French charm and Canadian pride fill this city up with an abundance of rich history. I got the chance to go to Montreal this past week on a work trip & me being the all things Canada lover – couldn’t resist! I’ve been to Canada twice before to Toronto so exploring a new Canadian city was definitely on the top of my list.
First things first, be prepared for French overload! Montreal is in Quebec which is the French province in Canada. Before my trip I was told that french was dying in the city and that I should not worry. They were clearly wrong. All signs were in French and everyone speaks French (unless I asked for help then they would speak it back). Yet, the people I encountered were super friendly so I had no issues with the language barrier.
I stayed in the Gay Village the first night and the rainbow street there is absolutely adorable! They have rainbow colored balls hanging down through St. Catherine’s street. The decorations make for a pretty great view as you’re walking down the street which by the way is filled with shops, cafes, restaurants, theaters, and convenient stores. West and east of the street you will find a more residential feel to the neighborhood, and not to mention the beautiful views that you can capture from my airbnb balcony!
Besides the Gay Village I decided to visit Old Montreal for it’s European feel and look. I got there by the metro (subway) which was only about a 10 minute ride from the Gay Village. Walking past Victoria Square I started noticing barricades, police cars, and a mass of people all piled up at Notre Dame Basilica. Apparently, May 17th is the founding date of Montreal – How cool! So some pretty important people (including Trudeau) were there speaking about I’m not too sure i’m assuming Montreal (sorry, it was in French!). I also managed to swing by a gift shop and buy souvenirs for myself :-).
We ended the night at a bar downtown called Apt. 200. My friend who I work for put together a cool event called “Seeing Sounds” which you can read all about if you follow us on social media via @NowNeverInc! Best tequila sours I’ve ever had and shout out to all the cool peeps who kept buying us shots!
Montreal was a good time and I’m sad that my time there was too short but I shall return!
PS: I ate Ketchup chips and I surprisingly thought they were decent!
Travel Tips: Download the Google Translate app, download the Montreal Metro Map app (this will come in handy when your trying to figure out what stop you should get off at as the metro doesn’t have a map inside the buses & the accent of the attendant is in heavy french), and remember that the US dollar weighs more than the Canadian dollar (currently) so a $15 uber ride is essentially a $11 uber ride!