I’ve made annual trips to Montreal since 2004, in some years more than one trip. But I traveled to the city only once in summer: 2005. And my view of the city has been shaped almost entirely by cold weather, brisk wind, and snow.
So, three weeks ago, in mid-June, when I landed in Montreal without my coat and gloves and scarf and sweaters… and looked around me and saw green grass and trees in full bloom, well, it was a different city.
Montreal is a different city in summer. The city gets a lot of winter tourism, but it’s swarming with visitors in the summer months. The sun rises early, sets late, people eat outdoors. I won’t go much further with this because that description applies to summer everywhere. But seeing it in summer again after so long gave me a chance to enjoy Montreal in new ways.
How so? Like taking a long walk outdoors in the evening. Two of the nights we were there, we ate at restaurants in the Plateau and then walked back to the hotel. Another example: aimless sightseeing. In winter, the weather conditions force one to be economical about time spent outdoors, so while I walk a lot, in winter my trips are less whimsical. I loved wandering down streets, or deciding at the last minute that I was near a favorite cafe, making a detour for an iced coffee.
Now I really am going to stop talking about this, but I’ll close by saying that I’m so biased about the superiority of Montreal in winter; however, I’m planning more warm weather trips there, too.