No matter the time of year, spending a few hours exploring around Montmorency Falls (Parc de la chute Montmorency) is always a good idea. In spring and summer, you can spend an entire morning, hiking the trails, checking out the waterfalls, and enjoying a picnic of fresh croissants and Quebec cheese. In autumn, when the leaves begin to change colour, Montmorency Falls is vibrant and stunning; a great season for a little hiking and taking an obscene amount of photos. In winter the park is covered in a blanket of pristine snow, and ice forms around the waterfalls – a true winter wonderland. Sure, hiking may be out of the question, but you climb up the icy canyon walls!
Located about 13 km’s (8 miles) outside of Vieux-Quebec (Old Quebec), Montmorency Falls (so named by Samuel de Champlain in 1613) is one of the TOP attractions in Quebec City. At a height of 83 meters, Montmorency Falls is 30 meters higher than Niagara Falls; while it is not nearly as wide, Montmorency Falls is impressive, and there is a good chance you will spend way too much time staring at them.
And you may even take an obscene amount of photos while you’re at it – we certainly do!
There are multiple ways to explore Montmorency Falls: take the cable car to the top and walk back down, take the cable car up and down, walk the 480+ stairs up to the cliffside to the top of the waterfalls, or park at the top and walk around a little before returning to your car.
Recommended route at Montmorency Falls
Experience the roar of the water as it rushes over the cliff and falls into the Saint-Lawrence river, and feel the spray on your face as you climb the 480+ wooden stairs clinging to the cliffside – don’t worry, there are several look-out points along the way if you need to catch your breath or snap a couple (or twenty) photos.
Once you have reached the top, make your way to the suspension bridge for a look of the waterfalls from above – as well as stunning views of Ile d’Orleans and Quebec City in the distance.
The BEST season to visit Montmorency Falls
It is a tough choice, the waterfalls and surrounding foliage are pretty most of the year: spring when the trees and flowers and in blossom, summer when the heat of the sun kisses your skin, autumn when the trees turn gold and rust and ruby, and winter when everything is white and sparkly.
That being said, our personal favourite season is autumn when the foliage along the canyon pops with colour.
What to expect in Winter
As they say on Game of Thrones, ‘winter is coming’, and soon Montmorency Falls will be covered in a blanket of snow and ice. While the wooden stairs may not always be accessible, the walkways at the top of the waterfalls will be open. Yay!
Of course, walking along the pathways is not the only activity you can do in winter. Consider going ice canyoning or snowshoeing!
The cable car is not open all winter, the fact is, it’s closed for most of the winter with the exception of the following dates:
- 26 Dec to 03 Jan – open daily 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
- 28 Jan to 19 Feb – open daily 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
- 20 Feb to 28 Apr – open Sat & Sun 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
How to visit Montmorency Falls
From 30 Apr to 30 Oct (high season) Montmorency Falls is in full swing and all parking lots are open, as well as the boutique, restaurant and cable car. The costs for visiting during high season are as follows:
- Parking 10.44 per vehicle
- Cable car – Adult, single ride $11.96
- Cable car – Adult, return $13.92
- Cable car – Couple $34.36
- Cable car – Child 5 & under $0
- Cable car – Child 6-17 $6.09
- Cable car – Family 2 adults & children 6-17 $46.97
From 31 Oct to 28 Apr most of the services at Montmorency Falls is closed (except for times listed above under ‘What to expect in winter’). The costs for visiting during low season are as follows:
- Parking 6.96 per vehicle
- Cable car – Adult, single ride $10
- Cable car – Adult, return $11.96
- Cable car – Couple $31.09
- Cable car – Child 5 & under $0
- Cable car – Child 6-17, single ride $5
- Cable car – Child 6-17, return $6.09
- Cable car – Family 2 adults & children 6-17 $41.97
If you do not have a vehicle, but you still want to visit Montmorency Falls, Tours Voir offers a half-day tour to the waterfalls, as well as Île d’Orléans. You can also take bus #800 from Hôtel Park Royale on avenue Honoré-Mercier to Royale /des Rapides and then walk about 5 minutes to the waterfalls (this takes you to the top of Montmorency Falls). The cost of a one-way bus ticket is $3.50 CAD.
5300 boulevard Sainte-Anne