Plan a Montreal Day Trip: Laurentian Mountains and Mont-Tremblant

Written by Teresa Bitler

September 24, 2018
Home >> Destinations >> North America >> Canada >> Quebec >> Plan a Montreal Day Trip: Laurentian Mountains and Mont-Tremblant

Montreal has so much to offer—from the historic, cobblestone streets of Old Montreal to gorgeous cathedrals, incredible museums, vibrant neighborhoods and more—that you could easily spend days trying to squeeze in just the top sites. The next time you’re in Montreal, though, do yourself a favor and plan at least one day for a trip to the Laurentian Mountains and Mont-Tremblant.

Roughly 90 minutes northwest of Montreal, Mont-Tremblant is a city and a mountain in the Laurentian Mountains. It is also home to a popular ski resort, the Mont-Tremblant Ski Resort.

Montreal Day Trip

Rock climbing in the Laurentian Mountains. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides ©parc national du Mont-Tremblant

The entire region serves as an all-season playground for the city. In the winter, Montrealers ski the 96 trails on Mt. Tremblant’s four slopes, go ice climbing, spend a day dogsledding or participate in other snowy activities. In the summer, they hike, fish, kayak, golf, zip line, and more. And, in the fall, they come for the foliage. Here are some of the best things to do any time of the year on a day trip from Montreal to Mont-Tremblant.

Winter Activities in Mont-Tremblant

Downhill skiing put Mont-Tremblant on the radar of most Montrealers, but it’s not the only reason to make a Montreal day trip. During the winter, Mont-Tremblant has something for just about everyone, even if you don’t like the cold.

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Skiing in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Mont-Tremblant has 665 acres, four slopes, and 96 ski trails for skiers and snowboarders. Since it has one of the most sophisticated snowmaking systems in North America with more than 1,000 snow guns, you’re practically guaranteed a good base.

Montreal Day Trip

Mont-Tremblant is where Montrealers go to ski. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides. ©tremblant

While about one-fifth of the trails are easy enough for beginners, Mont-Tremblant provides plenty of challenge for experienced skiers. Nearly one half, 47 percent, of the trails are rated very difficult or extreme. No matter which trail you choose, though, you’ll have incredible views of the Laurentians.

The ski resort also offers powered and groomed trails for cross-country skiing, skate skiing and snowshoeing.

Dogsledding in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Several companies offer dogsledding experiences, ranging from a one-hour ride to multi-day excursions. Longer rides can combine dogsledding with other activities such as ice fishing or visiting the bison reserve at the Kanatha-Aki Nature Center. If you’re not sure whether sledding is for you, visit the kennel instead to learn about the dogs, pack hierarchy and more.

Montreal Day Trip

Mush your way through the Laurentians. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides. ©Tourisme Laurentides

Dogs aren’t the only animals pulling sleds in the Laurentians. You can go horse sledding instead or enjoy a sleigh ride.

Scandinave Spa in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Normally, I wouldn’t recommend a day trip to one particular spa, but Scandinave Spa isn’t just any spa. It’s based on the Finnish tradition of immersing yourself in heat (hot baths, dry saunas, steam baths, and thermal waterfalls), rinsing in frigid waters (Nordic waterfalls, plunge pools, showers or the Diable River), and then relaxing for 10 to 15 minutes to stabilize your body’s temperature.

Montreal Day Trip

A heated pool at Scandinave Spa. Photo courtesy of Scandinave Spa.

Guests are expected to remain silent (no talking), and cell phones are relegated to the locker rooms. As a result, the experience is particularly relaxing, especially since many of the pools, waterfalls and other features are outside. The scenery is worth the drive alone, which is why you should head to Mont-Tremblant instead of visiting the Scandinave Spa in Old Montreal.

Other Winter Activities in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Skiing and dogsledding aren’t the only winter activities worth the drive to Mont-Tremblant. You can ice fish, ice climb, mountain bike on snow tires, snowmobile, and go tubing. When you want to head indoors, shop in downtown Mont-Tremblant, Le Village (halfway between downtown and the ski resort) or at the ski resort’s own village.

Montreal Day Trip

Winter in the Mont-Tremblant Ski Resort village. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides. ©tremblant

Summer Activities at Mont-Tremblant

Mont-Tremblant isn’t just for a Montreal day trip in the winter months. In fact, you’ll find even more to do in the summer.

Water Sports in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

More than 9,000 lakes dot the Laurentians, providing plenty of opportunity for fishing, boating, kayaking, whitewater rafting, and other water sports, but if you’re planning a day trip from Montreal, Lake Tremblant is your best option. Located at the base of Mont-Tremblant, it’s great for swimming. Or, you can rent kayaks, canoes, and standup paddleboards.

Montreal Day Trip

Swimming in Lake Tremblant is a popular summer activity. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides. ©Tremblant

The Tremblant Lake Cruise is a fun way to explore the lake without having to navigate the waters yourself. On the cruise, you’ll pass some of the lake’s seven islands and five bays while learning about the area’s history ($25 CAD). There’s also a dinner cruise and a Sunday brunch cruise available.

Ziplining in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

One of the best ways to experience the Laurentians is by zip line. Not only will you get the adrenaline rush of flying over trees, but the views are astounding. Book the tour that begins at the top of Mont-Tremblant and features five ziplines down to the ski resort village. Or, opt for one of the Mont-Catherine zipline adventures.

Montreal Day Trip

Zipline from Mont-Tremblant’s summit to the ski resort village. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides ©Ziptrek_Tremblant

Seeking even more thrill? Add rappelling or one of the Mont-Tremblant tree courses to your itinerary. The resort has four tree courses to choose from: the first two are relatively easy, the third is a little more challenging with zip lines and multi-level platforms, and the final course challenges at 65 feet in the air.

Golf in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Make the drive from Montreal to tee up at one of nearly 20 golf courses in the Laurentians. For breathtaking beauty, look no further than Le Geant Golf Course. Designed by architect Thomas McBroom, the 18-hole, par 72 course features two lakes, 52 sand traps, and plateaus sculpted into the mountainside.

Montreal Day Trip

Tee up on scenic courses in the Laurentians. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentides. ©Tourisme_Laurentides

Le Diable Golf Course is another standout with long, pine tree-lined fairways. Its greens are impeccable, and its bunkers can be frustrating, but the 7,056-yard course rewards with serene beauty. Le Diable is also known for its 16-acre Tremblant Golf Academy.

Summer Resort Experiences in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Mont-Tremblant Ski Resort has two great summer experiences: the Birds of Prey Flight Show and Tonga Lumina. The 45-minute Birds of Prey Flight Show takes place at the summit of Mont-Tremblant and features kestrels, an eagle, a hawk and owls. It’s perfect for families ($9.92 CAD plus gondola ride).

Part of the illuminated night walk, Tonga Lumina. Photo by Teresa Bitler.

The Tonga Lumina night walk is also family-friendly. Guests take a chairlift to the midway station, then stroll nearly a mile past illuminated displays telling the legend of the giant who protects the flora, fauna, and rivers of the area. Consider turning your day trip into an overnighter for the experience ($27.99 CAD).

Other Summer Activities in Mont-Tremblant Near Montreal

Love to cycle or mountain bike? Head to Mont-Tremblant. The area has countless cycling options, beginning with the paved ¾-mile trail from the ski resort to the nearby village and ranging upward in intensity to training circuits and climbs. Bicycles and e-bikes are available to rent if you don’t bring your own.

Montreal Day Trip

Mountain biking in the beautiful Laurentians. Photo courtesy of Tourisme Laurentide. ©Tourisme_Laurentides

If you prefer mountain biking, there are more than 30 miles of forested trails for guided or unguided rides. Or, you can go rock climbing, go-karting or paintballing. There’s also tennis, shopping, a casino and play areas for kids.

No matter what you like to do or what time of the year it is, the Laurentians and Mont-Tremblant provide a wow day trip from Montreal. Have you been? And, if so, what did you do while you were there?

Be sure to find out more about what to do in Montreal and throughout Canada on Wander.

As is common in the travel industry, the writer was provided with accommodations, meals and other compensation for the purpose of review. While it has not influenced this review, the writer believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest.

Written by Teresa Bitler

Teresa Bitler is an award-winning travel writer whose work has appeared in National Geographic Traveler, American Way, Wine Enthusiast, and AAA publications. She’s also the author of two guidebooks (Great Escapes Arizona and Backroads and Byways of Indian Country) and a contributor to Fodors Arizona & The Grand Canyon. While Teresa would never miss a must-see attraction, such as the Statue of Liberty in New York City, her favorite travel experiences are the unexpected ones: KoolAid with a Hopi medicine man, lobster prepared by a local on a Belizean beach, or a ride in a World War II-era bomber.

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