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    Downtown Montreal
    Photo courtesy of Tourisme Montréal, Stephan Poulin
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    The Clock Tower and the Jacques-Cartier Bridge
    Photo by Michael Vesia
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    Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal
    Photo by André Jodoin
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The Afar Guide to
Montreal

Montreal is shaped by its stirred-up history, the constant flow of immigrants, and a cultural identity crisis. Is it a French city with an English twist, or the other way around? Even after 400 years of quarreling, no one really knows. But to Montrealers, this dichotomy only adds substance to the city. Neighborhoods like Mile End and Petite-Patrie are artsy and homey, while the McGill Ghetto thrives as an international student community thanks to the city's five major universities. And of course there is Old Montreal, the one place in North America that could be mistaken for an ancient French village.

Essential Montreal Facts to

know before you go

Photos page thumb a94490b9c440f4e4e84c282d217874c4?1383774149

Marie-Eve VallieresMontreal Local Expert

Marie is a native Montrealer trying to balance a deep love for her hometown and an unquenchable thirst for travel and discovery. She has been to more than 20 countries, lived abroad in both France and the U.K., and is always on the lookout for authentic experiences wherever she travels—especially if it involves chocolate. She blogs at A Montrealer Abroad.