Every year in Montreal, Summer is highly anticipated. Locals, as much as tourists, get excited for sunny days and warm nights at all kind of outdoor activities, especially festivals. What makes theses festivals unique is that each one reflects an aspect of the city’s own creative culture and diversity – with major doses of international flavor. Here’s a list of Must-Dos in Montreal if you have the chance to spend time with us during the summer.

Credit © Espace pour la vie (Raymond Jalbert) jardins botanics

Wander Around the Botanical Gardens

Whether you’re from out of town or a Montrealer playing tourist; a family looking for adventure or a nature buff, the Botanical Gardens are worth a detour. With tons of different plant and flower species imported from all over the world, the gardens showcase miniature pieces of paradise and host wonderful events and exhibits. These breathtaking gardens will bring you back to your roots.

Get Moving on the Lachine Canal with Ma Bicyclette

Perfectly located right on the Canal, Ma Bicyclette is a superior bike rental for cyclists of all levels and ages. They even offer on-site repairs with friendly professional mechanics and delicious coffee. Every rental includes a helmet, a lock, a saddle bag and a map. Enjoy the freedom of being car-free and the ease of paved cycling paths for a pleasant ride.

EN Credit © Lachine Canal multipurpose path, Michel Legault

EN Credit © Lachine Canal multipurpose path, Michel Legault

Unique 5 à 7 on Canal Lounge

Until October 12th, jump onboard for a unique 5 à 7 experience on the Canal Lounge, a café-bar on a 45-year-old canal boat. First of its kind in town, The Canal Lounge remains stationary on the Lachine Canal. It’s the perfect spot for a romantic night out with friends enjoying cocktails and snacks, or even for an intimate family gathering. Kids 12 and up, with adult supervision, are permitted onboard. Step inside, relax and watch the sunset with some great lounge music.

Spend your Sunday at Mount Royal’s Tam-Tams

Every Sunday, until September 29th, Tam-Tams du Mont Royal’s Festival takes place on the green spaces of Mount Royal Park. Bring your blanket, food and favorite drinks and gather around the George-Étienne Cartier Monument to experience a free colorful performance from drummers and dancers.

Experience The PY1 Pyramid

Montreal is full of talent and creativity, and PY1 Pyramid once again gives us proof of it. This project from Guy Laliberté, the man behind Cirque du Soleil, and his new multimedia company Lune Rouge Entertainment, is undoubtedly like nothing you have seen before. Since its opening on June 1st 2019, The PY1 Pyramid center has hosted a story that spans the creation of the universe to the present, combining the illusory power of laser projectors, moving set pieces, LED light fixtures, a massive screen and surround-sound speakers. This entirely immersive show will affect the way you think about art, music and technology for the rest of your existence. For more information, click here.

Make the Most of Festival Season

It’s no secret: summertime in Montreal is festival time. No matter what kind of programming you’re interested in, there is for sure at least one that will inspire you. Here are some of the most popular.

L’International des Feux Loto-Québec

From June 29 to July 27, Montréal’s skies will light up with La Ronde proudly celebrating the 35th edition of L’International des Feux Loto-Québec.
Click here for the program.

Festival international de Jazz de Montréal

From June 27 to July 6, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal is taking place once again right downtown in Quartier des spectacles. A major part of Montreal’s downtown core is closed to traffic for 10 days, making it the perfect time to explore the city. Take advantage of free outdoor shows with this 40-years-old extravaganza, ranked as the world’s largest jazz festival in the Guinness World Records.
See the lineup

Just For Laughs Festival

From July 10 to 28, there’s no need to resist your urge to laugh out loud, thanks to the most important annual global gathering of the biggest players in the comedy world. For the program, click here.

Fashion & Design Festival

From August 10 to 24, the Fashion & Design Festival will be held, once again, in the Quartier des spectacles. Join the outdoor crowd and explore Montréal’s major contributions to the international world of fashion through the festival’s fashion shows as well as film screenings, urban art shows and vibrant street parties.
Go here to learn more.

Pique-nique EN Credit © Tourisme Montréal – Madore – Daphné CARON

Relax in Plateau Park Paradise

During the summer, Montrealers love nothing more than picnics. The city abounds with parks and The Plateau has some of the best around. Parc La Fontaine, located in the borough of Le Plateau-Mont-Royal, is also perfect for a run or a bike ride. There’s also Carré St-Louis, at the bottom of Prince-Arthur, that has one of the city’s most romantic fountains surrounded by benches. Finally, don’t miss out Parc Jeanne-Mance, opposite Mount Royal. Hosting softball on most days, this large patch of grass has the perfect amount of action to liven up your picnic.

La Banquise EN Credit © Tourisme Montréal, Bruno Guérin

Eat Poutine at La Banquise

La Banquise is not only renowned for serving one of the best poutine in the province, 24 hours a day, but also for being a warm, friendly venue where customers can enjoy an extensive choice of microbrewery beers and outstanding breakfasts. La Banquise proudly remains a family business, serving customers over 30 different types of poutine. It’s a go-to for comfort food.

Go to Marché Jean-Talon

Stroll down the many avenues of Marché Jean Talon and explore a fascinating variety of colorful fruits, vegetables, cheeses, oils spices, flowers, baked goods, and more local artisanal products. The Marché Jean-Talon is one of the oldest and largest public markets in North America.

Quench your Thirst on the Terrace

Le Sainte-Élisabeth Terrace is considered one of the most beautiful hidden courtyards in Montréal. This European pub is located just a couple of blocks away from Montréal’s main summer festival location: Place du Quartier des spectacles. Open until 3 AM during summer, they offer a fantastic variety of aged beers.

Walk Around Old Montreal

Cobblestone streets, majestic buildings, art galleries, coffee shops, and stunning terraces. It’s no wonder locals consider themselves lucky to have this little piece of Europe in their backyard. Grab your camera and get lost on the narrow roads, stroll along the water on the Old Port while searching for Montreal’s famous landmarks and discover Montreal’s history at the Pointe a Callière museum. Don’t forget to check out the Notre-Dame Basilica while you’re there!