Last Updated on January 16, 2021 by Pamela
No matter the time of year, spending a few hours exploring Montmorency Falls, Québec City (also known as: 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 Québec 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 (8 miles) outside of Old Québec, Parc de la Chute Montmorency (so named by Samuel de Champlain in 1613) is one of the TOP attractions in Québec City. At a height of 83 meters, Montmorency Falls is 30 meters higher than Niagara Falls; while it is not nearly as wide, chute Montmorency 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, near Québec City; 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.
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 at the waterfalls from above – as well as stunning views of Ile d’Orleans and Québec City in the distance.
The BEST season to visit Montmorency Falls, near Québec City
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, Québec City 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. Visit their website for schedule information.
A Charming Gîte Near Chute Montmorency
Le Royal Champêtre is a charming Bed & Breakfast (Gîte) just 15 minutes from Montmorency Falls on foot. Enjoy delicious homemade breakfasts with views of the Saint-Lawrence River, meet Brigitte and fall in love with this little slice of heaven.
Consider hiring a Québec City tour guide to create a custom tour that includes Montmorency Falls, Québec City!
Main station: 5300 boulevard Sainte-Anne
Secondary access: 2490 Ave Royale
418-663-3330 or 1-844-522-4883
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 chute Montmorency). The cost of a one-way bus ticket is $3.50 CAD.
Tours Voir offers a half-day tour to the waterfalls, as well as Île d’Orléans.
Drive HWY 138/40 towards Charlevoix and follow the exit signs for Île d’Orleans/Chute Montmorency.
Main Station is open Mid-Jun to Mid-Aug daily 8am–6:45pm.
See website for the rest of the year.
$6.96 CAD, children 17 and under are FREE. Parking is $3.48 CAD per vehicle.
Zipline is $27 CAD