Best things to do in October in the Eastern Townships

Published on Sept 15, 2023

Fall has finally arrived in the Eastern Townships, bathing the landscape in dazzling shades of yellow and red. Situated in the heart of the province of Quebec, our region is just one hour’s drive from Montreal and it shares a border with Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. It’s so close by and yet so out of the ordinary, welcoming visitors with a spectacular display of nature’s making. In addition to our fall colours, food and fun are also on the agenda in October.

While “leaf peeping” is a major activity this month, there are also many events and attractions all around the region. Check out the numerous activities you can enjoy with your family or your significant other!

Fall festivities at our mountain resorts

The Eastern Townships have no fewer than four mountain resorts, two of which – Mont Sutton and Owl’s Head – are very close to the American border. The panoramic views from their summit are, of course, spectacular, but in addition to those, the mountains are running fall festivals that feature chairlift rides, mountain biking, live entertainment, gourmet food and guided hikes. The list goes on….

While the fall colours are in evidence no matter where you travel within the region, there are certain areas – some not so well known - which offer truly spectacular leaf peeping. We’ve compiled a list of the 30 best places below:

To get the most out of the colour season, you may want to prolong your visit beyond just a daytrip. The mountain areas offer a wide range of accommodations – from B & Bs to full service resorts.

Romantic experiences to share with your partner…

The Eastern Townships exude romance! That’s not just because of the beauty of the landscape (although that’s enough to put anyone in a romantic mood!). The region has a laid-back, easy going ambience which encourages visitors to unwind and forget their worldly cares. This is particularly true in the fall when Mother Nature is putting on her spectacular show… The following outlines of 32 romantic activities and attractions you can share with your loved one. Take a look at our suggested itinerary:

Follow the Wine Route…

This is a beautiful time of year to venture along the Brome-Missisquoi Wine Route. The changing leaves provide a colourful backdrop to the 22 wineries that are dotted along the way. Wine tastings are included in a visit but even more romantic is to fill a picnic basket with local produce and dine among the grape vines. A number of the wineries also have restaurants where you can order a meal and you can always find nearby accommodation.

Then the Panoramic Sheds Circuit…

After exploring the Wine Route, continue driving towards the area where a designated circuit encompasses nine wooden “sheds” - open-sided lookout points from which you can admire the colourful vistas that surround you.

Ending in one of the restaurants in Sherbrooke

In the Townships, there are numerous places to enjoy a tasty lunch or a candlelight dinner. Annual Sherbrooke met la table (“Sherbrooke Restaurant Week”) is back and it runs from October 19-29. This food-themed event showcases the city’s fine dining spots, which cater to every taste and budget level. When you plan your next outing to the Eastern Townships with your loved one, we hope you can be inspired by the ideas we have outlined for you! And don’t delay if you’re planning to stay over. The fall season is particularly popular and accommodation – particularly a romantic venue like a cozy country inn - can be hard to come by if you don’t book in advance.

Plan a family getaway...

The beautiful days of October in the Eastern Townships are ideal for enjoying the great outdoors with your family. Plan an outing (or several!) to the region and have fun with the kids, to create happy memories for years to come!

...On a mountain

The hiking trails in the Townships are not all designed for seasoned walkers. Many can be easily navigated by small fry with short, little legs! Les sentiers du Morne are a typical example. One of the trails is a family-accessible path that winds through the forest. If you’re looking for a day filled with action, head for Bromont, montagne d’expériences. This mountain resort offers a slew of activities – mountain sledding, bungee trampoline, a climbing wall (and more).

...At an orchard

The Eastern Townships region is practically synonymous with the bounty of the land! October is the peak of the harvest season and at U-Pick farms and orchards you can gather your own apples and pumpkins – the key ingredients in sweet apple pies and hearty, vegetable soups. During the 17th edition of the Virée gourmande des Comptonales you can sample fresh produce and chat to some of the local farmers (October 7-8).

...Under a star-filled sky

Overnight with your kids under a canopy of stars in unique accommodations that will trigger their imagination. We have such unusual places to stay, which go well beyond regular hotel rooms (though we have those as well). In the Eastern Townships, you can sleep among the treetops, in a tepee, in a rustic cabin… The possibilities are endless! Check out our 25 suggestions for fall family activities in the Townships.

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Taste the Townships
Arts, culture and entertainment
Nature, sports and outdoor activities
Tourist routes
Family outing
Spa and wellness
Charging stations