A North American city with a European feel is a wonderful thing – and French speaking Montreal combines the best of both.
Elegant, extravagant European architecture like the breath-taking Basilique Notre-Dame and cutting edge creations like the Stade Olympique don’t detract from the local small-town feel that gives Montreal that vivacious and distinctive Bohemian edge. With the largest number of places to eat per capita, Montreal is a foodie paradise. Restaurants, food festivals, street stalls and overflowing outdoor markets, like the being Jean Talon Market in Little Italy, all serve up the best Montreal has to offer in fresh, local produce and innovative and exciting cooking.
With a transport system that runs like clockwork it is easy to get around and see the sights and quirky districts that go into making Montreal such a diverse city. From the lively Jewish Quarter of Mile End and the hip arts, boutiques and nightlife of The Plateau to the towering glass structures and cavernous museums in Downtown Montreal and the beautiful Village, where sipping coffee and dining al fresco are daily activities.
Escape the urban sprawl with a stroll among the giant trees of Square St Louis Park, the lakes of Parc Lafontaine or Mountain Parc du Mont Royal that towers over the city, with its breath-taking views and beautiful sculptures. A horse drawn carriage ride is an alternative way to see the city, taking in the majestic St Laurence River en-route or hopping on a rental bike to mingle with the roller-bladers that whizz along the harbour.
Get even further away from it all with a trip to Pole des Rapides recreational park where kayaking and river surfing are just a few of the incredible outdoor pursuits to partake in. Just out of Montreal lie vineyards and mountain villages, spa hotels and orchard and maples groves in this country of abundant outdoors.
Montreal by night is more than generous, with sporting events and live music, a staggering choice of fine dining and causal places to eat; bars that cater for every taste like the rooftop bars of Old Montreal and a different show, play and performance for every night of the week.
Montreal is a city that celebrates all the good things in life, and does so with style.
The following information is correct as of January 2015 and is subject to change. Please check with the airline directly for complete accuracy.
Montreal-Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport is located 12 miles from the centre of Montreal and can be reached by car in approximately 30 mintues. A free minibus service links the airport to Dorval Railway Station while Societe de Transport Montreal bus services operate from the airport to the city centre taking just 35 minutes. Shuttle buses and taxis are also available from outside the airport terminal.
What you need to know
Currency: The Canadian Dollar ($)
Visas: UK nationals do not require a visa to enter Canada but a passport valid for three months beyond the date of departure is required. Nationals of other countries may require a visa for entry. More information can be obtained from a local embassy or from the Foreign Office website.
Laws: The legal age for purchasing and consuming alcohol in Canada is 18. There is a smokng ba in force, prohibiting smoking in all indoor public places including pubs, bars, cafes, restaurants, hotels and clubs and on all public transport.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to visit Montreal is in the summer months where the days are long and sunny and nights are balmy and warm. Winter though, brings its own pleasures with plenty of snow for those who love to ski or snowboard. The spring and autumn are also great times of year to visit with fewer tourists and either flowers in bloom or golden leaves on the trees.
January brings with it the Wildside Festival and the Fete des Neige for all things snow-related. In February the High Lights Festival illuminates the city while the International Children’s Film Festival is ideal for the little ones. Creole Film Festivals and Easter egg hunts are highlight of April while May sees the return of the Jewish Film Festival, Montreal Museums Day and the longed for Beer Festival. The summer months are filled with festivals from fireworks and dragon boats to diving, world film and hot air balloons. Autumn brings lantern magic and burlesque before the magical winter and Christmas festivities begin.
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