Photo by Mathieu Dupuis, courtesy of Tourism Montréal
Îles-de-Boucherville National Park
If you aren't going to add a visit to some of the more rural parts of Québec before or after your time in Montréal, it's possible to get a small taste of the province's wild side at the Îles-de-Boucherville, a small group of islands about 25 minutes upstream from the heart of the city. In the middle of the St. Lawrence River, this small undeveloped reserve is home to skunks, deer, and migrating birds. You may also catch a glimpse of one of Canada's iconic animals, the beaver, though they tend to be elusive and shy. While the park is an ideal place for a short hike or a kayaking trip along its protected waters, it is still right on the outskirts of Montréal, so on a sunny weekend day you may find yourself sharing it with many city residents in search of a natural escape, just like you.