Jacques-Cartier National Park, Quebec
Located only 30 minutes north of Quebec City, the Parc national de la Jacques-Cartier truly is the city's "largest playground"! In the summertime, the park becomes a haven for all canoeing, kayaking, fishing, cycling, camping and hiking lovers - during winter, you can bring your snowshoes or skis to explore the 55 km of trails winding through the park and along the beautiful Jacques-Cartier River. A day-pass only costs $6.50 and trust me, it'll be worth every penny!!
Equipment: You can bring your own equipment (snowshoes, canoe, etc.) or rent it at the park. Check out the Website for more information.
Located only 40 km away from Quebec City, the Jacques-Cartier National Park is a bounty of nature waiting to be discovered. It is home to a wide variery of birds as well as moose, bears, etc. Its beautiful boreal forest is crossed by the Jacques-Cartier Valley, at the bottom of which lies the (predictably named) Jacques-Cartier River.
When I went there, it was as part of a canoe/camping trip, during which we came across some people riding kayaks as well. There are also several hiking trails with varying levels of difficulty (from easy to expert), and some of my fellow campers and I could not resist the temptation of walking at least one trail before leaving.
Reservations are not only recommended, there are essential.
Equipment: If you camp there, bring some warm clothes (i.e. warm sweater), even in summer: it can get quite chilly at night. If you intend on swimming in the river, you will obviously need a bathing suit. And finally, no matter, what your plans are, BRING SOME INSECT REPELLANT.