I (heart) Montreal!
I’ve just returned from an extra-long weekend in Montreal. What a fabulous city! It’s cosmopolitan, diverse, and incredibly easy to navigate. Whether or not you speak French, check out what Montreal has to offer. If you love food and wine, history, fashion, art, or all of the above, you’ll find that Montreal is a gem! Here are some of my travel tips for those visiting this charming world city:
Eat on St. Laurent
Lunch at Aux Vivres. This vegan restaurant is sure to please veggies and carnivores alike! In terms of both ambiance and menu, it’s very much like Calgary’s The Coup. Aux Vivres serves great teas and smoothies, and lots of fabulous entrees and desserts, too.
Casa Napoli for dinner. The food is amazing, the service is attentive and professional (think crumb scrapers!) and if you go two nights in a row, they just might treat you to a free dessert - true story! Try the spaghetti with pesto; you won’t be sorry! Portions are generous and a few nights a week, there’ll be a singer accompanied by a guitarist. Great atmosphere!
Take a Tour
Bus tours offer excellent value for your dollar. Get oriented with a half day tour, and you’ll have a better appreciation for the different areas you’ll explore in more depth, later on. A typical three hour tour will take you to Old Montreal, Mount Royal, Notre Dame Basilica, the Olympic Stadium and lots more. Guides are friendly and experienced – mine was born and raised in Montreal and had a true passion for his city.
I found that people in Montreal were eager to chat. I bought a piece of art from a gallery where the artist and I struck up a conversation. She tried on my glasses, we exchanged e-mails, and we had our photo taken together. We were old friends in an instant! At the House of Jazz, I had a visit with the saxophonist, who shared all sorts of opinions about Libya, Obama, travel, and more. All that, because I summoned enough nerve to tell him I loved the show. Montreal is a city of friendly, quirky and liberal folks. So, get out there and meet the locals!
Montreal is bursting with things to do, see, eat and enjoy. Plan a walking tour or an excursion to Quebec City, by checking out some of our resources. We’ve got maps, guidebooks, phrasebooks and dictionaries, and more. Borrow a DVD and get better acquainted before you even arrive. Or, discover Montreal through famous authors like Mordecai Richler and Leonard Cohen. It’s all here at your local library!