Have Fun In Old Montreal

Explore The Old Port and Do A River Cruise In Montreal

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So Much Fun In Old Montreal

We had so much fun in Old Montreal on our stay.  The Old Port had so many different things to see and do.  And a cruise on the St Lawrence River gave us a different perspective on this great Canadian city in Quebec.

On our road trip to Eastern Canada, we started with a short stay in Montreal.  We planned a great pampering stay for our anniversary.  But on several days we still headed out and explored.

An Interesting Walk To The Old Port

From our hotel we walked to the Old Port area.  It was a beautiful sunny day and we found much to see along the way.  

We found so much interesting outdoor art on our visit to Montreal.  On this walk we found more.  We stopped by the stairway to nowhere and wondered about the inspiration for this piece.  In the park we found some abstract pieces.  And even a colourful snake decorated a doorway.

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When we walked down the green space along Robert-Bourassa Boulevard, we saw an outline of a man made with white swirling lines (called “Source”) .  This was the second Plensa piece we discovered on this visit to Montreal.

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The colourful artwork was a great start to our day for fun in Old Montreal.

Wandering Along The Waterfront At The Port

We continued our walk and reached the Grand Quai on the waterfront.  Our boat tour on the St Lawrence River started from here.  But we were early and had lots of time to explore.

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As we wandered along the waterfront, we found lots of things to see and do.  If we wanted to relax, there was a floating spa.  For education there was the Science Centre.  

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There were many different ways to get around the Old Port area.  We thought the pedi-bikes might be fun.  And if we had more time, we would have considered some fast fun on the water.

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La Grande Roue de Montreal, a large ferris wheel was visible everywhere we walked along the waterfront.  We crossed over and went past the ferris wheel to the water and got a view down to the Sailor Tribute Clock.  Across the water, we saw the biosphere dome from the 1967 World Fair.

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There was an amusement park area on the waterfront.  We saw people moving along the rope adventure area.  For more fun there was even a zipline!

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We found so many ways to have fun in Old Montreal.

Wandering In Old Town

After we wandered along the waterfront, we strolled along the cobblestone streets of Old Montreal.  Shops and restaurants lined the streets.  Musicians entertained the people as they strolled or sat for lunch.  There were many historic buildings in Old Montreal.  But on this visit we did not have enough time to see them all.

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Place Jacques Cartier had many great outdoor patio spots for lunch.  We finally got a patio spot at the Jardin Nelson and enjoyed a great seafood lunch with a view.

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We enjoyed our short break before we headed off for more fun in Old Montreal.

A Harbour Boat Tour For Fun In Old Montreal

We headed back to the Grand Quai after lunch.  Our tickets for whale watching from Tadoussac, included a Montreal harbour cruise.  We got on the boat and grabbed a seat on the top outside deck with a view over the bow of the boat.

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The boat went slowly back up along the waterfront area we already walked.   We saw the ferris wheel and Sailor Tribute Clock from this different perspective on both the trip out and back in.

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Close to the Jacques Cartier Bridge we got a close up view of the La Ronde, created for  Expo ’67 and the second largest amusement park in Canada.  We were not sure who watched who as we went past!

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On our river cruise we got a different view of fun in Old Montreal.

A Different View of Montreal From The Water

After we cruised along the downtown area, we want past the industrial port.  One large container ship was being loaded. A large Great Lakes freighter like we saw when we cruised the St Lawrence in the Thousand Islands passed us going the other way.

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We saw lots of variety in the boats and other tour boats on the water.  Small pleasure craft went by.  People on personal water craft rode our waves.  

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We cruised for about an hour and then turned back towards downtown Montreal.  The boat followed the same path and got the same views in reverse.

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We were always interested in getting a different perspective on a city view and often did a water cruise.  Certainly one great way to have fun in Old Montreal.

Much To See And Do For Fun In Old Montreal

We had a busy few days on our short stay in Montreal.  We were happy we planned a day for fun in Old Montreal.  There was much more to see and do than we had time for on this visit.  But we saw there was something for everyone!

Did you have fun in Old Montreal?  What was your favourite thing to do?

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74 Comments

  1. I’m now completely enamored with the splendor of Old Montreal, from the breathtaking waterfront vistas to the marvelous outdoor art to the fun-filled activity excursions! I’d also like to take a harbor cruise and amble through their cobblestone streets. What a beautiful place!

  2. You know, I always seem to get close to Montreal, but never quite close enough. Whether it’s upstate NY or the Canadian Maritimes, somehow I still haven’t made it here! Your post gives me good reason to make it a priority. I know I would especially enjoy Old Town and Harbour Cruise. And, since one side of my family lineage comes from Three Rivers just about an hour north of Montreal, I make this a stop on an upcoming heritage trip. Thanks for the inspiration I needed to firm up my route!

    • I am glad this post has inspired you to add Montreal to your upcoming heritage trip. There is so much to see and do in Montreal. And the Old Town is a special spot.

  3. This brought back some great memories. Old Montreal is one of my favourite parts of the city. Those very cool art installations must be new, I was there last summer and they didn’t have them. I especially like the staircase. Montreal is definitely a fun city, so glad you showcased just how much it can be.

  4. I enjoyed your blog post! Montreal is very much in my bucket list and now you have inspired me even more to go there. I would love to go on that ‘stairwhere to nowhere’ and view the city from the top. Those pedibikes will definitely be fun to ride and explore the place. Looks like a beautiful old city! 🙂

  5. You had a great stay and had a great time in Old Montreal. The area around the Old Port is definitely worth visiting. The stairs to nowhere look so fantastic! I love this architecture, especially this art, like a colorful snake decorated with a door. I had no idea the city was full of such unique art. I hope to visit it someday.

  6. This is brilliant. I’ve always wanted to visit Montreal and now I’m more keen than ever! And looks like our kids will have so much to enjoy too! Especially the Ferris Wheel and zip line. For me, the Old Town would be my first preference. So beautiful and quaint. Your photos remind me quite a bit of some places we visited in France! Just gorgeous!

    • There are definitely a lot of things to see and do for fun in Old Montreal. Your kids will find lots to do. The Old Town is a charming spot and very European.

  7. Oh you’ve made me feel bad for missing out on a trip to Montreal when I visited Canada! I think I’ll need to go back again to visit as this looks so much fun. While I really don’t like snakes, that multi-coloured one is amazing and I’d definitely want a spin on those pedal bikes before taking in a view of the city from the water!

    • Montreal is definitely worth a visit if you get to Quebec on your visit to Canada. There is so much to love about the city. And the Old Town is a lot of fun.

  8. WOw, Montreal has been on my bucket list for some time, I love the water views and would love to see the city from a cruise. The street art scene looks pretty cool and would love to explore the old town which is what I’ve wanted to do when I visit there. Looks like an amazing city to explore

    • Montreal is indeed an amazing city to explore. Old Montreal had so many fun things to see and do. And the cruise was a perfect way to get a new perspective. I am sure you will visit one day.

  9. What a beautiful views there! I love that they build outdoor art for everyone to enjoy. Sounded like a lovely trip!

  10. Happy to know that you had a great time in Old Montreal. I would love to experience the La Grande Roue de Montreal. It looks so fun and existing. A zipline sounds awesome too. Thank you for sharing your wonderful experience. We look forward to visiting soon.

  11. Great post! I loved all the pictures, and thought your boat trip especially looked fun. You have a fantastic blog and pinterest page!

  12. Oh what a great place to visit! I love the art sculptures around the city and your photos, wow!!! I would love to see the old town, it looks so lively and picturesque. Thanks for sharing!

  13. It sure was fun seeing all of your photos of sights and art along the old port and waterways. When my husband and I visited Montreal a few years ago, they were having a heat wave. It was so incredibly hot that we had to stick to indoor activities or things we could see from the comfort of the car. Needless to say, that limited what we could do quite a bit. I did enjoy an evening near the old Cathedral one night when it had cooled off a bit. I really need to go back!

    • It was interesting to read that you visited at a super hot time. We were there one time when it was so cold we barely left our hotel. But this visit was a perfect temperature and we enjoyed wandering down to Old Montreal for some fun.

  14. I’m so obsessed with Montreal, I want to take that harbor cruise so bad and see Old Town, which I’ve always thought looks like Europe! Do you have a favorite coffee or dessert store in Montreal?

    • Old Montreal is a lovely spot to explore. And it sure does look very European. We did not find a favourite coffee shop. But we sure found some great chocolate shops.

  15. I really like the old school feel to Old Montreal. A cruise here would be perfect to soak all the sights in. The town really looks charming, I’d love to see it one day.

  16. Oooo this looks like so much fun! I’ve yet to visit Montreal or Canada for that matter. So many quirky statues and the old town looks like a lot of fun to get lost in 🙂

  17. I love all the sculptures that are featured around Old Montreal they look really cool. The place looks really interesting to wander around before hopping onboard a cruise to see the town from a different perspective.

  18. Thanks for showing us what we missed in Old Montreal. Our car stopped right in front of City Hall and had to be towed. We only saw Notre Dame and spent our 2 days waiting for the car to be fixed.

    • I was sorry to hear that you missed so much of Montreal with car troubles. Hopefully you saw enough or this post teased you enough to send you back to Montreal for another visit.

  19. Wow! Montreal has changed since I was there 20+ years ago. I love all the outdoor art installations. Will have to revisit.

  20. I wish we had more time when we visited…did not see all that great art or do a river cruise. Guess we need to go back!

  21. Old Montreal does seem fun! I love the art installations and the river cruise must have been amazing with those enthralling views. Were you able to spot the whales?

    • We were happy we did the river cruise in Montreal even if there were not whales this far down the river. But we sure were glad we saw them in Tadoussac. Lots of fun things in Old Montreal.

  22. I have never been to Montreal but it always intrigued me! I loved the architecture and the building of the old town and the possibility to spend some time at the harbour near the water! or maybe even taking a boat! This is a lovely guide, thanks for sharing it!

  23. I would love to go to Montreal someday! I’ve heard it’s like a mini Paris. I’ve never been to Canada’s east coast. I’ve always wanted to go on a zip line too!

  24. It sounds like a thriving city with so many fun things! I’d love to time a visit for some whale watching too and I’d love to check out the art sculptures, old buildings and amazing food.

  25. I have yet to visit Montreal, but would love too. I would love the European feel of the city. The art sculptures and the architecture throughout the area look amazing!

  26. Montreal has been on my bucket list for some time, and this post is making me want to visit event more. I’d love to explore the old town and discover the street art scene (looks cool). Montreal seems to have an European town vibe to it.

    • I am glad to remind you why Montreal should be on your travel wish list. Old Montreal is quite unique and has so many fun and artistic things to see and do. Hope you get to visit.

  27. I love the mix of the old and new – the quirky modern art mixed with the historic old town’s architecture. A fun place indeed to stop for a while and check out!

  28. A boat ride is a good way to see Montreal. I was surprised how big and busy the port is. We had some excellent fondue in our time in Old Montreal. Can you climb the stairs to nowhere?

  29. I love any type of boat tour or cruise, they’re just so relaxing! I’m glad you had a nice trip to Old Montreal! I enjoyed all the street art and statues as well!

  30. This looks like such a fun way to spend the day. I’ve been wanting to do a St. Lawrence River road trip through Canada and the United States, so these tips will definitely help in planning that out in the future.

    • I hope you do get to do a trip along the St Lawrence. A stop in Montreal should definitely be on the plans. And if you get a chance for a river cruise, it is a fun way to see things from a different perspective.

  31. Although I love travelling wherever life takes me, I’m still such a big-city-gyal. Therefore, Montreal would be absolutely down my alley. Also, I’d like to experience a bit Canada’s French side. Being such a culture vulture, I took a closer look at the wonderful sculptures, obviously. By whom is this huge white bust again? There is one like this in Singapore, too.

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