Leave the beaten track and discover the pick of our crop
A brief note to start with: Some of the web sites linked below are in English; other are in French. Don't worry: the Laurentians have welcome English speaking tourists for nearly a century and you will easily find someone to help you, in person or over the phone.
You probably have already heard about Le p'tit train du nord, the bicycle path that winds over 200 kilometers from St. Jerome to Mont-Laurier, but The-Heart-of-the-Laurentians, as the area is called, has many other outdoor trails to offer. Steps away from the bed and breakfast, you will find the recreational paths of Plein-air Ste-Adèle, criss-crossing the heights surrounding the village.
It is the ideal playground for cyclists and mountain bikers. You can rent a bicycle four a four-hour period or for the day, at the old train station in Mont-Rolland, at KM25 of the trail.
Seven kilometers to the north-west, the Parc de la rivière Doncaster is a true gem hidden amongst the hills, with its main trail accessible to all. Twelve kilometers to the north, towering over the picturesque village of Val-David, Parc régional Val-David/Val-Morin is famous for its high cliffs (a climber's paradise) and for the huge and mysterious erratic blocks scattered in the undergrowth of its forest.
It is also possible to paddle down the Du Nord River in a canoe or a kayak, from Val-David to Val-Morin, and cycle back on the linear park trail.
Sainte-Adele is the hometown of Claude-Henri Grignon, author of Un homme et son péché (The Woman and the Miser) describing life of the habitants at the beginning of the 20th Century. To honour his memory, the local community has put up a series of murals depicting pioneer life. The village has several nice art galleries. In the Mont-Rolland neighboorhood, a quaint little museum celebrates the art of Zénon Alarie, a little known but remarkable animalier sculptor.
In Val-David, facing the Dufresne grocery store that was saved by a monumental bas-relief, the 1001 pots exhibition is an yearly meeting place for pottery and ceramics lovers. Just outside the village, you will find the studio of international artists René Derouin and Jean Bisson Biscornet. Finally, combining nature and culture, two more gardens are worth the visit: the herbal garden of La clef des champs and the flower garden of philanthropist François Marcil.
If you love the stage, don't miss St-Sauveur's FASS, a world class dance festival presenting extraordinary performances under a big top. Around St-Adolphe d'Howard, students from the Laurentians Musical Camp professional program give free performances. But, whatever your tastes, the Laurentian Hills are bustling with performances and arts and crafts events.
The Laurentians have a long-standing gastronomical tradition, rooted in French cuisine and supported by the École hôtelière des Laurentides, located across the street from the inn. We like:
In Ste-Adele - For dinner : the creative elegance of Adèle Bistro; the refined classics from Chez Milot; the savoury slow cooking of l'Express gourmand; Les têtes de cochon and Recto verso, where haute-cuisine meets local farmers products. For lunch : the gourmet friendliness of Cœur de Provence (lunch only) and the healthy and tasty creations of la Quincaillerie des Saveurs (''the flavours hardware'').
In Ste-Marguerite - Café O' Marguerites, which feeds both the body and the soul!
In Ste-Adele : You can find lucious pastries and chocolates, pick unconventional decor accessories at Collections campagne, take advantage of the craft and farmer's market every saturday, and explore the vintage treasure chest at Les chineuses.