Québec: Domaine Saint-Bérnard

For our second day in La Belle Province, we left the resort village of Mont Tremblant and headed to Domaine Saint-Bernard. This place is the definition of a winter wonderland. Walking in, you’re greeted with crackling fire pits and mugs of hot soup and cocoa.

They’ve got routes for hiking, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing, with all the equipment you could ever need available to rent. The difficulty ranges from a Sunday stroll to black diamond.

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If you decide to go hiking like we did, check ahead with someone that works there for daily conditions, but the snowshoe trails are generally also totally passable on foot.

No matter what you do, make sure you go down the M1. It’s a 1km trail that leads to longer snowshoeing trails, but has a few little treasures. The first you’ll find is a little corridor filled with friendly birdies.

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When you’re in the main office, you’ll see free baggies of bird feed. Stuff a couple in your pockets because you’ll be mobbed by these little guys!

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One of them was so eager that he even landed on my Jasper’s head!

And just a little further down at the end the trail, you’ll find a station with benches and fire pits.

And this little fella.

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He’s the friendliest deer you’ve ever seen. If you’re patient enough, he’s been known to come over for a nuzzle. Seriously.

We kept going through the snowshoe trails until our toes were frozen still, and headed in to the fire before doing it all over again.

Les Manics, also known as the R4, begins just where the M1 ends. It’s a really easy hike that immerses you into pine and birch forests. You’ll feel as if you’d entered Narnia. The R8, which we did later, will definitely get your heart pumping as you climb all the way to the top of Mount Onotonio. The landscape doesn’t have the same fairytale quality as the low forest trails, but it does have these views.

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Walking towards the edge of the trails, you’re treated to spectacular snowy vistas of Mont Tremblant. If you look closely, you can just make out the colourful little village and the skiers winding their way down the Mont.

By the time we made it down, the sun was beginning to set, so we packed up our snow boots and made our way for the best treat of the day.

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There are several Scandinave Spas throughout the resort villages of Canada, each just as precious as the last.

I barely took the time to snap pictures before throwing on my robe and diving into the thermal bath!

They don’t allow phones or cameras past the reception, so you’ll have to take my word that this place is incredible. It has Nordic waterfalls, thermal baths, saunas, steam rooms, and great big fire pits. The air is crisp and clean, and nothing feels better after a long day out in the cold than sinking into a warm hot tub.

If you go, just make sure you bring your own robe and sandals. As much as I love this place, I hate how much of a racket they make on charging guests for these essentials.

We stayed here wading in the steam into the late evening, sipping hot tea and stargazing at the darkest sky you’ve ever seen.

XOXO,

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1 Comment

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