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A Weekend In Montreal: What To See, Eat, & Do

If you live in the northeast of the US, a road trip up to Montreal is a must! If you live elsewhere, a trip to Montreal is still a must! Montreal is located in Canada’s eastern Quebec province and is a city famously known for its French influence. Located just two hours across the US border, an easy trip up to Montreal will leave you feeling like you spent the weekend in Paris! Below are my recommendations for a weekend in Montreal, including what to see, eat, and do!

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Don’t have time to read the full guide? This Guided Bus Tour covers 15 of the most important historic sites in Montreal and is the BEST tour you could book in the city. 

Weekend In Montreal: Day One

Explore Rue Jacques-Cartier

Once you arrive in Montreal and settle in, I recommend beginning your adventure in Old Montreal. When I first arrived in Montreal it was lunchtime so I ate at Creperie Chez Suzette (SO GOOD) and explored this area. This area has so many narrow side streets full of French cafes and shops. The cobblestone streets in this area are so charming, and will truly make you feel like you’re in Europe!

Strolling through the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal, Quebec

Visit Chateau Ramezay

Also located in Old Montreal is the Chateau Ramezay historical site. This building is now a museum with a lovely garden. It’s located right across from Montreal City Hall and near many of Old Montreal’s historic squares.

Pro-tip: This Guided Bus Tour covers 15 (!!!) of Montreal’s most famous historic sites, including this one. I chose to explore the city on foot when I visited, but I recommend this option to maximize your sightseeing.

Eat Dinner At Taverne Gaspar

This restaurant is centrally located in Old Montreal and was once a 19th- century warehouse. I remember the drinks here being SO good, so check it out! BTW, the drinking age in the province of Quebec is 18 years old.

Weekend In Montreal: Day Two

Hike In Parc Mont-Royal

Mount Royal Park, also known as the “Mountain” is a sizable park with several trails and a lookout over the entire city. I began my morning here by climbing up hundreds of stairs to a beautiful lookout point that had 180° views of Montreal. There is a visitor’s center and lively park at the top.

View from the top of Parc Mont-Royal in Montreal

Coffee Break At Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons is Canada’s largest fast-food chain and is a popular spot for donuts and coffee for locals. If you’re in need of a pick-me-up while walking around Montreal, I recommend stopping here for a cheap, but yummy treat!

Eat Lunch At Jardin Nelson

Several people recommended this lunch spot to me in Old Montreal, and I could not recommend it to you all enough! This restaurant has a heated garden patio and a live jazz band. Additionally, the French food here was delicious. It’s a busy spot!

Eating crepes at Jardin Nelson Cafe in Old Montreal

Walk Down Rue Sainte-Catherine

This street is downtown Montreal’s main commercial street, full of shops, restaurants, and entertainment. It is pedestrian only and a fun place to hangout. Festivals are commonly held here, especially during the summer months.

Happy Hour At Maison Cloakroom

This is my top recommendation if you’re over the age of 18 and spending a weekend in Montreal with friends or family. I actually found out about it from a local Uber driver!

The Cloakroom is a speakeasy bar located in downtown Montreal. The bar is masked as a tailor shop. Once you enter the building, you must push through a floor length mirror to enter the bar. Once you pass through the mirror, walk down the dimly lit hallway to the elegant room at the end. The room only has 5 tables, all lit by candlelight, and a few stools at the bar. We sat at the bar and were greeted by the French bartender.

She explained how the Cloakroom has no menus and practices mixology. Basically, she asks what spirit you prefer and if you want something fruity, refreshing, or dark. We told her our preferences and within seconds she was crafting us each a unique cocktail. The drinks were a bit pricey since this place is so high-end, but it was honestly one of the coolest experiences I’ve had.

Enjoy The Nightlife On Crescent Street

Crescent Street is where all the clubs and bars are located in downtown Montreal. We went to three different places here and really liked a club called Thursdays!

Weekend In Montreal: Day Three

Go To Schwartz Deli

Schwartz Deli in Montreal is one of Canada’s oldest and most famous delis. We went here for a late breakfast/early lunch and got sandwiches to go. Their sandwiches have more meat on them than I even knew could fit on a sandwich.

Visit Place d’Armes Square & Notre Dame Basilica

Next, I recommend visiting Place d’Armes Square, Montreal’s most famous square, located in the heart of Old Montreal. Check out the Notre Dame Basilica! This cathedral has really beautiful architecture and is an iconic sight in Montreal. Fun fact: The Canadian superstar Celine Dion was married here!

Notre Dame Basilica located in the heart of Old Montreal

Walk Around Vieux-Port de Montreal

Before getting back on the road, I walked around the Old Port Waterfront. This area is especially historic. There was actually a colonial reenactment taking place as we were walking by. Additionally, the Montreal Science Center is located in this area.

The Old Port is a great place to grab a bite to eat, bike, rollerblade, watch some local entertainers, and walk around! If you prefer to see ALL of these highlights, this Guided Bus Tour is the best way to explore the city. 

That’s all of my recommendations for a weekend in Montreal! Montreal is a nice getaway from the US because of its accessibility and French-influence. If you’re open to driving another ~2 hours north from Montreal, Quebec City is another magical destination to visit. This guide covers 15 can’t-miss experiences to have in Quebec City in the winter. Lastly, I definitely think three days is enough time to explore the city! Grab some friends and enjoy your road trip up to Montreal, Canada!

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