Canada

Le Vieux-Port

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  • Day3

    Yesterday I arrived well in Montreal. I'm so lucky with the weather (sunny 25°C)!
    My hostel is located in Old Montreal close to the port - perfect spot.
    And Indian Summer is almost coming :)
    The first night I was awakened by a really loud and annoying sound. It took me a while until I realised that it was the fire alarm. It was half past twelve... We all went outside and waited for about 10 minutes until the staff turned it off. Luckily it was just a false alarm.Read more

  • Day58

    We had a private full day of touring Montreal with an excellent guide. We visited all 12 of our must see sights including Notre-Dame Basilica, Parc of Mount Royal, Westmount, St. Helene’s and Notre-Dame Islands, the Underground City and the Bagg Street Shul.
    We walked through several neighborhoods admiring the different ethnic and period architecture.
    As two East Coast natives we were both excited and skeptical about the famous Montreal bagels. Our guide took us to her favorite bagel shop. WOW! We became believers as we watched them hand roll and bake us the delicious bagels.Read more

  • Day59

    Our primary objective was food: We wanted to sample Montreal’s specialities of Poutine and Smoked Meat. We had read about Schwartz’s and Reuben’s Deli. Our Concierage told us that Reuben’s was walking distance from the hotel. When we arrived every table was filled and people were waiting. The food was terrific! The portions were so large we did not eat dinner.

  • Day7

    Today we crossed over the border to Canada on our way to Montreal. As with most cities it is very busy but has a charm of its own.

    Montréal (sometimes also called Ville-Marie) was founded in 1642 as a missionary colony under the direction of Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance, but the fur trade soon became its main activity.

    Montreal is the second-largest primarily French-speaking city in the world, after Paris. Historically the commercial capital of Canada, it was surpassed in population and economic strength by Toronto in the 1970s.

    Montreal is the second largest city in Canada, the largest in the province and the 9th largest city in North America with an estimated population of 1.75 millionin 2016. Montreal's population growth has been slow, and its 2014 population of 1.75 million is little changed from the 2011 census figure of 1.65 million.
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  • Day7

    As part of a tour of the city we visited the Notre-Dame Basilica. The ornate decoration all carved in wood is stunning.

    Built in the Gothic Revival style, the church is highly decorated. The vaults are coloured deep blue and decorated with golden stars, and the rest of the sanctuary is decorated in blues, azures, reds, purples, silver, and gold. It is filled with hundreds of intricate wooden carvings and several religious statues. Unusual for a church, the stained glass windows along the walls of the sanctuary do not depict biblicalscenes, but rather scenes from the religious history of Montreal. It also has a Casavant Frères pipe organ, dated 1891, which comprises four keyboards, 92 stops using electropneumatic action and an adjustable combination system, 7000 individual pipes and a pedal board.Read more

  • Day92

    Today did not start promising. Rain last night and showers continuing today. Not heavy showers but still a grey old day. So group decision was for us to explore the streets around us and take on the underground. The underground is a great idea for getting around Montreal when the weather turns inclement - heavy rain or the icy and snowy conditions of winter. A great idea and good in theory. It would definitely work if you knew your way around. Neil and I gave it a crack but did not travel too far. The locals however know what they are doing, it is linked to the metro and 200,00 use it daily. It was certainly very busy down there.
    Afterwards we walked into the Arts district but it was a short walk as the showers started again.
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  • Day93

    Blue skies once again so we hit the trottoirs leading down to Old Montreal.
    Our apartment is not to the standard of our recent Airbnbs, it’s OK mind but not great, however.............it is in an amazing position - handy to just about everything that we want to do in Montreal without needing to use public transport or walk a million miles. We manage to do that anyway usually without trying too hard. We also managed to place ourselves less than 100 metres from La Trouble-Fete celebrations.
    Old Montreal is situated on the shore of the Saint Lawrence River. We wandered the old town, had lunch then wandered along the harbour.
    Across the river is Habitat 67, an amazing housing development. Originally conceived as the architect’s thesis for his masters degree at McGill university and then built as a pavilion at the 67 expo.
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  • Day93

    We were ideally located for this event, just a 100 metres from the Place Des Festivals.
    At 7pm the night kicked off with the dead rising and wandering through the audience. After that there was a range of acts to entertain the crowd - acrobats and flame dancers, the Gothic Choir and Petit Chanteurs du Mont Royal, Yann Perreau, his band and dancers and two hip-hop singers. Yann Perreau was amazing, the sound clear and loud. He had the joint jumping.
    When the DJ came on we immediately felt sleepy and went home.
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  • Day94

    Neil’s back has been sore the last few days and I have a headache so it was a slow start to the day. We are on the move again tomorrow so we are taking it easy.
    In the afternoon we went around the corner to Fou D’Ici for a patisserie and coffee and then a wander before getting our position to see the zombies take to the streets.
    There was expected to be around 10,000 zombies. I didn’t count them as they marched past but there were many. Young and old were dressed up for the event. It was certainly a spectacle.Read more

  • Day75

    "GO HABS GO!" - This is the fan chant of the Montreal Canadiens. "Habs" comes from Les Habitants which is one of the french nicknames for the team.
    On monday they played against the Columbus Blue Jackets at the Bell Center. The stadion was almost sellout and the atmosphere was just great. Especially after the early first goal for the Canadiens followed by a second one in the first period. In the second period it got thrilling when the Blue Jackets caught up and dominanted the game. After the second big break the Canadiens were back and made the final goal in the last minutes.
    It was a really great experience and probably not my last game I watched in Canada. Go Habs Go. :)
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