The Skaters’ Waltz
Of the thousand and one pleasures of winter, ice skating is probably the most popular activities among Quebecers. What youngsters don’t have fond memories of their first pair of skates and their town’s outdoor rink at the first snowfall and winter cold! Times have changed though. To the frozen pond or iced-over river are added groomed tracks, speed skating rinks and numerous indoor facilities.
Québec City offers the D’Youville rink, a special gathering place for those who like to combine the joys of outdoor skating with the pleasures of a stroll through the streets of Old Québec. The refrigeration system of the rink ensures excellent ice surface quality at all times.
In Montréal, Mont-Royal park is an exceptional natural setting for cross-country skiing and sliding, but skaters are not overlooked, given the refrigerated surface of the Beaver Lake pavilion. In Old Montréal, the natural ice rink of the Bonsecours basin is open to skaters, who can glide to their heart’s content! In addition to a unique view of Old Montréal and the river, the site offers activities in a great atmosphere, with, as a backdrop, the illuminated panorama of the downtown area.
Outside the main centres are novel animated skating activities, with evenings lit by torchlight. Le Baluchon, in the Mauricie region, boasts an outdoor skating rink among the most beautiful in Québec. It stretches over five kilometres on the Rivière du Loup. In the same region, the Domaine de la Forêt Perdue offers skaters a maze of frozen paths ten kilometres long.
In Lanaudière, another rink, the longest on a river, the Rivière L'Assomption, has two 4.5-km lanes. This unique site in an enchanting setting is less than an hour from Montréal and Trois-Rivières. Lovers of the outdoors, nature, sports and winter activities will find all they could wish for.