Charming weekend account of Montreal by swetaaa, a 21 year old American :
Montreal was such a wonderful city to visit. That is, besides the ticket I got on the way there, the whopping 19% sales tax, oh, and the fact that my car battery died an hour before we were supposed to head home. It has such a European charm to it that it almost felt like I was in France.
What I liked the most about the city, was not only the diversity of the people and the culture and the languages and the FOOD (because honestly, those can be found in any American city), but also the diversity of the city structure. Never have I seen a city change so drastically within only a few blocks. Within a half hour to hour of walking, we walked by a waterfront port, the business district, Chinatown, a gay village, a park, a university area, the suburbs, and, for the lack of a better word, “mountain” (I’ll explain later). Not even New York (although I do love New York) could give you that.
Here are just a few things I LOVED:
1. The Food: There is such a variety of food available in Montreal. If not for anything else, visit Montreal for the food. Walking down one street, you could find such a great variety of restaurants. Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, Afghani, Lebanese, Greek, Indian, French, Italian, Mexican, you name it, they probably have it. And how could I forget one of the best foods ever (drunk or sober): Poutine- fries drenched in gravy and cheese curds. DELICIOUS.2. The Sense of Humor: The Just for Laughs Festival was going on while we were visiting, and there was a free event going on all afternoon into the evening. There were a bunch of food carts (where I tried REAL Macaroons for the first time, not the fake Au Bon Pain one’s and those were to die for). It was like a DisneyWorld of sorts, where random dressed up people would walk around in funky costumes in hopes of getting smiles and laughs. For example, there were these things walking around and rubbing peoples faces with their big hands and I could not stop laughing (probably cause it reminded me of myself).3. Biking Culture: Everyone in Montreal BIKES. There are bikes for rent everywhere. There are bixi stops everywhere. America should have more of these. (By the way, I thought it might have been offensive to call people from the States American, and not refer to Canadians as American, but that’s not the case…we asks a few locals and they prefer Canadian). This is the reason everyone is so fit there. This, and the fact that everyone walks everywhere and exercises like crazy. Unfortunately, we couldn’t rent bikes because the bixi stops would take $250 out of your bank account until you returned it (as a broke college student, the thought of that happening scared the crap out of me) and because the hostel we were staying at had broken bikes. But hey, there’s always a next time.4. Mont Royal: Let’s just say, if I lived there, this would be my go to exercise spot. It’s basically a mini mountain (in my eyes at least), but with stairs, a lot of stairs, and hills, a lot of hills. We went in the afternoon, around 1pm and the amount of people working out there for a weekday afternoon was crazy. Another reason America needs to focus less on working and more on health and relaxation. Anywho, climbing Mont Royal was tiring, but so worth it. The view of the city was absolutely breathtaking and so serene.5. Nightlife: Last but not least, who could forget the nightlife. My all time favorite place there (wish we stayed longer, but the bouncer was pretty creepy), was La Distillerie, a popular but very tiny bar off of St. Denis. BEST DRINKS EVER. and LONGEST WAIT EVER. The bouncer at this place also asked me, as Jersey girl, what my opinion was about the Jersey Shore. I tried explaining that I hated the show and how it absolutely did not portray New Jersey, but my cousins (from New York) had to take over the conversation and tell him that I worshipped Snooki. (FYI: LOVE the Jersey shore, HATE the show). Besides that, found this nice pub with a live band on St. Laurent, but when we went back to it more sober the next night, realized the crowd was WAY older than us. Ended up at this lounge-bar-club place, Pinq Taco, with good music to dance to (think Hot 97). One thing I wish we stumbled upon was a rave with techno/electronic music (since that was our primary assumption of what Candian nightlife was).
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- sketchbookincarnate said: ohmygod my friend went to the same festival as you!!!!! she was telling me abt the bubble ppl haha she said there were so many kids on psychedelics
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- youforiah said: sounds like a wonderful trip!! hope you are having a fabulous summer :)
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