Montréal’s Nature Parks
One of the great attractions of Montreal is that you are never very far away from the beautiful trails and nature parks where you can spend an enjoyable day walking or hiking without having to shell out too much money.
There are nine nature-parks or, as they are called in French, “parcs-natures” located within an hour’s drive from the centre of the city. Some are even open to the public all year around where you can cross country ski, skate or snowshoe during the winter months.
During the fall you can witness the magnificent foliage as well as the splendid greenery. These parks are designed for the hiker in mind as well as the casual walker where you can roam to your heart’s content and enjoy the marshes, the varied flora and fauna, historic sites, buttes, lakes, and the mature forests. If you are into kayaking or canoeing, you may also be able to participate in this great sport within some of the parks. In fact, you may also be lucky and witness a wedding in one of these parks, as very often during the late spring until Labour Day there are many who choose to tie the knot in this idyllic setting.
Many of the parks have very well defined trails while others are made up of delightful little paths that are not as clearly mapped out. However, in most instances visitors are permitted to wander almost everywhere. Most of the parks have restroom facilities, snack bars, picnic areas, interpretative centres, and ample parking spaces. The ideal way to spend a day is to bring your own lunch, water or other beverages, garden chairs, if you just plan to laze around, and a good book. This beats spending a fortune eating at some expensive restaurant where the food is sometimes horrendous! Make sure you bring sun tan lotion, as the sun sometimes can be deceiving.
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