City guide

Native Americans called it “the first stopping point”. European explorers named it City of Mary. Today it is known as Montreal, a sprawling city at the foot of Mount Royal that is a thriving crossroads of European, North American and immigrant cultures. The city of Montreal is a treasure in the heart of Canada, surrounded by scenic waterways and brimming with classic architecture and cosmopolitan cuisine.

Montreal, a city in Canada, has deep roots in the French colonial period, which began in the 16th century. The British takeover of New France in 1763 transformed it from a missionary community into a thriving hub of the fur trade. Montreal’s strategic location on the St. Lawrence River has allowed it to thrive as a hub of commerce, industry and finance. Until the 1970s, when Toronto surpassed it, Montreal was Canada’s largest metropolis, a position it had held since the country’s formation in 1867. Montreal, home to a predominantly French-Canadian population, is sometimes cited as the second French metropolis in the world. Talking metropolis (behind Paris), an assertion whose veracity is subject to debate (mainly by those who make the same assertion for Kinshasa and Algiers). But for many years, Montreal’s English-speaking population controlled the city’s financial sector. Many people from other countries have settled here as it is generally recognized as one of the most multicultural and diverse urban centers in the Americas. Montreal has lost none of its charm, vitality and cheerfulness and undeniably remains an avant-garde metropolis.

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