Culture, history, museums, galleries, and food!
Founded by Paul de Chomedey de Maisonneuve and Jeanne Mance in 1642, Montreal is the largest francophone city in the world outside of Paris. The city has many faces and presents a rich history that includes more than 80 different cultural communities.
The Old Port, which was a gateway for many immigrants, is now a historic gathering place bustling with tourists and locals throughout summer and winter. In Old Montreal, a visit to Pointe-à-Callière is essential for anyone wishing to explore the remnants of First Nations settlements and the first French communities. Also in Old Montreal, a few rare legacies of the French regime continue to survive.
Château Ramezay and the Seminary of Saint-Sulpice are examples of this time period. In the nineteenth century, Montreal was the largest city and the centre of business in Canada. Walk through the streets of the old town and you will see the rows of prestigious buildings that once housed the country's first major corporate offices and banks.
During a visit in 1888, Mark Twain named Montreal the "city of a hundred spires." In fact, we could say that Montreal is the city of a thousand spires. Its religious heritage is indeed rich and abundant. The Notre-Dame Basilica, the Cathédrale Marie-Reine-du-Monde, and Saint Joseph's Oratory are more than places of worship; they are places of memory that deserve attention.
Montreal is also home to a wide variety of neighbourhoods that have their own identities steeped in history. Each one deserves some attention. To discover them, why not combine business with pleasure and visit a bagel shop in Mordecai Richler’s Mile End, feast on smoked meat in Michel Tremblay’s "Main" Plateau, or devour a real poutine in Gabrielle Roy’s St. Henri. You will quickly learn that Montreal has also an excellent gastronomic heritage!