charming english speaking man walked by me and shouted “It’s Les Halls (the correct french pronounciation) What a disgusting accent!” .. so.. that was nice. A sure fire way to stop you practicing a foreign language. ha!

  3. Such lovely pictures and what a sweet little town this seems to be. I can imagine the disappointment you must have had unable to find a real Mc Donald’s. ๐Ÿ™

  4. It’s so beautiful in autumn! I like how in North America the autumns are more of that bright yellow-red leaves and blue sky, clearly shows in the pictures! My own country it’s the season of grey, for 6 months, and we are lucky to see the sun every 10 days or so ๐Ÿ™‚
    I like the charm of this “little” town, and when I will come to French speaking Canada, I’ll definitely remember this place!

  5. As a Canadian Native, speaking French is daunting for me too!! I’m glad you took some time to yourself since you were overwhelmed, but I hope you were able to enjoy the rest of your trip – especially with all the beautiful fall foliage! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Omg me too! I don’t know why because I love hearing people trying to speak English, I think it’s amazing. I can imagine the French would feel the same way. But still, it’s nervewracking!

  6. Beautiful photos! I am obsessed with the foliage. And good for you trying to speak French. I am currently in the same boat in South America with my Spanish (though I am taking classes so I sound like less of a foreigner!)

  7. My grandmother is from Quebec and I truly would love to visit and see the sight from myself. I can relate to your comments about attempting to speak French. I took Spanish and French during middle school and high school and I still can’t seem to speak much. I absolutely love the quaint beauty of Sherbrooke!

  8. The fall colors are absolutely gorgeous. I went on a mission trip a couple of years ago, and I remember how tiring it was trying to understand the Spanish that was flying all around me. But like your stay, it was definitely worth the language barrier!

  9. Oh, wow, it looks amazing! Loved the photos and how they captured all those gorgeous, vibrant colors. I’ve always wanted to visit Quebec, but haven’t made it further than Toronto into Canada. Hopefully soon ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Those autumn colours are amazing! We just don’t get that here in Australia. I think I would have been hiding in the BNB with you if I had to try out my high school French. Fairly sure no one would be able to understand me. I’m going to Paris next month, so I will soon know how bad it is!

  11. Wow – you lucked out with the weather and seeing all the trees at their fall color peak! Beautiful! I have not been to the Quรฉbec part of Canada yet, have always wanted to explore there. Thanks for sharing with #FarawayFiles!

  12. wow Sherbrooke is so beautiful and so colourful! Thats a shame you’ve spend most of the time in your BNB but I can see you were able to take some wonderful photos in the meantime! Its funny, I would never thought they might not speak English in Canada ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Sherbrooke looks so incredibly beautiful, especially with all the leaves changing colors! That’s awesome that you got to visit your friend while she was studying abroad there. And that’s so crazy to see the difference in city sizes in Scotland versus Canada!

  14. Quebec looks so lovely at that time of year!! I’m not sure I would understand anyone but I sure would love to visit ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Quebec looks gorgeous, and I’m keen to see the eastern parts of Canada since I’ve just been to the west coast. The problem is it’s so far away that you can’t really just go for a weekend! I need more vacation time! #wanderfulwednesday

  16. Your pictures are indeed lovely and I totally understand that you’re excited about going back! I thought as well that everyone speaks French and English but I made the same experience than you; we’ve stayed a couple of days in a little town 100km north of Montreal and they did not speak a word of english! I was really surprised… I wasn’t up for big conversation, I was just ordering a coke ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. Those leaves are incredible. Absolutely inspiring. I’ve never seen anything like that… it’s definitely on my list. I had to laugh at the 21-year-old self consciousness about language. I experienced the SAME THING when I went to France. I had such a mental block about it, but once I did… it wasn’t so bad after all. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  18. Malaysia has McDonalds everywhere!!! Anyway, these pictures look beautiful and the colours of the trees are amazing. Reminds me of here in Vienna.

  19. Sherbrooke seems to be very charming. Autumn colours and lights in your pictures are spectacular. Unfortunately I can’t speak any French at all. In strange places I am also trying to find MacDonalds. Thanks for sharing!

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