Sunday, January 4, 2015

Travel to Montreal, Quebec

When my sister asked me if i wanted to go to Montreal, without a blink of an eye, i said yes! Who wouldn't? Who doesn't love vacations, short trips? I would love to go on vacation my whole life....

So on December 19, 2014 we travelled to Montreal via the VIA Rail Train. The 5 hour train experience was wonderful. The stewards/stewardess were really nice. They have a wi-fi on board too, so it's not going to bore you. But come on, are you really going to do that? You gotta see the picturesque landscape's beautiful!

Inside VIA Rail Train

Montreal is a very cold place. When we got off the train, i was surprised by how terribly and horribly cold it was. It was -15. Yay! Brain freeze. Yes, that's what i got.

We stayed at Crowne Hotel just near the train station and the airport. Albeit i wished we could have stayed in the city itself so we can stroll around town easily, but the good price we got for our accommodation was the real i can't complain.

On our 1st day, we went to the Botanical Garden to see the "Candy Christmas Village" and the Insectarium at Rue Sherbrooke. We were very lucky enough because during that time, there was a special Christmas Presentation by a local choir group. It was heavenly!

Botanical Garden is a huge complex. This is on our way to the Insectarium. I want to call it the Insectarium Museum as the displayed butterflies, beatles, etc are not alive. There are a handful of living insects though.

The place is covered with almost feels like heaven! But that's me. 

After Botanical, we were supposed to go to the Parc Olympique for the "Winter Village" which was just across the botanical garden. Unfortunately though after 30 minutes of driving around and asking people, we just couldn't locate the place. The Parc Olympique is huge! Massive too if i must say. We went to Pi-O Indoor Theme Park for Kids instead, which wasn't bad at all because the kids loved it! We stayed there until closing time, which was 6PM. On our last hour, we were escorted by their customer service rep to operate any ride we want. Wow! You get discount for coming in at 4PM and then you get this. The perks of being late.

After the running and clapping for our kiddos, it's time to head to the Old Port of Montreal! We had our dinner at Bevo Bar + Pizzeria which really has a nice ambience, beautiful interiors and really great food! If you are at Montreal, indulge yourself! The place is known for its delicious food... So far, it didn't disappoint me.

Jacques Cartier Square. I love this kind of set-up! I love it. I love it!

Anyway, this is what i didn't really i'm sharing it with you so when it's your turn to visit, you know what to do. The Old Port of Montreal is a really big place with lots of places to go to. The Montreal Science Centre is just along that long stretch of the port. Even the Basilica of Notre Dame is nearby. But that's another story. I suggest that you look into the map for places that interests you so that when you come up with your itinerary, you can do it in such a way that you can explore the place in one day without missing anything. The city of Montreal have a website for you to check their upcoming activities too.

Along Rue del la Commune E just across the Old Port 

Along Rue del la Commune E just across the Old Port

Old Port of Montreal

Old Port of Montreal

The Old Port of Montreal is a very popular tourist destination. But what brought us here was the Fire on Ice sponsored by Telus. It's a fireworks display that light's up the whole city of Montreal. They do it for 4 sparkling Saturday nights that started on December 13, 2014.  The show starts at 8PM. While waiting, you can do some skating at the rink. Do note however, that it's very cold. I noticed some locals bringing with them their coffee thermos to keep them warm. While there is a cafe just outside of the skating rink, it wasn't enough a space to cater to the thousands of people there. 

Just outside of the skating rink

These are fire places where people will surround themselves to get warm. Some would even put up their feet. We were wearing our Toronto Boots, so this definitely was a life saver as your toes can get really numb!

Anyway, these are the beautiful fireworks that is definitely worth the freezing experience! All pictures were taken handheld on my Nikon D810. This camera is a beast!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures! What a lovely experience...