Best hiking near Montreal – Beautiful places that are worth the drive

Who doesn’t love being outdoors? I know I do. I am always in search of the best hiking trails and especially those within a driving distance for a nice day trip or a weekend trip outside of the city.

Quebec offers some of the most beautiful parks with mountains, valleys, waterfalls and stunning views to enjoy. Some of these trails can be enjoyed all year long, while some are wonderful during the warmer months or the fall as a foliage becomes spectacular. In this list you will find some of my favorite national, or provincial parks with the best hiking near Montreal. Some of these can be done as a day trip and some make for a great weekend getaway.

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You might also want to read:
TOP OUTDOOR ACTIVITIES TO DO IN MONTREAL THIS SUMMER
THE BEST MONTREAL ITINERARY – A LOCAL’S GUIDE
BEST AREA TO STAY IN MONTREAL

Parc National de la Jacques-Cartier

Distance from Montreal – 3 hours

If you are looking to go hiking near Montreal, this park is where you will see beautiful glacial valleys, including the Vallée de la Jacques-Cartier where the 550m river runs through. Here you will find over 100 kilometres of hiking trails to explore. The park is located 30 inutes from Quebec City and 3 hours from Montreal. In this park you can enjoy rafting, canoeing and kayaking and also choose a hike based on your ability. Here are some suggestions of the trails that I love:

La Croisee
Distance: 15.4 km
Time: 4 hours 45 minutes
Elevation Gain: 580 m

The Wolves Trail
Distance: 9.7 km
Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Elevation Gain: 480 m

Cascades 
Distance: 4km 
Time:1 hour 15 minutes
Elevation Gain: 156 m

parc_national_jacques-cartier_packandjet travel blog
pac national jacques cartier pack and jet travel blog

Parc Régional des Sept-Chutes

Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 45 minutes

Sept-Chutes or “Seven Waterfalls” is the perfect hike to let you escape the city life. This park takes you to the top of Mont Brassard at an altitude of 700m where you can witness the absolutely incredible views of the lake and surrounding area. Enjoy the waterfalls, lakes and rivers and enjoy the unspoiled nature at this park. All 12km of the park’s trails are surrounded by unforgettable scenery. 

Mount Brassard Loop
Distance: 6.3 km
Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Elevation: 375 m

 

parc sept chutes hike near montreal pack and jet travel blog
sept chutes regional parc pack and jet hikes near montreal

Zec des Martres

Distance from Montreal: 4 hours

ZEC des Martres is an area located 1 hour 30 minutes outside Quebec City, where you can find beautiful mountains, lakes and rivers. This area is part of the Laurentian Mountains (Laurentides), which are a chain of peaks that stretch from southeastern Labrador all the way to southern Quebec. Fun fact: The word martre refers to a ‘marten,’ which is a small cute mammal with brown fur that lived throughout much of Canada. Here you will find multiple trails but the best maintained and most popular is Path of the Dome. This trail takes you to one of the best viewpoints in the park. I actually think this is one of the best viewpoints in all of Quebec.

Path of the Dome
Distance: 8 km
Time: 3 hours 
Elevation Gain: 467 m

 

path of the dome pack and jet travel blog
zec des martres path of the dome best hiking near montreal

Parc Régional du Poisson Blanc

Distance from Montreal: 1 hour

This park makes a great weekend trip as it offers a wide variety of outdoor activities but also beautiful for hiking. There are 17 km of hiking trails with the longest trail being the Desjardins Trail at 9.3 km. If you’re not up for the challenge this hike offers, you can opt to do the Wild Cherry and Rapid Fort Trail. This hike will end with spectacular views of the Poisson Blanc reservoir. 

Wild Cherry and Rapid Fort Trail
Distance: 5 km
Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Elevation gain: 222 m

Desjardins Trail 
Distance: 9.3 km
Time: 3 hours
Elevation gain: 388 m

parc regional du poisson blanc - hiking near montreal - pack and jet travel blog
Photo Credit: https://poissonblanc.ca/
parc-du-poisson-blanc - hiking near montreal - pack and jet travel blog

Mont Tremblant National Park

Distance from Montreal: 2 hours

Mont Tremblant is probably one of the most popular, if not the most popular spots for adventure outside of Montreal all year round. With endless trails in area, there will not be a shortage of ideas for some of the best hiking near Montreal. There are many hikes in this region that require little effort but are very rewarding with some of the best views. Here are some of my favorites:

La Corniche & La Roche Loop (either together or separate)

Distance: 8 km
Time: 2 hours 40 minutes
Elevation gain:

Mont Nixon
Distance: 8 km
Time: 3 hours
Elevation gain: 427 m

La Chute-du-Diable
Distance: 1.4 km
Time: 24 minutes
Elevation gain: 46m

Mont Tremblant national park - pack and jet travel blog
mont tremblant hikes near montreal pack and jet travel blog

Parc naturel regional de Portneuf

Distance to Montreal: 2 hours and 40 minutes

This park has some of the most impressive landscapes that can be discoverd. There are 70 km of hiking trails and my favorites are listed below. Here you will find easier trails along the river with incredible view of the canyon. Here you can also go on a rafting excursion to see the beautiful rock formations from a different point of view. 

Sainte-Anne River Gorge
Distance: 5.5 km
Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Elevation Gain: 111 m

Sentier des Cascades
Distance: 2.7 km
Time: 38 minutes
Elevation gain: 46 m

 

parc naturel regional portneuf hikes near montreal pack and jet travel blog
parc portneuf hikes near montreal pack and jet travel blog

Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook

Distance from Montreal: 2 hours

In this park you will find the longest suspended footbridge in North America at 169 meters (and 50 m high) in North America. The most popular hike in the Parc de la Gorge is its 169-metre-long, 50-metre-high suspension bridge. Cross the bridge and visit the observation tower to take in the impressive view of the Gorge — a 750-metre-long canyon that began its formation during the last ice age. You can also hike up to Mont Pinacle. At the top of this hike, you will get wonderful views of Lake Lyster and Little Lake Baldwin.

Coaticook Gorge via Sentier de la Gorge
Distance: 3.5 km
Time: 1 hour
Elevation Gain: 96m

Mont Pinacle 
Distance: 4.3 km
Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Elevation gain: 192 m

gorge de Coaticook hikes near montreal pack and jet
gorge de Coaticook hikes near montreal pack and jet blog
Photo credit: https://letsgoplayoutside.com/

Parc national du Mont-Orford

Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 30 minutes

This park is considered to be an Eastern Townships gem. Mont-Orford is a favorite among hikers, bikers and rock climbers. This park has so much to offer and 8 trails to choose from, which span over 80 km. Choosing one of these hiking trails will give you the perfect way to enjoy the spectacular scenery with several lookout points. This is a popular spot for hiking near Montreal as there are routes available for all levels and whether are you an experienced hiker or a family with young children. Everyone will be able to enjoy the great outdoors in this park. Here are some of my suggestions for trails:

Mont-Chauve Trail
Distance: 9.2 km
Time: 3 hours
Elevation: 370 m

Pic de l’Ours via L’escalier du Nord
Distance: 12.7 km
Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
Elevation Gain: 624 m

Pack and jet best hiking near Montreal mont orford
Photo Credit: Mathieu Dupuis via Sepac
mont orford hikes near montreal pack and jet blog

Parc d’environnement naturel de Sutton

Distance from Montreal: 1 hour 20 minutes

The Eastern Townships are full of beautiful scenery, and this park with its 4 summits, lakes, and 52 kilometers of trails should not be missed. This park is definitely at the top of my list for hiking near Montreal. Trails range from 2.4 km to nearly 14 km, and they offer some of the best natural beauty the region has to offer. If you are a nature lover, there is no doubt that you should visit this park no matter the time of year. These hikes below are worth adding to your list of spots for best hiking near Montreal:

Lac Spruce Trail
Distance: 4.5 km
Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Elevation gain: 234 m

Round Top Trail
Distance: 6.1 km
Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Elevation gain: 432 m

 

sutton hikes near montreal pack and jet travel blog
sutton park hikes near montreal pack and jet travel blog

Hautes Gorges de la Rivière Malbaie National Park

Distance from Montreal: 4 hours 30 minutes

Although this may be a bit far from the city, I couldn’t leave it off the list of best hiking near Montreal, as it is arguably one of the best viewpoints in all of Quebec. The name of this park comes from the valleys that cut deep into high mountains in the region. Enchanting views. The main hike here is the Acropole des Draveurs which gives you an enchanting view of the Malbaie River. Although this is considered a difficult hike – some say the most difficult in the province – it is the main reason people visit this park. The mountain is the highest east of the Rockies and the drive is definitely worth it as the views from the top are unforgettable. 

Acropole des Draveurs
Distance: 10.6
Time: 4-6 hours
Elevation Gain: 885 m

LAcropole-des-Draveurs-hikes near montreal
Acropoledesdraveurs hikes near montreal pack and jet blog

Parc national des Grands-Jardins

Distance from Montreal: 4 hours

As soon as you see the views in this park, you will forget about the driving distance from Montreal. When I arrived and finished the hike, I couldn’t believe views like this existed in Quebec. There are over 30 km of trails that end with fantastic views with a wide range of landscapes. The name Grands-Jardins was given to this park because of the impressive vegetation in the region. The main view you shouldn’t leave without seeing is the one from Le Mont-du-Lac-des-Cygnes. This is where you will see breathtaking views down into the Charlevoix meteorite crater and Vallée du Gros-Bras. It’s definitely one of my favorite spots for hiking in Montreal and it should not be missed.

Lac-des-Cygnes Mount
Distance: 9.2 km
Time: 3 hours 10 minutes
Elevation gain: 439 m

La Chouenne Trail
Distance: 4.7 km
Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Elevation Gain: 199 m

travel blog hikes near montreal grands jardins pack and jet
grands jardins national park hikes near montreal pack and jet

Mont-Mégantic National Park

Distance from Montreal: 2 hours 30 minutes

Mont-Mégantic National Park has a network of 50 km of hiking trails, with the best views at the summit of Mégantic at 1,110 m and Mont Saint-Joseph at 1,075 m. You can choose one of the many awesome trails, but some of them more challenging than others. At the summit of Mont Saint-Joseph is where you will find a small charming chapel with stunning views of the Eastern Townships. This park is also where you will find the Mont Mégantic Observatory at the elevation of 1,110 m. This is the most important astronomical observatory in Eastern Canada. Here are some of the best hiking trails in this park for you to enjoy:

Trail of the Peaks
Distance: 12.4 km
Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Elevation gain: 390 m

Sentier du Mont Saint-Joseph
Distance: 7.2 km
Time: 3 hours
Elevation gain: 486 m

Mount Megantic Loop
Distance: 11.7 km
Time: 4 hours
Elevation gain: 525 m

Parc MontMégantic hikes near Montreal
Photo Credit: https://www.tourisme-megantic.com/
Mont megantic hikes near montreal
Photo Credit: https://www.easterntownships.org/

I would love to hear your thoughts on these hikes. Have you done any hikes that you love and don’t see on this list? Share your favorite hiking trails with me.

 

My must-haves when I go on a hike anywhere:

Good hiking shoes are a must and make a world of difference. I have always used these Merrell shoes and I highly recommend them. 

I usually like to have a light backpack, which I why I love these foldable, water resistant backpacks

To not add too much weight to my bag, I use these foldable water bottles. They are light and easy to carry and when you are finished drinking, you can pack it up without it taking much space or weight.

Make sure to layer up if you are planning on hiking in early spring or later in the fall or winter. You will also need crampons to avoid slipping in the winter.

Check out this link for other items you might need for your hike.

 

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