Four days. Three nights. And countless meals.
This trip was built on the foundation of my friend and I booking plane tickets to Montreal, and then telling our friend, who lives in said city, that we were coming. So, as I hope you've understood; we invited ourselves. Our friend ended up taking the news quite well though, and when we arrived a few weeks later, she greeted us with open arms at her quintessential, and charmingly old, walk-up apartment.
We came with the intention to eat, **correction - to feast. This may sound rather lavish, but as students who had just finished mid-term exams we were ready to indulge in the delicacies the city is known for. Having arrived in the afternoon, we unpacked our things, showered, and then made our way to a vegan restaurant, located just meters away from my friend's McGill area pad. There, we dined on a plate of nachos covered in so many beans, that I was scared my friends would be forced to enjoy a free concert brought to them by my bowels later that night. Thankfully it all past through well.
Naively, I expected that we'd have to take the bus from place to place, but everything in the city was so conveniently located that my two feet worked just as well. So, the next morning we walked to eat breakfast at a place called Beautys, where I ordered the most "fobulous" thing on the menu; blintzes with sour cream. Russians love dipping everything in sour cream and drenching anything in mayonnaise, and this meal covered the former; leaving me feeling very welcomed. After that we took the bus (just this once) to the Old Port.
The old streets of Montreal are magical, and very very European. The area isn't too big, as in a few hours we managed to walk through almost all the streets, see the Notre-Dame Basilica, and take a bunch of cliché pictures (almost all the pictures in this post are of old Montreal). Before we were done with this part of the city, we drank hot chocolate at TOMMY, a cute cafè lacking in enough seating to fully enjoy it. In any case, I'd had my second sugar rush for the day because my breakfast was also sweet, and with this new boost of energy we were ready for the next step of our adventure - SHOPPING!!
My friend and I came to Montreal with the intent to drop big money at Simons, which is a men's and women's retail store native to Quebec. Anyway, they have fabulous things, and we spent a good two hours in there, and had lunch during this time too ... it was complicated, but we ate without having to sacrifice valuable time on the ground scanning racks of clothing. We then headed back to the apartment, went for dinner, drank cosmopolitans and talked about other people's sex lives, and the lack of love in our lives.
While on our trip, I came up with a life changing equation that explains how to maximize dessert intake. It's rather simple and logical, but in any case necessary to outline : (breakfast x dessert) + (lunch x dessert) + (dinner x dessert) = dessert maximization. Basically, I'm trying to say that when you're trying to indulge, eat dessert after every meal, which is necessary in a city like Montreal where there are so many delicious sweets to try.
Our second day was also rather eventful. It started off with chocolate chip pancakes for breakfast, and then thrift store shopping. Apparently, "thrifting" is big in Montreal, and I wasn't surprised because all the stores we visited along a street called Saint Laurent had amazing finds. I bought a cardigan that makes me feel like the coolest grandma in the neighborhood, which I think will be very convenient.
We walked A LOT, and at this point in the trip our feet were hurting sooo much, but next we still went to the Musée des beaux-arts (an art museum). I kind of lack the appreciation needed to fully understand art; meaning that I took the opportunity at the museum to sit as much as possible, and pretend like I was trying imagine what the artist was really going through when he painted the work in front of me. The rest of the day was kind of a blur, but I remember I had a Montreal bagel - here.
Our flight was in the evening of the fourth day, and before we left we were determined to get to the top of Mount Royal. The climb up wasn't too bad, but I complained the whole way anyway. The view was pretty, but apparently nicer on less foggy days. This is also where we took the clown like pictures you see above. The hike unsurprisingly left us hungry, and so we headed to Shwartz's deli for smoked meat sandwiches, and wowowow ... it was honestly heavenly ... my taste buds were dancing.
I was sad to leave later that day, and slightly jealous that I hadn't chosen to go to university in Montreal. I already miss my friends, and the European yet free spirited vibe exuded by the city. Overall, Montreal is the perfect place to roam with friends and indulge in mouth watering meals, which follow the dessert equation of course!