In summer, Montreal is busier than ever. The city is brimming with positive energy and offers a multitude of enriching experiences for all who visit.
Electrifying festivals, iconic sites, terraces, restaurants and lively neighborhoods: everything you need to immerse yourself in Montreal’s summer effervescence.
We’ve put together a guide to discovering the city at its best during the most beautiful months of the year. Let the irresistible dynamism of this must-see Quebec summer destination charm you.
How to get to Montreal with points
How to fly to Montreal with points
It’s very easy to get to and stay in Montreal with points. Montréal-Trudeau International Airport is home to several airlines, the most popular of which is Air Canada.
Whether you’re flying from Istanbul, Los Angeles, Mexico or Vancouver, several direct flights are readily available.
For example, if someone from Los Angeles wants to have a good time in Montreal, they can use 53,900 Aeroplan points and $141.
How to stay at a hotel in Montreal with points
Then they’ll be spoilt for choice with all the Marriott Bonvoy hotels available with Marriott Bonvoy points, depending on their budget.
Read our reviews here:
Old Port of Montreal
With over 70 activities on the program, the summer of 2023 at the Old Port of Montreal promises to be rich in novelties.
- The immersive Space Explorers: L’INFINI experience returns to Montreal with spectacular new content captured in space.
- The world premiere of Cirque du Soleil’s new big top show, ECHO, explores the delicate balance of a world shared by humans and animals.
- The exhibition at the Montréal Science Centre, Hockey: Faster than Ever, unveils the history and science of field hockey with over 30 interactive activities.
What’s more, you can still enjoy the must-see attractions of the Old Port with exciting activities, including:
- The Montreal Ferris Wheel, for a breathtaking view of the city
- The MTL Zipline, for a thrilling experience
- Relax aboard Bota Bota, a one-of-a-kind spa on the water
- Admire the city from the water aboard the Bateau-Mouche
- Voiles en Voiles, offering an aerial and climbing experience
- SOS Labyrinthe, with a new course every week
This summer, downtown Montreal is rolling out a musical program and new furnishings in the magnificent Phillips Square, the new place to relax and enjoy a coffee break or a meal in the sun between two concerts.
You’ll find a host of cultural events at any time of day or week, including music, dance, improv and theater. Nearly thirty festivals and events will keep the Quartier des spectacles buzzing until October.
These are just some of the highlights that will make for an exceptional downtown summer experience:
- The esplanade Tranquille in the Quartier des spectacles continues to welcome Montrealers and visitors alike for relaxation and major summer festivals.
- The Jardins Gamelin have a warm new look. The free daily program will feature music and dancing.
- Right in the heart of rue Sainte-Catherine, at the foot of St Jax church, Le Jardin du Monastère will offer open-air circus performances, including the much-anticipated Cabaret de la Fierté, scheduled from August 3 to 19 and featuring a dozen artists from the 2SLGBTQ community.
- Starting May 21, the McCord Museum’s Urban Forest returns to Victoria Street with an ephemeral park and free outdoor programming.
Discover Montreal's other trendy neighbourhoods
When you’re in Montreal, other trendy neighbourhoods are well worth a visit.
With its summer beach and internationally renowned pedestrian street, Verdun is not short of charm.
Time Out named Wellington Street the coolest street in the world. During the summer months, it transforms into a lively pedestrian street and beachfront promenade. You can tour the neighbourhood’s public art on Art Public‘s interactive map, with a podcast to accompany you.
Or spend a spa day at Strom spa nordique on Nun’s Island, with its superb views, water circuits and many different facilities.
Good places to eat and drink include Bar Palco, Well, Kwizinn and Verdun Beach, Lili & Oli, Café Saint-Henri and Station W, and the Audacieuse Vanille patisserie.
Don’t miss La librairie de Verdun and fashion boutiques such as Marigold by Marilyne Baril, La Mistinguette and Le petit Shwap Club.
Montreal's Plateau and Mile End
Here are two trendy neighbourhoods with an inspiring ambience for your summer strolls.
The Plateau is packed with cafés, bars, bookshops, restaurants and boutiques. Its lively streets are lined with colourful houses on one side, while on the other you’ll find old textile factories transformed into startup incubators.
As for Mile End, slightly further north, it offers a unique fringe atmosphere of its own. With its vintage boutiques, quirky restaurants and cafés, the area is best known for its famous bagels.
The Village, Montreal’s gay district, is world-renowned for its lively, festive nature, both day and night. Rue Sainte-Catherine becomes pedestrianized during the summer, offering visitors the opportunity to enjoy its 60 terraces.
Many other trendy neighbourhoods in the metropolis are well worth a visit: Mount Royal and Outremont for outdoor enthusiasts; the Olympic Quarter and Hochelaga-Maisonneuve with its many cultural and sporting attractions; the Canal districts, with Griffintown, Saint-Henri and Little Burgundy.
And don’t forget Parc Jean-Drapeau, with its many activities including cycling, Jean Drapeau beach, the Stewart Museum, the F1 circuit, the casino and La Ronde.
The most beautiful terraces
Montreal has no shortage of beautiful terraces where you can relax, eat or drink, and enjoy breathtaking panoramic views. Here are our suggestions.
- Terrace H3, on the 9th floor of the Humaniti complex, 340 de La Gauchetière W
- Nacarat Bar, 900 René-Lévesque Blvd O
- Menthe et Couscous, 361, rue Émery
- Terrasse Carla, 985 Boulevard St-Laurent
- Pangea Restaurant & Bar, 104 Rue St-Paul E
- Terrasse Nelligan, 106, rue St-Paul O, 5th floor
- Bonsecours Terrace, 364, rue de la Commune E
- Marché des Éclusiers, 400, rue de la Commune O
- Vieux-Port Steakhouse, 39, rue St-Paul E
- Le Perché Bar Terrasse, 153, rue St-Amable
- Restaurant le Richmond, 377 Richmond Street
- L’Annexe Sainte-Ambroise, 5080 rue St-Ambroise
- Muze terrace at the new HONEYROSE hotel, 355, boulevard De Maisonneuve O
- Belvu Terrace at the Montreal Marriott Chateau Champlain, 1050 Rue de la Gauchetière W
The best cocktail bars
When it comes to fine cocktails and mocktails in Montreal, you’re spoilt for choice. Many of the city’s bars and restaurants have excellent mixologists. These include:
Atwater cocktail club
The bartenders at this Little Burgundy institution work with fresh fruit, homemade tonics, syrups and bitters, as well as a range of non-alcoholic spirits.
Time Out Market Montréal
Montreal’s famous epicurean market brings together dozens of the city’s top chefs and bartenders under one roof. There’s also the Soda Bar, which specializes in creating mocktails and sodas infused with herbs and citrus.
Marcus Lounge & Bar
The expansive lounge and terrace on the third floor of the chic Four Seasons serves up a collection of cocktails – and mocktails – to enjoy alongside a culinary menu by renowned chef Marcus Samuelsson.
The most eagerly awaited festivals
Montreal is widely renowned for its dynamic and varied festival scene. Here are some of the most eagerly awaited festivals this summer.
Francos de Montréal, June 9 to 17
With over 250 shows, the Francos de Montréal feature artists from the world’s Francophonie on the city’s biggest stages, indoors and out.
Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, June 29 to July 8
This year’s varied line-up includes legends such as Colin Stetson, Buddy Guy, Herbie Hancock and Diana Krall, as well as innovative artists like Orville Peck, CARRTOONS, Snarky Puppy and DakhaBrakha.
L’International des Feux Loto-Québec, June 29 to August 10
This hugely popular fireworks competition that lights up the Montreal skyline is back again this year.
Montréal Complétement Cirque, July 6 to 16
In July, the circus blossoms in the streets of Montreal, offering spectacular performances that will captivate your eyes.
Nuits d’Afrique international festival, July 11 to 23
For its 37th edition, Nuits d’Afrique presents a rich program of over 100 shows, activities and workshops showcasing Montreal’s Caribbean, Latin American and African diasporas.
Just for Laughs, July 14 to 29
The world’s biggest comedy festival will once again showcase the world’s best comedians. In addition to hundreds of free outdoor activities, the festival presents over 200 shows, many of them in the halls of Place des Arts.
Grand PoutineFest, July 19-30
The Grand PoutineFest tour stops at the Quai de l’Horloge in the Old Port.
Fierté Montréal, August 3 to 13
Fierté Montréal offers you one of the best festive moments of the year, with an explosion of shows and artists, and a festive atmosphere in the Village.
Osheaga Festival, August 4-6
This year’s headliners include the likes of Rüfüs Du Sol, Billie Eilish and Kendrick Lamar, as well as showcasing some of Quebec’s finest artists such as Alicia Moffet, Milk & Bone and Sarahmée.
Ready for an exciting summer season in Montreal? From tourist novelties to timeless classics, it’s impossible not to be charmed by the cultural diversity, fascinating architecture and vibrant energy that characterize this cosmopolitan metropolis in summer.