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Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site

What's New

Make the most of your summer in the Richelieu Valley's historic canals

Family experiencing the oTENTik Experience the oTENTik at the Saint-Ours Canal!
© Parks Canada
Parks Canada unveils its programming

May 24, 2016, Chambly, Quebec, Parks Canada Agency

Parks Canada unveils its 2016 summer programming at the Chambly Canal and Saint-Ours Canal national historic sites, two magnificent sites to explore in the Montérégie region. A varied and exciting programming will be offered to boaters and visitors and will allow them to discover the Richelieu Valley's bucolic and enchanting landscape.

Live the oTENTik experience at the Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site!

New in 2016, the Parks Canada oTENTiks will provide visitors with the opportunity to spend the night in accommodations that are a cross between a tent and a rustic cabin, in the enchanting setting of Darvard Island. oTENTiks will provide hassle-free camping from the end of June until September 18. On July 1, Canada Day fun and surprises will await youngsters at the Saint-Ours Canal.

Experience the joys of summer at the Chambly Canal National Historic Site

On July 9 (postponed to July 10 in case of rain), Parks Canada will help the public become more familiar with different water sports in Chambly during the Nautical Fest.

July 30 and 31, for the 1st edition of Learn-to camp in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Parks Canada and MEC (Mountain Equipment Coop) will transform the halte des Moulins Langelier into a campground as part of the festivities surrounding the city’s 350th anniversary.

In collaboration with Parks Canada, the City of Chambly will be offering families the Sur l’air de Chambly concert series, which will be held at the parc des Ateliers every Wednesday from June 29 to August 10.

New this summer, children and their families will have fun discovering the Chambly Canal with the help of Parks Canada Xplorers program. Equipped with a booklet filled with fun activities that will be given to the Xplorers upon their arrival at the canal, they will set out to explore the site with their families and will receive a special souvenir and certificate.

Be on the lookout for activities that will be announced throughout the summer by regularly visiting our website at www.parkscanada.gc.ca/canals.

As we near the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017, the Government invites all Canadians to experience Canada’s remarkable natural heritage and rich history at national parks and national historic sites this summer.

Quote

“The summer season is going to be exceptional for boaters and visitors of the Richelieu canals with new features such as oTENTik accommodations at the Saint-Ours Canal and the 1st edition of Learn-to camp in Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, which enhance visitor experience. Parks Canada and its employees are proud to help Canadians enjoy an unforgettable experience and take advantage of one of the most beautiful navigation systems in the world.”

- Luc-André Mercier
Director, Quebec Waterways, Parks Canada

Quick facts

  • Parks Canada continues to improve its visitor offer with investments in infrastructure, particularly by adding oTENTik accommodations in locations across the country, and by offering even more educational and innovative activities.
  • The Friends of the Chambly and Saint-Ours canals will offer numerous activities to visitors: bike rental, outdoor exercise, art creation workshops, GPS rallies, the Explorer circuit, and much more. Visit the Friends of the Chambly Canal website and the Friends of the Saint-Ours Canal (only in French) Facebook page for more information.
  • Since places are limited for the Chambly Canal Learn-to camp activity, register in advance by calling 1 888 773-8888.
  • The Chambly Canal's path earned 4th place in the top 15 favourite paths in Ulysses travel guides' essential and popular Québec cyclable.
  • The 2016 boating season will take place from May 20 to October 10, and information on the hours of operation is available at: www.parkscanada.gc.ca/canals.

Related links

Parks Canada's historic canals
Chambly Canal National Historic Site
Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site
oTENTik accommodations at Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site
Learn-to camp program at the Chambly Canal
Parks Canada Xplorers program!
@QuebecCanals


The Government of Canada announces new investment in Parks Canada’s historic canals in Quebec

The Honorable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, and Luc-André Mercier, Director of the Quebec Waterways The Honorable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, and Luc-André Mercier, Director of the Quebec Waterways
© Parks Canada

March 29, 2016, Montréal, Quebec, Parks Canada Agency

The Minister of Environment and Climate Change, Catherine McKenna, today announced an investment of more than $170 million to protect and preserve Parks Canada’s five historic canals in Quebec.

Canada’s National Parks are a vital part of who we are as a country – they bring our communities together and represent our shared heritage.

Today’s major investment will be used to conduct reconstruction work on the walls of the Lachine Canal, on the impressive lock of the Carillon Canal, and on the locks and bridges of the Chambly Canal. The funding will also be allocated to rehabilitate and reconstruct heritage-value buildings – such as the Chambly Canal superintendent’s house – and to build structures that preserve biodiversity, such as the Vianney-Legendre Fish Ladder on the Saint Ours Canal. Finally, service areas and footpaths will be built for the Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue Canal, in order to increase the experience for all visitors.

The Government of Canada will continue to make investments in our environment to ensure that our children and grandchildren are left with a country even more beautiful, sustainable, and prosperous than the one we have now.

Quote

“Through this significant investment, our government is protecting and preserving these treasured places, while supporting local economies, contributing to growth in the tourism sector, and enhancing the charm and attractiveness of these heritage sites. I encourage Canadians to visit and experience Parks Canada’s special places and to enjoy the outdoors, while learning about our rich history and heritage.”

- The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada

Quick facts

  • Parks Canada is the largest provider of natural and cultural tourism products in Canada and its destinations form the cornerstones of the Canadian tourism industry.
  • The Lachine Canal, which draws more than 1.2 million visitors, is an important gathering place and tourist attraction in Montreal.
  • National Historic canals are a defining feature of Canada and encourage communities and visitors to discover their beautiful landscapes, recreational opportunities and unique connection to our history.
  • Parks Canada is present in hundreds of communities across Canada and contributes approximately $3 billion dollars to the Canadian economy every year. Parks Canada’s overall contribution to the Canadian economy is responsible for more than 40,000 jobs from coast to coast to coast.
  • Parks Canada is investing an unprecedented $3 billion dollars over 5 years to support infrastructure work to heritage, visitor, waterway and highway assets located within national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas across Canada.

Parks Canada brings luck to visitors at the 2016 Montréal Boat and Water Sports Show

Carole Dubé and Isabelle Savoie Live summer to the fullest with Parks Canada!
© Parks Canada

Montréal (Quebec), February 15, 2016 –Parks Canada today announced the names of the winners of the contests organized as part of the 17th edition of the Montréal Boat and Water Sports Show held last February 4-7. During the event, everyone who visited one of Parks Canada's booths and filled out a participation form, earned a chance to win one of four prizes awarded via a prize draw.

Parks Canada's presence was very noticeable this year, starting at the entrance of the boat show with a photo activity in which visitors could pose in the magnificent setting of the historic canals and the new oTENTik accommodations. The booth presenting the historic canals of Parks Canada was also a great success and many boaters received pointers to help them properly plan their boat trips for the upcoming navigation season.

The Winners
Live summer to the fullest with Parks Canada! (Picture*)
Seasonal lockage and mooring permit

  • Carole Dubé, from La Prairie, will be able to cruise the Parks Canada network of historic canals during the 2016 navigation season.

Six-day lockage permit

  • Robert Deblois, from Terrebonne, will be able to cruise the Parks Canada network of historic canals during the 2016 navigation season.

Mooring permit for two nights on the Lachine Canal

  • Pierre Laberge, from Montréal, will discover the city of Montréal from a whole new perspective by navigating on the Lachine Canal.

oTENTik stay on the Richelieu!
Two-night stay in an oTENTik on the Saint-Ours Canal

  • Jerome McCarthy, from Montréal, will discover the joys of the outdoors, simply and without a fuss, in this new type of lodging offered by Parks Canada.

Parks Canada would like to congratulate the winners and thank everyone who came to meet us during the show. Have a pleasant navigation season and an enjoyable stay in an oTENTik!

* Ms. Carole Dubé, from La Prairie, grand prize winner of the Live summer to the fullest with Parks Canada! contest, receiving her seasonal lockage and mooring permit from Ms. Isabelle Savoie, External Relations Manager for the Quebec Waterways Unit.   


Parks Canada at the 2016 Montréal Boat Show

Contests, discounts, funny photos and plenty of surprises not to be missed!

Aviva - Montréal Boat and Water Sports Show - February 4,5,6,7, 2016 - Montréal Place Bonaventure

Montréal (Quebec), December 30, 2015 – Parks Canada is proud to partner with the Québec Maritime Association (QMA) as part of The Montréal Boat and Water Sports Show which will be held from February 4th to 7th at Place Bonaventure to introduce one of the most beautiful navigation networks in the world. Again this year, Parks Canada will welcome visitors to its space featuring Canada's historic canals and help them to plan their trips by boat. Come and see us so you don't miss the boat!

The 2016 edition of the Boat Show promises to be very exciting since Parks Canada has a trove of surprises in store for you: novelties, promotions for the 2016 season, contests, photo activation, rare visits and more! Parks Canada's Quebec and Ontario Waterways team has made every effort to ensure you'll enjoy a fascinating journey.

Unbeatable offers!
In association with the QMA and participating boat retailers, Parks Canada will offer a seasonal lockage permit to motorized and non-motorized* boat buyers at the event. Using this permit, new buyers will have the chance to travel all Canadian locks free of charge during the 2016 season. In addition, all visitors who come and meet the Parks Canada team at the stand will be given a 2 for 1 coupon for locking. With this coupon, recreational boaters get a second free lock pass for themselves or their friends with the purchase of a single passage in Quebec Waterways from May 20th to June 30th, 2016.

Prizes and more prizes!
When you visit Parks Canada stand at the Boat Show, you run the chance of winning a number of prizes for the 2016 season including a lockage and mooring permit, a six day lockage permit as well as a two night mooring permit at the Lachine Canal. Also, by participating in the photo activities offered by Parks Canada at the entrance to the salon, you could win a two night oTENTik stay, an all new type of accommodation at the Saint-Ours Canal where you'll enjoy a hassle-free camping experience less than an hour from Montréal.

Activities for the whole family
For the pleasure of visitors, the very popular Parks Canada photos activity will return free of charge at the entrance to the salon. Whether you're with the family or among friends, you can create a fun souvenir of your visit and share it easily. And on Sunday, February 7th, come and meet Parks Canada's superstar, the mascot Parka. Since Parka loves making new friends, take advantage of it by taking a picture with her!

The Montréal Boat and Water Sports Show is the largest nautical gathering in Québec, and Parks Canada is pleased to participate in it to meet boating enthusiasts and increase awareness of its exceptional waterways. So it's a meeting as early as February 4th!

*The seasonal permit for non-motorized boat allows canoes and kayaks to travel through waterways but does not include lockage fees.


Passage of a Boat Through a Lock
Passage of a Boat Through
a Lock at Chambly Canal

© Parks Canada

Lockage Fees

Following extensive comments and ideas on the proposed canal lockage fee, Minister Kent announced on May 14, 2013, that Parks Canada will freeze recreational lockage fees along Canada's historic canals for three years at 2008 levels.

More information


A World-Unique Fish Ladder

A Parks Canada and community organizations initiative

A unique fish ladder is helping species at risk reclaim their habitat at the Saint-Ours Canal National Historic Site.

The Vianney-Legendre fishway, located on the Richelieu River, in the Quebec Province, of Canada, is no ordinary fish ladder. Unlike the others; it shows that a historic site can be more than a site of Heritage significance. It can protect biodiversity and help recover species at risk.

The Vianney-Legendre fishway ladder
The Vianney-Legendre fishway ladder
© Parks Canada / Jean Mercier / 2002

The Copper Redhorse (Moxostoma hubbsi) is running up the Richelieu River again. This is a major victory for the unusual copper-coloured fish species, which is found only in south-western Quebec. A dam built in 1967 hindered this endangered species' migration to its most important spawning area upstream from the Canal-de-Saint-Ours National Historic Site of Canada. Now a fish ladder of unique design is brightening the future for the Copper Redhorse.

Such a successful environmental engineering project could create a tourist attraction and be useful in educating the public about this biodiversity restoration initiative. In fact, the fish ladder has even gained international attention. Although it has been designed uniquely for this site, other jurisdictions are interested in it as a model to follow.

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