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Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy

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Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy


We are coming to Montreal in July to visit my stepdaughter who has just emigrated there. I've looked at the Forum postings for things to do with kids and think that my son will probably enjoy the science museum and La Ronde.

Couple of questions - between July 15-21, are the Canadian schools on summer vacation and what are the lines likely to be like at La Ronde? Is there a better day to go there (i.e. Friday as opposed to Saturday or Sunday) to avoid the crowds?

Are there any other 'must see' things to do? We have a hire car, although we will have spent a lot of time driving around and would prefer not to go on long-distance drives if we can avoid it. Where can we go that doesn't involve a lot of walking? Planetarium?

We're thinking of checking into Le Square Phillips as it seems pretty central and is a suite hotel with a pool. Is the area safe and near to most tourist attractions?

Thanks so much for any help.

Adelaide, Australia
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1. Re: Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy

Hi, we went to Montreal in December 2007 - it was cold and snowy but we had lots of fun. We did a tour of the Olympic Stadium, the tower and the Biodome. The Biodome was especially fun - it is in the old Olympic velodrome which is on the site of the 1976 Olympic games. We had 3 children ages 17, 14, and 10 and we did these - they can really be done in a day.

We stayed in the Marriot Hotel in Old Montreal and it included a very substantial breakfast. They had valet parking (for a fee) and we were able to walk to a lot of the destinations in Old Montreal itself.

We went to the Toronto Science Museum and that was very good so I would expect the Montreal one to be just as good.

Old Montreal was a very pretty city and it had horse and carriage rides that we went on for our first night and thankfully they had heated seats and blankets for us but it was fun and very unique for us. We also went to the Notre Dame Basilica - the parents enjoyed that but the kids didn't enjoy it much.

Obviously I'm not an expert on Montreal but we had fun as a family doing these activities - we also found an English cinema and went to the movies - always a good option if you're tired and grumpy or its hot!! (or in our case - very cold!!)

Nashua, New...
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2. Re: Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy

Schools are on Vacation July and August. La Ronde might be somewhat less crowded on weekdays. However, on July 12 Portugal is presenting at the International Fireworks Competition. If you get tickets for seats at La Ronde, you can go to the park for that day. The fireworks competitions are incredible. Be prepared for massive crowds after the competition!

You definitely do not need a car and probably should not get one. The Metro is easy and inexpensive and parking is expensive. You can easily get to La Ronde, the Biodome, and Insectarium by Metro. If you stay in Old Montreal (suggested), you have easy access to the Metro, as well as the Science Center and IMAX theatre in the Old Port. The Science Center does not come close to the Science Museum in Toronto but it is hands on and can be quite enjoyable. Your 11 year old might also enjoy seeing models under a glass floor depicting early Montreal in the Archeology Museum. You can find lots to do and see in and around Old Montreal.

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3. Re: Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy

As mentioned schools are on vacation so lines could be long any day at La Ronde. My favourite days to go are ones that are a little rainy - it is usually less crowded and not so hot.

Other things you could do, not mentioned already, are renting bikes in the old port and riding along the lachine canal bike path, or (if you do keep your car) driving to the Lachine Rapids in Lasalle and taking a rafting ride. The planitarium is ok.

I think Square Phillips is in a great location. Near 2 main metro lines so you can get anywhere easily.

4. Re: Long weekend in Montreal with 11 year old boy

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