The summer months might be behind us, but with the cool weather comes holiday cheer! Montreal’s festivities go year round, and Christmas season is no exception. From markets to hot chocolates, and Christmas parks to fireworks, we’ve picked 16 things you won’t want to miss this year.
From December 21st to December 31st, Old Montreal puts on a wide selection of impressive holiday activities. The Jacques-Cartier Square becomes La Place Nordique where you’ll find fun musical performances, outdoor bars offering artisanal beers, hot chocolate and other warm drinks, holiday mascots, photo-booths, and much more! If you’ve got a penchant for festive activities,Merry Montrealhas your back!
Nothing can get you into the Christmas spirit more than The Nutcracker’s famous tunes by Tchaikovsky. See the spectacular ballet accompanied by a live orchestra and hum along to all the merry songs. The show runs starting December 14th until the 30th. Act quickly, though, because the good tickets go fast! For more information or to buy tickets, visit their website here.
14. Visit the Holiday Alley in Old Montreal!
The Pepin Shop (Maison Pepin) has decorated an alley in Old Montreal with everything that makes you think of Christmas! Pepin Shop offers a variety of local artists’ products from Christmas decorations to other home decor items that’ll make perfect gifts! Take a stroll down the alley and shop for a loved one at Pepin Shop.
The Montreal Craft Beer Tour is the perfect holiday afternoon activity! Whether it’s as a gift to a loved one, a way to show an out-of-towner Montreal’s best brewpubs, or even a way to spend some quality time with the beer lovers you love so dearly, it’s Latin Quarter brewpub itinerary will let you savour beer, observe the cheer, and learn more about Montreal. Gift certificates are now available, so you can surprise the beer-lover in your family with a special treat. For more information and to buy tickets, click here!
12. Cut down your own tree at Hadley Christmas Trees!
Put some real work into your Christmas celebration by heading over to Hadley’s Christmas tree farm in Lachute, Quebec. Drive down on a Saturday or Sunday Between 9AM to 4PM and peruse the trees until you find the perfect companion for your living room! For more information, click here!
11. Celebrate with Christmas in the Park
Germany is full of Christmas markets and Montreal seems to be following suit! From December 1st to 25th, Christmas in the Parkwill be happening on the corner of Cartier and Mont-Royal. What does one do at Christmas in the Park? Bring a friend, buy a Christmas tree, sing some songs, and drink mulled wine!
10. Take a Break from the holiday cheer at your local cinema
Let’s face it: Christmas shopping is exhaaaausting. If you’ve taken the time off to wrap presents and attend family dinners, you’ve got a couple hours to treat yourself. This year, Star Wars: The Last Jedi is just in time for those seeking a little retreat from all the holiday shopping and socializing. Thank you, universe!
9. Have a drink at an Xmas-themed bar!
Oh the weather outside is frightful, but an outdoor bar can be delightful! Not to worry–these Christmas-themed bars aren’t as cold as you’d expect. Le Bar Noel Miracle sits atop the William Gray hotel in Old Montreal on their outdoor terrace. Enjoy their Christmas-inspired drinks served in whimsical Christmas mugs in this heated little winter wonderland. There’s also the more casual Teddy Bar on Ontario street. The Teddy bar is also open during the day where you can sip on some specialty coffees and hot chocolates.
Le Bar Noel Miracle (William Gray Hotel): 421 St Vincent St Teddy Bar: 323 Ontario St E
8. Check out Montreal’s Nutcracker Market
From November 26 to December 10, Le Palais des Congres will be hosting Montreal’s non-profit market, The Nutcracker Market! Local vendors pair up with excellent gift ideas, merchants and Les Grands Ballets Canadiens will donate 10% of proceeds to The Nutcracker for Children fund. A good cause, a cheery atmosphere, and awesome gift ideas… what more could you ask for?
7. Spend A Victorian Christmas at the Cartier’s
The Sir George-Étienne Cartier National Historic Site is open to the public where visitors can explore the old victorian house and have some hot drinks by the fireplace! See the beautiful traditional decor and learn about the history of the house. There’s even holiday card making to participate in during your visit!
The story goes that last year, Montreal was bragging about having the tallest tree in North America, and proudly displayed and adorned it with Canadian Tire ornaments. The tree then became a national joke because of how incredibly ugly it was. Well, this year, Montreal’s in on the joke. You can now check out our beloved new “ugly Christmas tree” in the Plateau on Prince Arthur and Saint-Dominique streets. The tree also inspired a village called Le Village du Vilain Sapin of misshaped goods where merchants sell their “unique” crafts, ornaments and even vegetables! For more information, click here.
5. Visit the Santa figurines at the Stewart Museum!
If you’re a fan of Christmas things, you’re in for a treat in this magical Christmas exhibit. Until January 7, the Stewart Museum will be hosting hand crafted Santa figurines from American and Quebec artists. The exhibit features an explanation of the doll making process, family friendly activities, film screenings, and even a little Christmas gift for every visitor! Watch the figurines come alive to music inside a Christmas doll house… how enchanting!For more information, click here.
What better time than the holidays to grab a loved one and enjoy winter’s most comforting beverage? Montreal spoils us with scrumptious hot chocolate options, so you may want to try this one out a few times. Our top picks are:
There’s no better way to spend a morning than walking around Montreal’s historic old city while taking in its history and its culinary favourites. The Old Montreal Food tour invites you to taste Montreal’s culinary heritage, meet friendly new people and dive into the old city’s fascinating stories while exploring the famous institutions and cobblestone streets! Better yet, give the gift of a Local Montreal Food Tour for a fun present anyone would enjoy! The Old Montreal Food Tour runs regularly throughout December and between Christmas and New Year’s.
1. Start your singing career with some Christmas carolling
This favourite holiday pastime can be quite hilarious. Gather some good-humoured friends like yourself, rehearse a song, and pick a random house where people are home. Ring that doorbell, and get singing! Your Montreal neighbours will love favourite Christmas songs, and if not…. they’ll ask you to leave. It’s a little prank, but the results can be very entertaining.
Merry Christmas to all of you!
Old Montreal Food Tour
3h walking tour. Explore Old Montreal’s charming streets while you savour outstanding food. Offered everyday at 11:00 AM and more!
5 food stops incl. a craft beer + the classic St-Viateur Bagel
2 hours 15 minutes and a 1.3KM Walk (0,7 Miles) - 5:00 PM and more - (closed for the winter, back in spring) Starting at $49 CAD + ticketing fees and taxes for adult tickets (Children's prices available)