For my birthday, my wonderful fiancée decided that instead of buying me a gift, she’d take me on a little weekend trip. After digging up the ol’ passport, we drove off to Montréal, Canada. After a looooooong drive through New York State (although it was beautiful with trees changing colors) and a long-ass boring road through Canada, we made it to our hotel in Montréal. It was connected to a mall which had overnight parking in the basement, which was a godsend, because I hate looking for parking.
We were there early so that first day, we decided to take a stroll through Old Montréal since it was so close by. Walking around amongst all the old architecture, really took me away from reality. The difference in culture and scenery was entrancing, it reminded me a bit of being in Paris, with everything being in French. The people were quite friendly, being very helpful when asked for directions or saying sorry often, although that might also be attributed to them being Canadian (ey). Walking in Old Montréal we saw the Notre-Dame Basilica, which was quite beautiful. We wanted to go inside, but unfortunately there was a huge line every day that we walked by.
After walking through the old town, we took a stroll through Chinatown, which was mainly just a street. We had a bubble tea which was pretty good. Afterwards, we went for dinner at Jardin Nelson, which I have to say was probably one of the highlights of the trip. If you every visit, I fully recommend you come here and sit on the inside. It’s absolutely beautiful, and the food was so good. My fiancée had the duck, and I had the baby back ribs smothered in maple syrup. OMG was it so good. The ribs was probably the softest I’ve had in a long while and the maple syrup really made the dish soar. I’d be willing to drive all the way back to Canada just for that dish. Best part, American currency being worth more, made the dish like 20% less expensive for me 😉
Night time was beautiful as well, all the buildings lit up in beautiful colors. All over the city, videos were being played on the facades of many buildings. Many of the videos showed made the buildings look alive, like walls crumbling away, or strange characters just running along the wall of the building. It was really cool, and I wish places like New York can try something like that too.
The second day, we had St-Viateur Bagels for breakfast, which were soooo good (Montreal style bagels are doughy goodness). We went to the Botanical Gardens afterwards which was pretty, but unfortunately it was also raining that day.. Luckily we found a Japanese garden to take shelter with a dragon though.
Afterwards, we went to the Biodome next door, which was basically like a little forest/zoo inside a building. It was fun, plus we got to see little monkeys and penguins!
We rounded the trip off by being shopaholic fatties, having ice cream and poutine and shopping at Roots. #JustCanadianthings. We just hung out at the mall the last day, before calling it quits and heading back home.
It’s really nice getting to experience something like this so close to home. The fact that most people there spoke French really added to the effect of getting away, feeling like going to France again without dealing with long plane rides. Overall, it was a fun little getaway, and a much needed break from (American) society. I hope to see you again soon, Canada!