TravelTravel Advice

Where Can I Find Adventure Near Montreal?

I’m planning a vacation to Montreal, and while I’ve heard lots about its urban charms, I don’t know much about its wilderness access. Where can I play outside within a couple hours of the city?

(Photo: Michael Vesia/

Throughout the pandemic, we'll keep publishing news to help you navigate the state of travel today (like whether travel insurance covers the coronavirus), as well as stories about places for you to put on your bucket list once it's safe to start going more far-flung.


Canada’s second-largest city is renowned for great food, historic neighborhoods, and a vibrant and varied urban life driven in part by stubbornly cheap rent. It’s also wedged into a sweet corner of the continent for outdoor adventure: Vermont, New Hampshire and upstate New York are all on its doorstep. But before you dip south of the border, give these made-in-Canada adventures a whirl.

Mont Tremblant
Rafting the Ottawa
Hiking the Eastern Townships
Montreal Triathlon

Adventure Near Montreal: Mont Tremblant

mont tremblant montreal canada skiing resort
(Photo: Howard Sandler/

A short hop north of Montreal, Mont Tremblant is eastern Canada’s premier ski resort. And, like Whistler and other big-name spots, it’s transformed itself into a year-round outdoor hub. In summer, mountain biking, paddling, hiking, golf, rock climbing, and an aerial ropes course are all on offer, as is a Tremblant Iron Man. In winter, there’s downhill and cross-country skiing, dogsledding, snowmobiling, ice climbing, and steaming outdoor hot tubs ringed with snow.

Adventure Near Montreal: Rafting the Ottawa

(Photo: northernontario_outdoors/Flickr)

Just over the provincial border, the Ottawa River is home to some of the best North American whitewater east of the Colorado. It’s a big, broad river laced with islands and multiple channels made for different experience levels. Beginners are welcome, but the Ottawa has also hosted the freestyle kayaking world championships, so serious paddlers should find plenty to keep them occupied.

Several whitewater outfits operate out of the small town of Beachburg, Ontario, about three hours from Montreal. You’ll find everything from the standard one-day rafting trip to multi-day retreats, SUP lessons, and freestyle kayaking clinics.

Adventure Near Montreal: Hiking the Eastern Townships

Parc National du Mont-Orford canada
Parc National du Mont-Orford. (Photo: Michel Guerin/Flickr)

Tucked away southeast of Montreal are Quebec’s Eastern Townships, or “Cantons-de-l’Est.” The area is home to some of Quebec’s excellent provincial parks, including Parc National du Mont-Orford, Parc National de Frontenac, and Parc National du Mont-Mégantic. Head to the last one and hike up the park's namesake peak or Mont Saint Joseph for views of New Hampshire.

Adventure Near Montreal: Montreal Triathlon

poutine montreal canada adventure vacation food canadian food
Poutine, the first plate of many. (Photo: Brudulje/Flickr)

It’s not what you think. The so-called “Montreal Triathlon” is the city’s trifecta of world-famous, mostly-not-so-healthy delicacies: Montreal-style bagels, poutine, and a classic Montreal-style smoked meat sandwich. They're fatty, packed with calories, and totally worth it. Hit up all three, and then go forth and get some exercise.

Our mission to inspire readers to get outside has never been more critical. In recent years, Outside Online has reported on groundbreaking research linking time in nature to improved mental and physical health, and we’ve kept you informed about the unprecedented threats to America’s public lands. Our rigorous coverage helps spark important debates about wellness and travel and adventure, and it provides readers an accessible gateway to new outdoor passions. Time outside is essential—and we can help you make the most of it. Making a financial contribution to Outside Online only takes a few minutes and will ensure we can continue supplying the trailblazing, informative journalism that readers like you depend on. We hope you’ll support us. Thank you.
Contribute to Outside
Filed To: Weekend EscapesCanada
Lead Photo: Michael Vesia/
More Travel