Montréal is the most eclectic of Canada’s cities: The island metropolis hosts international events such as the Jazz Fest, delights culinary crowds with innovative French-Canadian cuisine, and struts a Euro-heritage along its newly revitalized historic streets. Impressively bilingual in English and French, Montréal’s global population is a diverse microplanet of French, Scottish, Chinese, Haitian, Arabic, Eastern European, Italian, Portuguese, Filipino, and Greek immigrants. All this is wrapped up in a vibrant arts and culture scene and energized by an exuberant university community.
It’s easy to make like a local and hop on a public BIXI bike to zip around the city. Maybe you’ll wind your way up Mont Royal, the central landmark that Montréal gets its name from, and then fly downhill to the Old Port for a stroll along the canal. Cafes invite leisurely people watching. Restaurants in the postcard-pretty neighborhood of Vieux-Montréal offer authentic old-world ambience and sophisticated European flair.
The main tourist center for visitors in downtown Montréal is the large Infotouriste Centre, at 1255 rue Peel (tel 877/266-5687 or 514/873-2015; Métro: Peel). It’s open daily year round, and the bilingual staff can provide suggestions for accommodations, dining, car rentals, and attractions.In Vieux-Montréal, there’s a teeny Tourist Welcome Office at 174 rue Notre-Dame est, at the corner of Place Jacques-Cartier (Métro: Champ-de-Mars). It’s open daily in high tourist season, from May to October.
The city of Montréal maintains a terrific website at www.tourisme-montreal.org. Its blog is packed with great specialty itineraries and up-to-the-minute suggestions.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.