Little of Everything, Montreal
Festivals lasts all summer long in Montreal, most of them have outside activities that will close down some of the main streets (St-Catherine, St-Denis, etc.). These closures happen at night. So leave you car home or be ready for a long wait despite police officiers trying to help out with the traffic around the closed zone.
I used the train to get to Montreal. It was a nice ride from Toronto. http://www.viarail.com/
The Metro is very easy and convenient for getting around Montreal. http://www.lookmontreal.com/mapmetro.html
there is a train that departs once a day from NYC, but it leaves at 7am and is really expensive. the greyhound is still expensive too. it took a helluva long time to pass by the border inspectors--the US customs & immigration people were much pickier and took more time than the Canadians. for some reason greyhound cut a deal with this guy in saratoga springs, so there is a totally useless bus break right after and before the on in Albany wherein you are herded into this cheezy restaraunt.
the Montreal metro uses the same cars as the new york subway! because in fact, all NYC subway cars are made in Quebec! neat. this creates a sensation of perpetual dejavu
You can fly in to the Dorval or Mirabel airports. We also have a port and driving in from the US or anywhere else i canada is fairly easy thanks to our highways. We also have a big train terminal downtown. For the more adventurous, we are connected to Quebec, Florida and the rest of Canada through a huge bike path system that is well indicated and easy to use.
Use Destina.ca! This is a very nice web site that can find a hotel, car rental and cheap flights to and around Canada! The airport code for Montreal is YUL are YMX (but YUL is the main airport,the other...)
Like any big city...
But the Train system here sucks. It is both very expensive and slow. Gaz in not very expensive (0.70$ CAN/litter).
The public transportation system here is both cheap and efficient. Very secure and confortable, it covers much of the nice spots of the Island. It is also very easy to use. It will average 2$ CAN for a ticket, but an weekly card with unlimited access is around 13$, and it is good for both bus and Metro. A MUST!!
Montreal is also renown in North America as one of the best city for bicycling (as far as it can be good in a North American City...). Just avoid the biggest streets and respect the signalisation. There is a nice web of dedicated spaces for bike to go around and these will always bring you to a nice place to visit!!!
Unfortunalty, like in many American city, cars are king of the road here, so watch for 'em. This makes it usually easy to get around in one. Parking is something confusing though.
Montreal has two airports, Miribel and Dorval, one for international flights, and the other for domestic, but I don't remember which.
First Air flies to Iqaluit on Baffin Island , which is one of the main Arctic transport hubs. From London, we flew with Canada 2000.
I stuck to walking, but my friends tell me there is a good underground transport system, not to mention the underground shopping 'city'. Horse and cart is a touristy way to see the main sights. There are also boats along the river, as well as an 'Amphibus' which travels on land and water. Jetboats also do speedy trips on the river, but I don't think they are cheap.
Probably the best way to visit Montreal aside from your own two feet or a bicycle, is to use the public transportation, since a car ride can very easily get on your nerve (I must speak from experience!!!). I'm just kidding, renting a car is a good idea since the region is so big and you wouldn't want to miss a thing. But to travel in the city, an extensive metro and bus system will take you everywhere. A ticket to go anywhere on the system is 2$ (you can buy 6 for 8.50$). There is also budget passes: CamHebdo to travel all day saturday and sunday for 13.50$ and touristic card 7$ for one day, 14$ for 3 days. Get a map! stcum.qc.ca
If you're from the south shore, take a bus. Or you can even bike across the Jacques Cartier bridge. I came close to doing it one day, starting from LaPrairie (waaaaaaaaay over on the other side of the shore!) but didn't...don't know why! Ima try again this summer, with a friend preferably (so we can go through the trauma together!) that bridge is rocky and always busy, always! :-)
BMW: Bus/Metro/Walk! Walk, walk, walk baby! I loooooooove to walk in Montreal, I rarely take the buses there...But if it's a long way to go, the metro is your quickest and most practical way.
All the major Canadian carriers fly to Montreal as well as American ones. Direct flights also come in from Europe.
The city has a great transportation system. The metro runs until 11 pm on the blue line and about 1:30 on all other lines, starting very early in the morning. It is very clean and safe and runs very frequently- one every few minutes. It is easy to get around in and figure out. Buses also run frequently and everywhere (to destinations further away from the city and run way later than the metro for those who may be clubbing etc late) It is just under $2 for a one way ticket but if you are staying there longer, consider a pass hebdomadaire (weekly) for $13.50 (unlimited travel on metro and bus) or a pass mensuel (monthly) for about $40 (unlimited)- very much worth it. When buying however, it is advisable to buy on a Sunday or monday for the weekly passes to avoid getting yelled at my metro attendants. They seem to have a problem with this. If it is later in the week or month and you still want a pass go to the main station at Berri-UQAM to get a pass.
You can also get around the suburbs and find trains to cities close by like Ottawa on trains at Bonaventure metro station (this is the main train station in Montreal).
Cabs are also a good way for late night travel- I find that they are a lot cheaper than in other Canadian cities and can cost under $10 for a trip across town and about $20-$25 from the UdeM campus to the airport, although there is a city bus that does this, though much slower.
Well this is a really stupid blurb, obviously some people need to fly..some can drive. I see it's my place to tell you how to get there.. don't be offended, I'm just playin.
I think walking is the best way, but you're going far or the weather is really bad, a taxi would be the second best choice.
You can get to Montreal by plane, train, bus, car, etc. They have a Greyhound bus station and a Via rail station.
The bus or the metro (subway). 1 ride costs $2.00 but if you think you're going to be using that system a lot, I would recommend getting a day pass for $7. A 3 day pass is $14 and a weekly pass is about $12.50.
Hey, depends where you're coming from!!!!
You *can* use the taxis, but that gets to be a bit expensive. Your best bet is the buses and metro system on the island of Montréal. If you're heading out to the south shore. From Berri-UQAM metro station there is a bus service that has routes to Toronto, Ottawa and quite a few places in Québec. You can rent a car if you want, but if you're planning on staying in Montréal, I wouldn't recommend it. Finding parking downtown is a b****. Montréal is also known as a great bicycle city (in the summer months, of course).
Try and fly into Dorval not Mirabel airport as it is much easier. Also Train service by ViA rail or Amtrak will bring you right downtown.
Montral has a great system of buses and cabs and an underground metro. Also most of the downtown core is connected by underground tunnels because in the winter it is just too darn cold to go walk outside sometimes.
Getting around by subway is a cheap and comfortable option. Montreal has a really good (but short) subway net.
Another option is renting a bike (there are some places to do it in the old part of the city, near the river, and ride some of the long paths which go around the city and some islands.You can get more information in the tourist office in the corner of the Rue Notre Dame and Jacques Cartier, in the Champ of Mars.