Route 148: Vanlife in the Pontiac

Published on June 6 2023

Vanlife is much more than a trend: it’s a true lifestyle that allows you to connect fully with your chosen destination! In vanlife, you can immerse yourself in unique places, meet friendly people, and go wherever the road takes you. This summer, take a memorable vanlife trip through the Pontiac on Route 148!

The key to success in vanlife is preparation … but not too much, because you also have to leave room for spontaneity! It’s always a good idea to plan ahead so you have a few reference points, and that’s exactly what our map of Route 148 provides. It lists a number of useful places in the Pontiac, including gas stations and places to park a van overnight, as well as restaurants and tourist attractions, so you can combine the practical and the recreational. Following the 148 is a refreshingly straightforward affair!

Overnight campgrounds

One of the big advantages of vanlife is that you literally take your hotel room with you! And the Pontiac has plenty of places to park your mobile refuge for a restful night’s sleep. Between Bristol, Shawville, Campbell’s Bay and Fort-Coulonge, the options are many and varied. For example, Pine Lodge, Chalets Prunella, the Timberland Tours campground, and Camping du Pont Blanc welcome van travellers. The Route 148 map indicates how each location works, the services available, the cost, and relevant information about recommended sites. The campgrounds are scattered throughout the Pontiac, so you can move from one to the next as your activities and interests take you.

Time to refuel (your vehicle and yourself)

Once you’ve decided where you’re going to camp, it’s time to stock up on fuel—for both your trusty van and the gourmet in you. You’ll find several gas stations clearly marked on the map. The same goes for grocery and convenience stores. Visiting these shops is part of the vanlife experience, with their local produce, regional character and friendly welcome!

Interested in sampling local flavours? Consider the restaurant suggestions on the map. There’s something for everyone: Little Red Wagon Winery, Brauwerk Hoffman microbrewery, and Pontiac Home Bakery, to name only a few! Or follow the Tap & Cork Route, a self-guided tour of the best wines, beers, ciders and spirits in the Ottawa Valley and the Pontiac. Meet passionate producers and learn more about the various production methods and their history. Cheers!

Set off on an adventure

Once the overnights and meals are taken care of, it’s time to think about what to do for fun! And the Pontiac has something for every type of vanlifer. Outdoor activities, cultural and heritage discoveries, aerial courses, farm visits, golf—there’s lots going on! The Cyclopark PPJ is great for cyclists, while Horizon X Rafting, Rafting Momentum and Chutes Coulonge Adventure Park have plenty of thrills in store. There are several hiking trails, as well as beaches and parks where you can spend a relaxing afternoon. Delve into the Pontiac’s past at the George Bryson Cultural House and admire the longest covered bridge in the province!

Have you covered the whole map? Visit the tourist information office in Campbell’s Bay for more information about regional attractions.

Destination: the Pontiac by van

If there’s one tool you need, it’s the Route 148 map. It’s a Google map, so you can download it to your phone and always have it on hand, even on the road when the network gets iffy.

Can’t wait to start your vanlife road trip in the Pontiac? The Vanlife Sagas web series will get you even more excited. It’s the perfect way to discover the must-sees along Route 148 from the perspective of vanlifers who’ve travelled it! And since the Route 148 directory is a constantly evolving project, don’t hesitate to send the team your impressions as a van nomad!


Summertime is festival time, so get your van ready and hit the Outaouais festival circuit! Check out our blog featuring not-to-be-missed summer festivities.

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