9 Charming Small Towns Near Montreal Perfect For A Fall Road Trip
No better time to catch the autumn foliage! 🍁🍃🍂
If you've been hoping to get your road trip on this fall season, then there are loads of quaint and charming small towns worth visiting this autumn where you can get up close and personal with Quebec's mesmerizing foliage.
Now, it is only a matter of time before a picturesque sea of red, orange, and gold colours takes over Quebec's landscapes. Nestled amidst this seasonal splendour are countless adorable towns, each giving off a storybook setting perfect for a fall visit.
With so many winding roads leading to old-fashioned cottages, invited cafés, friendly faces and stunning forest views, these nine road trip destinations near Montreal are practically reminiscent of a scene from a Hallmark movie.
So, grab your pumpkin spiced latte, cozy scarves and your favourite person, and road trip away!
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 15 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Eastman is a standout town with one of the oldest modern spas in all of Canada, Spa Eastman. The destination offers up a traditional spa experience including massage therapy and thermal baths, but also provides specialized retreats, some of which go as far as having you hand over your phone and electronics. You can also showcase your adventurous side with many canoe and kayak trips offered down the North Missisquoi River on a 28-mile journey that is certain to get some adrenaline rushing to boost your adventure reserves well into the autumn season.
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 15 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Dunham is located only six miles from the Canada-US border and offers much to do for any visitor. The quaint town is home to Vignoble de Ruisseau, a sugar shack that goes well beyond sugar shack essentials — they offer a three-course and a six-course tasting menu of maple goodness. You can also visit one of the 22 vineyards in Dunham, the vines of which produce Chardonnay, Merlot, Riesling, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Gewurztraminer., to name a few. Don't mind if we do, right?
Littleton, New Hampshire
Distance from Montreal: 3 hours
Why You Need To Go: Indulge in the enchantment of autumn during your New Hampshire escape in none other than Littleton. The quaint streets are adorned with the vibrant colours of fall, providing the perfect backdrop for exploring charming boutiques, quirky bookshops, and nostalgic toy stores. Sip on a locally crafted beer at Schilling Beer Co. or savour a comforting meal at the iconic Littleton Diner — get the traditional breakfast with extra homemade hash browns and thank us later.
Littleton's eat and drink scene takes an even bigger leap further with their sweet shops including Bishop's, which offers over 60 flavours of homemade ice cream and the Chutters General Store boasting the longest continual candy counter in the world measuring 112 feet long with over 1000 sweet delights to choose from. A valid Canadian passport is required to visit Littleton, New Hampshire.
Distance from Montreal: 2 hours 45 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Nestled on Lac Mégantic's western shore, Piopolis exudes autumnal charm, so much so that it's been given the nickname: "Coeur Villageois." This fall season, the village's small businesses, cozy inns, and B&Bs offer warm retreats amidst the changing foliage. Visitors can wander along the tranquil wharf, and explore the marina where you can take in stunning views of Lac Mégantic, the miniature lighthouse and its surroundings, all of which are bathed in autumn colours.
You can also discover history along the Halte des Zouaves rest area and a six-stop heritage route, immersing yourself in the village's unique past. For those looking for an ideal spot to stay, the Auberge Au Soleil Levant will certainly add an extra layer of warmth to your autumn journey in this cute and cozy town. And for entertainment, you can catch the Saint-Zénon-de-Piopolis festival up until December, which features high-calibre classical music concerts in the village’s church.
Distance from Montreal: 2 hours
Why You Need To Go: While Burlington is certainly more of a city than a small town, it definitely gives off small-town vibes. Yeah, sure there's a Target, Walmart and Trader Joe's, which you won't find in any average "small town" but a walk down Church Street will have you feeling like you've stepped into a typical town in the middle of somewhere cute America. Stop in for a coffee at the Cosmic Grind Coffee Shop or grab a bite at the Church Street Tavern — order the turkey sandwich and French onion soup. Stroll on down to the pier afterward for remarkable views of Lake Champlain and you've got yourself the perfect autumn day.
Offering up a mix of rustic and remote vibes with access to all the big-city stores like Free People, Lululemon, and Banana Republic, you certainly get the best of both worlds. A valid Canadian passport is required to visit Burlington, Vermont.
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 15 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Sutton is the ideal choice for a quick getaway from Montreal that allows you to take in all the majestic scenery this mountainous town has to offer. The picturesque town is also home to Parc d'Environment Naturel, which offers visitors one of the most stunning four-season trail networks in the entire province, and stunning views of the foliage during the fall months. Café Tintoretto is definitely a must-try and beckons as a cozy haven for a quick bite and soul-warming coffee. Oh, and don't be shy and try out a few of their sweet treats, too.
Visitors should also visit Mont Sutton, which will host its fall festival for five weekends starting September 16. From cherished family moments to adventures for outdoor enthusiasts and exhilarating thrills on our giant zipline and zipline coaster, there's something for everyone. Additionally, you can savour the crisp fall air while enjoying chairlift rides, free outdoor concerts, invigorating hikes, disc golf, and mountain biking.
Distance from Montreal: 2 hours 30 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Stowe is stunning all year round, but fall time in Stowe is next level. You can take in views of the Green Mountains, which are set ablaze with hues of red, orange and yellow from mid-September to mid-October. The town offers a blend of charm and coziness, making it an idyllic destination for a quick fall road trip from Montreal. For those who enjoy a bit of adventure, you can embark on scenic hikes along trails including the Stowe Pinnacle Trail or Bingham Falls.
Stowe is also home to many charming bed-and-breakfast inns and cozy cabins that provide an authentic New England experience. After a day of adventure, indulge in hearty, farm-to-table meals at local restaurants like Harrison's, The Bench or the Whip Bar & Grill, where you can take in fresh seasonal flavours in every bite. A valid Canadian passport is required to visit Stowe, Vermont.
Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 30 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Montebello during the fall offers a captivating escape from the city where the vibrant foliage of the mountains takes center stage. Visitors can explore the natural beauty of Montebello with activities like hiking or animal spotting in Parc Omega or taking a leisurely stroll along the Ottawa River. To immerse yourself in the season, stay at the Fairmont Le Château Montebello, a historic and picturesque resort with a rustic, log cabin ambiance — one of the largest of its kind in the world. You can also savour delectable French cuisine at Aux Chantignoles or enjoy a more laid-back meal at Le Café Entre Amis, which is considered to be a must-try brunch spot.
Distance from Montreal: 3 hours and 10 minutes
Why You Need To Go: Stoneham-et-Tewkesbury, also known as Stoneham, offers an exhilarating escape into the Laurentian mountains. This idyllic destination is known for its beautiful autumn foliage throughout the Jacques-Cartier National Park. You can take advantage of the many trails through the forest as well as a few easier-to-walk areas by the Jacques-Cartier River.
For an idyllic stay, the Manoir du Lac Delage offers lakeside accommodations where you can admire the fall colours from your window. Delight your taste buds at Le Batifol where you can dive into duck linguini, Atlantic salmon, crème brûlée, Spanish churros, and Bailey’s coffee, to name a few. If you and your pals are looking for a spot to grab a few drinks in a less upscale setting, then La Souche, Stoneham's microbrewery and restaurant, is a total must-try.
This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
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