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Daniel_Williams Sep 15th, 2004 08:32 AM

Lachine: A Fun Distinct Place to Explore While Visiting Montreal
Hello Montreal fans,

I like to report when I discover a new aspect to appreciate about the city I live in, Montreal. I've previously reported about excursions to Pointe Claire Village and Saint-Anne-de-Bellevue, delightful in their own right.

This past weekend I took the #110 bus (Centrale) from Angrignon metro out to the waterfront in Lachine (the bus crosses a bridge from Ville Lasalle to Lachine; I got off at 10th Ave and Saint-Joseph); so if you got a tourist 3-day pass, say, you wouldn't have to spend an additional cent to get here. Old Lachine is a lovely waterfront area, with the Lachine Canal running parallel, partly maintained by Parks Canada. There are restaurants and cafes, historic architecture and plenty of greenery in the areas adjacent to Parc Saint Louis here. You pass some beautiful old stone buildings walking along Saint-Joseph, including the Couvent & College Saint Anne and the Eglise Saints-Anges. This stretch of waterway has among the loveliest views of the Saint Lawrence River I've seen, with a well-maintained presqu'ile jutting into Lac Saint-Louis; the river comes to a fork at this point. The fork and presqu'ile give it a different feel from Pointe Claire (where the river is wider), Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue (river is narrower) or Ile-Saint-Helene (with skyscrapers in background and the water is less calm when I've been). Anyhow, it's 13.8 km from the Old Port of Montreal with maintained bike paths, so all you cyclists might enjoy considering this waterfront area as a final destination, biking along the Saint Lawrence River all the way.

Went to O Chateau, a pleasant cafe/ imported sweets place. Very friendly.

Anyhow, just wanted to share! Cheers! DAN

Scarlett Sep 15th, 2004 02:08 PM

Wonderful Dan! Thank you. I am always intending to rent bikes and ride along the entire canal but we have not gotten to it yet :)

michi Sep 15th, 2004 03:12 PM

A nice post, thank you. We will be visiting in Pointe Claire for a few days and will try to get to Lachine. It would never have crossed my mind to go there even though I lived in Montreal for more than 30 years.

indie Sep 15th, 2004 05:48 PM


we were in Montreal couple of weekends back and we did this ride all the way from the Old Port - some really cute little restaurants in old Lachine - guess that's true for all of Montreal - wonderful city!!

zootsi Sep 16th, 2004 07:57 AM

Dan, very interesting report on a little known area of the city. About 6 years ago, we biked the Lachine Canal and wound up at a very scenic park, which was a narrow spit of land with water on both sides. I suppose this is what you are referring to? However, I don't remember seeing many places to eat nearby. I must mention that although the Lachine Canal bike trail is a well maintained greenbelt, it does pass thru some pretty grimy industrial/warehouse type areas - it's not all scenic vistas(still a great ride however). My wife and I stopped to chat with some older 'rough and tumble' Montreal locals who were also enjoying the trail. They were amazed that their dear old city had become such a tourist mecca! :-). Even though we are die hard country folk, if I did have to choose a city to live in, Montreal would be at the top of my list, winters and all.

Scarlett Sep 16th, 2004 03:10 PM

zootsi, me too!
In fact, with hurricanes scaring me to death each week, I have almost convinced the Yankee that a big snow cannot be worse..:)

Daniel_Williams Sep 16th, 2004 06:31 PM


Thanks for reading! Michi, well I've lived on Montreal island for 7 years of my life and it was only last weekend that I journeyed to the Lachine waterfront, so it took me some time too. There really are so many lovely parks and scenic places on Montreal island, I feel we're truly spoiled. Zootsi, I wonder if the narrow spit of land weren't the presqu'ile I spoke of, in which case you were very close to the part with restaurants, I could see it...unfortunately that little peninsula only connects with the mainland in Ville Lasalle or by boat. Scarlett, in deep winter, sometimes I find I'm happy when it's WARM enough to snow (it gets so cold sometimes precipitation can't happen, and in these times, it's hard just to be outside). That said though, I too love my chosen city and I find I light up to others that do too. DAN

Scarlett Sep 17th, 2004 06:31 AM

Dan, Maybe I should drag the Yankee to Montreal this winter and give him(and me) a taste of a real Canadian winter. November is as cold as we have gotten so far :)
I only hesitate when I think of walking Pup in that sort of cold or snow.

But now I have to add your Lachine walk/bike? to my lists of To Do's.
thanks Dan~Scarlett

Scarlett Sep 17th, 2004 04:09 PM

Could you would you please email me at [email protected]. I have a private Canada question for you :D

Thank you~S

HogtownJim Sep 17th, 2004 09:47 PM

If you want real winter, try Quebec City in February.

I am from the praries (Winnipeg) where -30 to -40 below is common in the Winter.

I have never felt more frozen than in QC. The wind chill was a killer.

michi Sep 18th, 2004 04:09 AM


Why don't you write about more of your discoveries in Montreal under the same title, only changing the location. I think this is what a lot of tourists look for -- off the tourist track places.

Erick_L Sep 18th, 2004 12:25 PM

The "spit of land" is René Lévesque park. It's at the end of Canal Lachine path. Some of what looks like abandonned warehouse are actually lofts. To get to the restaurant area, you have to turn right after crossing the street. It's the Lakeshore path. The restaurants are on the street adjacent to the path. Some are difficult to see because of trees and the path isn't always close to the street. Plus people are more likely to look towards the lake. I ride there almost every day (for fun and going to work, which is also fun :-) ).

I find the lakeshore/rivershore path much more scenic than Lachine path.

The lakeshore path continues west for about 8km. Then you can ride on Lakeshore drive. There's quite a bit of traffic but it's slow and there are many other cyclists. What I usually do is cut across the island to the northen side (can be tricky, use a map) and follow the waters on my way back. The seasoned cyclist can add Île Perrôt (adds about 30km). Of course, you can drive to Île Perrôt, park at the tourist information and ride from there.

A good bike ride is the Lachine path and return on the shore path (turn left after crossing the street at the end of Lachine path). You can bike to Nun's Island, then across the St-Lawrence on the Champlain Bridge "estacade" (not the actual bridge), then turn left on the dirt path for 3km, under Victoria bridge and on the Formula 1 circuit (try a complete a lap), then back in town via Pont de la Concorde. This ride is somewhere between 40-50km. There ways to shorten it or make it longer.

The whole region is great for biking. If you're not sure where to go at any crossing, ask another cyclist.

On the bike path, keep your right, please ;)

mitchdesj Sep 21st, 2004 11:08 AM

Scarlett, you would need to buy Pup a pair of muttluks, essential here for winter.

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