30 Nov 2023

Time 7 minutes

7 Things to Do in Old Montreal This Winter

7 Things to Do in Old Montreal This Winter

https://vieuxmontreal.ca/en/pu...During this winter season, Old Montreal is full of activities to do, either indoors when the temperature is too cold or outdoors to enjoy the beautiful sunny days of winter.

Last update: November 30, 2023

1- Take a Tour of Some Expositions

Old Montreal is just bursting with art galleries displaying works from dozens of artists of all ages, all origins, and with various themes.

Wishbone Gallery, 395 Notre-Dame Street West

This unique gallery presents an ensemble of contemporary Canadian and international artists. Discover its latest exhibition "Hier," which explores the inextricable link between past memory and future hopes while subtly reflecting the underlying tensions of our time.

Centre PHI, 315 Saint-Paul West

In the unmissable Centre PHI, delve into Sex, Desire and Data, an immersive exhibition that explores the connections between sexuality and technology. In an enchanting safe space, discover this 40 to 75-minute experience that uses artificial intelligence. Plus, we invite you to tune out the everyday noise and lose yourself in Montréal’s new immersive listening room : Habitat Sonore. You'll enjoy a new way of appreciating the local and international musical landscape with a different kind of auditory experience that goes beyond stereo listening.

2- Become an Amateur Photographer

Does gazing at the work of other artists make you want to express yourself too? Here you’ll find all the equipment you need to start out in photography and you’ll meet experts that will answer any questions you may have.

Photo Service, 222 Notre-Dame Street West

Since 1937, the masters at Photo Service have been helping Quebeckers produce beautiful images, offering sales, rentals, equipment repairs, photo lab access, and more. It’s a true value for both professionals and newbies!

Camtec Photo, 26 Notre-Dame Street East

Open for more than thirty years, Camtec Photo offers the classic services, like new and used sales, and their photo lab. But we really fell in love with their book section and their virtual gallery. On their website storefront, they’ve shared creations from photographers of all horizons. There is much inspiration to be had here!

3- Get Some Air!

Outdoor winter activities are not just reserved for skiers and ice skaters! Why not discover Old Montreal’s heritage jewels in the cold season? Plus, if you did get a new camera, this would be the ideal time to test it out! During our exploration, we stop for a moment at different winter rest areas throughout the territory, where Adirondack chairs with plowed pedestrian walkways, views over attractive lighted decorations and seasonal installations like pine trees await us all winter.

On the list of must-see buildings and monuments, we’ve included Bonsecours Market with its famous dome, the heart of the neighbourhood since 1847; the New York Life Insurance building, constructed in 1887, the first Canadian skyscraper; the majestic neo-gothic Notre-Dame Basilica, inaugurated in 1829; and the pink Brossard-Gauvin House, built in 1749, the only Montreal residence made of wood in the French colonial style.

And you must go say hi to Marguerite Bourgeoys, featured in the statue-fountain installed in 1988 to pay homage to the one responsible for some of the first schools in New France, as well as Paul de Chomedey, sieur de Maisonneuve, founder of the Metropolis, whose bronze form has crowned the Place d’Armes since 1893.

4- Listen to a Piece of History

Get inspired by the magic of the holiday season and learn more about the neighborhood's traditions and historic wonders.

Victorian Christmas, 458 Notre-Dame Street East

This holiday season, don't miss a Victorian Christmas at Sir George-Étienne Cartier National Historic Site, where you'll experience the preparations for a 19th-century bourgeois Christmas. You'll be welcomed into Sir George-Étienne Cartier's Victorian home, decorated as in the old days. Accompanied by a guide, you'll move from the living room to the dining room, stopping at Madame Cartier's bedroom. Each of them having a different theme, you will learn about the traditions of the past, some of which are still present today, such as the Christmas tree and decorations.

Château Ramezay, 280 Notre-Dame Street East

Once the residence of French nobleman Claude de Ramezay in 1706, this magnificent building has served alternatively as state building and a court of law, before being transformed into a museum space at the turn of the 19th century. At Château Ramezay, you can discover permanent exhibits that help us relive, using many objects of the time, the everyday life of native, French, and English people during the time of New France.

Pointe-à-Callière, 350 Place Royale

Within the walls of this museum set on the very foundation of the metropolis, lie exhibits on a millennium of local history! You can learn more about commercial trades that allowed for the city to develop, native languages, the conventions and customs of pirates, and so much more! Plus, this holiday season, the Pointe-à-Callière Museum transforms into a magical place with a variety of free family activities offered with Holidays on the Pointe.

5- Give Yourself Some Unique Light Therapy!

Once again this winter, Old Montreal lights up in a magical atmosphere! Rediscover the unique character of Old Montreal through history and magic. Marvel at the sparkling structures all over the district. Some of our favourites: the impressive stars at Place d’Armes, the arch at Place Jacques-Cartier, the tree branch garlands over the charming Saint-Amable Street, and the magical tree near the courthouse. Plus, discover a new constellation of 9 majestic and dazzling stars that highlights the Lucien-Saulnier building, a structure cherished for its historic and symbolic significance.

6- Savour A Warm Drink

Has your Old Montreal expedition left you with rosy cheeks? To warm up a bit, go for a coffee, tea, or hot chocolate in one of the neighbourhood's many specialized locations. And here are some suggestions for some original drinks that you can find in two of le Vieux’ must-sees:

Tommy Café, 151 Saint-Paul Street West and 200 Notre-Dame Street West

Tommy Café is a destination of choice for those seeking shelter from the beaten path. We can’t resist the urge to try their lavender matcha or their latte… flavoured with Lucky Charms cereal! Of course, you can order all the classics, good at any time of the year.

Crew Collective & Café, 360 Saint-Jacques Street

Make a detour by Crew Collective & Café here to order one of our favourite hot drinks, be it their caramel latte, a London Fog, or one of the well-renowned house Camellia Sinensis teas.

7- Revitalize Your Skin!

To start the new year off on the right foot, you have a wealth of choices from the vast relaxation and beauty offerings available in Old Montreal.

The Ten Spot, 682 Saint-Paul Street West

At beauty bar The Ten Spot, they have a mission: to make us feel like a 10/10! No doubt that one visit to this unpretentious institution, notably specializing in nail treatments, will put a smile on your face! This chain even has its own line of body care products and nail polishes.

Loft beauté, 59 Brésoles Street

The menu at Loft lets you get a makeover from head to feet: facial treatments, manicures, pedicures, hair removal, massage therapy, and eyelash treatments.

Spa William Gray, 421 Saint-Vincent Street

Tucked away in the hotel of the same name, the elegant Spa William Gray is a sure bet. Enjoy the thermal experience and the numerous treatments administered by a talented team. For a moment of pure luxury, try out their signature spa ritual, given on a bed of warm quartz sand!

Rainspa, 55 Saint-Jacques Street

Throughout December, enjoy a 15% discount on a manicure-pedicure, plus a glass of bubbles at the Rainspa located in the Place d’Armes Hotel. Plus, treat yourself to a relaxing 90-minute massage for the price of 60 minutes. We can't forget the Proskin facial treatments from Dermalogica, which have the power to completely transform your skin, and are trusted by enthusiasts in Hollywood!

N.B.: Would your business fit in here, but is not yet mentioned? Please, don’t hesitate to contact us at info@sdcvieuxmontreal.com and we will be happy to include it.

Photos: Geneviève Giguère and Sara Megan