Celebrate winter in Quebec: 10 outdoor adventures in the snow
By Margo Pfeiff
- Frozen Mardi Gras: party outside an ice palace, watch canoes race across the ice-chunky St. Lawrence River and hit Old Québec City’s streets, converted to a playground during the frozen Mardi Gras that is Carnaval de Québec, the world’s biggest winter carnival.
- Let the dogs do the driving: learn to mush husky dogs and go dogsledding through the forest, spending the night in a tipi.
- All-night party: celebrate winter during the 11-day Montréal en Lumiere by tasting international guest chefs’ creations, skating outdoors, watching light shows and dancing to live music on snowy streets during an all-night party on “Nuit Blanche.”
- Dreams of ice: sleep in a hotel made of ice in the Québec City Ice Hotel on a bed made of ice, sipping vodka from a glass made of ice at a bar made of ice…
- Backcountry deluxe: snowshoe, backcountry ski and dine on gourmet cuisine in the middle of the Gaspé’s vast mountain and forest wilderness at the luxury Chic-Choc Mountain Lodge.
- Dance under the stars: strut your stuff at Igloofest, an outdoor winter festival that celebrates electronic music in the Old Port of Montréal.
- Ride the rails: a new train with fine dining now travels the scenic route from Québec City to Le Massif de Charlevoix, the province’s best-kept downhill skiing secret.
- Snow me the way: hop on a snowmobile and tour over 33,500 km (20,815 mi) of groomed and signposted trails crisscrossing the province. After all, local Quebec boy Joseph-Armand Bombardier dreamt them up here.
- Sipping cider: travel the ice cider route and visit a cider festival in the Montérégie region, sampling a chilled nectar made from frozen apples, Quebec’s unique, tart answer to icewine.
- Sugaring-off: tap your toes to traditional fiddling at a real sugar shack while dining on traditional Quebec winter cuisine including tourtière meat pies, then finish up with maple sugar pie or taffy pulled off a bed of snow.
Story and photo courtesy of the Canadian Tourism Commission.