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Summer is an ideal time to visit Montreal. To help you make the most out of your time, here are some of the best things to do in Montreal in summer.
If you are already planning for a summer retreat, Montreal must be one of the places on your bucket list. It is the biggest city in Quebec and the second most populated one in the entire Canada. The history, the culture, the zeal and the people are some of the first things that will captivate you in the city. And, if you enjoy biking, Montreal is also known for being one of the most bike friendly cities in the world.
Montreal gets its vibe from cobbled streets, amazing nightlife, lovely cafes, beautiful architecture and French-Canadian heritage. Also there are many festivals, concerts and open air markets that visitors enjoy during summers in Montreal. So, whether you are looking for a short vacation or an extended relaxing trip, here are the best things to do in Montreal in summer.
Things To Do In Montreal In Summer
1. A Ride Of La Grande Roue
La Grande Roue de Montréal is the symbol of Montreal. It is the tallest observation wheel in Canada. Hence, this is the first thing you should visit once you enter the city. Considering its height and the 20 minutes ride that it offers, it makes for a good experience, no matter what time you choose to visit it. It can be a different time in chilling or cold winters, but in summers it is an easy experience. The Ferris wheel is parked near the sea.
You can enjoy the astounding views of the sea on one side of the land and a settled city on the other. Each side offers a panoramic view depending on the time of the day. They are always pleasant from up there. And while you enjoy that, you can soak in the beauty of the city with your own eyes.
The Ferris wheel remains open from Monday to Sunday from 10 am to 11 pm. Though, it is always suggested to check the website for tickets and other information before you decide to visit the location.
2. Visit The Notre Dame Basilica
Located in the historic district of Old Montreal, Notre Dame Basilica is a world heritage site and one of the most beautiful churches and buildings in entire North America. Visiting this lovely Basilica is one of the best things to do in Montreal in summer or any time of the year. Once you are there, you will feel there is a certain peace to the huge walls and golden altar in the church.
You can take deep sighs while placing your eyes on the color-tinted windows. The high ceiling of the church with the arched structure and marvelous frescoes that have been built and rebuilt after the fire destroyed parts of it adds to its beauty. You would find an air of somberness as soon as you enter it.
3. Take A Stroll Through Breezy Old Montreal
An evening walk while window shopping through the roads of old Montreal is the perfect way to make your summer memorable. This part of the town is the place from which the town emerged. Hence, this is where you would find its roots. While you enjoy the old shops that have been there for generations, you will also love the design and architecture of some of the old buildings and structures here. Exploring old Montreal is like passing through the memory lanes of the city.
Most tourists and travelers enjoy the shops and the smell of delicious food and eateries that are parked on both sides of the street. Organic food, fresh vegetables, bakeries and boutiques would be available to welcome you to the old Montreal. Here is a fun Old Montreal walking tour that helps you explore this historic and culturally significant neighborhood.
4. A Picnic At Westmount Park
Situated amidst the most high-end region of the city, Westmount Park is the go-to place for many families around summer in Montreal. The lush greenery, the trees and the water body between the park makes up for an ideal picnic spot. The summers in the park usually offer a fresh breeze, in the green environment perfect for a family picnic. You would find a lot of local people here who would love to be friends with you.
Westmount Park has its grace regardless of the season that you visit it in. But in summer, it feels like the air and the park has been freshly scrubbed and it offers that space where you can take a deep sigh and enjoy the crickets chirping on a summer afternoon.
5. Summer Hike At The Mount Royal Park (Mont Royal Park)
The pleasure of that summer hike can only be found at Mount Royal Park. You already know that the name of the city is because of Mount Royal. And for all the right reasons. One hike through the trails of Mount Royal offers you the perfect views and that sense of achievement that you get while you hike your way through that. You can begin your journey from the Peel Metro Station. It takes around 2 km hike to reach the mountaintop to see the perfect view of the park. The 256-step staircase is another challenge that you can accomplish while enjoying the spectacular views of your surroundings.
The staircase route would take 15 minutes. But if you decide to walk, it can take 30 to 45 minutes for you to reach the mountain top. Apart from the fun of the journey, it is going to be the most fulfilling experience for you.
6. Find A Summer Solace In Mile End And The Plateau
There is no other place in the entire Montreal city that describes aesthetic and eccentric art than Mile End and the Plateau. Every street, every area, and every corner tells a fairy tale. One look at these spots and you would realize that they have come straight out of a book. The small artistic shops, boutiques and small museums next to art shops and supply shops are another reason you would love this place the most. If the front of the house is straight from a Jane Eyre novel, you see the walls covered in graffiti from one end to another.
If you have ever loved art in your life and museums and art pieces fascinate you, this is the perfect place for you to visit. It has been an art haven for decades now and hasn’t lost its beauty yet. Apart from having lunch and snacks at the cutest of cafes here, you can click a plethora of pictures to color your Insta feed. You can also take a guided walking tour of this artistic and lovely neighborhood.
7. Experience The Van Gogh Paintings at OASIS Immersion
Another art station in the city of Montreal is the OASIS Immersion. This is one of the best things to do in Montreal in summer for art lovers. If you have been planning to visit Montreal lately, this is the first thing that you would see in any Montreal Travel guide. And for all the right reasons. This place celebrates the art and life of Vincent Van Gogh in the most modernized way possible. There is no doubt in saying that this place has coupled technology with art. The 225 paintings of the artist are displayed via a virtual gallery.
Though the display is the technical word, you would more likely experience all of them in this show. The entire show is 60 minutes and you will be left in awe wondering about the talent of the greatest painter and artist ever. The tickets and show timings are available on their website, you should pre-book as the place mostly remains crowded.
8. Spend Some Time At Quartier des Spectacles
Quartier des Spectacles makes up a significant part of downtown Montreal. Or rather it is the life of Montreal. In this square, life thrives in the green environment, entertainment and fun. Every traveler or tourist loves this place for its zeal and culture. It would not be wrong to say that the true Montreal culture gets exhibited here. With multiple stages, music, theatres and comedy shows. There is no doubt, this would be the most exciting hub for anyone who would visit the city.
You need an entire day to explore the entirety of the Square. In the daytime, you would love the museums and the art exhibits that can hold your attention. In the evening you can book any theatre show from comedy to drama as well as magic.
9. Calm Down The Summer Heat At Ca Lem Creamery
What could be more relaxing than a good amount of delicious ice cream in summer? And if you agree with this sentiment, then there is only one name that you are required to know and that is Ca Lem. No matter which part of Montreal city you decide to visit you are going to find one outlet of this ice cream heaven. One thing is that the quality never differs. No matter the location, the quality and the quantity remain the same.
You can choose from the plethora of products, flavors and types of ice creams that they offer and you can customize the way you want to have it.
10. An Evening Walk Through The Old Port
If you are visiting Montreal in summer and want to explore it at a time crunch. You can plan your trip by spending less time in Old Montreal and more time in the more exciting downtown and the culture square. Though the salty sea breeze through the old Montreal is the perfect way to spend any of your evenings here. The twilight sky with a lit city at your back and the gorgeous sea at the front makes for an overall experience of time spent here.
You can plan an entire old Montreal visit from here in the form of a walking tour. Jacques-Cartier, Place Royale, Hidden Courtyards and Pointe a Calliere are some of the highlights of the tour that ends at Old Port. Going on a river cruise from the Old Port is also a great way to see the city’s highlights.
Where To Stay In Montreal
If you want to be all touristy, then you should be staying in the Old Montreal neighborhood. You can easily navigate through the major attractions by foot, especially the Old Port and the Notre Dame Cathedral. Also, one of the most scenic bike paths initiates from the Old Port. Below are our top recommendations for your stay in Montreal;
Budget (Upto $75) : Auberge Alternative is located at just 5 minutes walk from the Old Port of Montreal. The hostel offers dormitories with shared bathroom, kitchen and lounge facilities. Private rooms are available at the hostel too. It is a steal deal for backpackers and solo travelers. Click here to book your stay at the Auberge Alternative or to check its availability.
Mid-Range ($150 to $225) : Embassy Suites is a very cozy hotel close to Old Montreal. Rooms are clean, spacious, comfortable and filled with all the necessary amenities. The hotel serves delicious breakfast and a kid-friendly buffet. Guests also enjoy complimentary snacks and drinks during their stay at Embassy Suites. Click here to book your stay at Embassy Suites or to check its availability.
Luxury ($300+) : Hotel Gault is perfect for those seeking a luxurious stay in the heart of Old Montreal. The rooms are spacious, modern, comfortable, relaxing, have large picture windows and are filled with luxurious amenities. The hotel also features a library with a fireplace. You are surely going to fall in love with the city even more while staying at Hotel Gault. Click here to book your stay at Hotel Gault or to check its availability.
There you go, now that you have our list of fun things to do in Montreal in summer, we are sure you are going to have an amazing time in this beautiful city. There is something for any kind of traveler in Montreal. Do you have any more summer tips to share with us? Do let us know in the comments below.