Santa Clause Spotted in Summer Just North of Montreal
The Laurentians is an outdoor lover’s dream; thousand of lakes, rivers dot every corner of this lush mountainous region only an hour from Montreal.A popular destination for skiing in the winter, the region also offers a multitude of fun summer activities for families. Recently, to escape the heat of the city, I took the family on a great weekend getaway to the Laurentians where the kids got to visit Santa for the second time this year. Here is a report on what else we discovered on our visit.
Luxury Accomodations on the Lake
We head for the Laurentians on Friday evening. Weary of heavy traffic leaving the city, we have dinner first, and we are not on the road until nearly 8 p.m.Our destination is St. Adele. We have booked a couple of nights at the Chantecler, a fancy hotel with a private beach on Rond Lake. Chantecler will serve as base camp for our two-day family fun expedition. The hotel’s “Tre Monti” restaurant offers a large Primavera pizza, a hands-down dinner winner with my kids. No need to argue over restaurants in St. Adele when we return on Saturday night. Convenience and compromise are keys when traveling with kids.
Santa Summers in Val David?
After breakfast on hotel veranda, it’s off to Village du Père Noel (Santa's Village) in Val-David, a short 15 minute trek from our hotel. Upon arrival, eager to see the big guy in the red suit, my kids make a bee-line for ‘Santa’s House’ on the far end of the grounds. Though unsure what he’s doing in Val-David, my children nevertheless appear satisfied that this summer Santa passes muster, and we spend the next 4 and half hours taking in the rest of the activities.
Paddle Boating at the Beach
After swinging from giant birds, riding Santa’s electric train and checking out all the other activities available, my children’s excitement has waned considerably. Even my 7 year old seems bored. So we head back to our hotel and spend the rest of the afternoon at the beach, swimming and splashing about in the paddle boats.
Mont Saint-Sauveur Aquatic Park
Sunday lives up to its name; we’re treated to great weather with only a few passing clouds overhead. Santa’s Village is done, and the kids want some faster-paced action. Fortunately, I have the answer: the Aquatic Park at Saint-Sauveur. We begin our visit with the easy attractions like the Bumber Boats and the Pool-Spa. The ‘Lazy River’ takes us for a peaceful 15 minute tube ride downstream. After lunch, we graduate to more adventurous slides like the ‘Rivière Rouge’ and ‘Rivière du Nord’ where we fly down 400 feet of tunnels and turns. We wind out the day in spectacular fashion with two rides on the Viking, an alpine roller coaster.
The Laurentians: So Much to Discover
The aquatic park at Saint-Sauveur is definitely the crowning event for this family’s weekend getaway. The Laurentians offer a wonderful variety of nature-based activities that we didn’t have time for on this outing. Next summer, we return with our bikes. The “P’Tit Train du Nord”, Canada’s longest linear park awaits.