Hot sand and cool refreshing water are the prerequisites for a great day at the beach, and the less you have to travel to reach one, the better. The beach at the Cap-Saint-Jacques Nature Park in the Pierrefonds-Roxboro borough offers those key ingredients for summertime fun right at home in the West Island.

Allison and Steve Douglas of Kirkland didn’t have far to drive to relax and bask in the sun’s rays on a recent weekday afternoon that was tailor made for a day at the beach.

“It’s 10 minutes from home, so how convenient?” Allison Douglas said. “Often we’ll bike, which is even easier. It’s just right up l’Anse-à-l’Orme (Road) up to here and it’s a beautiful ride. And then you could always bike around the park too after if you want, which is nice. I think you have to take advantage of some of the things the city gives to you, you know, that we have because we often, we’re the same, we’ll go further and further to find water and a beach and there’s one right up the street. So why not?

“I think a lot of people don’t even realize it’s here. It’s quite nice on a day when it’s 36 with the Humidex.”

And the beach’s proximity to anyone who lives on the West Island means that in addition to being a potential day trip it can also make for a pleasant and satisfying quick stop.

“It’s not like you’re driving up north or anything,” Steve Douglas said. “You can come here for an hour or two and then go home.”

Montrealers Christina Fleming and Dominic Piche escaped the heat on a day trip during their vacation week. They found refuge from the blazing sun in the shade of one of the many trees that lurk on the back end of the beach.

“We got lucky,” Fleming said. “It’s so hot, we just had to be in the water, so we decided to come here.”

The sandy beach is nestled in a cove in the Lake of Two Mountains. Eating and drinking, including alcohol, is permitted in nearby picnic areas, but not on the beach. Smoking, glass containers, music, dogs, fishing and making fires are also not permitted on the beach.

“The Cap-Saint-Jacques beach is a must-see site for the summer season in Montreal,” City of Montreal spokesperson Linda Boutin said. “You will find the calm of nature, access to light watercraft to enjoy lac des Deux-Montagnes, trails to explore the forest, and even a belvedere allowing the observation of turtles. These are all safe and affordable safe activities that can appeal to everyone and be done during a day at the beach.”

Cap-Saint-Jacques beach is located at 21115 boulevard Gouin Ouest. Admission is $5 per adult and $3.50 each for children (ages 6-17) and seniors (60 and over). Half-price after 5 p.m. Children ages 5 and under admitted free of charge. Parking fee is $9. There are family rates, special rates, group rates and season passes available. For the shuttle bus service from downtown available Wednesday and Saturday visit

For more info call 514-280-6871 or visit

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