Old MontrealMontreal

Image for Notre Dame Basilica featuring religious aspects, a church or cathedral and interior views

Once surrounded by ramparts, this historic area within Montreal city now shines as one of the oldest and best preserved urban centers in North America. 

Nestled between the banks of the St. Lawrence River and Montreal Downtown is the original fortified town of Old Montreal. Although the walls have disappeared years ago, the cobblestone streets and architecture spanning three centuries make Old Montreal feel more like an old European city than a New World capital.

Visit the birthplace of the city at Pointe-à-Callière and wander the narrow, twisting Rue Saint-Paul, the city’s oldest surviving street. Just opposite Montreal City Hall, join Benjamin Franklin on the guest list at the Château Ramezay. Built as the governor’s residence in the 18th century, today the mansion serves as a museum dedicated to Montreal’s history. Just a block away at the Marguerite-Bourgeoys Museum, see the foundation of the city’s first stone chapel, which was built in the 17th century.

The Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History traces the city’s past back to its days as a 17th-century fur-trading post and beyond. Examine artifacts of local Amerindian people dating back thousands of years. Many of the exhibits are innovatively displayed underground in their original dig sites.

The culinary arts play a central role in Old Montreal’s history too. Dine at the Cabaret du Roy in Bonsecours Market to experience traditional cuisine alongside colonial characters brought to life by local actors. Old Montreal is also a hotbed of contemporary culture. Watch a show at the Centaur Theatre or the latest in local contemporary art at DHC/ART.

To get the most from your visit, join a walking, Segway or bicycle tour. Self-guided maps and guides are available from the visitor center and museums. For the quintessential Montreal experience, take a ride in a horse-drawn calèche after dark, when Old Montreal's finest buildings are beautifully illuminated with specially designed lighting.

Old Montreal is easily accessible via buses, metros, ferry and Underground City walkways. For drivers, street parking is nearly impossible, but paid garages are available.

Most museums in Old Montreal charge admission. During the summer months, museums are open daily, but during the offseason, they are closed part of the week, so a little preplanning is advised.

Top Hotels in Old Montreal

Estimated price for 1 night / 2 adults
InterContinental Montreal
InterContinental Montreal
4.5 out of 5
360 Saint Antoine Street Ouest, Montreal, QC
CA $161
per night
Mar 1 - Mar 2

Located in Old Montreal, this luxury hotel is steps away from Palais des congres de Montreal and The Underground City. Notre Dame Basilica and Sainte-Catherine ...

4.4/5Excellent! (2,028 reviews)

"The location was very central. Plenty of food choices and easy access transportation (Metro) within very short walking distance (1-2 minute walk)."…"

Reviewed on Feb. 20, 2020

InterContinental Montreal
Hotel Place d'Armes
Hotel Place d'Armes
4 out of 5
55, Saint-Jacques West, Montreal, QC
CA $179
per night
Mar 1 - Mar 2

Located in Old Montreal, this spa hotel is steps away from Place d'Armes, Notre Dame Basilica and The Underground City. Palais des congres de Montreal and Old ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (2,078 reviews)

"Beautiful hotel, excellent staff very friendly, the location is perfect Everything was amazing thank you to everyone"…"

Reviewed on Feb. 18, 2020

Hotel Place d'Armes
Hotel Nelligan
Hotel Nelligan
4 out of 5
106 Saint-Paul Street West, Montreal, QC
CA $161
per night
Feb 23 - Feb 24

Located in Old Montreal, this romantic hotel is steps away from Montreal Museum of Archaeology and History (Pointe-a-Calliere), Notre Dame Basilica and Old Port. ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (1,830 reviews)

"Beautiful hotel in the heart on old Montreal. Eato restaurants, bars"…"

Reviewed on Feb. 18, 2020

Hotel Nelligan
Hotel Bonaparte
Hotel Bonaparte
4 out of 5
447, rue Saint-François-Xavier, Montreal, QC
CA $159
per night
Feb 23 - Feb 24

Located in Old Montreal, this hotel is steps away from Centaur Theatre and Notre Dame Basilica. The Underground City and Palais des congres de Montreal are also ...

4.8/5Exceptional! (1,071 reviews)

"All we good except there was lots of talking noise during the night. I didn’t sleep at all both nights."…"

Reviewed on Feb. 18, 2020

Hotel Bonaparte
Embassy Suites Montréal by Hilton
Embassy Suites Montréal by Hilton
3.5 out of 5
208 Saint Antoine Ouest, Montreal, QC
CA $157
per night
Mar 1 - Mar 2

This family-friendly Montreal hotel is located in the historical district, within a 15-minute walk of Notre Dame Basilica, Christ Church Cathedral and Bell Centre. ...

4.3/5Excellent! (2,009 reviews)

"Beautiful big rooms . Jacuzzi bath extremely loud."…"

Reviewed on Feb. 13, 2020

Embassy Suites Montréal by Hilton
Le Saint Sulpice
Le Saint Sulpice
4 out of 5
414 Saint-Sulpice, Montreal, QC
CA $195
per night
Feb 22 - Feb 23

Located in Old Montreal, this spa hotel is steps away from Place d'Armes, Notre Dame Basilica and Old Port. The Underground City and Montreal Science Centre ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (2,036 reviews)

"Beautiful stylish and cozy, place. Great "away from home experience". Very friendly and attentive staff."…"

Reviewed on Feb. 18, 2020

Le Saint Sulpice

Popular things to do in Old Montreal

Old Port of Montreal
Image for Old Port of Montreal

Old Port of Montreal

4.5/5(1,690 reviews)

Historic architecture, modern attractions and an exciting calendar of festivals make it impossible to get bored at this lively and scenic riverfront space.

Notre Dame Basilica
Image for Notre Dame Basilica

Notre Dame Basilica

4.5/5(1,802 reviews)

The incandescent blue and gold interior of Montreal’s spiritual heart dazzles visitors and pilgrims. It was once the largest house of worship in North America.

Old Port
Image for Old Port

Old Port

4.5/5(944 reviews)

Once the hub for Montreal’s booming shipping industry, this historic and recreational area now draws millions of visitors to the banks of the St. Lawrence River. 

Top activities in Old Montreal

Old Montreal Walking Tour
Image for Old Montreal Walking Tour

Old Montreal Walking Tour

94% of travellers recommend
CA $25
Per adult
Quebec City & Montmorency Falls
Image for Quebec City & Montmorency Falls

Quebec City & Montmorency Falls

88% of travellers recommend
CA $121
Per adult
Saint Lawrence Whitewater Jet Boat Adventure
Image for Saint Lawrence Whitewater Jet Boat Adventure

Saint Lawrence Whitewater Jet Boat Adventure

98% of travellers recommend
CA $71
Per adult
Heart of Montreal Motorcoach Tour
Image for Heart of Montreal Motorcoach Tour

Heart of Montreal Motorcoach Tour

72% of travellers recommend
CA $60
Per adult
Pointe-à-Callière, Montreal Archaeology and History Complex
Image for Pointe-à-Callière, Montreal Archaeology and History Complex

Pointe-à-Callière, Montreal Archaeology and History Complex

94% of travellers recommend
CA $16
Per adult
Private Old Montreal Walking Tour
Image for Private Old Montreal Walking Tour

Private Old Montreal Walking Tour

100% of travellers recommend
CA $21
Per adult

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