As September is coming to an end, fall is almost among us and that means there will be plenty of apple and pumpkin picking, Halloween activities, and haunted house. However, the best fall activity has to be an insanely huge corn maze that gives you the chills.
There are plenty of places to wander amongst the corn stalks near Montreal — both during the day and after dark. Whether you're looking for a wholesome family activity or a Halloween-inspired fright night that'll make you scream in terror, there's something for everyone.
Many farms have online reservation systems while others don't require reservations, so check the websites thoroughly before heading out!
La Ferme Forget
Distance From Montreal: 40 minutes by car
Price: $8 per adult during regular hours or $15 per adult on Friday nights
When: The farm's opening hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekdays or 7 p.m. on weekends. For Friday nights at the farm, doors open at 6 p.m. and the last departure is at 9 p.m. with the site closing at 11 p.m.
Address: 7901, ave. Marcel-Villeneuve, Laval, QC
Why You Need To Go: This cornfield is 3.5 hectares – the equivalent of five football fields — and the maze brings you into the heart of it. You could check it out during the day, but adrenaline junkies looking for a fear factor will want to go Friday night when the labyrinth stays open after dark.
The price of your ticket also gets you access to bonus activities like tractor rides, u-pick sunflowers and zinnias fields, campfires with marshmallows, and a mini animal farm, depending on when you go.
Why You Need To Go: Thie farm has not one, not two, but THREE corn mazes to explore, each fitting this year's theme: London 1886, mysteries and investigations. "This season, take to the streets of 1880s Victorian London with Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson," the website describes.
In addition to the mazes, and outdoor investigation games for all ages, there's also a separate murder mystery game you can take part in.
Your ticket includes access to the corn mazes, farmhouse, picnic area, tractor rides, apple picking area (bag of apples excluded in the price) and more.
When: Friday from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. & Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Address: 30, Montée des Quarante-Deux, Sainte-Julie, QC
Why You Need To Go: According to the Labyrinthe Galaxie website, it has "one of the largest outdoor mazes in the world" with a total area of 48 acres — the equivalent of about 20 rugby fields. The gigantic corn maze in the heart of Ste-Julie offers four different options for landscaped trails: 1 km, 2 km, 3 km, or 5 km.
"The most seasoned scout in you is bound to get lost in this colossal maze," the website says. "Feeling corny will never have felt so good!"
Ferme Guy Rivest (Le Grand Labyrinthe De Lanaudière)
Distance From Montreal: 1.5 hours by car
Price: $8.50 per adult
When: Wednesday to Sunday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. (last entry at 4:15 p.m.)
Address: 1305, ch. Laliberté Rawdon, Quebec
Why You Need To Go: The 6-hectare cornfield has around 8 km of trails cut into it — all designed, according to the website, "to make you lose the north." The current edition has a cinema theme but will be decorated for Halloween throughout the month of October.
When: 9:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturdays and 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sundays (but hours do vary depending on the day so check website for details)
Address: 560 69e Avenue Saint-Zotique, QC
Why You Need To Go: This place is Halloween heaven or, as the website calls it, "the most original pumpkin village!" Not only do you get access to a corn maze, but there are also houses made of pumpkins, a u-pick pumpkin patch, and multiple fall photo booths where you can snap the perfect Insta shot. The idea of the corn maze is to find King Corn, the master of the maze, who will guide you on your journey.
When: Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. until October 24
Address: 63 Main St. W., Vankleek Hill, ON
Why You Need To Go: The 7-acre corn maze is Walt Disney World themed this year, in honour of the Orlando amusement park's 50th anniversary. If a trip to Florida isn't possible right now, why not take these mazes for a spin? The labyrinth can be completed in three different ways so you get to choose your own adventure.
When: Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. & Friday and Saturday night from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. (between September 24 and October 30)
Address: 11, rang du Trait-Carré, Sainte-Anne-des-Plaines, QC
Why You Need To Go: This giant corn maze is decorated for Halloween and turns haunted at night. Your ticket gets you access to the whole site. In addition to the labyrinth, there are sunflower trails, pumpkins and squash fields. Bring on the fall fun!
Staycations are where it's at 2021, and Quebec — with its rolling hills, beautiful lakes and endless drives — is a wonderful place to go exploring near to home. As Canada's largest province, it's chock-full of memories just waiting to be made.
Quebec offers an abundance of both history and nature, from its townships brimming with European charm to its vast provincial parks. You can fly, train or bus to many of Quebec's must-see destinations, but the best way to explore this far-reaching province is by car.
If you're craving the open road, take a cue from 95.9 Virgin Radio host Vinny, who knows a thing or two about road trips. As one of the hosts of Montreal's favourite radio station (and a born-and-bred Montrealer), he reaches road trippers and commuters every weekday morning.
Vinny knows that when it comes to exploring Quebec, you don't have to travel far to uncover lush scenery, wildlife and get some R&R. In fact, his favourite spots are all less than three hour's drive from Montreal.
Just imagine hitting the open road with the windows down and the radio pumping, cruising your way around picturesque villages, quaint architecture, lazy rivers and towering fjords.
Once you've checked out your favourite stops from Vinny's list of must-sees, all you need is a car, snacks for the road and 95.9 Virgin Radio on full blast.
Time From Montreal: 2 hours
Why You Need To Go: With so much to do and see, Mont-Tremblant is one of Quebec's most popular destinations no matter the season or the reason. From a panoramic gondola ride with a bird's eye view of the Laurentians to bike riding through one of the mountain's many trails, this spot is ideal for explorers and adventurers alike.
After a day spent wandering through nature in all its glory, you can wind down with a shopping spree in Mont-Tremblant's famed pedestrian village. Follow it up with an Instagram-worthy dining experience at one of the dozens of restaurants for a vacay done right.
Why You Need To Go: Less than two hour's drive from Montreal (during which you can jam out to tunes on 95.9 Virgin Radio), Saint-Sauveur is another popular Quebec destination that makes for a great day trip. With a massive outdoor pool and water park, restaurants like Gibby's and spas like Vinny's fave, the Polar Bear's Club Spa, Saint-Sauveur is a must-visit for Montrealers.
Spend the day soaking and steaming in the spa's thermal waters, view the Laurentians from horseback or shop to your heart's content. No matter how you choose to spend your time, there's no shortage of fun to be had at Saint-Sauveur.
Why You Need To Go: According to Vinny, Estérel Resort is "an oasis." With a four-season spa that boasts lake and mountainside views, it's easy to see why. Estérel Resort is all about escaping the daily grind, so what better way could there be to make use of a vacation day? Estérel's all-inclusive packages make it a one-stop-shop for all things R&R.
If you're in the mood for a solid sweat sesh, you can venture through the Laurentians via paddleboard, canoe, kayak, pontoon boat or bike. Foodies will especially love the range of fine dining, including the renowned Bistro à Champlain restaurant.
Why You Need To Go: With more than 225 species that call it home, Zoo de Granby is the largest zoo in the province and offers a great day out for the whole family. Due to continued health and safety guidelines, reservations are required for the summer 2021 season, so be sure to save your spot to get in on all the action.
Slender-tailed meerkats, white rhinos, Japanese macaques and snow leopards are just some of the many animals you'll get to spy here. Learn all there is to know about Granby's conservation efforts while you're at it, too.
Why You Need To Go: Just off the island, La Ferme Quinn is a go-to destination for farm-fresh fruits and veggies, including apples, cucumbers, kale and almost every type of berry you can think of. With fall just around the corner, now's the time to plan your apple-picking adventure to stock up for all those pies you're sure to make.
If baking isn't quite your thing, don't stress. According to Vinny, La Ferme Quinn has the "best apple pie ever." You can also load up on muffins and a ton of other baked goodies that may or may not make it through the car ride home.
Why You Need To Go: Combining rustic charm with jaw-dropping architecture, Le Château Montebello might just take your breath away in the best way as it's situated within nature itself. Fun fact: Le Château Montebello is the world's largest log cabin, and it was rated one of the top 10 resort hotels in Canada by Travel & Leisure.
To make your staycay complete, there's an outdoor pool and cabanas, a sports chalet boasting everything from tennis to mini-golf, a nautical pavilion for those who like to kayak, canoe or paddleboard, hiking trails and even 90-minute guided ATV rides.
Why You Need To Go: You don't need to travel far to uncover the beauty of Quebec. Open daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Centre de la Nature is a massive urban park that spans 50 hectares.
Whether you're in search of a chill picnic, wanting to uncover nature via the Centre's five kilometres of pedestrian paths, or looking to entertain the family at Piscine Saint-Vincent or the on-site petting zoo, Centre de la Nature has it all. There's even a tropical greenhouse that boasts a stunning array of plants and animals, so be sure to have your camera at the ready.
Why You Need To Go: Charm and character combine with history to make Quebec City a must-see (and see again) spot. Walkable and sure to satiate your wanderlust, Quebec City is a great spot to spend your vacation days. Crank up the radio while you're en route and listen to 95.9 Virgin Radio hosts talk all things pop culture and more before you pull up in one of the province's most iconic destinations.
Once you're there, soak up a bit of history at Château Frontenac then traverse the Plains of Abraham, the site of the famous Battle of Quebec. You can also peep a stellar view of the St. Lawrence River from Dufferin Terrace, zipline above Montmorency Falls, shop and eat to your heart's content — however you choose to spend your time, Quebec City has plenty to offer.
Why You Need To Go: Touted as a "super cool experience" by Vinny himself, Parc Omega is a safari park with a 12-kilometre route that winds throughout. You're likely to see wolves, deer, bears, bison, birds and more at this year-round attraction.
For the brave-of-heart, you can also spend a night or two in a cabin, chalet, lodge or pod that's surrounded by a pack of wolves. Each accommodation has a glass facade to allow uninterrupted views of nature and wolves alike.
Why You Need To Go: Since it's always five o'clock somewhere, what better way to spend a day than at a winery? Located just minutes from Montreal, La Bullerie is the first Quebec vineyard that specializes in sparkling wines. With the likes of white, red and, of course, rosé, you can sip and santé while you take in the picturesque views of wine country.
If you fancy a picnic while you're there, La Bullerie offers one of their very own that includes choice cheese, fruit and a local dessert. It's the ultimate daytime date location.
The night labyrinth at La Ferme Forget in Laval, which is just a 40-minute drive from downtown Montreal, has reopened for the 2021 season and it's as spooky as ever.
Each Friday night, starting at 6 p.m., you can test your courage by getting lost among the winding corn stalks.
The cornfield is 3.5 hectares – the equivalent of five football fields — and the maze brings you into the heart of it. So you'll need to be brave as you navigate many twists and turns with only a flashlight to guide you.
After you've been found your way out of the corn maze and had the fright of your life, you can wind down with a fire and marshmallows that are included in the price of your ticket.
Tickets go on sale Monday morning for Friday of the same week. Since the number of participants is limited, you are required to book in advance. The activity costs $15 per person.
Your ticket also gets you transportation — by tractor — to the sunflower and zinnia fields to pick flowers, access to a mini animal farm, country music and refreshments in the picnic area, and more.
The last departure for the labyrinth is at 9 p.m. and the site shuts down at 11 p.m.
The maze is divided into two routes: the first one takes 20 minutes and the second one takes about an hour.
Enter if you dare!
Corn Maze In The Dark
When: Fridays starting August 13. Doors open at 6 p.m. and the last departure is at 9 p.m. with the site closing at 11 p.m.