Montréal, Québec, Canada – Just Another Big City? (Read on to Find Out)

But really, it’s French influences and unique subway system still had me enthralled!

By Matt Lewis Executive Editor & Multimedia Reporter We took the high-roads; not literally, but metaphorically today. There were some steep hills my grandparents had to contend with and two very specific locations that piqued our entire Family’s interest:

  1. Notre-Dame Basilica of Montréal

    1. Notre-Dame Basilica is a basilica in the historic district of Old Montreal, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. The church is located at 110 Notre-Dame Street West, at the corner of Saint Sulpice Street. Wikipedia
    2. Architectural style: Gothic Revival architecture
    3. Official Website:
  2. Bibliothèques Montréal – Pour aller plus loin

The Montréal leg of our journey actually began the night before when we got the briefing on the ship. Sam of course gave guests the low-down on what places to visit, as well as providing interesting History and culture anecdotes that got us excited for another port – even if it was just another big city. During the pre-briefing as I’m going to be known to call it from now on, I came up with a nickname for Sam: Sam “Be a Good Lad” Ladley, in a somewhat concerted effort to remember his last name.

     “Some of the prettiest parts are within walking distance from (our boat),” Mr. Ladley said during the pre-briefing.

He told us again about how these areas in general have lots of aluminum plants. Mr. Ladley then went on to describe the “Silver” spires; which are actually made of aluminum. All churches in the region seem to have a component of aluminum, local wood, stained glass and/or stone-work. Mr. Ladley said something about Montréal being – somehow – related to head of navigation; but I was only half paying attention and couldn’t take notes fast enough. Our journey, he told us, was going to take us to the part of the river where the Ottawa and St. Lawrence Rivers meet; or an archipelago of islands as it was described to the ship’s passengers. Both rivers have rapids, Mr. Ladley said. So, after he said this, my mind began to wander again. I started thinking about the white-water rapids of Colorado and how much fun I had rafting down them. “Lachine” is the nickname for the rivers, bestowed by Jacques Cartier, and the nickname stuck, apparently – and is even the name of an area of Québec.

     “It is very much like Long Island,” Mr. Ladley said.

Montréal, he told us, literally translates to Mount Royal in English. Once I heard this, all I could think is: I need to find a casino on the mountain that was hopefully called Casino Royale (and even if only in my own Private Idaho) maybe, for a moment, I’d feel like James Bond.

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Watch This Notre-Dame Basilica of Montréal Video by Click on the Blue Text

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