Wordtravels

Wordtravels

Old Port of Montreal

Vieux Port © mricon
Vieux Port © mricon

Montreal's Old Port is actually fairly new, having undergone a major facelift to make it the most popular site in the city. Named Vieux Port de Montreal in French, it draws some five million visitors each year to its bustling wharves.

In the 19th century, the port of Quebec on the Saint Lawrence River was one of the most important in the world, with thousands of ships and sailors passing through. There are still plenty of boats in evidence but nowadays they are mainly tour boats, ferries, and amphibious buses, offering trips along the river or around the port. Ferries cross to the Parc des Iles, site of the Expo 67 World's Fair, which lies in the Saint Lawrence and offers facilities for picnicking, swimming, and skating and skiing in winter.

The Old Port itself is a thriving arts and entertainment venue where something is always happening. It also offers a huge open-air skating rink, IMAX cinema, vibrant cafes, and a Science and Technology Center with interactive displays.

The clock tower offers excellent views across the city and contains an exhibition that traces Montreal's history. Around the port are the city's original 17th-century fortifications, while characters in period costume conduct guided tours through the streets and alleys and point out the points of historic significance.

Address: 333 Rue de la Commune Ouest

Website: www.vieux.montreal.qc.ca