Montreal has some of Canada’s most beautiful architecture within a stone’s throw from nature. As soon as you step off your flight to Montreal, you’ll notice the distinct French influence oozing from the city. Parisian-like cafés line the cobblestone streets. And the inhabitants have a reputation for being friendly to tourists. If this is your first time to Quebec’s largest city, keep reading and discover how to plan your perfect trip.
When to visit Montreal
Visiting Montreal is seasonal. Winters can be long and harsh. Sometimes snow falls as late in May. This is ideal if you want to get out into the mountains and take part in winter sports. The winter wonderland also produces a majestic air and is highly photogenic. Spring tends to be short, and you can stroll the leafy avenues as the flowers begin to bloom. But we recommend visiting Montreal in the summer. Days are longer, and the temperatures are mild.
How much does it cost
Montreal isn’t a budget-friendly destination. You won’t be able to snap up bargains of a lifetime. Instead, you can expect a laid-back attitude and a high-quality getaway. Almost every hotel or resort goes above and beyond when it comes to guest satisfaction. You can also find world-class cuisine in downtown including Michelin star restaurants. Rather than try to save pennies, you should go all out and splurge. Few people go back home regretting spending their money on a luxurious trip in Montreal. If you want to hit the shops or soak up the famous nightlife, you should expect to pay London or New York prices.
The best things to do and see
The first stop is usually the old town. Montreal’s old town has a blend of French colonial architecture and grand cathedrals. Stroll along the cobblestone streets and soak up the atmosphere. Then step inside a quaint café for a coffee and croissant. Many visitors feel like they’re teleported across the Atlantic to France. You’ll hear French spoken in day-to-day conversations, and the ambience gives off a scent of 18th-century Paris.
Aside from the old town, many visitors spend their time and money in the shopping districts. This includes boutiques stocking the latest fashion lining the modern streets. Trendy locals carry designer bags as they head from one shop to the next. According to some, the shopping scene is among Canada’s best and on par with the likes of Milan.
After a long day exploring the old town and shopping, head to Rue St Denis. This is the main stretch of restaurants and bars in the city. Head down in the later afternoon and join the locals for an after work beer. Or come in the evening to hit some of the hottest clubs for a night of partying. Throw in Canada’s reputation for friendliness and you’re guaranteed to have fascinating conversations and experiences.
Planning a trip to Montreal
Montreal attracts thousands of tourists each month. Some come to enjoy the historical centre and French colonial atmosphere. Others take advantage of the high-end shopping and famous nightlife. Just remember to choose the time of year you visit carefully so that you don’t get caught out with the late (or early) snow!