10 Things To Do In Old Montreal: Complete Guide To Québec’s Charming Seaport
Old Montreal is a historic district in downtown Montreal that dates back to the 1600s. It is a place where history and modernity coexist, with old stone buildings and cobblestone streets alongside trendy hotels, restaurants, shops, and offices. Old Montreal attracts visitors with its unique charm and atmosphere, as well as its rich cultural heritage. Whether you want to explore the past or enjoy the present, Old Montreal has something for everyone.
What To Do Old Montreal offers a variety of activities for tourists and locals alike. You can stroll along Saint-Paul Street, the oldest street in Montreal, and admire the architecture and art galleries. You can visit the Notre-Dame Basilica, a stunning Gothic Revival church with colorful stained glass windows and a grand organ. You can also check out the Old Port, a waterfront area that hosts festivals, events, and attractions such as the Montreal Science Centre and the Clock Tower. Old Montreal is a destination that you don’t want to miss when you come to Canada.
1- Spot The Notre-Dame Basilica Of Montreal
- Address: 110 Notre-Dame St W, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1T1, Canada
- Hours: Open daily from 9 AM to 4:30 PM (closes at 4 Sat/Sun)
The Notre Dame Basilica of Montreal is a historic landmark and a place of worship in Old Montreal, Canada. It was built in the 1820s.
- The Notre Dame Basilica of Montreal is not only a place of worship but also a stunning architectural masterpiece. Many visitors come to admire its beauty and take pictures.
2- Experience History In Place d’Armes
- Location: Old Montreal, Ville-Marie Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Old Montreal, Real estate for sale
Place d’Armes is a historic square in the heart of Old Montreal, Canada. It is surrounded by some of the most important buildings in the city, such as the Notre Dame Basilica, the Bank of Montreal, and the Aldred Building. In the center of the square stands a statue of Paul de Chomedey.
This area dates back to the 18th century and has been well-preserved up to this point.
3-Ride La Grande Roue de Montréal
- Address: 362 Rue de la Commune E, Montréal, QC H2Y 0B4, Canada
- Hours: Open daily from 10 AM to 11 PM
- Tickets: $22.10 per rider
If you want to see Old Montreal from a different perspective, you should try the La Grande Roue de Montréal. This is a giant Ferris wheel built in 2017 to mark the 375th anniversary of the city. It has 42 cabins that can take you up to 60 meters high and give you a panoramic view of the city and the river. It operates all year round so that you can enjoy it in any season.
4-Shop At Jean-Talon Market
- Address: 7070 Henri Julien Ave, Montreal, Quebec H2S 3S3, Canada
- Hours: Open daily from 8 AM to 6 PM (closes at 5 PM on Sunday)
Another attraction in Old Montreal you should not miss is the Jean-Talon Market, a lively outdoor market where you can find various fresh and delicious products. You can browse through the stalls of fruits, vegetables, meats, cheeses, fish, and pastries and sample some of the local specialties. The market is trendy among tourists and locals alike, so be prepared for a crowd on weekends.
5- Explore The Montreal Museum Of Archaeology And History
- Address: 350 Place Royale, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 3Y5, Canada
- Hours: Tuesday – Sunday from 10 AM to 5 PM (opens at 11 AM on Sat/Sun)
- Tickets: $18.86 per person
If you are interested in the history and culture of Montreal, you should visit the Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History. This museum is located in Old Montreal, Quebec, and features exhibits that explore different aspects of Montreal’s past and present. You can also enjoy various events that take place throughout the year. The museum was established in 1992 to commemorate the 350th anniversary of the city.
6- Walk Around The Old Port Of Montreal
- Neighborhood in Montreal, Quebec
A great way to enjoy Old Montreal, Quebec, is to explore the historic Old Port of Montreal. This is a scenic area where you can stroll and join festive activities all year round. This is one of the most visited attractions in the city today, but the Old Port used to be a fur trading hub in the past.
7- Take In The Sights At Saint Patrick’s Basilica
- Address: 460 René-Lévesque Blvd W, Montreal, Quebec H2Z 1A7, Canada
- Hours: Open daily from 10 AM to 4 PM (closes at 5 PM on Sat/Sun)
If you want to admire a historic church in Old Montreal, you should visit Saint Patrick’s Basilica. This is a beautiful Catholic church that was built in 1847. You can see the impressive architecture, attend a service, and take pictures of the majestic interior.
This is a minor basilica on René-Lévesque Boulevard in Downtown Montreal, so you can easily find it.
8- Learn Something New At the Montreal Science Centre
- Address: 2 De la Commune St W, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 4B2, Canada
- Hours: Mon-Fri 9 AM to 4 PM, Sat-Sun 10 AM to 5 PM
- Tickets: $28.79 per person
If you are curious about science, check out the Montreal Science Centre. This is a fun and educational place where you can discover various exhibitions and programs, as well as watch i-MAX movies. You can spend around two hours inside and learn a lot.
9- See The Town In A New Way At Tyrolienne MTL Zipline
- Address: Hangar 16, 363 Rue de la Commune E, Montréal, QC, Canada
- Hours: Open daily from 11 AM to 8 PM
- Tickets: $20.83 per person
If you want an adrenaline rush in Old Montreal, try the Tyrolienne MTL Zipline. This is an exciting adventure where you can fly over Bonsecours Island in the Old Port of Montreal. You can enjoy the fantastic views of the city and the river from a high-speed zipline.
10- See The City Come Alive At Saint Paul Street
- Street in Montreal, Quebec
Saint Paul Street is one of the most historic places in Montreal. François Dollier de Casson built it along an old fort’s edge. It is the oldest street in the city and was a main road in the past.
Montreal is a city that never sleeps, with many things to do at night. You can enjoy the nightlife, the culture, and the entertainment in the dark.
11-Best Time To Visit Old Montreal
- Best Time To Visit: April/May or September through November.
If you want to enjoy Montreal at its best, you should visit it in spring or fall. Winter can be very harsh for travelers who are not used to the Canadian cold. The snow and ice can make it hard to get around. But if you don’t mind the cold, you can also see some beautiful and fun holiday events in Montreal.
The warmer months are better for exploring Montreal on foot. You can see the flowers in April and May or the colorful leaves from September to November. You can also experience the romantic and historic atmosphere of Old Montreal, no matter what time of year you visit.
12- Best Way Around Old Montreal
- Best Way Around: By foot, bike, or bus
Walking or biking is the Best Way to see Old Montreal. But if you want to explore the rest of the city, you can take buses or taxis. Montreal has an excellent public transportation system, with buses that go to many places during the day.
You can also rent a bike if you stay near downtown because many of the attractions in this guide are close to each other. But remember that Old Montreal is different from the rest of Montreal, a bigger city with more distant attractions. Old Montreal is smaller and more accessible to walk around.
You can rent a car if you want to go outside the city, but it might be more expensive.
13- Where To Eat In Old Montreal
Breakfast: Allô mon Coco
- Address: 501 McGill St, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 0B7, Canada
- Serving: Family-friendly chain serving hefty-sized breakfast & lunch classics, including omelets & crêpes.
Lunch: Stash Café
- Address: 200 Saint-Paul St W, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 1Z9, Canada
- Serving: Traditional Polish dishes & set-price menus in a charming room with warm lighting & church pews.
- Address: 312 Saint-Paul St W, Montreal, Quebec H2Y 2A3, Canada
- Serving: A lively restaurant with subdued lighting, stone walls & a European-inspired daily market course.
Drinks: The Coldroom
- Address: R. Saint-Vincent, Montréal, QC H2Y 1G8, Canada
- Serving: Gourmet cocktails mixed in a speakeasy-style hideaway with exposed brick walls & wood beams.
14- Where To Stay In Old Montreal
Regarding Old Montreal hotels, there are plenty. Here are some stays based on budget, mid-tier, or luxury price ranges, all within the Old Montreal borders.
Budget: Sonder Lambert
- Address: 53 Rue de Brésoles, Montreal, QC H2Y 1V7
- Amenities: Free Wi-Fi, Tea/coffee maker, Flat-screen TV, Free toiletries
- Address: 445 Rue Saint-Jean-Baptiste, Montreal, QC H2Y 2Z7
- Amenities: Indoor pool, Spa and wellness center, Fitness center, Restaurant, Bar/Lounge, Room service, Free Wi-Fi
Mid-Tier: Maison Sainte-Thérèse By Maisons & co
- Address: 110 Rue Sainte-Thérèse, Montreal, QC H2Y 1E6
- Amenities: Free Wi-Fi, Tea/coffee maker, Valet parking, Wi-Fi available in all areas, Flat-screen TV
Mid-Tier: Lofts du Vieux-Port
- Address: 97 de la Commune Street East, Montreal, QC H2Y 1J1
- Amenities: Restaurant, Bar/Lounge, Free Wi-Fi, Coffee machine, Business center, Meeting/Banquet Facilities, Internet
Luxury: Auberge du Vieux-Port
- Address: 97 de la Commune Street East, Montreal, QC H2Y 1J1
- Amenities: Spa and wellness center, Fitness center, Restaurant, Bar/Lounge, Room service, Free Wi-Fi
Luxury: William Gray by Gray Collection
- Address: 421 Rue St-Vincent, Vieux, Montreal, QC H2Y3A6
- Amenities: Spa and wellness center, Fitness center, Restaurant, Bar/Lounge, Room service, Free Wi-Fi, Tea/coffee maker
15-Tips For Visiting Old Montreal
Some tips for visiting Old Montreal are: First, it is a part of Montreal, Quebec, Canada, but it is a smaller area you can walk around. You don’t need to rent a car to see it.
French culture is powerful here, and in the surrounding area, so you often hear French. English is spoken in Old Montreal, but not everyone can say it well.
Buses are an excellent way to travel around the city, so if you want to save money, you can take a bus to go from one place to another.
16- How To Spend The Perfect Day In Old Montreal
You can have a wonderful day in Old Montreal if you follow these steps. First, enjoy French food at a cafe or restaurant near your hotel. Then, wander around the cobblestone streets and visit some local shops.
Next, hop on a bike and head to the Old Port to see what’s happening there. Relax at a park and have a picnic in the nice weather. You can also admire the architecture of the Basilica or Notre Dame.
Finally, have a delicious dinner at a restaurant and walk back to your hotel. Have a good night and a great time.