I’ve been a few times to Montréal and I love this city. It is super walkable, has so many interesting spots and very active life even in the dead of winter. Anyway, this is a random list of places that I like in the city, in no particular order.
Note that it is highly recommended that you make reservations to the restaurants, most of them are rather difficult to go to without one.
- I would stay in the Plateau or somewhere downtown for easy access everywhere
- Old port is fun and pretty but I wouldn’t recommend staying there
- Bikes! Bike share stations everywhere. Montréal is very bikeable and you should tour the city with them if you can. Go do some laps in the Formula One track that is now closed for cars, the Gilles Villeneuve curcuit.
- The museums are pretty good! I particularly liked: Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History, Musée d’art contemporain, Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Redpath Museum
- Take your time to explor Mont Royal and of course go to its top! It’s pleasant to walk. The Mt Royal Chalet has some cool views of the city.
- Parc LaFontaine is also pretty nice. Plenty of good spots nearby.
- Pay attention to the time of the year and see if the city is holding festivals. Summers are packed with them, almost back-to-back!
- Biodome is cool
- Jean Talon market is cool too, and a good spot to buy maple syrup.
- If you’re old like me, you should visit the UQAM campus – that’s the place of one of the most famous lipsync videos! The library is beautiful too.
Food & Drink
Food in Montréal is pretty good. Don’t be fooled by the poutine and the queues de castor – there are many excellent food places. Again, reservations are mostly required!
Montréal is also a fantastic place for Portuguese food. There are many hidden nooks, do your research and get something with piri-piri sauce or the grilled chicken. Really good stuff.
Au Kouign-Amann | Google Maps
Get their pastries. Go early. Thank me later.
Big in Japan | Google Maps
Awesome place for cocktails. Difficult to find and… “interesting” host. After having too many drinks, combo with the place next door…
Patati Patata Friterie de Luxe | Google Maps
Don’t let the name fool you, it’s NOT a luxury place. It’s a place to get old-school poutine, overfried potatoes, squeaky-in-a-good-way cheese curds and gravy. They don’t do too much fuzz here, classy, greasy, perfect for after too many drinks.
La Banquise | Google Maps
If you’re feeling fancy, you can get fancy poutine instead. La Banquise is 24h which is GREAT. You can add all sorts of toppings to the poutine if you think 2000 calories are not enough.
St. Viateur bagels | Multiple locations
I think Montréal bagels are way better than NYC bagels. So get them! St. Viateur has two locations but be warned! The one closer in the Plateau is an actual café that you can sit and buy, but the one farther from downtown is just a bakery and has no seating. Buy your fixings and go to the park and eat them. Pro-tip: Bagels freeze decently, so buy a bunch to take home. Don’t expect to find all the NYC craziness in terms of flavor – here you can get sesame, poppy or plain. That’s it.
Fairmount Bagel | Google Maps
Similar to St. Viateur in the sense that it is only a bakery that you can also just buy the bagels and the fixings. Buy from both and try them out!
Schwartz Deli | Google Maps
A tourist trap that is actually good, it has the standard, delicious, jewish deli fare. Great if you haven’t ever been to one, but I don’t think it’s worth waiting too long in the line for it.
Au pied de Cochon | Google Maps
If I want to have a food-induced heart-attack, this will be the place. It is a glorious temple to fat and foie gras and the food is delicious. This is a classic and hyped-up place so make sure to make reservation as early as possible
Joe Beef | Liverpool House | Google Maps
Very hyped-up because Bourdain went there (it’s the episode they eat infinite food) and actually pretty amazing. Pretty expensive and also delicious. Reservations are also very recommended.
Agrikol | Google Maps
Fantastic caribbean restaurant, awesome drinks (the bar next door can serve you drinks if you have to wait for a table!). I go there almost every time I go to Montréal. Fun fact: the owners of this restaurant are also in a band called Arcade Fire.
Le Passé Composé | Google Maps
Delicious brunch, but beware for looooooooooong lines. Go there early! It’s really good food though so I’d make an effort to go.
Dieu du Ciel! | Google Maps
3 Brasseurs | Multiple locations
A really good option especially if you wanna sit many people. Decent happy hour, decent beers.
Crew Collective | Google Maps
Coffe spot I haven’t been but looks great: https://goo.gl/maps/bPbw2b7XgR62
Agree? Disagree? Let me know!