The hibernation is over! Time to get in on Montreal’s active outdoor culture and there’s no better way to take advantage of your time off than by getting outside. Give your friends Facebook-envy with pictures of your adventures zip-lining through the trees or paddle boarding on the river. Whether you like getting dirty out in the woods or prefer to spend your days armed with a camera and a latte, the sunny days are calling you. Get some fresh air with these unique outdoor activities in and around Montreal.
Childhood memories of swinging on ropes and climbing trees shouldn’t have to end when you grow up. This Quebec company has started a huge trend by creating obstacle courses up in the trees. These treetop walkways and zip lines are the ultimate dream come true for people that don’t ever want to stop being kids. Ropes are strung 25 to 60 feet high on different types of suspended bridges. Arbraska is pure, outdoor fun.
2. P'tit train du nord
Originally a railway track running through the Laurentians north of Montréal, this 200 kilometre trail is now used for cycling. It's one of the most scenic rides available for bikers, and runs through a number of tourist towns between Saint-Jérôme and Mont-Laurier. Unlike most paths of its kind, there are plenty of convenience stores, hotels, inns, bed & breakfasts, and campgrounds along the way!
3. Montreal Scooter
Explore the city in style. On a hot summer day, the best way to get from the Tam Tams into the city for a show is on a scooter. These little things zip through traffic and park anywhere, allowing you more time to do the things you want. Rentals are available for an hour or for the day, with all the accessories you need.
Photo cred - PEACEBUGG
4. SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard)
Take advantage of living on an island surrounded by water by getting to know what’s up. For those of you who don’t know, “SUP” is Stand Up Paddleboarding. It’s one of the most fun and accessible ways to play on the water. The wide board allows you to do almost anything on it; yoga, cross-training workout, or just paddling out at your own pace. It also gives you a great point of view for taking pictures. Check out their 4 locations around the island of Montreal and Jean Drapeau park.
5. Au Diable Vert
A short drive into the Eastern Townships will bring you into this hidden mountain retreat. This unique campsite allows guests to stay in 4 different types of accommodations on its rustic hillside location. Besides regular camping, they have tree houses, small and big log cabin apartments, and something they have named a "treegloo", which looks like a plastic igloo in the middle of the forest. Let’s face it though, you know you want to sleep in a tree house!
6. Extra Entrainement
If you ever watched American Gladiators as a kid, then this is for you! Offering coaching, obstacles courses and physical training classes, Extra Entrainement is like military boot-camp without all the yelling. It is designed to train people to be out in the wild rather than sitting behind a desk all day.
Website (French only)
Photo cred - Pure Slacklines
While some say that slacklining is meditative and therapeutic, others say that it fvcking crazy! It's actually balance training on a piece of nylon or polyester webbing. The rope is tensioned between two trees (or other solid anchors) and the goal is to stand, walk or do tricks while balancing on the line. Unlike circus tightrope, the flex in the line means you can either bounce up or from side to side, and other rigid lines can be strung across longer gaps higher up for the adrenaline junkies among you.
Photo cred - Cache Mania
If you've never heard of it, Geocaching is treasuring hunting for real life. The website and app uses GPS to hide a "cache" for anyone to find using coordinates and a little ingenuity. It's like a mashup of Indiana Jones, pirates, and science geeks. There are hundreds of caches to track down in your neighborhood right now. Best of all, it’s free!
Photo cred - journal metro
9. Via Ferrata
The Diable Via Ferrata is a unique mountain experience overlooking the Diable river valley in Mont-Tremblant, Quebec's largest national park. This walking/climbing course is built on a cliff face with built-in steps, handles, beams and bridges that overlook the meandering river, 200 meters below. The spectacular view of the mountain ranges offers the perfect city escape for anyone who dares the climb.