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     For its size, there is no other city in North America
quite like Montreal. Perhaps our best known landmark
is the Olympic Stadium: home to the Expo's baseball
team. When not filled with fans, it doubles as a venue
for concerts, car and boat shows, and other sports
events. The retractable roof now remains permanently
closed due to numerous mechanical problems.
Montreal is a great place to visit any time of
the year, but summer is when it truly comes
alive. The Montreal Grand Prix in mid-June is
just the beginning of our summer festivities.
It also marks the beginning of the International
Fireworks Competition at the waterfront La
Ronde Amusement Park. And summer nights
in Montreal can last until 3:30 in the morning.
Saint Catherine Street experiences a traffic jam
every night when the clubs and bars finally close.
The Bishop-Crescent street corridor is very
popular with English guests, but visitors should
also stroll down St-Denis Street, the heart of
the French Bistros. In Old Montreal you can ride
a caleche along cobblestone streets or walk
near the waterfront in the Old Port. The Old Port
marks the beginning of a bike and roller blade trail
that stretches 18 miles along the Lachine Canal to
the west end of the city. Above all Montreal is a
people city, and one of the best ways to meet them
is at the many festivals held throughout the summer.
The first major event is the International Jazz Festival
which attracts musicians and guests from all over the
world. Many of the concerts are held in 8 giant open-air
stages in a central corridor closed to traffic. Additional
concerts occur in the area's many clubs, but even if you
can't get tickets, the ones outside are free and always
a good show. Prominent artists in the blues milieu such
as John Lee Hooker also often perform.
. The last weekend of the Jazz Festival marks the beginning of "Les Nuits
Afrique", another 9 days of music from the Caribbean and Africa. The
comedy festival "Just for Laughs" is next and the list goes on - A Buskers
Festival, the Montreal World Film Festival, the Tour de l'Isle - the largest
bicycle tour of its kind - through the streets of Montreal. There are also
numerous ethnic celebrations paying homage to Greek, Portuguese,
Caribbean, Chinese, Irish and the other communities that comprise the
fabric of Montreal. And of course we cannot forget June 24 - Saint Jean
Baptiste Day - the patron saint of the Quebecoise. And there are any of
hundreds of other activities to occupy one's time - from many performers
on the streets of Old Montreal and the quaint rue Prince Arthur pedestrian
corridor with its many restaurants ... to the Botanical Gardens, the Biodome,
the Museum of Fine Arts and many wonderful parks.
Two nights a week, throughout June and July the island
of La Ronde sparkles with the fires of the Pyromusicales.
The Amusement Park itself is a wonderful place to spend
an evening. But good views of the spectacle can be had
from the nearby Jacques Cartier Bridge or from the Old
Port just across the river. The St-Jean-sur-Richelieu Hot
Air Balloon Festival takes place during the second week
of August - just a 30 minute drive south of the city. Another
great activity on Sunday afternoon is the weekly drummers'
session - the informal "Montreal Tam" that takes place on
the eastern side of Mount Royal Park. And finally, there is
our incredible assortment of wonderful restaurants. Virtually
any kind of food you could ever possibly want can be found
here - especially French!