My family and I have never been to Parc Omega, located in the beautiful and picturesque Montebello area in the Outaouais region. Somehow, I thought the Parc was seeing a few animals on the trails while passing by in your vehicle with a picnic area. Talk about not informing myself on such an amazing destination for the whole family! After talking to a staff from Parc Omega while I was attending the BConnected Conference, I soon realized how majestic the scenery was and how wrong I had been all along!
Parc Omega is an adventure in the heart of nature, a place to reenergize yourself, and to see the wildlife at its best! You can definitely visit the Parc in a short time, about 90 minutes, but you would miss so much of all the activities you can participate and the trails to view. I strongly recommend at least 4 hours to visit by car, foot, kart, and tractor, and to take part in the Animations Animals Show. To be quite honest, you can spend the entire day at Parc Omega!
In your car, you can observe the wild animals on the 15 kilometer marked road. The total duration of our car trail was 2 hours. If you want your family to feed most of the animals on the trail, you have to take under considerations the waiting time from one car to another feeding them, so added time might be needed. As I was heading to Parc Omega, I received a tweet reminding me if I had brought some carrots, humm… no, I forgot to bring the carrots! No worries, as they sell them at the gift shop at the Park House, so you can feed the deer, the fallow deer, the wapitis and the ibex. A 2 pound bag per person should be enough, but the animals certainly can eat a lot! The wolves, bears, coyotes, and arctic foxes have a particular diet, so you don’t need to give them any carrots and their enclosures are separated from the route. The Park House includes a snack bar, a gift shop and, during the summer, a dairy counter. It even offers a panoramic view on the Bird Lake, and it’s surrounded by red foxes and raccoons. Many picnic tables are supplied outside to enjoy your meals.
They have over 21 km of trails that can be traveled by foot, karts, or tractor rides offering each their own beautiful surroundings and wildlife animals including the White Tail Deer, the First Nations Trail, and the Bear and Timber Wolves Boardwalk.
The animation shows with birds of prey and small mammals are offered throughout the year at different times and days of the week depending on the season. You an even meet a guide on the Boardwalk to find out more about bears and wolves. For more information, please visit Parc Omega seasonal activities page on their website.
I am positive that your children will want to know what types of animals they can see at Parc Omega. They are classified in 5 categories:
Prairie: Elk, Red Deer, White-tailed Deer, Fallow Deer, Coyote, Red Fox, Wild Turkey, and Bison
Forest: Moose, Gray Wolfe, Black Bear, Boar, Raccoon, Squirrels and Chipmunks, and Birds of Woodland
Mountain: Alpine Ibex and Birds of Prey
Lake: Beaver, Canada Goose, Turtle, Goose, and Great Blue Heron
Boreal region: Caribou or Reindeer, Arctic Wolfe, Arctic Fox, and Musk Ox
About mid way through the car trail, you can make a stop at the Deers area where you can visit the Trading Post, the Old Farm, the play structures for the kids, the lookout zone, go to the washroom, and have a picnic. You can even feed the deers and their babies right from your hands!
What I liked best about Parc Omega was all the open space the animals have to run, relax, and play! I found their homeland to be of adequate space for such type of animals. We also enjoyed feeding the animals on the trails and in our vehicle. I was concerned about our new Grand Caravan being damaged or scratched while the animals would approach our vehicle, but they are so friendly, and it’s like they know just to put part of their head/nose through the window. I would strongly recommend following these safety instructions from Parc Omega while on the car trail:
- Do not get out of the vehicle. Keep all doors closed (tailgate and sliding doors).
- Keep your windows half closed to avoid having the animals try to enter their heads into your vehicle. Do not feed the bisons.
- During the mating season (September to mid-November), avoid the deer and the male wapitis and do not feed them.
- Toss the carrots for the little animals, the wild boars, and the Alpine ibex, in order to prevent having them climb on your car.
- In winter, do not stop uphill; keep a good distance from the other vehicles; and stay in the middle of the road since it is not as large as it appears.
Parc Omega is situated about 45 minutes from Ottawa and 1 hour from Montreal. It was a nice scenic ride coming from Ottawa by taking the 148 and 323 routes to the Parc, or you can take highway 50 from Gatineau. It’s also open all year long. We loved our visit with the wildlife animals and would recommend Parc Omega to children (and adults!) of all ages!
Disclaimer: I received tickets to Parc Omega for the purpose of writing this review. All honest opinions are my own.
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