One of our favourite things to do when exploring new cities is to wander different districts. To see the areas of the city where people who live there hang out and eat, generally shunning downtown districts which have a tendency to be fairly uniform. Montreal in this respect was an absolute treat.
The Village is the city’s Gay district and it is probably one of the most colourful places I have ever been. You know you are nearing the village as the pink balls suspended across the street act as a beacon for miles around.
Locally referred to as ‘the mountain’ the Mont Royal district hugs the bottom of the hill and is home to a largely Francophile population. It is also apparently Canada’s most creative neighbourhood as around 8% of the labour force is comprised of artists (thanks Wikipedia for that gem of a fact). It’s a really fun neighbourhood and we enjoyed spending time there, eating delicious food and ice cream and marveling at the co-ordination displayed in the flower box planting of some of the residents and at the incredibly steep stairs many have to climb to get to their front doors.
In an attempt to walk off some of the fine food we had been dining on in Mile End and the Plateau we took a walk through Mont Royal Park and up to the Chalet at the top. Unfortunately for us the day we picked was extraordinarily muggy. I’ve never really understood the expression ‘soupy air’ but now I do, it’s weird and thick, walking feels a bit like wading and when you start to do something strenuous you immediately start to sweat.
And on that nice mental image, here are the pictures I took at the top, I’m sure the view is incredible on a clear day; I guess I’ll just have to go back.