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Magie des Fêtes à Montréal

The magic of the holidays in Montréal

End the year on a high note
Published on
December 15, 2017
Each year, holiday hustle and bustle fills the city. Show windows twinkle and activities abound. It’s time for holiday magic in the city as a year of celebrations draws to a close.

A walk along the cobblestone streets to admire the Christmas decorations in Old Montréal is like taking a trip back in time. “It’s like being in Europe!” exclaimed a tourist who had just arrived from Chicago the night before. She’s not the only one enjoying herself. On December 31, the whole area will be one big party. Some 150,000 revellers are expected and the streets will be closed to traffic for the occasion from 7 a.m. December 31 to 7 a.m. January 1.

Basilique Notre-Dame, Montréal

Notre-Dame Basilica on Place d’Armes offers visitors moments of wonder and contemplation. Before the traditional Christmas Eve mass at 7 p.m., 9:30 p.m. and midnight on December 24, the majestic building will host a Christmas concert by Marc Hervieux on December 20. And every afternoon at 2:30 p.m. from December 27 to 31, head organist Pierre Grandmaison will play the most beautiful Christmas carols.

Noël éternel

Just a few steps away, the shop window of Noël Éternel on Rue Notre-Dame is filled with ornaments, wreaths and Christmas village figurines year-round. “Each year, I buy a new ornament,” said Sylvia, who came with her husband, a retiree.

Grand Marché de Noël

At the big Christmas market in the middle of Place des Arts, small cabins offer gift ideas and the aroma of churros fills the air. Near the churro fryer, a couple warms up with some mulled wine. In her little house, Mrs. Claus chats with a family from Cornwall who are spending a few days in the city. The lighted train runs through the middle of the crowd. In front of the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, a choir sings Christmas carols.

Marché Bonsecours

A little further down the road, the Marché Bonsecours is all aglow. On December 31, it will host a large and popular banquet of foods of yesteryear, including pea soup, tourtière, pouding chômeur and sweets for everyone.

Banquet du 31 décembre

On Place Jacques-Cartier, the lighted arches welcome passersby, tourists and revellers. At the nearby Quai Jacques-Cartier, the big New Year’s party will be held on December 31 featuring Mes Aïeux, Garou and Daniel Bélanger.

Finale du 375e

For the grand finale of Montréal’s 375th anniversary, the Jacques Cartier Bridge will be lit with flamboyant colours at midnight on December 31. From the Quai de l’Horloge and the Quai Jacques-Cartier, ring in the New Year by taking in the show, followed by the traditional fireworks.

In celebration of the New Year, Montréal’s metro will be free all night long from December 31 to January 1.

 Grande finale of Montréal's 375th anniversary

Celebrating 375 years of history!
In 2017, Montréal will bustle like seldom before, as the city reinvents itself, lights up and looks back on its rich history. Revisit the history of our rich metropolis and discover the urban projects that will transform our living environment.
Celebrate - click here