Cathédrale Marie-Reine-du-Monde

Church in Downtown
Image by Sven Klaschik / Getty Images

The Cathedral of Mary Queen of the World is a smaller but still magnificent version of St Peter’s Basilica in Rome. The architects scaled it down to a quarter of its size, mindful of the structural risks of Montréal’s severe winters. This landmark was built from 1870 to 1894 as a symbol of Catholic power in the heart of Protestant Montréal.

The 13 statues of saints over the entrance are sculpted in wood and covered with copper; at night they are brilliantly illuminated. The neobaroque altar canopy, a replica of Bernini’s masterpiece in St Peter’s, is fashioned of gold leaf and copper with swirled roof supports.