As you drive from anywhere into Quebec towards Montreal, you will be surprised to see how sign boards and directions in English slowly fade away and French boards start appearing. Be prepared to double check what some of the signboards say before assuming something.
We ended up parking at a street (where several other cars were parked too) . The board was in french and we just assumed it was okay to park. When we came back after an hour, a ticket for $65.00 was stuck on our windshield. We decided to take the money from Montreal and pay the fine.
So, our next stop was:
The Casino de Montréal:
The Casino de Montréal is the largest casino in Canada located on the Île Notre-Dame in Montreal. It is also one of the largest in the world. They don't serve drinks at the gambling tables, you will have to walk up to the bar (located in every floor). We won over $300 at this casino, and had a few drinks. We were able to pay the parking ticket online.
Amphibus Tour in Montreal:
The amphibus tour in Montreal is an excellent way of getting to know the places to see in Montreal. The bus travels both on land and water (duh!) and you should try to ride this first, if this is your first visit to Montreal.
Before you start driving, make sure you call the Montreal Amphibus Office (
The tour costs $32 for every person but it is worth the money. The driver and the guide are very friendly, knowledgeable and are bilingual. The guide was able to show us a lot of places to go and also told us some exciting history of the French culture. After hearing the history of the Notre-Dame Basilica, we decided to check it out next.
Notre-Dame Basilica (
Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal):
Built in 1820s, the basilica is an excellent showcase for gothic architecture. Much of the original building and its contents have been destroyed by an arson in 1978. However, it has been rebuilt to preserve the original style as much as possible. Unless you are entering the Basilica to attend the mass, there is an entry fee of 5.00 $. The interior of the Church is breathtaking with stained glass depicting the religious history of Montreal. The roof is ornate with multicolor ornamental work and is quite a view to watch.
Olympic Stadium in Montreal is the largest stadium in Canada and is the largest inclined structure in the world. Built for the 1976 Olympics, it is now primarily used for baseball and canadian football. The roof is a huge retractable door, it is kept open during summer and is closed to encourage indoor activities during winter. It also houses a large swimming pool.
Anyways, a stadium is just a stadium right? It may not be super exciting, but it is still interesting as you ascend at a 45 degree angle to the roof via a funicular.
Montreal Botanical Garden:
Situated across the road from the olympics stadium is the Montreal Botanical Garden. This is a very beautiful and vast botanical garden ( about 185 acres) . The entry fee is 16$ and you also have to pay sseparately for parking. The ticket includes admission to a nearby insectarium. You can also take the trolley or train as the garden may be too big to walk around. The number of plant species they have in this garden is astounding. This is a highly recomended place to see in Montreal.
Other Places to See:
Montreal's Underground City (officially RÉSO or La Ville Souterraine) is the world's largest underground complex in the world. This is a huge shopping mall and is also used for subway trains. A piece of the Berlin wall in the underground city is shown Below:
1. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (French: Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal) is a major museum, and is 150 years old ( founded in 1860).
2. Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History ( Pointe-a-Calliere).