And, as home to a bustling nightlife and home to the legendary jazz festival, Montreal provides New Englanders with a perfect opportunity for a romantic weekend away.
We had the opportunity to spend the long weekend in Montreal and while the weather outside was frightful, especially for the end of May, the weekend away, nevertheless, was delightful.
Thanks to Priceline, we scored a four star feng shui-inspired hotel at the gate of Chinatown across the street from a metro station. A short walk to the right, up the hill and we were standing in the shadow of the grand Notre Dame cathedral. Across the street and up two blocks was the world famous, or rather infamous, Rue Sainte-Catherine, lined with restaurants, bars and other interesting retailers and services.
We've been to Montreal many times before. And thank goodness, because it was barely 50 degrees and pouring rain...that is, until Sunday night. Nevertheless, we explored some romantic, quaint corner coffee houses and the matrix of tunnels that lead to the "Underground City" of shopping centers, designed for residents and tourists alike to escape the Montreal's frigid winters.
Regardless of what Mother Nature has in store, here's a sampling of what you will find in Canada's Cultural Capital.
St. Joseph's Oratory of Mont Royal--Canada's largest church. You will find pilgrims going up the center stairs on their knees in sacrifice. Check out the views from the top...fabulous views of Montreal from the city's highest point.
And then there's Olympic Park, home of the 1976 Summer Olympic Games.
The Biodome is fun for exploring various ecosystems...the tropical one is my personal favorite. It also includes the botanical garden, which is lovely as well.
The bug museum, I could do without...but to each, his own.
And if you're a foodie like me, no trip to Montreal is complete without a Nutella crepe.
If you're from the Northeast, Montreal is a very doable and very fun weekend escape. It's only six hours from Boston, but it feels like an ocean away. Crescent Street is lined with terraced restaurants, bars and clubs. The hipster Mile End neighborhood is another must-see area to explore. And if you like to gamble, check out Montreal's casino, built on rock salvaged from construction of the city's metro system.
Foodies, shoppers, cultural enthusiasts, gamblers, outdoorsy types...there's something for everyone north of the border. Check it out, and you, too, will be able to say, Je me souviens.