In recent years, Montreal, Canada, has become a focal point for a lot of young people to visit thanks to our amazing nightlife. However, don’t be mistaken, even if you don’t want to come to grab a drink or hit up a nightclub, there are plenty of things to do in this amazing city. Between the botanical gardens, Mont-Royal Park, and all the restaurants in Little Italy, you’ll be more than set in your visit. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to have some help. Here’s your first piece of advice: don’t come in the winter. While it may sometimes look magical in photos, there is not much to do unless you are into winter sports. To truly get the magic of Montreal, and to take part in the events, then you should come in either fall, spring or summer when you can walk around and enjoy the sites as you make your way throughout the city. Which is why we made up a list of things to do, places to eat, and places to have a drink in this amazing city. Each category has my personal three favourite places, but keep in mind that there are plenty of things for you to do, no matter what your taste of vacation, food, or drink is.
things to do in montreal
Montreal has a ton of things for people to do, no matter your interest. If you want to take a small shopping trip while interacting with the locals, you should definitely make your way to Jean-Talon Market. While they do have food tours that you can do, they do cost money. So, go in the summer for free and enjoy walking around, talking to a lot of Montreal locals and elder Italian people who enjoy showing off their amazing fruits and vegetables. When you’re done looking at the food that you want to bring home, you can walk about a meter across the market to the many coffee and breakfast places that they have to grab yourself an Iced Coffee while you watch others enjoy the sun and their shopping.
If you’re into museums at all, then you should take a trip down to McGill University, which houses the Redpath Museum. You will be able to go back in time through a ton of Historical collections, from dinosaurs to Ancient Egypt, before getting closer and closer to our modern age. While you’re there, you can enjoy the sites of McGill University, which looks like a mansion! Have a picnic on the lawn, and then take a metro ride downtown to finish your day in the heart of downtown Montreal.
The most important place you can probably go to is the Old Port of Montreal. Situated right by the water, it is the go-to for locals to spend their time when the weather is beautiful. Between the street performers, street art, and the food trucks, you will never get bored when you are spending a night there. Make sure to check the schedule of the Old Port, that way you can go when they will be setting off fireworks. While you’re there, make sure to grab a beaver tail, and no, don’t worry it’s not a real beaver tail. It’s just a delicious, and quite frankly, a huge dessert that will fulfill your sugariest fantasies.
best places to eat
L’Entrepot Mont-Royal might be a newer discovery, but it is definitely one of mine and many locals favourites. The menu is incredibly cheap, as everything costs around five dollars and the dish you get is not only of a massive portion, but it is incredibly delicious. This is a perfect place for you to try your first poutine, as not only is it an amazing dish to have there, but you will also be checking off something on your list by eating our most famous dish. Address: 1019 Mont-Royal
For those who want to grab something delicious in the downtown Montreal area, then you should definitely go to Kim Ramen. Not only is the price amazing, but it is all homemade noodle dishes. There are so many restaurants in Montreal, but many are not homemade, so if you want something legit, this is the place for you. Address: 1441 St. Mathieu
Finally, for those who like to go out of their comfort zone, you should definitely make your way to Satay Brothers, once again on Notre-Dame. They are skilled in the art of Singaporean cuisine, and you will seriously never want to leave. While the meal-sized soups tend to be the fan favourites, if you go with a large group of people and pay a set amount, then the cooks will prepare for you what seems like endless dishes to share around the table. They bring a ton of different meats, salads, vegetables, and more. Address: 3721 Notre-Dame
best places to grab a drink
Big In Japan-Bar
Montreal is full of places for people to grab a drink and wait for the sun to rise. The Big In Japan-Bar is one of them. It’s a speakeasy-inspired bar that is located right on the corner of St-Laurent. It is difficult to find, but after all, that’s part of the charm. However, it’s recognizable by a massive red door. It’s a great place for you to feel like you are part of something bigger than yourself, something elite, and specific to you and you only. Address: 3723 Boulevard Saint-Laurent
Another great place is Apt. 200, which looks exactly as it sounds. There are different rooms in the bar, made to look like an apartment, and they even have some games in case you want to do more than just grab a drink. For the older crowd, like myself, you will definitely find yourself falling in love with the retro arcade games! They also have an air hockey table! You may just spend more time on the games than you do on the drinks. Address: 3643 St. Laurent
The Burgundy Lion
The Burgundy Lion is an English pub, located on Notre Dame, which is becoming a center point for those who visit, and locals, to enjoy some good food and even better drinks. The Burgundy Lion is a major point for all those who are in the area, as you can sample their amazing whiskey collections. It’s also a nice way to put yourself in the European mood while still enjoying the local scene around you. Address: 2496 Rue Notre-Dame Ouest