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Montreal is one of the more culturally dynamic and interesting cities in Canada. In fact, many in neighbouring areas will take weekend trips to steal some time in La métropole. With that being said, there’s a great big amazing world out there just beyond Montreal’s borders, and sometimes everyone needs to change it up. With great museums, townships, lakes, and mountain ranges, Montreal is a city boasting one of the most beautiful and interesting surrounding areas in the country. Here is our list of the best day trips outside of Montreal.
Visit The Canada Railway Museum, Saint-Pierre, Saint-Constant, QC
Just across the St. Lawrence River, stands one of the better historical museums in Canada. The Canada Railway Museum is a testament to the country we know today. Showing amazing technological and engineering breakthroughs, to memorials dedicated to the labourers and workers behind the railroad tracks. While you could drive or take a bus to the museum, it seems a more fitting to get there on the Candiac/St-Constant commuter train from Lucien- L’Allier.
Do The Calvaire d’Oka Hike, Oka, QC
If you’re looking for a nice and accessible hike, look no further than the Calvaire d’Oka Hike. The trailhead is located just across the street from Oka Provincial Park (which is a worthy visit in its own right). If you don’t have access to a car, bring your bike on the AMT train for Two Mountains, and ride a short 10-kilometre bike ride to the trailhead.
Visit Sucrerie de la Montagne, Rigaud, QC
This Quebec Heritage site is something to behold. Sucrerie de la Montagne is open year round, and as authentic and true-to-history as sugar shacks come. There is a general store, Quebecois restaurant, and bar on site. If you intend to stay the night, you can even rent little cabins on the property.
SUP At Mont Tremblant, Mont Tremblant, QC
How could we not include this one on the list? Only a 2-hour drive north-west of Montreal sits one of Canada’s finer 4-season resorts and National parks, Mont Tremblant. The village, which is modelled after a classic Swiss mountain town, has an array of summer activities including incredible SUPing, mountain biking, beaches, swimming, and hiking while the winter is renowned for its consistent snow pack and expansive terrain.
Bike To An Alpine Lake On The Petit Train du Nord Trail
This old railroad trail works its way up some gladded hills to an alpine lake featuring beaver dams, scrambles, and amazing vistas. In the winter, there is skating on the lake, while a nearby cliff provides high-quality ice climbing. The trail is a loop and serviced by a Greyhound to Prevost, which is all to say; it’s the perfect day trip. Nearby Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts is a cute town surrounded by the Laurentian Mountains, rivers, lakes, trails, and woods. Plages Major and Tessier are great beaches on Lac des Sables, and downtown Saint Agathe features some amazing French cuisine serve up in small historic restaurants.
Visit The Cap-Saint-Jacques Nature Park
The three square kilometres of wild space is stashed behind the West Island’s housing developments, making this area feel like a hidden gem. This park features the largest beach near Montreal and provides windsurfing, kayaking, beach volleyball, and more. Food trucks have been known to show up at the park on weekends, but it may be worth packing some snacks just in case they don’t show. Take the Deux-Montagnes train to Pierrefonds Roxboro Station and then hop the 68, which will take you all the way to the park.
Pretend You’re In E.T. At VéloVolant at Au Diable Vert
Pedal a bike through the sky and get an incredible view of wild ravines, rivers, waterfalls, and mountains. VeloVolant is a 45-minute bike ride in which you propel yourself along a cable in the trees. Your 9-year-old-self is freaking out right now.
Visit The Granby Zoo, Quebec, QC
Founded in 1953, the Granby Zoo features over 1000 different animals and 200 species from nearly every continent. With 516,000 visitors per year, it’s still a relative secret. Consistently rated as one of the better zoos in North America, this is a can’t miss. Be sure to check out the baby tigers and red pandas. Once you’ve had your fill of animal viewing (is that possible?) you can check out the Amazoo water park across the street.
Like this post? Check out Montreal Must-Sees According To Fashionista Catherine Belle and What To Do In Montreal This Labour Day Weekend, too!