Monday, November 03, 2014

Walking & Eating Our Way Through Montreal

The drive took about 3.5 hours and we stopped several
times to take a brief walk.

Our hotel LHotel was a natural for wedding photos with the
big LOVE sculpture outside the door. It was centrally
located and had large comfortable rooms - and lots of very
modern art.
After our son James' wedding we decided to take a little mini vacation and spent 3 days up in our neighboring city of Montreal. We stayed at LHotel , Rue 62 Saint-Jacques West ( near the Notre Dame Cathedral and the old section of Montreal and were very happy with our choice and the price $120 per night (special deal on Expedia). We carefully researched restaurants on TripAdvisor and were very happy with our choices. Two lunches at Arepera, 4050 Rue de Bullion in Plateau Mont-Real and Cafe Titanic, 445 Rue Saint-Pierre near our hotel. Both were very good but the arepas at the former won out. Dinners were at Restaurant Su, 5145 Rue Wellington, Verdun and Europa, 1227 de la Montagne. The former is out of town a bit but was an easy drive. They served very good Turkish food with attractive decor and excellent service at a reasonable price. The later is rated #2 of 4481 restaurants in Montreal and was one of the best meals we've ever had, but very expensive. We reserved both on Open Table ( My reviews are all on Trip Advisor.
We walked all over the city as the weather was beautiful. Our first day around the waterfront, second day visited the Museum of Fine Arts and Plateau Mont-Real and the third day rented bikes to see the Canal Lachine area. There is so much to do here, we'll be back again next summer.
Notre-Dame Basilica was just around the corner

Montreal is punctuated with squares and small parks that
invite you to sit down and relax.

This park was dedicated to Jeanne Mance, one of the first
nurses and founder of the Hotel Dieu (a hospital) in 1645.

Public art is everywhere in Montreal 

A few examples here

Our first afternoon we walked along the river through the
parks and quays.

This whole area has been newly developed as a recreation
site since our last visit here 13 years ago.

Despite being much further north than our home in Vermont,
the colors were just beginning to change here in the city.

There are miles of parks along the St. Lawrence

And even a beach - the most unusual one we've ever seen, it
was artificial and up above the river. This was just one
corner of the beach!

There are so many beautiful restaurants in the
city and most have inviting outside seating.

They line the street and all seemed to be doing a good business
especially since there was little foot traffic in late afternoon.

Jacques Cartier Square is the center of old Montreal and
simply beautiful. Here looking up at Nelson's Column .

That's the Montreal City Hall at the top.

This elaborate fence decorated the entrance to the subway
and the labyrinth of underground shopping malls

The juxtaposition of old and new architecture
is striking throughout the city

Scott is framed by this modern art decorated street next to
the Museum of  Fine Arts.

Where we spent a great morning seeing the Faberge Exhibit
and enjoying the beautiful new addition to the Museum

I loved this wall in one of the corridors

A close up.

From the entrance in the new building we crossed over to the
original museum in a passage under the street.

One of the famous giant eggs

The icons were covered in jewels and gold 

Some of the enamel detailing

There were movies showing the detail on some of the
eggs as it was hard to see with the eye, but I took this
shot myself.

And Scott took some others with this phone

Like this one with my reflexion in a bejeweled frame.

We walked several miles to have lunch at Arepera in the
Mont Royal Plateau area as we both love arepas and
haven't had them since our time in Venezuela and Columbia.
They were great.

This is an eclectic and interesting residential
and small business area

Sunflowers are always fun.

Brightly trimmed, mostly brick townhouses lined the back
streets. It looks like this area is being slowly gentrified.

We couldn't resist checking out this Army
Navy shop with quite a collection of
Science Fiction pieces.

This menacing giant guarded the entrance
Walle looks sad with Eva.

On our way back to the hotel we went through "Chinatown"

On our second day we rented bicycles at the Vieux Port for
a half day and toured the waterfront and the Canal Lachine.

Our bikes were very nice and well taken care
of, but we hadn't cycled for a long time and
were more than a little rusty.

This shows the broad lovely path which borders the Canal,
sometimes on both sides.

I loved the silvery leafed trees that often lined the canal.

Heather with her bike in the large park at the
end of the canal where it joins the St.
Lawrence seaway.

Cheese Cigars and lollipops, garlic popcorn
and dried beef, hanging on the line were
among the amuse bouches at Europea

This box opened up in a cloud of smoke to
reveal yet another surprise appetizer

My first course!

Cotton Candy and Madelaines were among
the many desserts.