Historic Buildings

Basilique Notre-Dame Dating from the 19th century, this Gothic Revival masterpiece simply dazzles.

Château Ramezay A well-preserved 18th-century governors’ home.

Hôtel de Ville Rebuilt in 1926, the city’s gorgeous city hall displays local art by the legislative chamber.

Bank of Montreal Canada’s oldest bank has a stunning marble interior and vaulted ceiling.

Vieux Séminaire de St-Sulpice The clock on this 1680s seminary was a present from Louis XIV.

Cathédrale Marie-Reine-du-Monde This 19th-century landmark was a symbol of Catholic power in Protestant Montréal.

Live Music

Place des Arts There's always something going on amid the plaza's high-tech concert halls.

L’Astral This jazz venue in a century-old building is a favorite for the jazz festival.

Casa del Popolo From folk guitarists to spoken-word poets, Casa does artsy like nowhere else.

Metropolis From raves to David Bowie, this former cinema has seen it all and keeps delivering.

Dièse Onze A charming basement jazz den with brassy beats and decent snacks.

Cafe Culture

Le Cagibi Café Bohemian spot for coffee or vegetarian fare by day, drinks and arts events by night.

Caffè Italia This very unpretentious coffee shop in Little Italy really feels like the old country.

Pikolo Espresso Bar The signature drink in this stylish space is the Pikolo ristretto, which goes down smooth.

Olive + Gourmando With such yummy sandwiches, this bakery-cafe in the heart of Old Montréal is easy to love.

Flocon Espresso Tiny joint where coffee nerds high-five over some of the city's best espressos.

Café Olimpico A fun, buzzing crowd with great people-watching potential in Mile End.

Carré St-Louis Montréal's prettiest little square has a tiny cafe with outdoor tables.

Quaint Backstreets

Mile End Explore streets that are home to bagel bakeries, funky cafes and bars, and hipster hangouts in this multiethnic district.

Plateau Mont-Royal From Ave du Mont-Royal to Carré St-Louis, the Plateau is the city’s bohemian quarter, with artsy cafes, plentiful parks and unusual boutiques.

Westmount The national historic site is awash in Victorian homes, leafy parks and its heritage city hall.

Old Montréal Head down shop- and restaurant-lined Rue St-Paul, then lose yourself in the quiet backstreets.

Museums

Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal A showcase of old masters and contemporary artists.

Musée d’Art Contemporain A weighty collection of artworks from Québecois legends.

Musée Stewart This old British garrison displays relics from Canada’s past.

Château Ramezay A home of French governors and one of the finest examples from the ancient regime.

Musée d’Archéologie et d'Histoire Pointe-à-Callière An excellent history museum built on the spot where European settlers put up their first camp.

Fur Trade at Lachine National Historic Site This 1803 stone depot in Lachine tells the story of the fur trade in Canada.

Green Spaces

Parc du Mont-Royal The city's main mountain, with wintertime skating and sledding, and biking and jogging in summer.

Parc La Fontaine A leafy park with a chalet restaurant overlooking a lake (and outdoor rink) in winter.

Parc des Rapides Watch the rushing rapids from a picturesque spot on the St Lawrence River.

Canal de Lachine This once industrial canal has been transformed into a 14km-long cycling and pedestrian pathway.

Jardin Botanique Stop to smell the flowers in these lush 75-hectare gardens.

Plage des Îles This lovely if artificial beach makes a great destination on a hot day.

City Cycling

Canal de Lachine Follow the peaceful waterway from Old Montréal out to the Lac St-Louis.

Boulevard de Maisonneuve Much of this one-way street cutting through downtown has its own bike lanes.

Parc Jean-Drapeau These two park islands have winding trails for cycling and walking.

Parc du Mont-Royal It’s a slog to pedal up here, but the wooded trails make it well worth the effort.

Bixi You'll get places fast by hopping around the city on these bike shares.

Pampering

Bota Bota A delightful spa perched on the water near Old Montréal.

Strøm Nordic Spa This beautiful Scandinavian-style spa sits on an island a few kilometres from downtown.

Studio Bliss Get active in a yoga class, then treat yourself to a massage.

Aveda Montréal Lifestyle Salon Spa & Academy Offers a full range of treatments, including an indulgent Rejuvenating Experience.

Ovarium Experience weightlessness in the relaxing salt-filled flotation baths.

Art

Musée d’Art Contemporain Québec’s finest contemporary artworks, in a sleek downtown museum.

Fonderie Darling Cutting-edge installations in a hidden corner of Old Montréal.

PHI Center Arts center with evocative exhibitions, plus frequent film screenings.

Galerie Simon Blais This prestigious gallery in Mile End features some of Québec’s finest contemporary art.

DHC Art Features mind-bending contemporary works.

Aquatic Adventures

Saute-Moutons Go for a high-speed cruise on the waterfront on these thrilling jet boats.

Stand-Up Paddleboards Get a workout paddling around the lake on Île Notre-Dame.

Parc de La Rivière-des-Mille-Îles Take a self-guided canoe trip among 10 islands near Laval.

Rafting Montréal Head off on a white-water paddle down the Lachine Rapids.

H2O Adventures Rents kayaks and pedal boats for a leisurely glide on the peaceful Canal de Lachine.

Panoramic Views

Terrasse Place d’Armes Come summertime, this rooftop bar is the best place for a sundowner.

Kondiaronk Lookout Magical views over the city from atop Mont-Royal.

Île Ste-Hélène Fantastic city and waterfront views from an island just one metro stop from Old Montréal.

Olympic Stadium Spectacular views from the inclined tower (and from the cable-car ride going up).

Chapelle Notre-Dame-de-Bonsecours This 18th-century sailors’ chapel commands splendid harbor views.

Oratoire St-Joseph You'll earn those memorable views after climbing the 300 steps (though some prefer the lift).

Unusual Sights

Place Jean-Paul-Riopelle Time your visit to see the ring of fire on this striking fountain and sculpture.

Gare Windsor Look for ghosts of the past in this hauntingly empty former railway concourse.

Illuminated Crowd This sidewalk sculpture offers a rather dark view of humanity.

Gibeau Orange Julep The great orange ball atop this fast-food joint has become a city landmark.

Underground City Lose yourself among the interconnected malls, metro links and passageways.

Croix du Mont-Royal Yet another city icon is this tall metal cross that you can hike to in Parc du Mont-Royal.