Exploring the Laurentides

Exploring the Laurentides: A Gem in Quebec’s Crown

Nestled in the heart of Quebec, the Laurentides region is a breathtaking tapestry of natural beauty, vibrant communities, and rich cultural heritage. Known for its rolling hills, sparkling lakes, and lush forests, the Laurentides offer a year-round playground for outdoor enthusiasts, nature lovers, and those seeking a serene escape from urban life. In this piece, we delve into the various aspects that make the Laurentides a must-visit destination, highlighting its natural wonders, recreational activities, cultural attractions, and culinary delights.

Natural Wonders

The Laurentides region is renowned for its stunning landscapes that change with the seasons, offering a unique charm throughout the year. During the summer, the area is a verdant paradise with its dense forests, meandering rivers, and pristine lakes. Mont-Tremblant, the region’s highest peak, offers panoramic views that are nothing short of spectacular. In the autumn, the Laurentides transform into a vibrant mosaic of red, orange, and yellow hues, attracting photographers and leaf-peepers from all over. Winter blankets the region in snow, turning it into a wonderland for winter sports enthusiasts, while spring brings a fresh bloom of wildflowers and rejuvenation to the landscape.

Mont-Tremblant National Park

One of the crown jewels of the Laurentides is Mont-Tremblant National Park. Covering nearly 1,500 square kilometers, it is the largest and oldest provincial park in Quebec. The park offers a multitude of outdoor activities, including hiking, canoeing, fishing, and wildlife watching. Its extensive trail network, including the famous La Roche trail, provides access to some of the most scenic vistas in the region. In winter, the park is a haven for cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and ice climbing.

Lakes and Waterways

The Laurentides is dotted with countless lakes and rivers, making it a paradise for water-based activities. Lac des Sables, Lac Tremblant, and Lac Masson are among the most popular spots for swimming, boating, and fishing. These lakes are also perfect for relaxing by the water, enjoying a picnic, or renting a cottage for a tranquil getaway.

Recreational Activities

The Laurentides region is synonymous with outdoor adventure, offering activities that cater to all ages and interests. Whether you’re an adrenaline junkie or looking for a peaceful retreat, the Laurentides have something for everyone.

Skiing and Snowboarding

The Laurentides are home to some of Quebec’s premier ski resorts, including Mont-Tremblant, Saint-Sauveur, and Mont Blanc. These resorts boast a variety of slopes suitable for beginners to advanced skiers and snowboarders. Mont-Tremblant, in particular, is internationally acclaimed for its well-groomed trails, modern facilities, and vibrant après-ski scene.

Hiking and Cycling

During the warmer months, the Laurentides’ extensive network of trails comes to life. The P’tit Train du Nord, a 232-kilometer-long linear park, is a favorite among cyclists and hikers. Following an old railway line, it offers an easy and scenic route through the heart of the Laurentides, passing through charming villages and beautiful countryside.

Water Sports

Kayaking, canoeing, and paddleboarding are popular activities on the region’s many lakes and rivers. Outfitters throughout the Laurentides provide rentals and guided tours, allowing visitors to explore the waterways at their own pace. The Rivière Rouge is particularly known for its gentle rapids, making it a perfect spot for a leisurely paddle.

Cultural Attractions

Beyond its natural beauty, the Laurentides are rich in culture and history. The region’s towns and villages offer a glimpse into Quebec’s heritage, with numerous museums, galleries, and cultural festivals.


Sainte-Adèle is a cultural hub in the Laurentides, known for its vibrant arts scene. The town hosts the annual Festival CinéFest, celebrating independent films from around the world. The Place des Citoyens, a cultural and community center, offers exhibitions, concerts, and theater productions throughout the year.


Saint-Sauveur is famous for its lively atmosphere and numerous festivals. The Saint-Sauveur Arts Festival, held every summer, features performances by renowned musicians, dancers, and artists. The town’s historic church, Église de Saint-Sauveur, is a beautiful example of Quebec’s religious architecture and often hosts concerts and cultural events.

Mont-Tremblant Village

Mont-Tremblant Village is a picturesque resort town that combines outdoor adventure with cultural experiences. The pedestrian village is lined with charming boutiques, art galleries, and cafes. Throughout the year, the village hosts various events, including the Tremblant International Blues Festival and the Tremblant Gourmand, a celebration of local food and drink.

Culinary Delights

No visit to the Laurentides would be complete without indulging in the region’s culinary offerings. The area is known for its farm-to-table dining experiences, with many restaurants sourcing ingredients from local farms and producers.

Local Cuisine

The Laurentides’ culinary scene is characterized by its emphasis on fresh, local ingredients. Traditional Quebecois dishes, such as poutine, tourtière, and maple syrup-based treats, are staples in many restaurants. Local cheeses, meats, and produce feature prominently on menus, providing a true taste of the region.

Microbreweries and Wineries

The craft beverage scene in the Laurentides is thriving, with numerous microbreweries and wineries offering tours and tastings. Les Brasseurs du Nord in Blainville, known for their popular Boréale beers, and the Vignoble Rivière du Chêne, a family-owned winery in Saint-Eustache, are must-visits for beverage enthusiasts.

Farmers’ Markets

Farmers’ markets are a great way to experience the local food culture. Markets like Marché d’été de Mont-Tremblant and Marché Public de Val-David offer a variety of fresh produce, artisanal products, and homemade delicacies. These markets provide an opportunity to meet local farmers and producers, and to taste the flavors of the Laurentides.

The Laurentides region is a captivating blend of natural beauty, outdoor adventure, cultural richness, and culinary delights. Whether you’re exploring the rugged trails of Mont-Tremblant National Park, skiing down the slopes of Mont-Tremblant, or savoring local delicacies at a cozy bistro, the Laurentides offer an unforgettable experience for every visitor. Plan your trip to this enchanting part of Quebec and discover the myriad of treasures that await in the Laurentides.