Parc de la Chute-Montmorency/ Montmorency Falls Park, Quebec, Canada

Quebec City

Difficulty: Easy - Family
Park Amenities:
Interpretive Centre
Interpretive Signs
Pet Friendly
Wheelchair Access

Parc de la Chute-Montmorency

Montmorency Falls Park in Quebec City

Parc de la Chute-Montmorency is an adventure park just outside of Old Quebec City, Quebec which is centered around the spectacular Montmorency Falls. At 83 m (272.3') in height these waterfalls are 1.5 times taller than Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. However, watching the torrents of water flowing down the Montmorency River and cascading over the edge of the Boischatel fault to join the Saint Lawrence River below is an awesome experience during all four seasons.

Where to Start Exploring Montmorency Falls Park Quebec Canada

A good place to start any visit to the Parc de la Chute-Montmorency is at the Visitor's Center located in the old train station at the bottom of the falls. Tourists, sightseers, and adventure enthusiasts can purchase tickets for the cable car to the top of the falls, as well as for various activities inside the park... stop for a bite to eat at the Sandwich Stop, and learn about the history of the station and the park.

Today, the historic railway station still serves as a stop for the Train de Charlevoix, a tourist train that runs between Quebec City and Clermont making stops in several villages along the way, including Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupre, Baie-Saint-Paul, and Malbaie. However, its story began in 1881 when the Quebec government authorized the Quebec, Montmorency & Charlevoix Railway company to build a line along the Saint Lawrence River. The railway was instrumental to the development of villages in eastern Quebec, and was used to transport people, lumber, and other products throughout the 1890's. In 1899, the railway was acquired by the Quebec Railway, Light & Power Company, and from 1910 until 1948 hydroelectricity supplied by the Montmorency Falls was used to power the electric locomotives used on the line, as well as the Quebec Tramway.

Hiking at the Bottom of Montmorency Falls

Beginning at the parking lot outside the railway station, visitors can make a circuit around the base of the waterfalls, walking between the river and the cliffs, and enjoying the magnificent falls from all sides. The old railway crossing over the river has been transformed into a pleasant pedestrian walkway, complete with observation platforms and viewing points. Therefore, a wooden boardwalk takes walkers along the western edge of the basin through a pleasantly forested area, bringing them closer to the base of the falls. Heading in the other direction, a raised concrete walkway provides sightseers with panoramic views of the awe-inspiring waterfall.

Getting to the Top of the Waterfall

To get to the top of the waterfall, more adventurous and athletic visitors can choose to climb the Montmorency Falls Panoramic Staircase, which is a set of 487 stairs that clings to the cliff face on the eastern edge of the basin. In summer, spray from the nearby waterfall can be deliciously cooling during the long ascent, but in winter visitors are warned that the stairs can become too icy to climb. Covered viewing platforms offer ample opportunity to catch your breath and enjoy the stunning views as you make the climb. A less-strenuous alternative to the staircase is a cable car, which whisks sightseers to the top quickly and effortlessly. During the ascent, panoramic views of the waterfall, the Saint Lawrence River, and the Ile d'Orleans stretch out far below.

Manoir Montmorency Heritage Site

The Montmorency Manoir was built in 1781 by Governor Frederick Haldimand as a summer residence. The location was chosen because of its proximity to the Chute Montmorency, which had been named in 1608 by Samuel Champlain, in honour of the duc de Montmorency, who later became the viceroy of New France. Uncharacteristically, the architecture of Haldimand's two-story house was inspired by British Palladian villas and the colonial plantation houses in Florida, and when it was finished, the residence became one of the first buildings to appear in Canada that didn't reflect the French architectural style. After Haldimand's death in 1791, the manor was rented between 1791 and 1794 by Prince Edward Augustus, who was the Duke of Kent and Queen Victoria's father. Accompanied by his mistress, Madame de Saint-Laurent, the Duke of Kent became the first Royal to stay in Canada. For this reason, in 1901 the house was opened as the Kent House Hotel, which became a tourist attraction complete with park, zoological garden, carousel, skating rink, and access to the prestigious Royal Quebec Golf Club. Unfortunately, after WWII the hotel lost favour. Subsequently, it became a spiritual retreat before the Government of Quebec acquired the property in 1974 and created the Parc de la Chute-Montmorency. In 1993 a fire severely damaged the building, but it was rebuilt the following year, and now houses a gourmet restaurant and banquet facilities.

Exploring Montmorency Park Above the Falls

From the terrace of Manoir Montmorency, visitors can follow a wooden boardwalk along the top of the cliffs to the suspension bridge, stopping at La Baronne observation deck to take in the spectacular views over the Saint Lawrence River along the way. The covered La Baronne viewpoint extends beyond the cliff edge, requiring a sense of daring and a strong head for heights to experience the close-up views of the magnificent waterfall. Standing on the platform, visitors can feel the power of the falls thundering through the forests around them. Continuing on across the suspension bridge, which spans the lip of the falls, the roaring of the waterfall is almost deafening.

Zipline Across the Thundering Falls

For those more interested in high-flying adventure, a double zip line across the cove of the falls offers an adrenaline rush like no other. Furthermore this 300 m zip line allows daredevils and thrill seekers alike to dangle their feet above the thundering waterfall while zipping through its spray. Riders must launch themselves off the cliff edge, landing on the far side of the falls near La Baronne belvedere.

The Via Ferrata

The Via Ferrata provides an exciting experience for thrill seekers who prefer a slower pace. This 'Iron Road' consists of three climbing routes that stretch along the vertical face of the boischatel fault. Three sets of iron hand and foot holds guide hikers across the cliff face. Visitors age 8 and up can attempt the course, wearing climbing harnesses that are securely hooked onto a continuous cable that doesn't require detachment of the carabiners while navigating the course. Perched high on the cliff side, climbers enjoy a unique perspective of the falls and the surrounding scenery.

Places to Eat at Montmorency Falls Park

There are a variety of culinary options offering different dining experiences for those who have worked up an appetite while visiting Montmorency Falls Park. The Station's Sandwicherie, which is located in the Station at the base of the falls offers a wide selection of homemade sandwiches and beverages, which can be enjoyed as an outdoor picnic or in the informal eating area within the Station. Alternatively, the Manoir Restaurant, located at the top of the falls, offers gourmet fare and stunning natural scenery from its dining room and outdoor terrace. It is also open for weddings, banquets, and other group functions.

Parc de la Chute-Montmorency

Montmorency Falls Park


Parc de la Chute-Montmorency/ Montmorency Falls Park, Quebec, Canada
2490 Ave Royale, Quebec City, Quebec, G1C 1S1
Quebec City

How To Get ToParc de la Chute-Montmorency/ Montmorency Falls Park, Quebec, Canada

There are two parking areas at Montmorency Falls Park:

Lower Parking Lot Address: 5300 Bd Sainte-Anne, Québec, QC G1C 0M3
Upper Parking Lot Address: 2490 Ave Royale, Quebec City, QC G1C 1S1

Driving directions to the lower parking lot from Old Quebec City (approximately a 15 min drive):

Take the Autoroute 440 E ramp to Sainte-Anne-de-Beaupré
Continue onto A. 440 E
Take exit 325 toward Parc de la Chute-Montmorency/QC-138 O
Turn left onto Bd Sainte-Anne/QC-368 O
Turn right onto Av. St Grégoire
Follow the road until you reach the Parking Lot Entrance
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