Two years ago I visited Canada for the first time in my life. During three weeks, I did a road trip in British Columbia and Alberta, which was fantastic. I really want to go back to this beautiful country one day, as I’ve become a fan!. That’s why I’m excited to announce that Melissa from A Broken Backpack was willing to share all of her insight tips to Montreal, the largest city in Quebec.
Montreal, Quebec’s metropolis, is a renowned icon around the world. Considered french, in fact, perfectly bilingual, Montreal can charm the tourists and the locals through his four seasons. “Je me souviens”, typical Quebecker slogan, means “I remember” in memory of the Quebec history. Today I remember my tender and lovely Quebec, my dear Montreal.
In the spring: The Sugar Shack
Remember that in Quebec, there is snow. Not just a little, too much I should say. AND, even in the spring. What is a sugar shack? If I say maple syrup, does it sound a bell to you? A sugar shack is a restaurant / reception room with a picturesque traditional atmosphere where sharing is required. On the spotlight: Maple syrup (of course!). It is ideal to enjoy the typical Quebec dishes and it is also a great excuse to enjoy the suburbs.
To try: The maple taffy on snow! (Yes, you are right, on snow!)
In the summer: Festivals
During the summer season, Montreal is loaded with festivity. Week after week, the festivals are the main activity downtown. Say a big hello to concerts, comedy shows, parades and much more!
Local tip: Getting there by metro (subway) is your best option as a lot of streets are closed.
… And terraces
St-Denis Street, downtown, is the perfect street to find and to enjoy the terraces. It will give you the opportunity to discover some of the many Montreal restaurants, pubs and bars. You want to try local beer, sip sangria or even taste typical dishes such as Quebec Montreal Smoke meat sandwich or one of our famous poutine? It is THE spot to try it.
To try: A Bloody Ceasar or A Long Island Ice Tea (typical cocktails)
In the Fall: Enjoy the colors at Lafontaine Park, Maisonneuve Park or Mont Royal
These spots are three typical outdoor venues to enjoy a bike ride or a walk, and most importantly, the colours offered by the autumn. If you would like to have a great view from Montreal city, Mont Royal is a good option as it is also a belvedere.
Reminder to tourists: In Quebec, we also celebrate Halloween as a child, teenager and even adults! Don’t be surprise if everybody wears a costume on or around October, 31st.
In the winter: Ice skating
Have I mentioned the snow? If so, did I say that in Quebec, its cold? It’s so cold that we even have… ice! The old port is the place to skate! Plus, if you are travelling with your partner, this spot tends to be romantic.
Reminder to tourists: Quebec’s coldness also means great winter clothes!
… And hockey
Our national sport: hockey! Attend a hockey game is a traditional local experience! Too broke to afford a ticket? Enjoy the match via the comfort of your chair in one of the many sports restaurants.
Local tip: Our team: Montreal Canadians, Go, Habs, go!
My top 3 in terms of Quebecker culinary experiences:
- Poutineville (this is the time to experiment the poutine);
- La Banquise (this is the time to compare poutine, even in the middle of the night);
- La cage aux sports (for a Montreal Canadians match, the popcorn and the famous chicken wings).
Montreal has much more to offer. To visit it is great of course. BUT… if you DO Montreal as the locals do, it will improve your experience I promise you!