Summer is finally here, and with our particular situation brought about by the pandemic, many families are looking for places closer to them to explore. Luckily, the Vieux (Old Montreal and the Old Port) is bursting with activities to rediscover or experience for the very first time.
Is your child a history fan? We’ve gathered here a list of activities curated especially for budding history enthusiasts!
Is your child into ships, treasure, and everything pirate? As luck would have it, the Pointe-à-Callière Museum is running the Pirates or Corsairs? exposition, which reimagines the universe of Pierre Le Moyne d’Iberville for your little landlubbers! The voyage sets sail Tuesday through Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. for a reasonable price: 4 years and younger get in free, $8 for 5-8 year olds, or $42 for the family. Aboard the corsair ship, The d’Iberville, your kids will be plunged into a world of adventure, where they can test their physical and intellectual abilities and see if they have what it takes to be a true corsair.
Good to know: The pirate ship at Voiles en Voiles in Old Port is more modern, but can assuredly stretch out some little legs in need of some exercise between these two historic activities. And while you’re in the area, you should grab a snack at Mary's Popcorn or from Felix & Norton, well-reputed cookie makers since 1985!
© Photo Credit 2: Pointe-à-Callière Museum
If you’re going to be walking all over town, why not explore the historical aspects of Montreal to better understand the origins of our fair city through captivating accounts and peculiar anecdotes? Piquing the curiosity of young and old minds has been Guidatour’s objective for several years, and at that, they have proven successful!
Good to know: Guidatour is part of the Passeport Attraits program, discounting both their regular and ghost tours. This program offers discounts to several attractions within le Vieux, including: Pointe-à-Callière Museum, Mtl Zipline, Voiles en Voiles, le Petit Navire, la Grande Roue, Château Ramezay, and Écorécréo. Several packages are available!
Previously Alexandra Pier, the Grand Quay is offering curious minds (big and small alike) to explore maritime history in their History of Ships exposition, beginning Sept 7th. This show will include a dozen model ships marking the history of the Old Port, as well as different objects that have been passed down by the first administrators of the port and preserved throughout the years for the public’s viewing pleasure. One of the most impressive items shown during this expo has to be the Gold-Headed Cane, which has been traditionally passed to the first captain to cross the waters of the Montreal Port on the first day of every year. This tradition has been going strong for more than 180 years!
You can also visit this exposition for free from Wednesday to Sunday, between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Please note that all considerations have been made to ensure a safe experience for our visitors. There will be hand sanitizer available for use at the exposition’s entrance. The number of visitors will be limited in order to allow for a distancing of 2 meters at all times, and a pathway through the exhibit will be specified.
Additionally, the green roof of the Grand Quay is well worth the detour. There, you can find a timeline that lays out the history of the Port, from the town’s founding to today! It is a great way to learn more about the city while staying active and enjoying great weather and the unmistakable view of the Vieux!
The museum is open to all ages and the Governor's Garden, open every day from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., is free to the public and not to be missed!
Come savour the aromas and unique colours of this magnificent plot of nature, situated deep in the heart of the historic neighbourhood, and take a step back in time to the 18th century. This is a great way for children to learn about plants’ uses and to take time to contemplate the beauty of nature, all while learning plenty of interesting facts about the gardens of New France.
All precautions have been taken in accordance to the prescribed sanitary guidelines in order to ensure a safe visit for our guests.
© Photo Credit 3-4: Château Ramezay
The Marguerite-Bourgeoys Historical Site is the last stop on the must-sees for any child into history. Here, you can admire the oldest chapel in Montreal (dated 1771) and its sublime Casavant pipe organ. The two proposed circuits offered by the Historical Site are called the “Bonsecours Experience”, a journey to discover the life of Marguerite Bourgeoys, the neighbourhood, and the Bonsecours site via an original narration that you can access through your cellular device. The trip is punctuated with anecdotes, testimonials, and exclusive images.
Amazing architectural and artistic discoveries await you daily at the Marguerite-Bourgeoys Historical Site, open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., all at an affordable price. It is $7 for children ages 6 to 12, and $9 for students 13 to 25 years old (with valid identification). You can also opt for the family package, valid for up to two adults and two children (age 16 and younger), at $30.
© Photo Credit 1: Geneviève Giguère