Winter is here, and we’ve just kicked off our ski season with Fun Family Skiing at Mont Tremblant! Tremblant is less than two hours by car from Montreal and nine hours from New York City, but the drive must rank as one of the most beautiful in North America. We’ve noted that parks in Quebec are national parks, as opposed to provincial parks, which adds to the feeling that Quebec is a country within a country.
The View From the Top of Mont Tremblant is Spectacular
An Intrawest resort like one of our other favorite mountain resorts, Stratton, Mont Tremblant offers over 662 acres of ski terrain with over 96 trails for every type of skier. Ranked among the World’s 25 Best Ski Towns in 2014 by National Geographic, and #1 Ski Resort in Eastern North America by SKI Magazine, Tremblant offers countless fresh experiences, including a new kids’ zone, new glades, noteworthy new tech and toys. For non-skiers, the resort provides plenty of entertainment with its picturesque village pietonnier of shops, movie theaters, restaurants and spas. Your family can ride the gondola from one end of the village to the other for free. If you walk up the hill that resembles the trek to Montmartre, you can shake the hand of the reindeer mascot and warm your mittens at a variety of delicious fire pits scattered throughout the village.
Le Sommet des Neiges at Mont Tremblant
We stayed at Le Sommet des Neiges, which is right next to both the main gondola lift and the ski school and even boasts it own lift. Underground parking is right next to the complimentary ski lockers. Ordering your lift tickets in advance will give you a substantial savings. Buying the tickets that can be printed and ready at your hotel desk will allow you to hit the slopes as soon as you arrive. Before hitting the slopes, our family had a sumptuous but reasonably priced lunch at Le Grill.ca Express, where the chef amused us with local stories. Who knew that a hot dog in a croissant could taste so good? In fact, they are even better than the ones at the Yankees games!
The rest of the family hit the slopes while we hit the shops. At the Christmas shop, L’atelier du Pere Noel, we purchased an adorable ornament where the owner customized it by painting on each family member’s name and the year. Our tree is filled with such ornaments from our baseball and ski trips around North America. Farther down the hill, we found Le Magasin General, where, in anticipation of a relaxing dinner in, we bought fresh produce, pasta and bacon, a local favorite. Any meal is great with bacon!
The photo board outside the Aquaclub at Mont Tremblant
At the end of the afternoon, we all dragged our aching bodies to the Aquaclub La Source, which offers a series of indoor and outdoor connected pools and hot tubs. Our younger children swung from the rope swing, giving their best Tarzan calls, while our teen enjoyed the hot tub. The spa also features an adult only outdoor hot tub, just outside the pool area’s glass doors, so we could relax but also keep an eagle eye on the kids. A mini golf course surrounds the hot tub but is open only during the summer.
After our casual home-cooked meal of pasta with a yummy salad, the family hit the hotel’s recreation center for a round of pool. Following that, with the children exhausted from our full day, it was a toss-up between watching the family comedy The Game Plan on DVD or watching Saturday night hockey. Saturday night is famous in Canada for being hockey night. And that night, of course, the Toronto Maple Leafs were playing the Montreal Canadiens, their long-time rivals. So who do you think won the face-off for the evening’s festivities?
Other family friendly tips:
- For hotels on the hill, Mont Tremblant has many options, ranging from the 5-star Fairmont Tremblant Resort to the 4-star Le Sommet des Neiges to the comfy Marriott Residence Inn or Hilton Homewood Suites (includes breakfast). Thanks to American Express Concierge, we were able to snag a two-bedroom condo at Le Sommet des Neiges at an extremely reasonable price. Nathalie, the concierge at the hotel, was very helpful with arranging a variety of activities and handling our lift tickets. For other lodging options, check out dwellable.com.
- The American Express card is a great choice in Canada because it doesn’t charge the currency exchange fees that other cards often do.
- Spa services are plentiful. At this time of year, most of the resort hotels can arrange an early season special on an in-room massage, or you can visit the beautiful Amerispa at the Fairmont hotel. The Scandinavian Spa is also nearby and features a variety of adult only outdoor baths and spa services.
- For dinner, we recommend Restaurant La Savoie for fondue and raclette or Restaurant Coco Pazzo for Italian for either eating in or taking out.
- Learn to ski & learn to ride: the resort offers a variety of amazing developmental programs for children aged three and up. We really love how Flaik, a handy GPS locating device, is given free to every child registered in a lesson. Not only does this device give parents peace of mind, but with it you can replay your child’s day on the internet. How soon can we have these for family shopping trips to the mall?
- Burton will again hold a special event for teens called El Nino on March 29, 2015, during which they will provide special tips on how teens can improve their park performance.
- For other ideas on how to make your family ski trips more affordable, check out how to pack in our post on Beaver Creek.
Don’t miss the Fun Family Skiing at Mont Tremblant! Any favorite family ski trips or travel tips? We want to know!
The Sunset at Mont Tremblant
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