Île-des-Moulins is located 30 minutes from downtown Montreal and nearby Laval, on the north shores of the Riviere des Mille-Iles and of the Riviere des Prairies. This small island is considered one of the most important pre-industrial site of the 19th century, a historical site, as it used to have a large complex of buildings from that era (today only 5 remained). The first flour mill was built in 1721 and a sawmill in 1725. Many other mills were built in the 19th century. We headed to Terrebonne on a cold autumn weekend day and we discovered a gem! Enjoy the sound of the streaming water, cross the dam towards Île Saint-Jean and be inspired by the old buildings and mills.
Parking: You can find parking near the Theatre du Vieux Terrebonne or at Collège Saint-Sacrement which offers free 500 parking (901 St-Louis Street).
No entry fee
Optional guided tours – high season: $8 per person, low season: $ 6 per person, $4 per person (free visit only without a guide). Check website for more details and opening hours.
Open all year round
Suitable for a baby stroller
We found a parking space on the high street of Rue Saint Louis. The walk towards Île-des-Moulins was nice, going through a small green space with monuments of the first world war.
Below is a description of the short walk we did around the two islands: Île-des-Moulins and Île Saint-Jean.
The starting point is the first building on the right which access the Île-des-Moulins. It is a municipality library which sits on the remains of a mill. We actually went inside the library on our way back as we wanted to get warm and the girls enjoyed the kids’ section on the ground floor near the mills!
We did not go inside the buildings for guided tours and we headed towards the dam with the pedestrian walkway.
The Moulin-Neuf Dam (rebuilt from remains in 1979) allows to regulate the flow of the river (Riviere des Mille Iles) and controls ice accumulation during Springtime.
View of Île-des-Moulins from the Île Saint-Jean.
Parc de la Pointe-de-Île on the Île Saint-Jean offers nice views of the river and you can watch many Canadian geese resting on the shore.