Val-d’Or, located in the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region of Quebec, Canada, is a vibrant and picturesque city that offers a wide range of activities for visitors to enjoy. Whether you’re an outdoor enthusiast, a history buff, or simply looking to immerse yourself in the local culture, Val-d’Or has something to offer. Here are some of the best places to visit and things to do in Val-d’Or:
1. La Cité de l’Or
This historic gold-mining site offers a fascinating journey into the region’s mining past. Visitors can explore an underground mine and learn about the gold extraction process. The tour includes a visit to the Mining Village, where you can experience what life was like for the miners and their families. The on-site museum also provides valuable insights into the mining industry’s impact on the area.
2. Les Jardins à Fleur de Peau
For nature lovers, this botanical garden is a must-visit. It features a stunning collection of native plants, flowers, and sculptures, all set against the backdrop of the beautiful landscape of Abitibi-Témiscamingue. The gardens offer a tranquil and serene atmosphere, perfect for leisurely walks and picnics.
3. Kanasuta Ski Hill
If you’re visiting during the winter months, Kanasuta Ski Hill is the place to go for skiing and snowboarding. With a variety of slopes suitable for different skill levels, this ski resort caters to both beginners and experienced winter sports enthusiasts. The scenic views from the top of the slopes are an added bonus.
4. Village minier de Bourlamaque
Another historical site, the Bourlamaque Mining Village, offers a glimpse into the region’s mining heritage. It’s a well-preserved village with colorful wooden houses and buildings that provide a sense of what life was like in the early 20th century. Take a leisurely stroll through the village to soak in the unique atmosphere.
5. Regional Museum of Val-d’Or
Image Source: https://www.britannica.com/place/Val-dOr
To delve deeper into the city’s history and culture, visit the Regional Museum of Val-d’Or. The museum showcases exhibits on the region’s Indigenous heritage, mining history, and the development of Val-d’Or as a city. It’s an excellent place to gain a better understanding of the area’s past and present.
6. Osisko en Lumière
This winter festival is a celebration of snow, lights, and outdoor activities. During the festival, you can enjoy various events, such as ice sculptures, snow slides, and illuminated displays. It’s a perfect occasion for families and friends to come together and have fun in the winter wonderland.
7. Outdoor activities
The surrounding natural beauty of Val-d’Or offers an array of outdoor activities. From hiking and biking trails to fishing and canoeing in the nearby lakes and rivers, outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty to keep them entertained.
8. Local Cuisine
Don’t forget to sample the local cuisine while in Val-d’Or. Being in the heart of Quebec, you can savor traditional French-Canadian dishes like poutine, tourtière, and maple syrup treats.
9. Kiamika Regional Park
For those seeking an immersive outdoor experience, Kiamika Regional Park is a great destination. Located about an hour’s drive from Val-d’Or, this vast wilderness area offers hiking trails, canoeing, and kayaking opportunities. The park’s serene lakes and dense forests provide a perfect setting for a day of exploration and relaxation in nature.
10. Centre d’Exposition de Val-d’Or
Art enthusiasts will appreciate a visit to the Centre d’Exposition de Val-d’Or. This contemporary art center showcases works from local and regional artists, giving visitors a glimpse into the vibrant art scene of the area.
11. Promenade du Centenaire
Take a leisurely stroll along Promenade du Centenaire, a picturesque walkway that runs through the heart of the city. The promenade is lined with beautiful flowerbeds, public art installations, and benches, making it an ideal place for a peaceful afternoon walk or to sit and soak up the ambiance.
13. Parc-Aventure Joannes
Image Source: https://www.quebecgetaways.com/parc-aventure-joannes
This adventure park is perfect for families and thrill-seekers alike. With activities such as treetop obstacle courses, ziplining, and climbing walls, Parc-Aventure Joannes offers an exciting and challenging experience in a safe and supervised environment.
14. Abitibi Golf Club
Golf enthusiasts can tee off at the Abitibi Golf Club, a scenic 18-hole course surrounded by lush greenery and stunning landscapes. Even if you’re not an avid golfer, the club’s restaurant and patio offer a relaxing spot to enjoy a meal or drink with a view.
15. Aboriginal Cultural Festival
If your visit coincides with the Aboriginal Cultural Festival, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the rich cultural heritage of the First Nations communities in the region. The festival showcases traditional dances, arts and crafts, storytelling, and delicious Indigenous cuisine.
16. T.E. Draper Observatory
Image Source: https://www.tedraper.ca/
Astronomy enthusiasts can visit the T.E. Draper Observatory to observe celestial wonders. The observatory regularly hosts public stargazing events and offers a chance to learn about the night sky through telescopes and educational programs.
17. Shopping and Dining
Explore the city’s charming downtown, where you’ll find boutique shops, art galleries, and cozy cafes. Don’t miss the chance to indulge in some regional delicacies and try out local restaurants that offer a blend of Quebecois and international cuisine.
18. Magasin Général Dumulon
Step back in time and visit Magasin Général Dumulon, a historic general store that has been preserved to give visitors a glimpse of what shopping was like in the past. The store’s authentic atmosphere and old-fashioned products make for an interesting and nostalgic experience.
19. Festivals and Events
Image Source: https://tourismevaldor.com/en/
Val-d’Or hosts various festivals and events throughout the year, celebrating everything from music and arts to local heritage and sports. Check the city’s event calendar to see if any festivals align with your visit, as they offer a fantastic opportunity to mingle with locals and experience the community’s vibrant spirit.
20. Beaudoin Lake Park
Image Source: https://www.wikiloc.com/trails/outdoor/canada/quebec
For a relaxing day by the water, head to Beaudoin Lake Park, located just a short drive from Val-d’Or. This peaceful spot is perfect for a family picnic, swimming, or simply enjoying the beautiful natural surroundings.
21. Agnico Eagle Arena
Image Source: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centre_Agnico_Eagle
If you happen to be a hockey fan, catching a local hockey game at the Agnico Eagle Arena can be a thrilling experience. Ice hockey is deeply rooted in Canadian culture, and witnessing a game in person can be a fun and exciting way to immerse yourself in the local sports scene.
22. Amos-Hodgson Historical House
Located in nearby Amos, the Amos-Hodgson Historical House is a well-preserved heritage site that showcases life in the region during the early 20th century. The house offers guided tours and a glimpse into the past, making it a fascinating outing for history enthusiasts.
23.Nature Interpretation Center
The Nature Interpretation Center in Val-d’Or provides an opportunity to learn about the region’s flora and fauna through interactive exhibits and educational programs. It’s an excellent place for families and nature lovers to deepen their understanding of the local ecosystem.
24. Gold-Bearing Floats
Join a guided tour to explore the gold-bearing floats in the surrounding rivers and streams. These natural formations, created by the movement of glaciers, are known for containing gold particles. It’s an exciting and unique activity for those interested in geology and prospecting.
Image Source: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Chibougamau
If you have more time to spare, consider taking a day trip to the nearby towns of Chibougamau and Chapais. Both towns offer their own set of attractions, including beautiful lakes, wildlife reserves, and opportunities for outdoor activities.
26. Fishing and Hunting
Val-d’Or and the Abitibi-Témiscamingue region are known for their abundant fishing and hunting opportunities. Whether you’re interested in angling for trout, walleye, or northern pike in one of the many lakes or prefer hunting for game like moose and grouse, there are various outfitters and guides available to facilitate your outdoor pursuits.
27. Labyrinthe du Lièvre
Located in nearby Notre-Dame-du-Nord, Labyrinthe du Lièvre is a unique attraction featuring an intricate maze. This labyrinth is an enjoyable activity for families, challenging visitors to find their way through the twists and turns while surrounded by beautiful scenery.
28. Microbreweries and Local Brews
Quebec is known for its craft beer scene, and Val-d’Or is no exception. Sample locally brewed beers at one of the city’s microbreweries, and try some unique flavors and blends that reflect the region’s distinct taste.
Places and Things To Do