Montreal is the biggest city in French-speaking Canada and the second largest in Canada after Toronto. Located in the Southwest of the Quebec province, it lies on the Hochelaga archipelago on the the Saint Lawrence river, near Ontario and the United States. Montreal hosted the 1967 International and Universal Exposition and the 1976 Summer Olympic Games. In addition, every year it hosts the Montreal World Film Festival, the Montreal International Jazz Festival, the Just for Laughs comedy festival, the Montreal High Lights Festival and the Formula 1 Canadian Gran.
Montreal is considered the second most important French-speaking city after Paris. The Olympic Park in the east of the city houses the Montreal Biodome (ecological museum and permanent laboratory), the Insectarium and the Botanical Gardens, second only to the Kew Gardens in England. Montreal also boasts a Planetarium, as well as the Biosphere, a museum dedicated to the environment. The city is also the birthplace of singers like Leonard Cohen, Rufus Wainwright and Mylène Farmer, the infamous Star Trek captain William Shatner and Céline Dion (who was born in Charlemagne, one of the suburbs, but is associated with Montreal on an international level). Several major tourist and leisure destinations are also accessible from Montreal, such as the Laurentides Mountains, where the ski resort Mont-Tremblant is located.
Accommodation in Montreal’s student residences
Among its many academic institutions, Montreal has 4 main universities, two French-speaking, the University of Montreal and the University of Quebec in Montreal, adn two English-speaking, the Concordia University and the McGill University. It should be understood that these residences are designed primarily for students and not children or adults expecting a high level of luxury. However, with this in mind, the halls do meet a level of comfort that we expect most visitors to be happy with, and we will welcome any feedback where this is not the case.
Getting around Montreal
Montreal has an extensive metro system, which is entirely under ground, which avoids the problems of the harsh winters. The city is served by Pierre-Elliott-Trudeau airport (also known as Dorval). A shuttle service links the airport and the city centre via the city’s central bus station, Berri-UQAM, which acts as a hub for bus services originating in the rest of Canada and the United States. Via Rail provides the main train services and offers links to most Canadian cities, such as Quebec, Ottawa and Toronto. Amtrak, the American national railway network connects New York with Montreal with the daily Adirondack service. Montreal also boasts over 650km (400 miles) of cylcing routes, largely in the Southwest of the island.