I’ll recommend an extension of what I did yesterday afternoon.Drive up to the area around Lac au Castors on the top of Mont Royal for around 10 am.Leave your car at one of the huge parking spots, it’s $8 for a full day.
Alternatively, I believe the route 11 bus goes there from Metro station Mont-Royal, on the orange line, perhaps 10 minutes from a downtown station.The site up around the lake and the mountain peak is nice in itself.There’s the cross on top of the mountain as a short hike, and also a chalet building.
There’s a lookout near Lac au Castors.There’s a wide dirt path (Chemin Olmsted) that winds down the mountain.You get some beautiful vistas of the South side looking toward downtown Montreal and the Monteregian Hills in the distance.
You see the buildings, the bridges, and the Olympic stadium.Once there’s enough snow in December, there’s tobogganing on the sloped Hills around the lake.If you hike/walk down to the bottom, you’ll meet a lot of other people, walking, jogging, Running, biking (watch out for the mountain bikers – there are 20 km/hr speed limit signs, but Montréalers are notoriously relaxed with such rules).
In the winter there are cross country skiers on the part of the trail used for that.You come out at the bottom at the monument on Avenue du Parc.Walk past the kindly herbal medicine vendors, and from there, you can cross Avenue du Parc and make your way to the Plateau Mont Royal.
I recommend stopping for a funky sandwich, bowl of vegetarian chili and a cup of coffee at Cafe Santropol at Saint-Urbain and Duluth.There’s also some Portuguese roast chicken places that are fast but amazing.I find Santropol cozier after winter walking (though the restaurant is best in the late spring through to early fall, when you can sit outside in the garden).
Then you can walk around for a bit, say on Duluth out to Saint Denis.Then, if you left your car at the top, you can either walk back up (about one hour), or take the 11 bus from Metro Mont Royal (Berri and Mont-Royal).Another nice place to go in winter if it’s nasty out is the Olympic stadium complex.
There’s the Biodome, which is an indoor structure with different climate controlled zones representing areas of the earth with plants and animals.The tropical zone is my family’s “discount tropical vacation” usually once in the depths of winter.The Planetarium is also in the same complex.
There are lots of things in Montreal that you can do year-round.
Such as:- walk, drive or take the bus up Mount Royal- visit museums, the Science Center, the Biodome/Planetarium/Botanical garden, etc.- indoor swimming- indoor (and possibly outdoor) ice skating- visit the Grande bibliothèque For more specific activities and calendars, you can check here Montreal | Event | What to do and here What to do in Montréal?
Stay indoors!Temperatures can drop well below freezing.That said, Montreal has a lot going on underground as most buildings are connected by tunnels with shops, restaurants, movie theaters, etc.
Enjoy the cold weather.Days are short so make the most of the limited daylight by being outside.Bundle up well.