What to do and see in Montreal, Canada: The Best Places and Tips

July 13, 2017 Moriah Teneyck

Montreal, c’est si bon! This French-speaking city is considered the cultural capital of Canada, and is a cosmopolitan celebration of Québécois style. A horse-drawn carriage ride around the cobblestone streets and grand buildings of Vieux-Montréal will give you a taste of European flavor. The Basilique Notre-Dame is a confection of stained glass, and the Plateau Mont-Royal district will delight you with its quaint boutiques and cafés. Dig in to a massive plate of poutine to fuel up for a tour of the epic Olympic Park.
Restaurants in Montreal

1. Notre-Dame Basilica

110 Notre-Dame Street West, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1T1, Canada +1 514-842-2925
Excellent
74%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 15 reviews

Notre-Dame Basilica

Montreal's oldest Catholic church, built in 1656, is known for its intricately designed interior, which includes stained glass chronicling the history of the city.

Reviewed By Anne19511231 - Montreal, Canada

Notre Dame Basilica is a must see in Montreal. Very close to The Old Port this church is magnificent! The architecture reminds us of some of the most noteworthy churches of Europe. The interior is awe inspiring. Include the visit while enjoying Old Montreal. As most tourists will tell you, this place is a taste of Europe in North America. I love my city!

2. Old Montreal

Montreal, Quebec H2Y 3Y8, Canada +1 877-820-2453
Excellent
62%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 10 reviews

Old Montreal

Stroll, bicycle or take a horse-drawn carriage through the narrow cobblestone streets of Montreal's famous Parisian-style historic district, filled with cultural landmarks, museums, boutiques, sidewalk cafes and restaurants.

Reviewed By Sherri2178 - Regina, Canada

So much to see and do here. Plenty of great restaurants and sites to see plus tons of cool little shops. So reminds me of Europe but not as busy and much closer to home.

3. Barbie Expo

1455 Rue Peel | Metro Peel, Montreal, Quebec H3A 1T5, Canada +1 514-842-7777
Excellent
85%
Good
14%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 342 reviews

Barbie Expo

This is not Barbie as you once knew her! The Barbie Expo, conveniently located in the heart of downtown, in Les Cours Mont Royal, Montreal’s most prestigious upscale shopping mall, is a brilliant and exciting way to showcase the haute couture fashion available at the exclusive flagship boutiques within the mall. The stunning display houses over 1000 dolls, and is the largest permanent Barbie doll Expo in the world! A truly incredible selection of world-renowned designers have magnificently fashioned breathtaking outfits for every possible occasion—all of them modeled by the 11.5 inch fashion icon herself. Admission is free. Designers on display include Christian Dior, Donna Karan, Armani, Ralph Laurent, Vera Wang, Bill Blass, Oscar de la Renta, Christian Louboutin, Zac Posen, Carolina Herrera, Bob Mackie, and many other authentic fashion all-stars!

Reviewed By Stevefrench34 - Saskatoon, Canada

Our young daughters wanted to see this Expo and, quite honestly, I had little interest in seeing the exhibit.
I was pleasantly surprised to see the admission was free and the exhibit exceeded all expectations.
Very large exhibit that covers every imaginable theme from movies to musicals represented.
TIP *Expect to spend about half an hour.

4. L'Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal (OSM)

Maison symphonique de Montreal | 1600 rue Saint-Urbain Montreal, Montreal, Quebec H2X 0S1, Canada +1 888-842-9951
Excellent
83%
Good
14%
Satisfactory
1%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 244 reviews

L'Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal (OSM)

Reviewed By Lioneli

I had a high expectation as the reviews below were quite ravishing. But I was very much disappointed with the size of orchestra. Two cellos!! (Not to mention other instrument) I am just a simple music lover but the ratio of instruments are unbelievably inappropriate. Put aside the much bigger number of violins, there were four contrabass versus two cellos!! I could not believe my eyes!! Two flutes, two clarinets, two bassons and two trumpets, if I'm not mistaken. No other brass or woodwind! The last program of the day was Haydn's symphony "Drum Roll" and there was only one drum! I only went to see Pinchas Zukerman play Mozart, so my goal is accomplished, but I would not pay the full price to go again to osm.
FYI the indoor parking is only $12 (tax included) if you buy it prior online and the spot is saved for you.

5. Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre

5151 Cote-Ste-Catherine Road, Montreal, Quebec H3W 1M6, Canada +1 514-345-2605
Excellent
74%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 122 reviews

Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre

The Montreal Holocaust Museum tells the story of Jewish communities before, during and after the Holocaust. Through the life stories of Montreal survivors, the Museum invites visitors to reflect on the destruction caused by prejudice, racism and antisemitism.

Reviewed By Jer D - Bordeaux, France

A worthwhile journey through the time between the end of WW1 and the present. Some poignant images and notes from the past, but there is an underlying positive message from the survivors who narrate the various video presentation.
I was glad to bear witness to the information presented
Definitely worth the time to visit

6. Mount Royal Park

1260 Remembrance Road, Montreal, Quebec H3H 1A2, Canada +1 514-843-8240
Excellent
64%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 8 reviews

Mount Royal Park

Inaugurated in 1876, the Mount Royal Park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the highly skilled designer behind New York's Central Park. It is an ideal site for admiring a wide variety of plants and birds or for enjoying outdoor activities. Les amis de la montagne offer a variety of services and activities that provide wonderful opportunities to discover the beauty and wealth of resources that the park has to offer, including the new permanent exhibition at the Maison Smith and interactive terminals and map.

Reviewed By beltar682017 - Toronto, Canada

yet another breathe of fresh air in such a large metropolis. the hop on hop off bus took us up the hill so we saved some energy - awesome views of the city

7. Laurentian Mountains

Southern Quebec to the shores of the St. Lawrence River, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Excellent
72%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 549 reviews

Laurentian Mountains

Laurentian Mountains are so close to Montreal that you can easily go skiing for the day. In winter, there is also dog sledding and ice skating. Other times of the year, enjoy whale watching, mountain biking and kayaking.

Reviewed By Monette B - Montreal, Canada

The drive north into the Laurentians is beautiful no matter the season! A great place for romance or family...Theres something for everyone ! Sports, Spa's, Shopping and Supper! LOL, We go often, when we find a great deal on hotel, spa get aways.. Anytime is a good time in the Laurentians !!

8. Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Musee des Beaux-Arts)

1380 Sherbrooke W, Montreal, Quebec H3G 1J5, Canada +1 514-285-2000
Excellent
65%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 3 reviews

Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Musee des Beaux-Arts)

Founded in 1860 as the Art Association of Montreal by a group of Montreal art collectors and patrons, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) was one of the first museums in North America to build up an encyclopedic collection worthy of the name. It now numbers over 41,000 works from Antiquity to today, making it unique in Canada. It comprises paintings, sculptures, graphic arts, photographs and decorative art objects displayed in four pavilions: the Jean-Noel Desmarais Pavilion (international art), the Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion (world cultures), the Liliane and David M. Stewart Pavilion (decorative arts and design) and the Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion (Quebec and Canadian art). The latter, which was inaugurated in September 2011, includes a 444-seat concert hall - Bourgie Hall - featuring an important group of Tiffany stained glass windows. A fifth wing, the Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion for Peace devoted to international art and education, will open in late 2016 to launch Montreal's 375th anniversary celebrations.

Reviewed By thunderpaste - New Orleans, Louisiana

Saw an excellent special exhibit on Napoleon's Court. Also visited the classic collection. Not a huge museum but the collection does contain Some Rodin, Monet, and a couple of Picassos. Two of the rooms were arranged to accent the lighting in the works which was a very nice touch.

9. Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal

3800 Queen Mary Road, Montreal, Quebec H3V 1H6, Canada +1 514-733-8211
Excellent
64%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 4 reviews

Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal

Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount-Royal, founded by Saint Brother André in 1904, is a catholic sanctuary and the largest shrine dedicated to Saint Joseph in the world. We welcome everyone to partake in panoramic views, music Concerts and special religious celebrations; come discover natural, cultural and spiritual treasures in the heart of the city. You will marvel at the votive chapel containing 10,000 candles, the Oratory Museum featuring nativity scenes from around the world, the Original Chapel, the spectacular Garden of the Way of Cross, the Crypt Church and the largest domed Basilica in North America.

Reviewed By Natalie B - Montreal, Canada

Another of Montréal's MUST see while in town.
The small chapel to the side is where Brother Andre's vision started.
Many people who visited Brother Andre walked in with cane or crutches but left without them.
It's wonderful to see all the crutches and canes in the small chapel and the Oratory in candle room.
I find it to be a very spiritual place filled with hope and comfort

10. Japanese Garden

4101 Rue Sherbrooke Est, Montreal, Quebec H1X 2B2, Canada +1 514-868-3000
Excellent
70%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 259 reviews

Japanese Garden

Part of Montreal's huge Botantical Garden, this specialized 15-acre section includes a tearoom, an art gallery and a Zen Garden.

Reviewed By PeterMmetroNY - New York City, New York

As part of the botanical Gardens the "Japanese"is definitely worth a visit. It is more Asian inspired than strictly Japanese. Lovely ponds and walking trail. Kids LOVE the KOI pond! glad we strolled through it.

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