Old Montreal (Vieux-Montreal)
Ville-Marie is a quarter of Montreal. It is the most visited tourist destination and a favorite place. In 1964, the Ministry of Culture of Quebec put Old Montreal in a list of places that are the historical heritage of the country and an architectural monument. Nearly all quarters of Old Montreal are similar to those of continental Europe.
It is located near the old port. It was once the center of commercial life. Today, this function is lost. Now it is one of the main attractions not only of the quarter, but of the entire city.
Local craftsmen and artists sell their handiwork here. Musicians, dancers entertain residents and tourists. Restaurants, cafes, bars, souvenir shops operate seven days a week.
There is Jacques Cartier Square here. A hundred years ago you could met here first cars. Today, this area is only for pedestrians.
For nearly two hundred years (since 1829) the Cathedral, named after Our Lady of Montreal, also attracts numerous tourists here. It has a 70 meters bell tower, which was built in the Gothic Revival style. Now it towers proudly over the whole quarter.
Around eleven million visitors come to Old Montreal annually.
Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (Musee des Beaux-Arts)
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is not only the oldest in Canada, but also one of the most famous in North America.
Founded in 1860, today it houses a collection consisting of more than 33 thousand exhibits. There are many paintings, the authors of which are known all over the world: El Greco, Monet, Van Gogh, Titian and others. Here you can admire paintings, engravings, decorative and applied arts, English porcelain.
The persistence of interest of all the visitors is the world's largest collection of tea boxes, which have been used to conduct the tea ceremony at various times.
Every year you can witness the exhibitions held in the museum of old and contemporary Canadian and international artists. The Museum collaborates with many famous art galleries. Among them is the St. Petersburg Hermitage.
In 1972, there was the largest robbery in the history of the Canadian Museum. The total value of the stolen items (paintings, statues, jewelry) is about eleven million dollars. Only one landscape by Rembrandt, according to experts, estimated at one million. Unfortunately, the crime was never solved.
Montreal Botanical Gardens (Jardin Botanique de Montreal)
Montreal Botanical Gardens (Jardin Botanique de Montreal) are one of the most famous botanical gardens in the world. It is located in the former capital of Canada, Montreal.
On the territory of 75 hectares, which takes up the entire garden, more than twenty thousand varieties of plants grow. They are all united by certain characteristics of thirty thematic gardens and ten greenhouses. At any time, visitors are able to get pleasure from the beauty and diversity of flora represented here.
It was founded in 1931 on the initiative of the famous botanist Joseph Marie-Victorin. Montreal Botanical Gardens were opened to visitors in five years. In 2007, the Gardens received the status of the historic site of Canada.
In the herbarium of the Botanical Gardens, you can find almost one hundred percent of the plants growing on the territory of Quebec. Here you can also meet and wildlife. It is primarily the proteins. On ponds and lakes you will see ducks, turtles, and herons.
One of the 30 thematic gardens is Chinese garden. Here you can see all you will find only in China. Even the building, where there is a bonsai collection (live copies of these trees in miniature) presented to the garden, was built in Chinese style. It is the world's largest garden, located outside of China.
If you need to fill up your refrigerator or just learn more about people and how they live, you, be sure to visit the local market.
In Montreal there are many food markets. However, the most colorful and, according to the guides, the cheapest one is the Jean-Talon. There are many sprawling shopping arcades on the same street. In addition, it is considered to be the largest in North America.
You will not be able to leave this market empty-handed. Moreover, sellers are so skillfully in persuading you that often you can buy a package, which you do not even intended.
You can see almost everything on the market shelves. In addition to conventional products, there are national cuisines of different countries.
Jean-Talon Market was opened by Jean-Talon Market in the heart of the Italian quarter in 1933. Since then, it has been here, delighting visitors not only by abolish products, but also by the opportunity of relaxing, having a snack at one of the numerous cafes, eateries, small cozy restaurants. You can also listen to the pleasant music here.
You can often see here the performance of circus clowns.
St. Joseph's Oratory (Oratoire Saint-Joseph)
This cathedral is the basilica, which was built on the hill of Mont-Royal in a place a small wooden chapel.
Its construction started in 1904 by a Catholic monk, Brother André Bessette, who owned the gift of healing. There many pilgrims came, and, thus, a need to build a bigger building appeared. So, in 1917 he began to build the temple that was opened to visitors in 1924. St. Joseph's Oratory was fully completely only in 1967.
It was given the name of St. Joseph, inherited the gift of Brother Andre.
We would especially like to note its dome, which became the third largest in the world (the first one is in Yamoussoukro, the second is in Rome). It can be seen from any point of the city (283 m above sea level). To go up, it is necessary to overcome 283 steps.
2,200 people can sit there. Every year there is about two million pilgrims. Among the most distinguished visitors are Mother Teresa, the Dalai Lama, and Pope John Paul II.
Oratorio is surrounded by a beautiful garden, adorned with twelve marble sculptural installations that reflect the life of Christ on the earth, from his birth to the Resurrection.
Montreal Biodome (Biodome de Montreal)
In the north-eastern part of Montreal, near the Olympic Tower there is a huge building with unusual shapes. It has a transparent roof. This is an island of wildlife, the so-called Biodome.
It is divided into sectors, each of which is one of the Planet`s natural areas. Every zone is reproduced so thoroughly and detailed, what you really feel like in the tropics or (to the extent that falls under the tropical rain), or on the glaciers in the permafrost zone, or in the jungle.
You quickly get from winter to summer, from autumn to spring. You will come across a variety of both flora and fauna.
From one area to another you have to go through the paths and bridges in the immediate vicinity of the waterfalls, animals and plants. There is an interesting point: the animals are not in cages, and roam freely in their familiar environment.
For not very long period of time, you can visit the four environmental systems: in the Arctic, in the coastal zone of Canada, in the tropics and in the zone of coniferous forests of the north.
You should undoubtedly visit Montreal Biodome, especially if you come here with children. It is not just a museum, stuffed with a variety of exhibits. This is an interesting place for kids of all ages.
Notre-Dame Basilica (Basilique Notre-Dame)
In the Old Town, the historic district of Montreal, on the Place d'Armes, there dominates by its 70-meter tower, built in the Gothic Revival style, one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world. It is Notre-Dame Basilica (Basilique Notre-Dame)
In 1672, the community built a Catholic church, which was consecrated in honor of Our Lady. At that time it was the only one in the city. Only two hundred years later, in 1872, on the site of a small order of dilapidated church a good-looking cathedral was erected. At that time, it was the greatest of all churches in North America.
Nowadays, this Roman Catholic Church is the most popular tourist attraction in Montreal. This is not surprising. Magnificent architecture, exquisite interior, beautiful organ music and singing choir will not leave indifferent anyone who sees this miracle once.
The real decoration of the city, Notre-Dame Basilica, is listed as a national landmark in the country.
There is an interesting fact that the wonderful stained glass windows of Basilica transmit shows not the life of biblical characters, but depict the history of the city.
Nuptials celebrities are often held in Notre-Dame Basilica.
Parc du Mont-Royal
In the center of the former capital of Canada, Montreal, three-headed hill Parc du Mont-Royal towers. In 1876, the park was designed and laid out around this hill. It was called after the hill – Parc Mont-Royal.
Today this park is a favorite place for citizens. It is also one of the most visited tourist attractions. From the top of the hill there is a unique view over beautiful city. There is also a 31-meter cross, a symbol of Catholicism. When dusk falls over the park, the cross is lit. It is really a tremendous sight.
In summer, there are beautiful flower beds, lawns, sheltered silky green grass, lake, where you can ride a bike, a special area where they can have a picnic. The perfectly landscaped area adjacent semi-wild forest, decorated with sculptures created by nature itself also gives a unique charm to the park.
Children especially like a perfect play complex, where they can arrange arrange a competition in skill, strength, agility. It is equipped with a cycle track, which is carried out races, and you can just ride.
In winter, Parc Mont-Royal offers a cross-country skiing, ice skating on the frozen lake Beaver.
Museum of Archaeology and History (Pointe-a-Calliere Museum)
If would like to learn more about the history of the city, its life and development, please, go to the square Place-Royale that is located in one of Montreal districts. There is the Museum of Archaeology and History (Pointe-a-Calliere Museum).
There is an interesting coincidence: the Museum was opened exactly in 350 years after those who became its founding in 1992, came to the place of where the future city first appeared. The museum building is located on the site of the old buildings, city walls, built to protect the city. Some fragments are shown to visitors as exhibits. After lying in the ground for such a long time, they are perfectly preserved.
At first, the museum was like an archaeological laboratory to which only a limited range of stakeholders had an access. Only a few years later, it opened its doors to all comers. Today, its exhibits are introduced to over 350 000 visitors a year.
Pointe-a-Calliere Museum is not one building but a complex consisting of six autonomous parts. The greatest interest can cause Eperon (building, which houses the bulk of the exhibits). In the lower tier active archaeological excavations are being presently held.
In addition to the exhibition halls, you can visit the gift shop.
La Ronde Amusement Park
Downstream of St. Lawrence a small island named after St. Helena stretches. It was named in honor of the wife of the founder of the French settlements on the territory of modern Montreal Samuel de Champlain.
In the previous century, it was a "fiefdom" of the military. Only in the second half of the last century, after Expo 67, that the island became a recreational area, the island of museums and parks.
The famous La Ronde Amusement Park is one of the most attractive for tourists. It occupies an area of 591 000 square meters. More than forty carousel and rides work today in this park. It is the second largest in Canada amusement park.
Among the most popular entertainments is roller coaster (the largest of which is called "Goliath", length is 1231 m, and height is 54 m). There are nine of them in the park. There is also the world's highest roller coaster called double Monster. It is made of wood. There are many other attractions that can cause an adrenaline rush from fans of "sharp" sensations.
Some attractions are specially designed for family fun.
In July, the famous International Fireworks Competition takes place in La Ronde Amusement Park. At that time the sky blooms with unique beauty of fireworks.
Montreal is a cultural center of Canada, the second largest city in the country, with a population of just under 2 million, together with suburbs - 4 million. It is recognized to be one of the most comfortable cities in the world, and due to a large number of higher educational institutions, Montreal is also considered to be the most "student" city in North America.
Where to go, what to see in Montreal?
Quebec's colonial past can be read like a book, stroll through the Old Town. It is a museum without a solid roof and walls. Choosing what to see in Montreal, you should not go by the Place Jacques Cartier, which is designed exclusively for pedestrians. Here you can witness a concert or theatrical show, visit the shops of local craftsmen and artists. Or just sit on an old bench, enjoying pleasant views.
There is also a one of the most important cultural monuments - the Roman Catholic Basilica of Our Lady. This is one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the world, not only for its stunning stained glass windows, and organ music. Without a doubt, a list of what you need to look at Montreal gets another temple - Saint Joseph's Oratory on Mount Mont-Royal. Its dome rises to a height of 283 meters. They are perfectly visible from any point of the city.
Numerous museums of Montreal also attract tourists very much. For example, in Pointe-a-Kaleri there are archaeological and historical monuments found in Quebec over the past 350 years. The City Museum of Fine Arts presents the audience nearly 33,000 of paintings, sculptures, porcelain and antique utensils.
Wondering what to see necessarily in Montreal, you must pay tribute to the city botanical garden - it is truly unique. Here there are all the representatives of the local flora, besides 30 separate pavilions acquaint visitors with the fauna of different countries. Biodome is not less attractive for tourists. It is a huge museum of wildlife under a glass dome, both greenhouse and a zoo.
There are also tourists who want to touch nature, or have a picnic or a cable car ride in the park Mont-Royal, which gradually becomes a real forest. And fans of active entertainment will surely delight La Ronde. It is a recreation center, which brings together the most "adrenalin" attractions. This is an excellent way to check "on the strength of" the nervous system and the vestibular apparatus.