This is Why I Love my City, Montreal!
People! I’ve traveled to many, many cities. Anywhere from Barcelona, to Buenos Aires, to NYC, to LA, to Bangkok, to Marrakech, to Rio. Now, I did indeed have a great time in all of these cities. But in all honesty, Montreal, my hometown, kicks ass!
Montreal is definitely known as one of the festival capitals of the World. As soon as the sun comes out and birds start chirping, you can expect the beginning of festivals. World renowned festivals such as the Jazz Fest, Just for Laughs, Nuits D’Afrique, Beer Fest, and International Film Fest are just to name a few. Then, once the days get shorter and the snow starts falling, festivals such as the Lights Festival and Igloofest are among the most popular. This being said, winter or summer, there is something going on in the city.
Party, Party, Party
People in Montreal are fun! A city of 2 million people and 4 universities, let’s just say that you’ll always find a place to party, regardless of what day of the week it is. The four main streets of downtown Montreal are Mount- Royal, Saint-Denis, Saint-Laurent and Crescent. Mount-Royal and Saint-Denis are the hip place to be at the moment. Predominantly French, you’ll find interesting bars such as Porte Rouge, Candy Bar and Edgar. Then comes St-Laurent, also known as the Main. Here you’ll find the supper clubs and most popular night clubs of the city. You can dine and party at posh places like Buona Notte, Globe and Med. If you’re looking for a place to dance and go all out, consider partying at Gogo Lounge (retro music with dancing poles on the bar) or Rouge. Finally, we have our famous Crescent Street. The street is popular among tourists in the city. It’s an ideal place for Happy Hour at Thursday’s and Winnie’s.
If you’re looking to party in style, head to the Old Port. Here you’ll find nice terraces with cool people. Terrasse Bonsecours is a lounge/club in the middle of the port. Otherwise, you can go to Hotel Nelligan, where you can mingle with both locals and tourists on a beautiful roof top terrace. If you’re looking for a club, Confessionnal plays great music!
Although clubs close at 3am, you normally have a few options for the after party.
- Winter or summer, you’ll quickly notice that the party continues outside. Whether in the old port or on The Main, you’ll see a crowd of people hanging out and laughing before slowly dispersing to..
- EAT! When in Montreal, you absolutely have to eat poutine, a local dish with fries, gravy and cheese curds. It’s delicious! Go to La Banquise, one of the most (if not the most) famous place in Montreal for poutine.
- If you’re still looking to party, head to Circus for an after hour party.
Other than partying, we Montrealers enjoy eating! As the second city with the most restaurants per capita in North America (following NYC) and being one of the most multi-ethnic cities in North America, the city offers a great variety of restaurants. Some of my favorite include:
- Sol Y Mar for great and cheap Peruvian restaurants. Both the Ceviches and Parillas are tasty!
- Milsa is a Brazilian restaurant and a great option for you meat lovers.
- Khyber Pass is a tasty and BYOW (Bring Your Own Wine) Afghan restaurant.
- Dans La Bouche is known for both their tapas and great brunches!
- Dai Baffoni for authentic Italian restaurant. Located in the heart of the Little Italy.
- Les Enfants Terribles, located in the Mile End is a cute little French bistro. Keep in mind that the city is filled with many of them. Walk on Bernard Street or Saint-Denis/Mont-Royal if this is what you’re looking for!
Other Cool Stuff
- Montreal is a bilingual city. A large percentage of Montrealers speak both English and French.
- Cirque du Soleil was born in the Streets of Montreal. It’s now the most famous circus show on the planet! A must-see, regardless of the city you’re watching it in.
- Sundays are famous for tam-tams on our Mount-Royal (the actual mountain, not the street). Every Sunday, hundreds if not thousands of people head to the mountain and relax to the sounds of tam tams.
- Our Olympic Stadium, built in for the 1976 Olympics, is famous. Famous for its unique architecture and famous because it turned out to be one of the most expensive stadiums ever built in the World.
- We are known for our extensive underground city with about 2,000 shops over an 18-mile distance.
Michelle Caroline Nadon
Okay, I’ve been told that if I’ve never been to Montreal, I HAVE to go. Now I KNOW I have to go. … your city looks like its probably one of THE most funnest cities ever. I LOVE to dance and I LOVE french fries, so I’m thinking, that Montreal could be the best place to cut loose on the dance floor and try some authentic poutine right after! Great post!
Yes, yes! It should be on your list of destinations!
The only downside about Montreal is that we don’t have any natural beaches, which is a bummer because we are an island! But we have lots of lakes not too far from the city.
Michelle Caroline Nadon
I grew up in the Okanagan, with two lakes at either side of our city. Sounds like you’ve got it all! You’ve most definitely been put on my list of destinations. Merci de partager votre enthousiasme et l’esprit merveilleux!
Do they have a reggae festival?
I’m not lying when I say we’re the World’s capital in terms of festival
I grew up on the west coast, but after 8 years – on and off – I like to call Montreal “home” wherever I happen to be. It truly is a fantastic city and I miss it. The new BIXI system (public bicycle program) which was just being implemented as I moved away…has only made the city even better!
A few of my personal favourite places to chill/eat/drink:
Chez Brasil Cafe (the açaí dish is amazing)
Le Sainte-Elisabeth Pub (or *any* outdoor terrace!)
The Blue Nile (yummy Ethiopian food)
Caffe Art Java (The best espresso & cappuccinos in the city outside of Little Italy)
That’s nice to hear!! The only place I’ve been in the list you mentionned in Sainte-Elisabeth and it is indeed a cool place! I will definitely have to try the acai at Chez Brasil Cafe. I was hooked on it in Brasil this winter and I’d love to try it again in Montreal! I haven’t used the BIXI bikes yet (I have my own bike) but it really picked up! You see people on bikes all over downtown, the old port and on le plateau. It reminds me of Amsterdam!!
Then you definitely have to check out Chez Brasil They serve it (as pulp) with bananas and granola, and it’s delicious! I haven’t found it anywhere else in Montreal (or Canada for that matter). They have live music often too. And you should go out to Bobards on Sundays for more brazilian music if you’re so inclined
Will do! I’ll let you know how I like it! I’m so excited to eat acai in MTL!!
Montreal area residents and visitors are able to enjoy a wide range of activities, both traditional as well as contemporary.life in Montreal is good.And we Love it.
Thanks for sharing,
Restaurants in Montreal
I will be Toronto in 11 days, and was debating on whether to go to Montreal, this has helped me make up my mind!! Thank you, I can’t wait to see your city!! Do you know which festivals will be on towards the end of August beginning of September? Thanks x
Hi there! If you’re in TO, you should def come to Montreal for a few days. At the end of August, we have the raggae fest (Aug 20-21) and the international film fest (Aug 18-23). There are other festivals but these are the two most popular. Don’t forget to go to tam tams on the Sunday!
Brilliant!! I will def be paying a visit!! Thanks a million!
Nice write up!, Tanya!
You have a great blog!