Montreal is a perfect place to escape for the weekend. Known for its creative art scene and its European feel, Montreal has lots to offer for anyone who needs a weekend getaway. To get the most from a weekend trip, use this three-day Montreal itinerary.
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Montreal is celebrating its 375th birthday in 2017, there are many events going on throughout the summer. Be sure to check out Alive375 to see if there is anything going on while you’re there.
On day one of the Montreal Itinerary, you can enjoy the markets then head to Old Montreal for shopping and dining.
Morning at the market
Start your day off right with some breakfast and coffee. Grab a Montreal bagel or some fruit from a market such at Jean Talon Market or Atwater Market.
While you’re here, take a look at the stalls around you. Pick up some snacks for later in the day.
Take in the wonderful smells and aromas coming from each of the vendors, and try not to stuff your face with all the delicious eats.
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Afternoon in Old Montreal
Use your afternoon to take a full walking tour of Old Montreal. Start at the Place d’Arms and take a peek into the Notre-Dame Basilica.
Next head to Place Jacques-Cartier, a large cobblestone street square. Here, be entertained by the street performers and arts scattered throughout the square.
Connect to Rue Saint Paul and head east. Here you’ll find the delights of Old Montreal with shops and cafes. Along this road is the famous Bonsecours Market, which now houses boutiques and offices.
Next head down Rue de la Commune and enjoy a stroll along the Old Port. Find the Clock Tower that was built to commemorate the soldier lost in World War II and catch views of the Jacques Cartier Bridge over the St. Lawrence.
Evening is for eating
With countless restaurants and cafes, there is no shortage of food in Montreal. Choose from any one of the many pubs for a local craft brew, then fill your gabber with the best damn soft serve ice cream at Mlle. Catherine at Place Jacques-Cartier.
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On day two of the Montreal Itinerary take off for Olympic Park. You’re going to need all day to enjoy this part of town.
If you take the Metro, get off at Viau station, which is at the eastern part of the Olympic Park. At this park you can explore the Biodome, the Botanical Gardens and the plants, so be sure to leave yourself lots of time to discover.
I recommend starting with the gardens in the morning, when it’s not too hot and the flowers are in their peak blooming time.
I loved the bonsais at the Japanese Garden and blooming trees throughout the park.
Next head to the Insectarium where you can see both dead and alive bugs. It’s also a great reminder that if all we have to deal with in Canada are mosquitos and black flies, we are lucky.
Depending on when you’ve booked your show, head over to either the Planetarium or the Biosphere.
The planetarium has set times that you have to pre-book. In one room, you lay under a domed screen on bean bag chairs. In another you relax into Imax chairs while the domed screen takes you on a tour of the night sky. It was astounding to see.
Lastly, hit up the Biodome, which is home to 5 main ecosystems of the Americas – tropical rainforest, Laurentian forest, Gulf of the St. Lawrence, Labrador coast and the sub-Antarctic islands.
Here you can see everything from penguins to lynx to golden lion tamarins. Over 200 species are living in the Biodome.
Hop back on the Metro and go look for something tasty to eat to fill out your evening.
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On day three of the Montreal Itinerary, have a relaxing morning brunch then get your walking shoes to experience Mont Royal.
Brunch it up
Go for it and dig into brunch at any one of the cafes in Montreal. Try traditional crêpes or dish out on eggs benedict, either way savour morning brunch.
You’ll need your energy for your afternoon.
Afternoon enjoying Mont Royal
If you’re up for it, take a hike up Mont Royal to take in unparalleled views of the city. The 494-acre park is the largest in Montreal and offers many activities, including hiking and biking in the summer and snowshoeing and tobogganing in the winter.
The iconic view of Montreal can be seen from the observation point at the Chalet du Mont Royal.
In the summer, locals with hand drums come out in droves every Sunday afternoon for a “Tam-Tam Jam.” Dozens of musicians play and encourage visitors to join in.
There you have it a three-day Montreal itinerary to enjoy this wonderful French-Canadian city.
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