Thinking about spending a few days in Montreal in autumn? Great idea! Autumn in Montreal is awesome, it’s a great time to be there! Unlike what many people may think, there are many things to do in Montreal in autumn! From POP Montreal to Halloween, the public markets, various events and festivals, etc. You can’t be bored! You can also have a walk in the city and enjoy the beautiful colors of fall foliage. Going to Montreal in the fall? Here’s what to do there!
Watch the fall foliage
Autumn is the best time to admire the leaves in Montreal. The leaves reach their peak between late September and early October, this is when you have to pay a visit to Montreal. What are the best spots to enjoy autumn colors in Montreal? Mount Royal Park is probably the place to be when it comes to fall foliage. It’s in the heights of the city and offers panoramic views of the city from its three summits (the Camillien-Houde Belvedere, Kondiaronk Belvedere and Outremont Summit). Don’t miss it!
Enjoy the green spaces
Montreal is home to numerous green spaces. Just have a walk through one of Montreal’s stunning parks. As mentioned earlier, you can admire the autumn leaves fall. Where to go? Here are the best places to experience this crisp of colourful season while it lasts: the Botanical garden, Bois de Liesse park, Morgan Arboretum, parc Jean Drapeau, parc Angrignon, bois de l’ile Bizard, and the Parc la Fontaine. Yep, many parks to see!
Fill your stomach
The food is delicious in Montreal, therefore you have to taste the local food in one of the numerous restaurants there. For instance, you can try smoked meat – a mix between pastrami and corned beef- at Schwartz’s or Lester’s Deli. You can also go to one of the numerous oyster bars like Lawrence which offers an excellent $1 oyster happy-hour deal. Let’s not the forget the poutine, mac’n’cheese, apple pies, butternut squash soup, etc.
Go to a public market
Two of the most popular public markets in Montreal are Jean-Talon market and Atwater market. They’ve been operating since 1933 and they both offer a variety of delicacies to visitors. Delight in the seasonal fruits, vegetables and ready-to-eat dishes. There’s also ephemeral open-air market spaces such as Jardins Gamelin, marché des eclusiers and les Jardineries.
Pick apples near Montreal
Autumn in Montreal symbolizes the harvest season for U-pick apple orchards around Montreal. Apple-picking is a fun way to spend a day with friends and enjoy a beautiful autumn day. Head to Domaine de Dunham, Apple Heard Orchard or Cidrerie et Vergers Léo Boutin to go apple-picking not far from Montreal.
Experience the Canadian Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving in Canada is definitely not as big as in the US but still, people celebrate it. It’s celebrated on the second Monday of October to commemorate the country’s colonization. Like in the US, Thanksgiving in Canada means turkey dinners and family gatherings. During Thanksgiving, many restaurants offer traditional holiday meals for lunch and dinner.
Get spooky for Hallowen
Halloween in Canada is like Halloween in the US: Canadians celebrate it more or less the same way, dressing up in quirky costumes, seeking out thrills, eating candy and party all night long! You can go on one of the numerous ghost tours or attend one of the Halloween-themed events such as the Zombie Walk (very popular), the Club la Voute Halloween Ball or the Malefycia Haunted House.
Don’t miss the Pop Festival
The POP Montreal International Music Festival is a mix between a music festival, an open-air flea market, visual art exhibit, film event and workshop series. It usually takes place late September during 5 days and takes over dozens of the city’s stages, from major venues to holes in the wall. It attracts 10,000 people per day and combines emerging talents with commercial success stories.
M for Montreal
M for Montreal is another music festival in Montreal. This one takes place late November and also includes outdoor concerts, panels, workshops, networking activities, cocktail receptions, large venue attractions, nightclub events, and other exclusive events. This one showcases more than 100 artists in various venues across Montreal.
Enjoy the numerous festivals
In autumn there are numerous festivals taking place in Montreal. I already talked about POP Montreal and M for Montreal but there are other ones. The Burlesque Festival is dedicated to glamour, humor, and the art of burlesque. The Intercultural storytelling festival is Montreal’s first and largest storytelling celebration. The Montreal Bach festival celebrates the composer for two weeks. Montreal Mural Festival is dedicated to street art. Listen to discussions about film and witness stories unfold on screen at International Festival du Nouveau Cinéma. Finally have a good laugh at comedy festival Just for Laughs.
Go to the museums
Some days we’re just not lucky. You want to go out but it’s pouring outside, or it’s just a gloomy day. Don’t worry there are still things to do. Why not visit a museum? Or go to an art gallery? There are plenty of them in Montreal! The Montreal museum of fine arts is very popular and hosts must-see exhibitions. The Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (MACM) is a contemporary art museum features works reflecting the significant trends of contemporary art by Quebec, Canadian and international artists. There’s also Place des arts, the Fondation PHI and the McCord museum.
That’s it! You have plenty of ideas now if you plan to spend a few days in Montreal in autumn. It’s a great season to get there! You won’t regret it! Not going to Montreal in autumn? Check out my guide about how to spend 2 days in Montreal. It’s one of the most beautiful cities in Canada!
How to get to Montreal
If you decide to get there by plane, click here to check the latest flight prices. Check the visa policy of Canada here. Most citizens from Western countries can stay up to six months visa-free. Be careful though. Unless you’re a US citizen, if you arrive by air, you are required to obtain an ETA beforehand here. If you arrive by land from the US, or if you’re a US citizen, you don’t need the ETA.
How to get around in Montreal
Honestly, you can visit most of the city by foot. Otherwise you can rent a bicycle, take the bus, the taxi… And of course the subway! People are really civilized in the subway, they patiently wait one after the other to get in the subway.
Where to stay in Montreal
If you’re traveling on a budget, I suggest you to stay at the HI Montreal Hostel. Click here to check the reviews, photos and availability. If you want to stay in a mid-range hotel, the Manoir Sherbrooke is a good one. Click here to check the reviews, photos and availability. Finally, if you’re into luxury hotels, you can stay at the Hotel Birks Montreal. Click here to check the reviews, photos and availability. Otherwise click here to check the hotels available in Montreal.
- Traveling soon? Check out my travel resources page. This list of travel accessories can also be useful.
- Don’t go to Canada without travel insurance! If something happens, you’ll see by yourself, medical expenses are extremely expensive there! Here’s why get travel insurance!
- Depending on where you’re from, the outlets may be different for you in Canada! Think about getting a travel plug adapter!
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