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Considering that Montreal is Canada’s (and possibly all of North America’s) most romanticized city, you won’t be at a loss of activities to sweep your sweetheart off their feet. From strolling the narrow cobblestone streets of Old Montreal to enjoying a picnic in the park, this francophone city is bursting at the seams with romance fit for a fairytale. Here’s our list of the five best things to do on a romantic trip to Montreal:
1. Wander down Rue Saint-Paul. As the oldest street in the city, Rue Saint-Paul still has its charm — nearly 350 years later. What was once Montreal’s main thoroughfare, this charming cobblestone road navigates through Old Montreal. Though it used to be lined with mansions, today Rue Saint-Paul is bordered by commercial homes and office buildings; but that doesn’t make it any less beautiful, as these are some of the most enchanting commercial buildings we’ve seen.
2. Get cozy in a horse-drawn calèche. Give your feet a rest as you indulge your inner romantic in a ride through the old city. Whether you board in Place d’Armes, in front of City Hall or on De La Commune Street, your horse and buggy awaits you. Revel in the melody of the clip-clop of the hooves as you ride past the charming 18th- and 19th-century buildings that line the streets of Old Montreal.
3. Stroll through Parc du Mont Royal. Explore one of the most beautiful parks in the city with your love in hand. Designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the creator of Central Park in New York City and the Emerald Necklace in Boston, Parc du Mont-Royal is a similarly large green space located in the heart of a city. Popular with visitors and residents alike, it offers something for everyone — cycling, hiking, picnicking, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
4. Picnic at Parc Jean Drapeau. This isn’t just a park, it’s an island getaway — right in the middle of Montreal. Courtesy of the extra dirt left over from building the city’s subway, Parc Jean Drapeau consists of two islands in the middle of the St. Lawrence River. To get to this picturesque oasis, hop on the Metro subway or walk across the Jacques-Cartier Bridge. Though both of the islands are beautiful, we prefer Notre Dame Island, which is to the south.
5. Explore the Old Port. As a the social, economic and cultural esprit of Montreal since the days of the French fur traders in the early 1600s, the Old Port is something special. Four hundred years later, the port remains one of the centerpieces of the city, hosting everything from Cirque du Soleil to the Montreal Science Center. An evening along the St. Lawrence River doesn’t get much more romantic than this.