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Montreal city guide

Dispatch Coffee

For the house-roasted brew

The Montreal roastery has three brick-and-mortar locations: a minimalist coffee shop created in collaboration with Rhoncus Design in the heart of the Plateau Mont-Royal, a flagship space in Mile-Ex and a café on the McGill campus. Pair your Dispatch brew with a selection of snacks prepared by local businesses, like vegan eatery Le Kitchen and Hof Kelsten bakery.

Dalla Rose

For the DIY ice-cream sandwiches

Nora Gray alums chef Mike Dalla Libera and former general manager Nick Rosati spin handmade artisanal ice cream daily using milk sourced from northern Quebec at this Saint-Henri hot spot. The crèmerie has a rotating selection of seasonal flavours (including two vegan options), like cookie biscuit, ground cherries and vegan chocolate.

St-Viateur Bagel

For Montreal-style bagels

This shop has been hand-rolling bagels and baking them in a wood-burning oven since 1957. Locals, tourists and celebrities alike (it’s got Celine Dion’s and William Shatner’s seal of approval) pop into the 24-hour bakery for a dozen to go or an on-the-spot carb fix after a night on the town.

Larrys

For small bites and weekday breakfast

Start your morning with a cappuccino made with Portland’s Heart Roaster beans, then head back in the evening, friends in tow. Wash down small plates, like the preserved chicken, with a selection from the natural-centric wine list, or a pint of the Ghost Farm IPA, from one of the co-owners’ craft-brew side project.

Elena

For the pizza

To see what’s making Montreal buzz, step into the electric Italian-modern comfort of Elena, a pizza and pasta restaurant from the Nora Gray team. Sit between a couture-cloaked Westmount family and a tattooed mother and son and chow down on fresh-off-the-boat B.C. spot prawns; blistered, naturally leavened pizza showered with six kinds of mushrooms, celery root and taleggio; and handmade tagliatelle with a robust pork and beef ragù. The natural and biodynamic wine list is a liquid lecture on the purity, snap and vibrant acidity these wines can achieve. This is what it’s like to see a chef and her team at the top of their game.

Mon Lapin

For the natural wine

The green of potted plants dapples the white walls of this Little Italy oasis, where stellar natural wines play off layered flavours and textures. A dazzling salad of endive, caramelized pumpkin seeds, pickled elderberries and shaved foie gras matches with the creamy minerality of a Loire Valley Domaine du Haut-Planty muscadet, while aromatic Jerusalem artichoke bread topped with sunflower crumble finds a partner in a sunflower butter. You won’t mind the no-reservations wait project from the Vin Papillon team: Servers stop by with words of encouragement and magnum pours of pet nat, making you feel like the centre of the party.

Alma

For classic Catalan fare

Afro-Latino coastal beats and the smell of local radishes and shishito peppers on the grill are in the air. Suddenly the vegetables catch fire, but pas de problème. The chef gently blows out the blaze, and dinner at this Outremont wine bar in Montreal keeps rollicking on. The owners fused their love of Mediterranean flavours and the natural wines of Catalonia with a short menu featuring some Catalan classics: grilled octopus with patatas bravas, and grilled sausage with calçots (grilled spring onions) and romesco. Thick hunks of toasted bread are paved with an even thicker layer of housemade butter, then topped with pungent oil-cured Cantabrian anchovies. Tender pieces of Îles-de-la-Madeleine lobster and housemade spaghetti swim in butter under a shower of lemon zest – popping in the mouth with acidic bursts of ripe cherry tomatoes and a Tanca Els Ulls white from Celler del Cesc in Tarragona. Alma was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

Beau Mont

For the locally-sourced ingredients

The local sourcing gets five stars at this just-right-sized Park-Ex spot from Montreal’s Toqué team. Decorated with giant jars of preserved produce and a panoramic backlit photo of Kamouraska, it’s not as big and fancy as mama Toqué! but more refined (and exclamation point-less) than Brasserie T! Every element in the Nordic shrimp dish – the crustaceans, the radish, chili vinaigrette and garlic – sings of the sea or the soil. The salty, nutty, foraged wild parsley scattered over lacquered turnips and carrots hints at hidden depths. And the fish, sourced from the chef’s favourite Outaouais producer (who went from raising deer to fish after disease wiped out his herd), is served on a bed of braised mini-kale with a peach-mint dice. Beau Mont was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

Le Petit Mousso

For the biodynamic wine

“We eat way too much of this!” our server with the long-stemmed rose tattooed beneath her collarbone tells us as she brings out sweet and spicy radishes from the chef’s farm with a hit of sea salt and a smear of housemade cultured butter flavoured with camomile. Two of the city’s most creative chef minds are at work here at the minimalist, more affordable little sister to Le Mousso. Shaved turnip slices filled with plump pieces of shrimp and emulsified turnip are bathed in fermented tomato water, alive and as electrically acidic as kombucha. Bright-green layers of blanched asparagus, head cheese and pickled knotweed combine to form a golden ratio of fat, crunch and fermentation. The only thing that can match the brightness of the menu? The organic and biodynamic wine list. Le Petit Mousso was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

McKiernan Luncheonette

For the ham butter and foosball

The Joe Beef gang has teamed up with Maison Publique, adding a sprawling, family-friendly space that feels like a restaurant inside a bright, summer-camp dining hall (pool table! foosball!). My summer camp never served ham butter (a 1:3 ham-trim-to-butter mix whipped to perfection), which I slathered on everything. Or soft, slow-cooked leeks dotted with smoked New Brunswick mussels (doused in olive oil and scattered with arugula) and paired with a raspberry-ginger Gutsy Kombucha (on tap) to bring out the mussels’ funkiness. And definitely not an impossibly moist half roast chicken, sitting on a pool of bagna càuda ringed with crispy roast potatoes, that sings with a grassy, mineral-driven 2017 Stefan Vetter Müller-Thurgau. McKiernan Luncheonette was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

Moccione

For the tempura-fried Quebec pike

Fresh pasta is boiling on the open-kitchen stovetop; Rick James funk is shaking the sound system and a crew of nine (headed by the ex-sous-chef at Toqué) are firing on all cylinders to keep up with a packed, 26-seat room. An amuse-bouche of pale-green asparagus mousse ringed with olive oil, basil sprouts and chive flowers arrives in a bar glass. Fat, round, tender orbs of tempura-fried doré (Quebec pike) come with an elevated tartar sauce striped with herb oil and garlanded with shaved fennel, capers and pickled red peppers. We wipe our plates clean with homemade focaccia that’s fermented slowly and topped with Maldon salt. Then the only thing that could make this moment better arrives: a smooth, slightly smoky biodynamic wild-ferment 2017 Matthias Hager Urgestein Grüner. Moccione was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

Monarque

For the foie gras with rhubarb

Fan-shaped art-deco marble-tiled floors. Acres of metal-topped bar. Giant pieces of meat displayed in the dry aging meat cellar like old-masters portraits. This sprawling, drop-dead-gorgeous Square Victoria resto-brasserie in Montreal has perfected the art of the gentle steer. Wouldn’t we rather have the Portuguese 2017 Curtimento Branco orange than the Greek retsina orange? And perhaps the foie-gras torchon over the beef tartare and sea urchin? (Yes on both counts: The elegant, peach-nosed wine brought out the best in the creamy foie and rhubarb.) When it comes time for dessert, we are gently nudged toward the fruit pavlova, a hulking triangle of not-too-sweet meringue and dollops of whipped cream, drizzled with a bracing seed-studded fruit coulis. Monarque was a contender for Canada’s Best New Restaurants in 2019.

Pastel

For the housemade bucatini

Elegant silverware rescued from the Fairmont the Queen Elizabeth redesign and blush linen tablecloths meet modern tubular lighting and playful splashes of pastel at this airy Old Montreal eatery, named #8 on Canada’s Best New Restaurants Top 10 list in 2019. The food is also a combo of modern riffs that play on a solid classical foundation: Housemade bucatini napped with a creamy cacio e pepe sauce glows the colour of lime sherbet thanks to an infusion of chlorophyll extracted from blanched spinach and parsley (a shower of black pepper with hints of sweet grapefruit, peach bitters and horseradish renders it sublime). Pairings – an aromatic, creamy Albert Mann 2016 pinot gris and a ravishing 2009 Cantomoro Tunia cab sauv from Tuscany – are (you guessed it) also a mix of the old and the new.

Phi Centre

For the multi-disciplinary art exhibits

Housed in a historic building built by John Ogilvy in 1861, the Phi Centre is a multi-disciplinary complex with a mission to make art accessible to as many people as possible. Look for screenings of international Cannes-awarded films and browse pop-up shops featuring products by up-and-coming designers.

Bar Datcha

For the electronic music

Head to the only club in Mile End, order a Berghain cocktail (named after the famous Berlin nightclub), made with vodka and yerba mate, and show off your moves on the dance floor. Make sure to head there on Thursday for an evening of jazz and tarot.

Casa Del Popolo

For live indie music

Founded in 2000 by Godspeed You! Black Emperor bassist Mauro Pezzente and wife Kiva Stimac, the “House of the People” is a family-run vegetarian restaurant, bar, art gallery and music venue. Stop by in the afternoon for a vegetarian burrito and a pint of beer, then come back at night to catch up-and-coming local and touring musical acts perform on stage.

Mount Royal Park

For family-friendly activities

In the summer months, bring your kids on a gentle hike to the summit for unbeatable views of the city. Then, head towards Beaver Lake for an afternoon picnic and let your little ones roam freely. In the winter months, explore the mountain while cross-country skiing along its various trails, go for a skate on Beaver Lake or toboggan down the designated slopes nearby.

The Letter Bet

For up-and-coming artists

Part gallery and part boutique, this seriously stylish Saint-Henri store invites you to beautify your life with sleek streetwear and striking original works by up-and-coming artists.

Ssense

For the designer clothes

At high-end online store Ssense’s new five-storey Old Montreal flagship, go beyond the Kenzo and Versace-bedecked racks for a post-shopping bite at their chic café with brutalist vibes (menu by Le Fantôme’s Jason Morris).

Blanc Confetti

For the fresh stationery

Writing letters might be old-fashioned, but this Little Italy paper emporium with beautiful printed cards and winsome stationery makes us want to travel back in time.

Hotel William Gray

For the local flair

Independent Montreal streetwear boutique OTH has an outpost seamlessly integrated into the sleek lobby so you can shop Canadian labels like Naked & Famous and Raised by Wolves. Walk through to Café Olimpico, the second location of the Mile End institution established in 1970, for an espresso or a Perrier and Stappj, a hard-to-find Italian bitter soda.

Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth

For the Far-out Business Digs

When they refreshed the 950-room hotel, Sid Lee Architecture also got down to business with conference facilities, paying homage to the property’s swinging-’60s origin story. Most boardrooms are filled with natural light and whimsical touches (Ping-Pong-ball artwork and canary-yellow beaded curtains), but the Eureka room would be appropriate for world domination. Black leather chairs, a round table lit by a stark halo and 16 curved screens for 180-degree video calls fuel creativity and Dr. Strangelove aspirations. Toast the day’s work with a Dubonnet cocktail (the Queen’s drink of choice) with gin and orange bitters, served on an actual silver platter and chilled with an E-stamped ice cube, at the street-level Nacarat Bar.

W Montréal

For the tailored experience

The property in a former financial-district bank building has become a refuge for business travellers and creative types alike, matching guests with tailored services: a map to the city’s best vintage shops, anyone? Your jaw may drop at the extra-high ceilings and windowed walls in a new open-concept (and aptly named) Extreme Wow Suite. Sit in the private terrace’s swing chair and peep at the bustle in Square Victoria below. Order French-onion-soup dumplings at the pop-up-inspired Nom Nom Cantine before a night out. On your way back, grab a Quebec gin and tonic spritzed with housemade perfumes at Bartizen.

Hotel Gault

For the oversized French windows

Interiors at Hôtel Gault have a fresh industrial look, striking a perfect balance with the European romance of Old Montreal. The hotel’s 30 rooms enjoy high ceilings and large windows; walls are painted in soft tones, and bright furnishings inherited from the 1950s and ’60s provide sparks of colour. Weary travellers can benefit from the energy-renewing jet-lag massage or relax and repair at the Valmont Beauty Lounge – located across the street – one of only a handful of spa retreats worldwide to be specially designed by Swiss anti-aging experts.

Boxotel

For the eco-friendly rooms

Once a commercial print shop, this sleek spot offers an eco-friendly, peaceful hideaway in downtown’s Quartier des Spectacles. It’s no fluke that your teched-out room basks in natural light: The hotel’s sun-oriented windows, solar thermal panels and heat-retaining concrete floors were all designed to reduce energy consumption. Apartment-like lofts have smart features that allow you to control lights, temperature and music from the TV screen, so you never have to leave the bed.

Hôtel Saint-Paul

For the beaux-arts architecture

A classic example of Old Montreal’s beaux-arts architecture, with a sharp, simple design approach, Hôtel Saint-Paul has benefited from an elegant restoration. Bold metals and woods are found in each of the 119 rooms, with large windows welcoming natural light. The main entrance boasts a huge marble fireplace, a warm detail contrasting with the hotel’s more austere features.

Info about getting from the airport, public transportation and more.

Getting from the Airport

Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) is located in Dorval, about 30 to 45 minutes from downtown Montreal. Highways 20 and 520 are the main access roads to the city, but there are other services available if you don’t have a car. For $10, the express bus 747 connects you from the airport to downtown Montreal 24 hours a day. Taxis charge a fixed rate of $41 from the airport to downtown Montreal.
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Public Transportation

The Métro is the most convenient way to go between neighbourhoods. The yellow line connects you with the South Shore suburbs and Île Sainte-Hélène to access Parc Jean-Drapeau, where Expo 67 was held. One ticket costs $3.50.

Bikes

See the city like a local (and save money) by hopping on a Bixi. The bike-share has over 600 stations and 7,430 bicycles navigating the city’s numerous bike lanes. The system is set up for short trips; the base fee starts at $2.95 for a trip that lasts 30 minutes or less (longer trips cost extra). The season lasts from April to November.

Taxis

If hailing one from the street doesn’t work, you can easily find taxis waiting at the corners of major avenues in Montreal and near public attractions.
Atlas Taxi: 514-485-8585
Taxi Coop Montreal: 514-725-9885
Taxi Diamond: 514-273-6331

Uber

The Uber app is really easy to use in Montreal now that the ride-sharing company is fully legal in the city. If you don’t have the app, you can download it in a matter of seconds.

Weather in Montreal

Thursday light rain
24°C May 28, 2020
Friday moderate rain
25°C May 29, 2020
Saturday light rain
18°C May 30, 2020
Sunday sky is clear
14°C May 31, 2020
Monday light rain
14°C Jun 01, 2020
Tuesday overcast clouds
14°C Jun 02, 2020
Wednesday heavy intensity rain
11°C Jun 03, 2020
Powered by: OpenWeatherMap.org

Book today for the lowest fares to Montreal

FromToDepartureFare TypePrice

Algiers (ALG)

Montreal (YUL)

Sep 01, 2020-

Sep 06, 2020

Round-trip/Economy
575EUR*
Viewed:3hoursago

*Fares displayed have been collected within the last 48hrs and may no longer be available at time of booking. Learn more about this offer. Additional baggage fees and charges for optional products and services may apply.