Things to do in Montreal
Whether you’re planning a high-culture getaway or a weekend shopping spree, a gourmet sampling of the city’s most noteworthy restaurants or a tour of the city’s vibrant nightlife, you’ll be blown away by the range of things to do in Montreal. Stroll through the landscaped greenery of Mount Royal to take in gorgeous views of the city from on high, or take a funicular ride up to the Montreal Tower Observatory, housed at the 1976 Olympic Stadium, for a sweeping panorama of the city. For an unforgettable day of sightseeing, travel the cobblestoned streets of Old Montreal and dip into the shops and boutiques that line the Old Port on the St. Lawrence River, take in the architectural majesty of the Notre-Dame Basilica, and cap off your day with a visit to one of the area’s many fine dining establishments. To experience the city’s vibrant nightlife, head over to the Plateau district, a favorite of Montreal’s hip set.
Art lovers looking for things to do in Montreal shouldn’t pass up an opportunity to visit the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal, which houses a diverse collection of paintings, sculptures, furniture, prints, drawings and photographs from European and North American masters; modern art aficionados should visit the Musée d’Art Contemporain for an unforgettable collection of contemporary masterpieces. Music lovers will want to visit in the summertime to take advantage of the city’s many music festivals, including the International Jazz Festival, while cinema buffs won’t want to miss out on the Fantasia and FIFA film festivals; the city is also home to 250 theater and dance companies that perform year-round.
Between Jacques-Cartier and Clock Tower quays in the Old Port, the Patinoire du Bassin Bonsecours is a scenic outdoor skating rink along the St. Lawrence River. Each evening, from December to mid-March, a DJ plays music in styles ranging from classical to 1980’s hits.
Olympic Pedigree: Home to rowing events in the 1976 Games, and one of the largest artificial outdoor rowing facilities in North America.
Montreal has great bike trails throughout the city and along the water. The best of them is the one that follows the Lachine Canal for about nine miles, from the old city to the western suburbs.
Designed by Marius Dufresne and completed in 1914, the five-story Maisonneuve Market is located in its namesake district. Although historically a daily market, from the 1960s to 1995 there was a police office and cultural center in the Beaux-Arts building.
This traditionally working-class western suburb has several surviving historic sights, including the lovely Maison Saint-Gabriel.
Eclectic Mile End space that's one part antiques shop and one part gallery.
Close to the bike paths along the Lachine Canal, Le Marche Atwater pieces together a farmers’ market atmosphere from a mix of pastry shops, chocolatiers, and flower stalls.
The supermarket is the winner of the People's Choice Award for design.
For a deeper look at Canadian art, don’t miss the Beaux-Arts museum in the heart of downtown’s Golden Square Mile.
The oldest public market in Montreal, the Lachine Market dates to the 1840’s. The farmers’ market became a permanent market in 1909, and the bulk of items on sale are still basics like local cheeses, fresh breads, and garden vegetables.
Site of the 1976 Summer Olympics, this complex of hulking concrete buildings—and former home of the Montreal Expos (now used for concerts and events)—is located a few miles east of downtown and also includes the city’s lovely botanic garden.
Once you have the gourmet accoutrements from the Les Touilleurs kitchenware store, cab it up to Little Italy and this enormous food market, which is the city’s culinary epicenter. Here, you can stop by the William J.
This eclectic little boutique/art gallery showcases paintings by owner Lysanne Pepin, quirky jewelry, and a handful of well-priced bohemian women’s clothing lines, including its own Espace Couture label.
Set on an otherwise unappealing stretch of Rue Sainte-Catherine, the industrial-looking Belgo Building is an inauspicious hub for the city’s contemporary art scene. Inside, the building is brimming with small galleries, some of which also serve as artists’ workshops.