In collaboration with Tourisme Montérégie.
A good place to start this family fest is Verger Labonté, an apple orchard that in the winter turns into a land of puzzles and skating. Bring your own skates and glide through over 2 km of enchanted trails, then play a winter edition of the Guess Who? mystery game or explore the snowshoe trail. It all happens within a wintry wonderland vibe with music, a bonfire, maple taffy on snow, plus hot chocolate and cider.
In Sainte-Catherine, just minutes from Montréal, you’ll find RécréoParc, and at RécréoParc, you’ll find the ultra-popular Rendez-vous polaires. It starts in January and runs until early March, turning this serene South Shore nature enclave into a frosty illuminated festival complete with music, outdoor café, firepits, skating, tube sliding, and a new fatbike, snowshoe and cross-country ski trail that spans 9 km. While you’re in the area swing by Saint-Constant next door for a visit at Exporail, the Canadian Railway Museum, where kids big and small can hop aboard a miniature railway and see the largest collection of Canadian railway vehicles in the country.
Brossard has enough family entertainment to fill a whole day—if not more. There’s BFLY, a magical butterfly aviary that includes an indoor treetop course, a play area on three levels, a climbing zone and a maze of mirrors; Clip ’n Climb, where all ages can learn to climb walls like Spiderman; Oasis Surf (indoor surfing in a beachside environment—cowabunga, dude!); and iSaute, a trampolining universe with more than 20,000 square feet of interconnected trampolines plus foam pits, an exclusive section for toddlers, an obstacle course and a slackline.
Au Machin Chouette is a whole unto itself! This 8,000 sq ft amusement center includes a 17-ft long spiral slide, tunnels, a trampoline, a playground for toddlers, a triple-a slide, plus climbing walls. Never a dull moment. If you’re got any energy left, head to the neighbouring Mont-Saint-Grégoire for a go at Uplå by Arbraska, an aerial park with nets, trampolines and slides in the treetops—even in winter!
Skiing is an obvious good time during March Break, and Ski Saint-Bruno is a great choice for beginners, just 20 minutes from Montréal. The ski hills is also located next to the Parc national du Mont-Saint-Bruno, where you can cross-country ski, snowshoe, hike or fatbike along the trail network for hours, surrounded by over 200 bird species and 40 mammal species that live in the park. Warm up before heading back with a hot drink to-go from the Vieux-Moulin tea house.
Get the whole family buzzed at Électrium, where the power of electricity will reveal all its secrets. The kids will love to watch the electric eel do its thing, or a grand duel of impulses, or feel the force of magnets and learn about how hydroelectric power works to brighten up all our homes. Sign up early for some of the special free activities offered during March Break, like introductory science workshops for kids aged 6 and up.
There’s a vast outdoor playland in Saint-Hyacinthe, and it’s called Parc Les Salines. This four-season destination gets zippy (and nippy!) in the winter with snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, skating and tube sliding. Equipment rental is available onsite if you don’t have your own! As are drinks and snacks in the chalet for when you need to recharge.
Taking the kids to prison might just sound appealing by the end of March Break! The Maison nationale des Patriotes is a historic military structure where you can learn about the Lower Canada Rebellion of the 1830s, a foundational moment in Canadian history. On you way home, stop by the related site in Montréal, on De Lorimier Street, where you can visit the Prison-des-Patriotes-au-Pied-du-Courant (say that three times fast).