Walking Trails

Whatever the season, the Domaine Forget de Charlevoix walking trails are free of charge and open to all. Discover more than three kilometers of paths accessible to the whole family. By foot or in snowshoes, enjoy the great outdoors and great art on this site where nature and culture come together.

The Reservoir Road

0.57 km
7 minutes
Start: Behind the Paul-Lafleur Pavilion
End: The Reservoir
Level: Easy

This trail starts just behind the Paul-Lafleur Pavilion, the student residence built in 2013 following the growing popularity of the International Academy and various other groups. It runs along a large clearing that used to be part of a golf course in the 1930's and later maintained by local farmers for hay. Halfway there, you can branch off to the Service Road that will take you directly to the Former Mansion area, where you will find several sculptures from the permanent collection. Discover different aspects of these larger-than-life works. If you prefer to continue enjoying nature, go all the way to the Reservoir where more walking trails await.

The Loop

0.91 km
13 minutes
Start: The Refuge
End: The Refuge
Level: Easy

Not even 1 kilometer long, the Loop is the longest of DFC’s walking trails! The trail begins and ends at the Refuge, a small rustic shelter with a table and a wood stove, very practical for warming up snowshoe enthusiasts in winter. Fun fact, this cabin is also known by the Domaine's employees as "Jean-François' cabin". Back when the student residences could not accommodate everyone from the International Academy, one of the professors stayed there for an entire summer! Halfway along the trail, there is a small shortcut that saves you a few meters. You can also branch off to the Forest Trail, which gently climbs up to the Reservoir.

The Forest Trail

0.31 km
5 minutes
Start: The Reservoir
End: The Loop’s south end
Level: Easy

It could also have been called the winding trail! All in curves, peaks and valleys, this trail winds its way through the woods and connects the Reservoir to the south end of the Loop. Despite its easy level, it is a favorite among joggers who prefer an extra challenge. Also ideal for snowshoeing, this trail runs along the southern limit of the vast 100-acre estate, for guaranteed tranquility! Fun fact, the forest covers about half of Domaine Forget de Charlevoix's surface area. The presence of nature and proximity to the St. Lawrence River make it a place conducive to introspection and meditation. Dozens of groups come to the Domaine each year for meditation, yoga, personal growth, tai chi and qi-gong retreats. The Domaine's Lodging Complex and Food Services packages are ideal for those seeking well-being and balance.

The Gazebo Trail

0.27 km
4 minutes
Start: Behind the Paul-Lafleur Pavilion
End: The Gazebo
Level: Easy

Perfect for evening strolls and close to the DFC Rental Studios, you will fall under the spell of this short path winding through giant cedar trees with curved trunks. When the sun begins to set, the rays of light weave through the branches and time seems to stand still. Light and shadow dance around you as you walk up to the gazebo, a small building recently restored after years of neglect. It is said that during Rodolphe Forget’s years, people used to come here to seek shade and take a break from the hubbub of the mansion. It offers one of the best views of the St. Lawrence River. To get there, look for the three practice huts behind the Paul-Lafleur Pavilion; they will lead you directly to the gazebo. You can even branch off on your way to the Salle Anne-Marie Asselin, a building that serves as a classroom for the International Academy.

Lover's Lane

80 m
2 minutes
Start: Near the American Yellowwood tree
End: Claire and Pierre Nadeau Lane
Level: Easy

DFC’s most romantic spot! As soon as the mansion was built in 1901, the Forget family built this shortcut in the forest to facilitate access between the house and the main gate down by the road. Why not enjoy a short stroll just before a concert during the International Festival or a show during Variety season? Hop by the French Garden and check out the many plant varieties and the American Yellowwood! Also dating back to the mansion's golden days, the garden and the tree are being taken care of by Charlevoix' Horticultural Society. Learn more about these two historical attractions by downloading the interactive map. 

The Creek Trail

0.24 km
4 minutes
Start: The Reservoir
End: The Refuge
Level: Easy

This short trip connects the Reservoir and the Refuge while following the Reservoir Creek. Sourced higher up in the mountains, this brook used to supply drinking water to the entire property via an elaborate system of pipes that ran through the entire site. Between the Forget family, their guests, their servants, the greenhouse, the vegetable patch and the livestock, a lot of clean water was needed! Once you get to the Refuge, you can tackle the Loop or cross the bridge to return to the Service Road that will take you back to the Former Mansion area.

The Service Road

0.48 km
6 minutes
Start: Bottom of the Central Staircase
End: The Clearing
Level: Easy

The ideal trail for those who don't want to venture too far into the forest. Beginning near the Central Staircase, the Service Road allows you to admire several giant sculptures that are part of DFC’s permanent collection. Those strolling by that area in the summer may hear a few notes of music, or even sweet melodies coming out of the many brown huts that serve as practice rooms to the students of the International Academy. Past the bend, a gentle slope will lead you to the clearing, ending near the shack. Two options are then available to you: go south to the Reservoir and explore other trails or go north to the Lodging Complex. Before leaving, don't miss the opportunity to visit the nearby gazebo for one the most beautiful viewpoints at DFC.

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