July 27, 2013 – We’ve never been to Quebec. So one weekend we decided to change that. First up – Montreal. And the first thing you’ll want to see is the Biodome. Sure, it looks small from the outside, but where else can you experience a rain forest (complete with monkeys and birds), walk through a mini forest with beavers, watch sea ducks, and then sit and stare at puffins (and watch the puffins stare back)? Oh, and the cafeteria is decent, too – the turkey and brie panini is a winner, and the chef’s choice hot entree is also a good choice.
After the Biodome you can head to the Art Museum, then head to a nearby cafe for some coffee. Once you’re properly caffeinated, trek up the (steeper than it looks) hilly street and through the park for a panoramic view of the city from Mont Royal. Frederick Law Olmstead designed the greenspace, and it’s a beautiful place to walk. And the view from the top can’t be beat.
Now it’s time to walk back down the hill (still steeper than it looks), back to your car, and head to Old Town Montreal. Just try not to do it when big name comedy acts are in town, or traffic on the way out might be a bit of a challenge.
We decided on fish and chips for dinner at Brit & Chips, along with a local beer. Everything was excellent, and the fish were fried perfectly. One surprise is that they have various seasonings that they include in the batter. This makes for some fun flavor combinations. After dinner we strolled along the water, then back through the old town. There’s an old fort (well, the outline of one), as well as some beautiful old government buildings. Tonight there was also a guy swallowing fire; we steered clear of him and the crowds watching him. We also learned that John Molson started his brewery back in the 1700’s; the building is still standing by the remains of Montreal’s town wall.