The Seven Events You Want To Go To Montreal To See

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

If there’s one way you can really find out the character of a city, you just need to look at the biggest events celebrated there every year. When you see the kind of things that bring people together, that’s when you really see what kind of people call a city home. For Montreal, Canada, that’s no different. Known largely at the cultural hub of Canada, you’ll hope to see something different when you get. But just what are the big events and festivals that are really worth sticking around for?

Igloofest

For a city like Montreal, there isn’t really any getting away from the weather. The warmer seasons are comfortably hot enough, but the winter months (and a few surrounding them) are hard to bear. So, is that when the whole city shuts its doors? No, that’s not fitting of one of the cultural hubs of the entire city. Instead, it’s when huge amounts of people join for the biggest music festival that the city sees the whole year around. Igloofest is something of an oddity when you first hear of it, compared to other summer music festivals, but the people of Montreal seem to be nothing but stubborn, intent to enjoy their electronic music and their dancing regardless of what the weather says.
The winter celebrations

Not everyone is going to be dancing outdoors to huge sets of live music when the winter rolls around, of course. But that doesn’t mean that they’re going to shut themselves indoors, either. Instead, you’re going to find many of them at the Fetes de Neiges, a city-wide celebration of everything wintery. For four weekends, Parc Jean-Drapeau serves as the hub for all kinds of fun that have anything to do with snow or ice. There’s ice skating, there’s sledding, there are going to be plenty of snowball fights, especially around the huge ice pirate ship. There’s a lot of music and dancing available, too, for those of you still feeling the rhythm from Igloofest. Definitely one to go to if you have any kids (or big kids) traveling with you.

The lights

Sometimes, you just want to enjoy a calm winter’s evening with a cup of hot cocoa, without having to get up and dance or get freezing by spending all day throwing snowballs. If you want to just relax during those darkest months, then Montreal still has you covered. In particular, you’re going to want to check out the Montreal en Lumiere festival. The whole city brightens up and just when you thought people would be going to bed, they’re taking to the streets. You can admire the pretty lights all you want, but there’s plenty of live music, great food, and even curling available throughout the city. If you’ve never experienced a winter wonderland, this is what it really looks like.
The marathon

That said, it’s not always the case that it’s snowy, icy, and cold. It’s never a guarantee, but Montreal does have its warmer months and there’s plenty to do during those as well. Just as summer ends, in September, you’re going to be confronted by a whole stampede of locals.  The Montreal marathon is a huge annual event that sees thousands of participants. It’s not all about the race as well, but about the festival that comes with it. If you can get in great shape, then you’ll want to try your luck, but otherwise, there’s a whole health and fitness expo that comes with it for you people looking to get in better shape.

The Grand Prix

If you want to see something just a bit faster than people in a marathon, then you might be interested in perhaps the most popular of all the city’s events. Montreal loses hockey fever for just a few months, right in time to pick up the racing bug when the Grand Prix in Canada comes to town. With the Grand Prix comes all the luxury you would expect, attracting some of the classiest of people to the city’s hotels and the most exclusive of parties to enjoy a craft beer with while you talk about the races. It’s an event that attracts a worldwide audience and it’s when the city truly shows its face as a hot tourist destination.
The Patrick’s Day Celebration

Once you’ve enjoyed the luxury and high octane thrills of the Grand Prix, you might be ready for something just a little bit less sophisticated. That’s not to say that there’s no effort in the Patrick’s Day Celebrations of the city. It’s right up there with cities like New York and Boston for some of the most elaborate and fun Patrick’s Days in the whole of North America. As one of the oldest Paddy’s Day Celebrations in not just Canada, but North America, it draws thousands of visitors from all across the country to see parades of floats usually somewhere in the twenties, plenty of authentic Irish Music, and green as far as the eye can see. This is definitely when the party animals want to come to Montreal.

The Chamber Music Festival

Things slow down when there’s a little jazz and classical music to enjoy and there’s nothing wrong with that. The Chamber Music Festival certainly doesn’t draw the crowds of Igloofest, but most of the city will take part at some point, somewhere, as a slew of venues invites hundreds of performers. Rather than a huge stage and a crowd of dance-mad Canadians, it creates an atmosphere of the music over weeks in concert halls and outdoor venues across the whole city. Definitely, an event to catch if you want a slower paced trip to the city. It’s three weeks of some of the most gorgeous sounds composed by man and woman and a perfect backdrop to enjoy it in.
There’s art, there’s music, there are movies, sports, and even a good run. There seems to be little that won’t bring Montreal folk from their home. That’s a good sign for anyone looking to see a city that really knows what it’s like to welcome visitors.

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