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Homegrown sustainable practises: your winter getaways in Authentic Quebec

November 28, 2022

Homegrown sustainable practises: your winter getaways in Authentic Quebec © Valerie Kelhetter
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Within a short reach of both Montreal and Quebec City you’ll discover endless pleasures in the heartland of our province in the regions of Authentic Quebec, Lanaudiere and Mauricie. Looking for environmentally friendly and ecological winter escapes. We’ve got the answer.

So, when the ethical commitment and eco-responsibility of your hosts are added to the virtues of the local, it gives ideas for winter getaways that really make sense. In Lanaudiere and Mauricie, the local is never banal, and ethics, always chic!

Homegrown sustainable practises: your winter getaways in Authentic Quebec

Whether our local entrepreneurs cater to your desires for lodging, food and outdoor activities on the various stops along the Chemin du Roy, or along the St-Lawrence River, or within the vast boreal expanses, they all share a passion and consideration for regional diversions that are both ecologically sound and environmentally sustainable.

So close to Montreal and Quebec City yet distant enough from urban bustle, Lanaudiere and the Mauricie nurture a philosophy of respect. Be it for the land, for those who farm it and bring to market the seasonal harvests and for all its inhabitants, great or small.

Living in Authentic Quebecan unmistakable awareness takes hold that businesses as well as residents are conscientiously factoring a genuine concern for long-term sustainability into their commercial plans and projects.

Tourists, travellers and visitors, whether it be for a day or weekend are welcomed to take part in this area of Quebec rendered that much better through our collective contributions. Regardless of season, it’s always the right time for ecotourism.

In supporting adventure outfitters, local artisans, lodgings, attractions or restaurateurs that operate in an environmentally friendly manner you are effectively contributing to the betterment of Lanaudiere and Mauricie regions. Small changes and sound choices play a big role in establishing durable and positive change.

A Vineyard with eco-responsible initiatives: from the forest to your wine glass

Abandon those gas-powered engines for the quiet and stillness of our dog sledding trails.  Mush in the hush of the forests.  In the scope of a host of winter activities dogsledding is truly a timeless tradition to be enjoyed by kids of all ages.  Thrills, spills and chills to be had by all – all-the-while being one of the most ecologically friendly adventures available.

Befriend the huskies as well as the mushers.  Come and enjoy a once in a lifetime experience.  The woods of Lanaudiere and Mauricie regions, in particular in the Matawinie and Haute-Mauricie are idyllic locations to start.  Thick forests shelter riders from any potential winds, and the countless lakes and rivers provide for endless excitement in the crisp fresh air.

Less than an hour away from Montreal lies the town of Rawdon.  There you will find the team at Kinadapt, a reputable dogsledding outfitter ready to take you on an unforgettable winter adventure. Kinadapt offers tailored trekking packages for all levels of skill and experience including moonlight runs. You will quickly understand how the valued respect of the dogs is central to their approach. The pack made up of huskies and malamutes are considered full-fledged members of the Kinadapt team. Once the huskies are retired, one can become a benefactor and enjoy the privileges of being a huskie patron. Would you like to sponsor a Huskie?

Located just a two-hour drive from Québec city, near the St. Maurice River and La Mauricie National Park, Galeox Univers is another fine example of the alliance and respect between man, wildlife and the environment. Galeox Univers is home to a large dog kennel made up of Siberian and Alaskan huskies. Gabrielle Church and her family owned and operated dogsledding outfit offers visitors a unique opportunity to drive their own pack of huskies into the Boreal forest of the Haute-Mauricie. Galeox Univers is about creating rewarding connections between our four-legged friends and people within a natural landscape. Watching the huskies’ setting off on the snowy trails you can see how their eagerness and joy is equally intensified as that of our clients.

As the head of Galeox Univers, Gabrielle Church explains, “Our huskies are dearly loved by our family and friends. As animal caretakers we know the personality of each animal. Our huskies are not on chains, their welfare, comfort and freedom are just as important to us as that of any visitor.  Galeox Univers offers visitors a hands-on approach to taking care of the huskies. For example, one can learn how to interact and feed them at the end of the day.”

© Jean-Gabriel Pothier

Another winter lifestyle in Authentic Quebec

Staying in our region gives new meaning to the Roman god of sleep and dreams Morpheus, offering the possibility of making the most of your free time. Throughout Quebec Authentic regions, lodgings are committed in solidarity on a year-round basis to the social fabric of eco-responsibility. Here, the concern for the well being of the planet is as high a priority. A pioneer of its kind, Le Baluchon Eco-Resort is situated in the beautiful Mauricie countryside of Saint-Paulin.

The various types of accommodations, soft adventure activities, spa treatments as well as Le Baluchon’s gastronomic menu have been designed to reduce their ecological footprint on the planet. Grounded on some of the principals of “slow-design”, the hotel’s rooms and cottages are built and decorated using local expertise and materials.

Here you can enjoy snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, dogsledding or 35 km of fat-bike forest trails in a genuine green village in the heart of a protected natural landscape. Recycling, energy saving, waste management, kitchen waste and water, use of eco-friendly products and sustainable reforestation are an integral part of Le Baluchon’s operating practises.

At Kabania, their philosophy invites you to adopt ecological practices all the while enjoying a unique ecotourism experience in Lanaudière. Kabania is made up of small cabins on stilts and tiny houses that are nestled amongst the trees, exquisite cabins in symbiosis with the boreal natural landscape. Kabania’s sustainable commitment is a shared value that is realised through a range of daily concrete actions. For example, Kabania supplies washable coffee filters, organic dish soap in bulk, vegetable sponge and food composting. Additionally, a great source of inspiration is the joy of walking along one of the many “leave no trace behind” forest trails created to reduce our footprint. It is a way to connect with nature and contribute to the preservation of our natural environment for future generations.

A Vineyard with eco-responsible initiatives: from the forest to your wine glass

In the heart of Lanaudiere and Mauricie regions one cannot overlook the various sustainable initiatives in the agri-tourism sector. Many artisans propose to visitors’ unique learning opportunities in harmony with their eco-agricultural practises.

Located on the threshold of Mauricie, Annie Trépanier and Éric Blouin are owners of an organic vineyard.  At the Clos Sainte-Thècle Vineyard exists an innovative lodging named, “CAMPagne.”  Dome shaped igloo-like housings are installed at the edge of the vineyard near the forest mountainside. To minimize the footprint on the land, the eco-friendly structures are built on platforms offering amenities and the comfort of an urban hotel. During the winter season, snowshoes are provided for each couple.  Also, guests can enjoy the beautiful agricultural countryside by riding an electric fatbike or on Hok skis, a hybrid between cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. And lets not forget, to savour one of the many house wines that echo the biodiversity of the vineyard, releasing the natural aromas and balance of its environment.

In Authentic Quebec the grandiose boreal forest and landscape is not just a beautiful setting and playground.  Here, it is an actual year round pantry for all locally produced and sustainable foods.

In the hinterland of Lanaudiere lies renowned ambassador of delicious products made right on site of the Val Notre-Dame Abbey. Here, a traveller can learn about the various produce grown in the surrounding forests. To discover the gourmet characteristics of the forest, the Abbey invites guests to get their hands dirty and enjoy an excursion into the woods where, they will learn about how to identify edible mushrooms and herbs. And, during the winter season are hikes on snowshoes that lead to a secluded yurt to sample some gourmet food delicacies. These activities are just another opportunity to experience local values ​​and the practise of sustainable development while, exploring, learning and savouring the diverse flavours of the landscape.

The vast natural environment in Authentic Quebec is imbued with a profusion of tastes. Likewise, each player within the territory has decidedly perfected the art of appreciating the natural landscape in a sustainable and eco-responsible manner.

© Véronic Vanasse