18 Places Offering Free Hiking

Published on Jun 4, 2024

We all know, the Eastern Townships region offers a multitude of hiking trails. While some require an entrance fee, many others are accessible free of charge. Here are 18 destinations where you can hike without spending a dime.

Psst! Voluntary contributions are always appreciated in order to help keep the trails in good condition. The maintenance of many networks depends largely on donations.

  • Mount Hereford
    In the Hereford Community Forest, you’ll find 16 km of trails, including the Neil-Tillotson Trail, which takes you to the top of the mountain after a 7 km hike. Looking for shorter trails? Opt for the Géants and Urubus trails starting from the Saint-Herménégilde parking area.  
  • Sentiers frontaliers
    Long-distance hikers will be delighted by this network, which covers more than 150 km of the border mountain backcountry. For a one-day outing, head to the Marble Mountain and Mount Saddle sectors.
  • Parc du Mont-Bellevue
    A jewel of nature in the heart of the city of Sherbrooke, this park is easily accessible with its 7 km of multi-use trails and 5 km of rustic walking trails.
  • Parc des montagnards – Mount Shefford
    This park, part of the Réserve naturelle du Canton de Shefford, is a perpetually protected area with three short trails that form a loop of nearly 5 km.
  • Johnville Bog and Forest Park
    The star attraction here? The Tourbière trail, a peat bog path which takes you through a rare ecosystem in the region. With almost no elevation change, the trail is ideal for a walk with the kids or a leisurely stroll past the interpretation panels that tell you more about the ecology of peat bogs and the last ice age.
  • Marais de la Rivière-aux-Cerises
    A haven of biodiversity just a short distance from Magog, the Rivière aux Cerises marsh offers more than 5 km of trails, including 1.2 km on wooden bridges running through a wetland teeming with life!  
  • Un Lac au Sommet Trail
    The Un lac au sommet trail is tucked away in the town of Marston, in the Mégantic region. At 4.2 km long (one way), you’ll discover a lake called Lac à Jos-Gilbert as well as several curious ridge formations surrounding it.
  • Mount Scotch Cap
    Piopolis is where you’ll find Scotch Cap, a small mountain part of the Route des Sommets, and named so because of its shape, which truly resembles a Scottish woollen cap. The easy trail winds through 2.6 km of mixed forest before offering views of the region’s lakes and mountains.
  • Parc des Deux Rivières
    Here, you’ll find belvederes, including a panoramic shed, picnic areas, a forest nature course, interpretation stations and, of course, 5 km of nature trails along the shores of the Rivière Saint-François in East Angus.
  • Parc régional du Marécage-des-Scots
    Looking for a trail with little change in altitude, away from the crowds and accessible by pushing a baby stroller? The 8 km multifunctional trail linking Walter-Mckenzie Park in Scotstown to the Franceville sector of Mont-Mégantic National Park is the perfect choice!
  • The Gold Mine Trail
    Starting out from the Centre d’interprétation de la mine d’or, in Chartierville, this 3.5 km trail (one way) will take you to the remnants of the old mine by crossing over the Mining stream using a small suspended bridge.
  • The Village-Montagne Trail in Sutton
    Five kilometres separate the town of Sutton and the mountain. This trail makes it possible to hike all the way up to the mountain. Described as a family trail with a gentle incline, it follows a stream to the stunning site of the Marmite aux sorcières (witches’ cauldron).
  • Ile du Marais in Katevale
    Start by taking the Typha Trail, a former railway track, to get to the island, then walk the two kilometres all the way around. You’ll have a view of Lake Magog on one side and the marsh on the other, a natural habitat for a multitude of bird species.
  • Parc écologique Jean-Paul Forand
    Located on the eastern slopes of Mount Shefford, this large protected area is criss-crossed by a network of trails totalling 6.3 km. From its mature forest to its marshy area, you’ll love walking here.
  • The North Missisquoi Park– Eastman Sector
    From this park’s starting point, you’ll first have to take a footbridge on stilts and then a bridge over the Missisquoi North River. From here, you’ll have three trail options ranging from 3 to 7 km.  
  • Bolton-Est Hiking Trails
    Worth discovering in Bolton-Est? Two delightful trails! The Sablière trail, 2.4 km long, takes you through a sand pit, a marsh and a maple grove, and the Ruisseaux trail combines a hiking path and a country road.
  • The North-Missisquoi Trail in Saint-Étienne de Bolton
    The Sentier de la chute à Louise trail (2,8 km), the Sentier de la Mine trail (4,5 km), the Sentier du lac Libby trail (5,6 km), the Sentier au tournant de la rivière trail (1,4 km) ... all great walks to discover free of charge in Saint-Étienne de Bolton.
  • Mount Bélanger
    In St-Robert-Bellarmin, right by the US border, Mount Bélanger rises to an altitude of over 960 m, and at the summit you’ll find an observation tower from which you can admire the breathtaking panorama of the surrounding area.

You should read

Family-Friendly Hikes in the Eastern Townships
This Summer’s Ultimate Activity Guide to Do Among Friends


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