Montreal’s Hipster Holiday
The following is an article “Montreal’s Hipster Holiday” by Marc Pulisci.
Montreal remains to be one of the most prominent tourist destinations for the world’s hipsters with its unrelenting love for the arts, eccentric festivals, and all things creative. As Québec’s largest city situated on an isle along the St. Lawrence River, this tourism hotspot bursts with vibrant culture and unique sights if you’re looking for something cool and different. Vegan bars and party hubs accentuate the gas lamp-lit squares illuminating its one-of-a-kind neighborhood. From its eye-catching street art to industrial startup offices, a holiday in Montreal will give you a feel of what being cool is really all about.
If you’re planning to give Montreal a visit this year, here are a few hangouts you might want to check out for a hipster holiday you won’t forget.
This neighborhood is definitely one to fall in love with if ever you’re in Montreal. What used to be an industrial entrepot located in the middle of Westmount and the Lachine Canal, St. Henri has been recently renovated into an aesthetically improved business hub with condos and offices lining up along Rue Notre Dame. The main attractions here however are the many great F&B finds and markets such as the old American staple-themed Greenspot Diner, the sprawling Atwater Market next to the Lachine Canal, and brunch favorite Foiegwa. There are definitely more restaurants to visit at Lachine Canal where you can also take a bike ride all the way to the old port or simply lounge in one of its many parks.
Street Art and Mural Tour
Montreal’s art scene has appealed to many art connoisseurs from around the world with its giant murals in the cool Plateau neighborhood. You get access to 35 art murals in this two and a half minute walk tour that also features the Le Plateau-Mont-Royal Stroll complete with a local guide who will let you in on Montreal’s rich art culture and history. Make stops at the art cafes, microbreweries, and bakeries around the area while on your tour to fully immerse in the hipster vibe of the city. You also get to see the nearly hundred feet tall Leonard Cohen mural that pays tribute to the legendary Montreal artist. A few steps away also takes you to Cohen’s house which is absolutely a great plus.
Ice Wine, Craft Beer, and Ice Cider Tour
Québec is also home to the finest wine countries in the province which you can check out via either a half or full-day tour. Indulge in private wine tastings and acquaint yourself with one of the province’s greatest exports-- ice wines and ciders. Workshops are offered should you want to know more about the best food pairings, local wines, or how to make the beverages yourself. You also get a local guide for the tour as well as lunch and transportation via a minibus that travels along the Roguemont hillside to the Domaine Cartier-Potelle for the half-day tour, or the Eastern Townships which are the most renowned wine countries in the province after two other stops for the full-day package.
With 40 blocks of hipster treasures that stretch from Mont-Royal Avenue to Van Horne, Montreal’s Mile End features haute culture at its best complete with craft beverages and edgy art designs. Meet the neighborhood’s most eccentric artists in various mixed art studios such as Art Hives, Galerie Simon Blais, or Red Bird Studios among many others. However, if you are more into flavors and shops then check out the many food haunts in the area including St-Viateur Bagel, and retail stores at St-Viateur Street, Myco Anna women’s shop, or the Drawn & Quarterly bookstore for some eccentric graphic novel souvenirs.
Montreal is without a doubt a must entry in your 2020 holiday checklist if you are looking for something that’s culturally different but has all the excitement you want to experience. From the food, to the hotels, to the culture that this Canadian hotspot offers, it’s difficult to think that this type of “cool” can ever be found anywhere else.
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