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10-day Montreal / QC / other - itinerary help

10-day Montreal / QC / other - itinerary help

Old May 13th, 2023, 06:33 PM
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10-day Montreal / QC / other - itinerary help

Planning a trip for early September to start and end in Montreal. (Flights to my home city in the U.S. are much better in/out of Montreal than QC.) Looking for help plotting our itinerary across ~10 days. We are most interested in history / culture, culinary and wine scenes, and a spa day. Whale watching is of interest but not a must-do (unless you recommend otherwise!).

From Montreal, I know we'll want to spend time in the Eastern Townships (suggestions welcome) before heading to QC. That's where my thinking gets muddled, knowing that we have to return to Montreal and only have ~10 days total. Should we continue on to Charlevoix? Or turn back and spend time elsewhere en route to Montreal? Should we try to fit in the Mont Tremblant area as well?

Thank you in advance!
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Old May 15th, 2023, 05:03 PM
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Hi EMC,
I'd normally have posted a substantial TR with fotos of our fall 2022 Montreal/Mt. Tremblant voyage by now, but family matters have taken priority. It was our first time back in 42 years--I used to work there. Much as I enjoy QC, with your time frame I'd give it a miss this time.

Just some scattered thoughts here:
Spa? Check out the Scandinavian one on Nun's isle, a great way to spend a relaxed day. Or, if you enjoy shiatsu bodywork massage bodywork, check out the wonderful 'ashiatsu' service by Suzanna Chan on Park (aka Parc) Avenue in Mile End. Ashiatsu involves the practitioner using their own feet pressure while suspended above and balanced using wooden poles. We've had hundreds of massages across the globe and both agreed---this was the best ever. [email protected]
S'il vous plait tell her that 'les deux maudit anglais de Toronto Ellen and Gregg, sent you.

My wife is from Montreal and she insisted that we visit the rural Mt Tremblant area in the Laurentians, as opposed to the Eastern townships. *Understand, by 'Mt. Tremblant' I DO NOT mean the main touristy 'village', a Dysnified, pseudo-European ski location. Not our style.
Instead I mean the excellent countryside nearby. We chose to base at a rental as part of a most unique 'resort' in La Conception. That resort was a French-owned one called Bel Air and features a variety of uncheap lodgings ranging from domes, to pods to lovely futuristic houses, one of which we rented next to their Clubhouse. We did so to leaf peep out in the middle of nature, plus ride ebikes by the lovely local lakes towards that aforementioned tourist village (see 'P'Tit Train du Nord'). They have a well-regarded sushi restaurant onsite.
I had underestimated just how wonderful the actual National park called 'Mt. Tremblant' was. It was our first time there and we were impressed.

In Montreal, one could:
-shop for tea at 'Un Amour des Thes', Richard Wallace's sympa maison de the on rue Bertrand in Outremont.
-dine in a special atmosphere at Cardinal Tea Room.
-have breakfast at Beautys, a genuine diner as seen on an old Bourdain episode on Youtube--fantastic food.
-enjoy peerless croissants at Figaro cafe bistro in Mile End.
-flaneuse and shop along 'The Main', the arty strip of Boulevard St. Laurent in the Plateau area e.g. ethnic women's clothing at Palma, Guillaume Bakery, much high-quality street art and Italian cafe life at Novanta. (funky Duluth Ave and also quiet Sq. St. Louis are both just off St. Laurent too).
-visit both markets: Atwater ('Le Paradis du Fromage', 'Terrines & Pates' and 'Premiere Moison' bakery) and also Jean talon ('Creperie du Marche', 'Delices de Mer' fried cod, 'Binette & Filles' flowers, 'Epices de cru' spices exotique) *see also Joe la croute just outside the market for excellent bread.
-eat at the 8th floor terrace restaurant at the William Gray hotel, an outside experience with superb views out across the Vieux Port district---best wine of the entire trip.
-bien sur you must walk through immense Parc du Mont Royal. There will be crowds. And limited parking.

-a rarity that most tourists miss: the ultra-modern new campus buildings of the University of Montreal @the old Outremont Yards neighbourhood.

In Montreal's Mile End, we rented an apartment from 'Parc Lofts' next to the Rialto theatre and near Tamey Lau's iconic Flower Shop--her motif is the hanging Victorian-top birdcage collection that she also sells, mais oui quite the sight en masse!
Les Ptits Enfants de Felice Italian cafe and Cheskies Bakery are also right across the road. The latter reflects the neighbourhood's Hassidic Jewry and their culture. That apartment had an outdoor hot tub and great views 'to the mountain'. We would recommend it. Those with mobility issues might find the stairs challenging, but it was very good value.

Recommended viewing: The Kings of Coke; The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz. Suggested Listening: Leonard Cohen, Gino Vanelli, April Wine, Celine Dion and Arcade Fire---their original rehearsal hall/apartment was a 2 minute walk away from our loft..
I am done. The end.
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Old May 23rd, 2023, 03:55 PM
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10 days is just about right for what you want to do. Perhaps 3 nights in Montreal, 2 nights in QC, 2 nights in the Charlevoix area, and a few nights in the Eastern Townships. Popular bases in the Townships would include Magog, North Hatley, Sutton and Bromont. Magog is the biggest, right on a lake with a fun little downtown and a beautiful lakeside park and promenade. There are about 2 dozen scenic wineries sprinkled throughout the area, many are clustered around the little town of Dunham. If you enjoy road bicycling, this area is considered one of the best in the world, with hundreds of miles of well groomed bike trails. Except for busy Sherbrooke, the whole area is quite rural and becomes very flat open farmland as you head west from the Bromont area. The picturesque St Benoit Abby is worth a visit, and little towns like Freighsburg, Knowlton & Stanbridge East are very pleasant. The mini series
Three Pines' was filmed in the area.
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Old Feb 15th, 2024, 05:46 PM
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The province of Quebec eagerly promotes its attractions on-line. https://www.bonjourquebec.com/en-ca is one rich source of ideas and activities. The bigger cities such as Montreal and Quebec City also are active on-line
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