True confession: earlier this summer, I fell in love … not once, but twice, and in exactly the same spot—the Village Majopial holiday village in the Vallée-de-la-Gatineau. But worry not, my partner had no problem with it, because he was there too!


For the past few years I’ve been hearing a lot about this beautiful resort, with its wonderful restaurant and spectacular setting on Thirty-One Mile Lake (where I did a lot of tubing when I was young, but where I hadn’t set foot in a decade). Lo and behold, in early June, Stéphanie Vallée, Quebec’s Minister of Justice and Minister responsible for the Outaouais Region, mentioned that Village Majopial was one of her favourite places in the Vallée-de-la-Gatineau. Clearly the time had come for me to rediscover the place, so I booked a date for a visit with my family, including my in-laws. What a great way to kick off summer in the Outaouais!

So much to discover!

I was instantly smitten with the place itself, the beautiful landscape, the lake views from the lovely patio at the L’huile d’Olive restaurant. My second crush was the new sport I tried for the first time: stand up paddling (SUP). Here’s the whole story!


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The moment we opened the door of our little suite, the inn began to work its magic. This place had it all: nice room, large bathroom, fully equipped kitchenette, comfortable couch, WiFi and cable TV. As well, we had access to an outdoor patio and a BBQ shared by the four suites. For larger groups, rental cottages are also available.

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Just before supper, we took a few minutes to put our personal watercraft into the water so we’d be all set to go in the morning. The marina is very pretty, with room for up to 18 boats, and you can buy gas at the dock.

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It was time for supper, so we made our way to the restaurant, L’huile d’Olive. None of us had been there before, but we’d noodled around on their Facebook page for a sneak preview of the menu. Chef Marc Gervais didn’t disappoint … there were so many tantalizing choices!

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Even more difficult was choosing a bottle of wine! The wine cellar is an attraction in itself: it’s visible from the restaurant, through a glass panel in the floor. And you should see it! My father-in-law was as happy as a kid at Disneyland.

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By the time we left, everyone was really happy with their meal, and full to bursting. Everything was so good that it would have been rude to refuse dessert! Even Thomas found something he loves, fresh Quebec strawberries.

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Stand up paddling session

Sunday morning, 10 a.m. My partner and I were ready and raring to try stand up paddling for the first time. Observation: It’s not as hard as you might think. Next day’s observation: It’s quite a workout for your abs and your arms!

Our SUP instructor, Marie-Pierre, was our guide as we explored the beautiful lake. We learned a few basic techniques that we practised kneeling, then standing. If you enjoy water sports, I’d definitely recommend SUP!

These guided activities are organized by the Pôle d’excellence en récréotourisme en Outaouais (PERO). The next SUP sessions will be offered next weekend (Friday, July 15 to Monday, July 18). On Tuesday, July 19, you can even go stand up paddling under the full moon. The schedule resumes the weekend of August 18–21. Click here to view the full calendar. Book your spot today! Other activities are available, including sea kayaking.

To the beach

Once we’d finished our BBQ lunch, we hopped onto our PWC and headed for the beach. The beaches are gorgeous, but they’re accessible only by water, so you’ll need a boat or some other watercraft to get there. It’s worth the effort, though: it’s almost like being in Florida!

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We had a fantastic weekend, especially as Mother Nature was very kind to us. If you enjoy water sports and good food, you should definitely put Village Majopial on your list of places to visit this summer!


Family vacations and activities, Summer activities

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