Tired of the baking, cooking, cleaning, and hosting of the holiday season? Put yourself in time out and make a New Year’s Resolution to get away from your responsibilities, if only for a weekend. Even better, bring a girlfriend (or eight) along for the ride and escape to Montreal, the perfect place to reconnect with friends and fun. Here are our favourite things to do and experience with the squad in Montreal:

1. Bota Bota

Between the water circuit, the massage therapy, restaurant, and spa treatments, it really should be pronounced Bota Botaahhhh. This spa-on-a-boat (yes, really) features Nordic-style baths, which are best enjoyed (silently) with friends. Grab your swimsuit and start off with 10-15 minutes in the steam room, whirlpool, or sauna to relax those muscles, then steel yourself for a plunge in the cold baths to get your heart pumping! Afterwards, stretch out and relax for 20 minutes in a lounge chair on the Relaxation deck. Repeat until all stress is gone! Add a massage and you probably won’t ever want to leave. www.botabota.ca.

2. Maeva Surf

For a completely different type of water experience, head to Maeva Surf with the gang for an indoor surfing lesson. After some theoretical training, you’ll start off on a bodyboard with an experienced instructor, but don’t worry: you’ll be hanging ten on a flowboard in no time. With a tropical, kitschy, surf-bum vibe, a full restaurant and bar, and plenty of opportunity to video your friends in gnarly wipe-out mode, Maeva Surf is a radical way to bond with friends. www.maevasurf.com

3. SkyVenture

Continuing on the theme of capturing embarrassing moments, there is simply no better place to immortalize your squad on Instagram than SkyVenture, an indoor skydiving facility for the not-so-brave. Hurl thyself into this indoor freefall simulator, a wind tunnel of such tremendous strength that you will literally defy the laws of gravity. An experienced instructor will be with you every second, making sure your flights are fun and safe. Ask to add a “Ride to the Top” (trust us) for a stomach flipping experience that MUST be felt to be believed. www.skyventuremontreal.com

4. Broue Tours

When you’ve “come down” from your SkyVenture visit, chill out with a Craft Beer Tour and Tasting in Old Montreal with Broue Tours. Known as Montreal’s most generous beer tour, the knowledgeable guide will walk your through eight craft beer tastings at three different breweries, (plus bonus cheese, pretzels, and jerky!) concluding with a whiskey sampler at the hospitable “BreWskey”. This three-hour tour will whet your whistle and introduce you to the finest ales in Montreal. And did we mention there was cheese? www.broue-tours.ca/en/montreal/

5. Ateliers et Saveurs

If beer isn’t your bag, gather the girls and try your hand at cocktail shaking with Atelier et Saveurs, Montreal’s preeminent provider of cooking, wine, and cocktail classes. Get schooled in margarita mixing, wine sampling, or when you should use tequila (spoiler alert: the answer is “always”). If you’re hungry, you can always try a pastry class, make a batch of tapas, or even whip up beautiful macarons to take home. Now that’s a sweet end to a perfect weekend away. www.ateliersetsaveurs.com

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