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As winter recedes and the days grow longer and warmer, Montreal bursts into life, ready to embrace the sunny months ahead. From the high-flying acrobatics of Cirque du Soleil to the sweetness of maple syrup, from beer festivals to biking adventures, and from cherry blossoms to free museum days, Montreal offers a plethora of experiences to enjoy this spring.
Montreal in spring is a city reborn, offering activities that cater to every taste, from outdoor adventures and cultural explorations to culinary delights and historical journeys.
Experience the Magic of Cirque du Soleil
Montreal, the birthplace of the globally acclaimed Cirque du Soleil, is the ideal location to witness their breathtaking performances. Cirque du Soleil is known for its stunning blend of acrobatics, creativity, music, storytelling, and elaborate costumes and set designs. While Montreal doesn’t host a permanent show, the spring and summer seasons typically feature a Cirque du Soleil production. In 2019, the Alegría show runs from April 18th to June 16th in the Old Port of Montreal, with tickets starting at $55.
Capture the Cherry Blossoms
Spring in Montreal is marked by the blossoming of cherry, crabapple, and magnolia trees across the city, offering picturesque scenes for photography enthusiasts. The Montreal Botanical Garden, with its 30 diverse gardens including Japanese and Chinese gardens, is a prime location for blossom viewing. The garden’s Insectarium also offers a fascinating insight into the insect world. Other notable spots for blossom viewing include Rue McGill College, Île de la Visitation, Parc Jean Drapeau, Ahuntsic Park, Westmount Park, and the area near Palais des Congrès close to Montreal’s Chinatown.
Savor Maple Syrup at a Sugar Shack
Quebec, producing 80% of the world’s maple syrup, is the go-to place for this sweet treat. Early spring is the ideal time to visit a local cabane à sucre, where you can indulge in meals enriched with maple syrup and learn about the syrup-making process. A visit to a sugar shack often includes a meal, a demonstration of the syrup production process, and possibly walks or sleigh rides through the woods.
Enjoy the Montreal Beer Festival
Beer enthusiasts should not miss the Montreal Beer Festival, running from May 22 – 25, 2019. Hosted at the historic Windsor Station, the festival showcases hundreds of beers from local Quebec breweries to international brands. Entry is free, with beer tastings requiring purchase of coupons.
Dive into History and Culture at Montreal’s Museums
Montreal Museums Day, typically the last Sunday in May, offers free access to over 30 museums. Highlights include the McCord Museum, Stewart Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, and The Biosphere, each providing unique insights into history, art, and environmental science. Special events, such as the Museum of Contemporary Art’s late-night openings, offer live music, cocktails, and artist interactions.
Explore Montreal by Bike
Spring’s mild weather is perfect for exploring Montreal, one of the world’s top biking cities, on two wheels. With over 645 km of bike paths and the convenient BIXI bike-sharing system, options abound. The Lachine Canal Bike Path offers a scenic route from the Old Port to Lachine, passing historic buildings, green spaces, and modern skyscrapers. The De Maisonneuve Boulevard Bike Path, ideal for downtown exploration, connects museums, shops, and urban parks, showcasing Montreal’s vibrant city life.