Known as the Little Paris of North America, Montreal is a bilingual city that was once the economic capital of Canada. The city was a French colony in the early years and is also known as the City of Design. Being a French-speaking region, the city has a rare North American style of architecture and culture that exudes a strong sense of humanity. What attractions are worth visiting when you come to Montreal in the summer? It's all organized in this article.
Table of Content
Montreal | Old Town
Cathedral of Our Lady
The Cathedral of Notre Dame is a monument built in 1829, a landmark of Old Town and the largest Catholic church in North America. There is a fee to enter the church, and it looks even better at night when there is a light show. It's usually after dinner (in Montreal in summer, it's almost 10pm) and there are more people walking around the square, but I still like the night view the best, with the blue lights.
In the evening, the interior is even more gorgeous, and tickets for the 2018 Sound and Vision show are $24 per person.
Dammam Military Plaza
The square outside Notre Dame Cathedral is Military Square Dame, always crowded with tourists and surrounded by spectacular buildings, including the oldest bank in Canada, the Bank of Montreal. In the center of the square is a statue of Mézanoubaud holding the French flag, who led the French to the area in 1642 and built the old town area that exists today.
Old Harbour Area
After walking through Notre Dame Cathedral and down the road, you will enter the Old Port area. The streets are beautiful and there are many small stores and restaurants to visit. The streets are very different from other North American cities due to the French influence.
Gothic buildings and stone streets become a free stage for light art on summer nights, and the romantic colors bloom even more intensely in the evening. The walls are constantly changing to reflect different works of art, and a stroll along the river after dinner while watching the light show is a special treat on a summer night in Montreal.
At the outer edge of the Old Port is a 2-kilometer-long tourist trail that passes by the docks of the Old Port and is bordered by the St. Lawrence River. In addition to the cruise ships that can be found along the water's edge, the trail is also home to a variety of events, such as the Cirque du Soleil of Quebec, which is based here. There are also archaeological and science museums to visit.
Across the St. Lawrence River you'll find these strange buildings called Residence 67, designed by Canadian architect Moses Safdie, which has become quite a recognizable landmark because of its odd appearance. It is said to have been inspired by medieval Mediterranean hillside architecture.
Bon Secours Market
This spectacular building is the Bon Secours Market, which was once used as the City Hall and other government offices as well as a public market, and is now a large creative marketplace where you can browse through the small stores.
Named after the French explorer who first discovered Canada, Cartier Square, like Notre Dame Cathedral, is a must-see for all visitors. At the center of the square is the 35-meter-high Nelson Memorial Column, which commemorates the British Navy's victory over the French in 1809.
The City Hall next to Cartier Square is a must-see building. Known for its majestic Second French Empire style, it is decorated with an exterior terrace and a double sloped roof. It is also lit up at night and is quite spectacular.
The square is surrounded by many restaurants and cafes, and of course street performers. I couldn't understand a word of the French songs, but the atmosphere was fantastic.
Maple delights, the famous maple candy store, is my favorite little store with a wide variety of maple products, my favorite being maple ice cream. If you're interested in the history of maple candy and how it's made, there's an in-store exhibition that explains it in great detail.
The archaeological museum itself is in the oldest location in Montreal, with the Place Royale in front and the site of the monumental excavation underneath.
The exhibit is divided into several sections, which introduce in detail the history of Montreal, as well as many artifacts from the history of the First Nations and other peoples who lived here. First, there is a video that explains the history of Montreal.
The highlight was the ancient ruins, where we had to walk through the mysterious sewers to enter the archaeological ruins. This monument is the Ville-Marie, the earliest settlement of immigrants, where we can see the old wall of the old city and the old royal square, which echoes the royal square on the ground. In the exhibition, the contours of the original walls of the old city are shown in light. It is said that the earliest walls were made of wood and later the French built stone walls for defense. Here we see the guard post and the wooden fence.
If you are more or less interested in history or archaeology, this is a great museum with many interactive exhibits.
Montreal | Mount Royal
Montreal's Mount Royal, located on the west side of the city, is Montreal's largest park and an important landmark. It is the largest park in Montreal and an important landmark. The name Montreal is derived from Mount royal.
On a summer weekend during a music festival, the park is surprisingly crowded, but even so, the park looks very relaxing.
The highlight of Mount Royal is the Mount Royal Observatory. Mount Royal is actually a small hill, with its highest peak at 233 meters above sea level, but since Montreal has a rule that no building can be taller than Mount Royal, the Mount Royal Observatory is the best place to see the cityscape (and nightscape) of Montreal.
When the weather is hot, you can walk into the Mount Royal Lodge to cool off. The red cross hanging in the center is the flag of Montreal, and there are some historical photos in the rooms.
Montreal | St. Joseph's Church
St. Joseph's Church is a Roman Catholic shrine built in 1094 by Andre Bessette, a priest of the Congregation of the Holy Cross. Famous for its miraculous cures for the sick, the church began as a small chapel and expanded to its current size of 10,000 people.
The cathedral was enlarged in 1924 and completed in 1967. The dome of the sanctuary is the third largest in the world and the largest in Canada, and the interior of the nave itself can seat up to 4,000 people.The original chapel that was built in 1904, where Andrew first practiced his religion, is now preserved in the back corner of the cathedral.
Andrew is said to have been a priest with a compassionate heart and miraculous healing powers. It is said that he massaged lame patients with oil from the altar and they were able to walk without the muleta again, so people left the muleta they no longer needed to hang inside the church and sent many certificates of appreciation to be posted on the walls. Later, because the original space was too small, the Crypt church was expanded and more muleta were hung inside.
In honor of Andrew's memory, the church still has many items that Andrew used to display and introduce his life. Andrew lost his father when he was nine years old and his mother when he was twelve, and spent the next thirteen years wandering and working at odd jobs. He was not accepted into the novitiate until 1872, when he was assigned to be the janitor of Notre Dame College for 40 years. He cared for the sick and often visited and massaged those who were considered incurable.
There is also a garden walkway for prayer and meditation next to the church, so you may want to take a walk after seeing the inside of the church.
Montreal | Montreal Downtown
Downtown Montreal is a great place for shopping, dining, museums, concert halls, and arts and culture centers. The most famous university in Montreal is McGill University, known as the "Harvard of Canada", which is very close to downtown. The most convenient way to get to downtown is to take the subway to the McGill station on the Green Line.
In addition to shopping, the city center has a number of historical attractions. It is worthwhile to take a walk around Place du Canada and its opposite, Dorchester square, behind which is the dome of the Church of Our Lady of the Queen of the World.
The monuments on Canada Square commemorate those who lost their lives in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. The most iconic statue of MacDonald has two cannons on the ground next to it, and if you look closely, you will see that there is a double-headed eagle carved on the cannons, which is the symbol of Byzantine Empire. The symbol of Byzantium, which symbolizes the fusion of Europe and Asia, appeared in Quebec, North America. It turns out that these two cannons were acquired by the British in Crimea during the Crimean War in 1853, and were later given to Montreal by the Queen of Victoria to celebrate the 250th anniversary of the founding of the city.
The statue of the Knights of Dorchester Square commemorates the Boer War of 1889, a war in which Canada suffered great losses because of the British invasion of Canada. This war was the final expansion of the British Empire, as Britain annexed all of South Africa. After that, the British Empire began to give the colonies to the local whites for self-governance. The rider's horse is facing Mount Royal.
Church of Our Lady Queen of the World
The Church of Our Lady of the Queen of the World, the second largest church in Montreal, is a spectacular Baroque building in the center of the city, completed in 1894.
The interior of the church is also quite grand.
Les Cours Mont Royal Barbie expo
The area west of Canada Place is a shopping area full of stores, among which Les Cours Mont Royal is Montreal's highest-end shopping center, and there is actually a spectacular Barbie expo inside, displaying more than 1,000 Barbie dolls, and they are all dressed in authentic Hong Kong brand-name clothing. There are also special Barbie dolls dressed in various national costumes.
Montreal Museum of Art
The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts is Canada's largest art museum, with four main galleries, three of which are modern and one of which, the Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion, was itself a church in 2010. The theme of the main galleries is world culture, featuring art from ancient civilizations around the world.
Originally a medieval church, the Claire and Marc Bourgie Pavilion now displays modern artwork inside.
Place des Arts - Montreal Jazz Festival
If you're in Montreal in July, it's time for the Jazz Festival, which brings together musicians from all over the world. The performances are outdoors and are free to attend. Even though the show doesn't start until dark, people are already taking up seats around the Place des Arts before it's too late. There are several different stages with simultaneous performances.
If you walk all the way from Underground city in the south of the old town, there are also Olympic rings and Olympic monument on the way.
The Montreal Olympics were organized in 1976. Forty years ago, Montreal's market was so devastated by the Olympics that the city went into debt for thirty years, which shows how important the Olympics are to Montreal. In addition to the Olympic Rings in the center of the city, the main Olympic venues are located in the north of Montreal. The Montreal Olympics also have a special significance in the history of sports in Taiwan: in the summer of 1976, when Taiwan was still competing under the name of the Republic of China (ROC), then-Prime Minister Trudeau requested that the Olympics be held under the name of Taiwan, and the team opted to leave the country because the government was unable to accept the request. Shortly thereafter, in November 1976, the IOC announced that it would only recognize the People's Republic of China as the representative of China, and since then the "Chinese Taipei" team has been participating in international competitions.
The Latin Quarter is full of theaters, cafes, boutiques, and of course, restaurants. This time, I spent a few more days in Montreal, so I came here to take a stroll. I took the Metro Green Line and walked along Rue Saint Hubert, and there were many small stores. I can't say which one is particularly famous, but it's a good place to browse, and it's very artistic, and it's also a little bit like a Western version of a night market.
When you are tired of walking, you can find a coffee shop on the side of the road and sit down. Look out of the window at the crowds of people, and it's also a good time to rest your feet.
Walk along Rue de Saint-Vallier towards Petit-Italy, which is characterized by residential buildings.
Montreal | Little Italy
Little Italy is another great area to visit. Montreal's Little Italy neighborhood is home to the largest number of Italian immigrants in Canada. During the wave of Italian immigration that began at the end of the 19th century, most of the Italian immigrants who came to Canada eventually chose to settle in Montreal, partly because it was the largest city in Canada at the time, and partly because the east coast was not only closer to Europe, but also because the Italian language was closer to the French language, making the French-speaking part of the city naturally popular with the Italians.
Church of Nostra Madonna della Difesa
Across the street from Little Italy Park is the Nostra Madonna della Difesa Church. The church was built by Italian immigrants and inaugurated in 1919. The frescoes depicting Mussolini on horseback were added in 1933 to celebrate Mussolini's signing of the Lateran Pact for the independence of the Vatican. The painting of Mussolini in the church became a source of controversy during World War II, when the two countries were at loggerheads and the author was detained by the Canadian government. The frescoes themselves were originally intended to be removed by the Canadian government, but were eventually covered with cloth until the end of the war.
Casa Italia was originally built as a meeting place at the request of the Italian community. At that time, Italy was ruled by the strongman Mussolini, and many Italian immigrants in Canada, feeling honored by the prosperity of their home country, joined the fascist groups and often gathered at the Casa Italia. In Casa Italia, we can also see the fascist symbols in the building.
Canada later banned fascist gatherings. During World War II, the Canadian government viewed Italy as an enemy and began to suspect its residents, so the membership list of the Casa Italia was used to screen for suspected "enemy aliens" who were detained in concentration camps, and tens of thousands of other Italian immigrants were labeled, lost their jobs, and often called to the police station. Therefore, immigrants at that time would try to hide their identity as Italians. Although relations between Italy and Canada eased after World War II, this period of history has left indelible memories in Canadian politics, and the road to transitional justice has been as long as the Holocaust in Germany or the 228 Incident in Taiwan.
Marche Jean-Talon is a farmer's market in Little Italy, and it is also the number one tourist attraction. All the stores are self-produced by the farmers, and the fresh produce is not only attractive to tourists, but also very popular among the local residents. In addition to produce, you can also eat here. Some of the stalls sell Canadian specialties, such as maple sugar and ice wine, and it is also a good place to buy souvenirs.
Montreal | Chinatown
Just a little bit north of the Old Town area is Chinatown, which is actually not that big, with two gates at the front and two gates at the back, so you can walk through it in about ten minutes. The first Chinese to settle here were Cantonese migrants recruited to build the Canadian Pacific Railway, later joined by Hong Kong and Vietnamese Chinese, and at one time the area expanded considerably, but now only this small area remains.
There are not many Chinese restaurants in Montreal, and most of them are concentrated here. Although it is small, it has all the essentials, because it is close to the meeting place for business trip, I have eaten lunch and bought tea drinks here, and the taste is still very authentic.
Montreal | Atwater market
Atwater market is the largest farmer's market in Montreal. People who live in the area like to go there, but tourists rarely go here because it is located in the south, far away from the attractions. You can shop for a long time and the quality of the products is really great. If you can take the produce home with you, you will go crazy. I especially liked the butcher shop here. I tried many different kinds of meat and bought a lot of them for my hotel as a midnight snack.
There is also a flower market in the outdoor area. There are also many temporary booths in the plaza outside on weekends.
There's also a bike path along the canal outside the market, so take a walk in the summer and enjoy the everyday pleasures of Montreal's local residents.
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