When you cross into the province of Quebec, all signs change to French. This didn’t intimidate my husband nor myself because we both have some working French in our vocabulary. However, the road signs are still fairly obvious as my children pointed out. It was clear which were speed signs or stops signs. You may want to review your directions (north, south, east, west) but really, especially with a GPS, it’s very easy to navigate.
Note, it’s not just the U.S. that has massive summer construction season. It seemed to be alive and well in Canada, too. It did occur to us that their fix/build season is probably shorter than our own.
First on our list for Montreal was the Biodome/Space for Life which is the former 1976 Olympic park buildings. It is mini-ecospheres under one roof and it’s neat to travel from a North American forest to a tropical rainforest in a matter of moments. The Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium (on the same grounds) has many options, too. The one show we attended had Adirondack style chairs around the periphery and bean bags in the middle. It was cool, and dark, and relaxing and some of us retained more content than others (since “others” might have fallen asleep… I’d pay for that nap again. Just sayin’).
We also went to the Montreal Tower which is a 45-degree angled tower that rises high above the city (take that Pisa, with your 5-degree tilt). It’s not as tall as the CN Tower, but still provides a very cool view of Montreal.
From there we hopped on the Metro to visit the Pointe-a-Calliere Museum of Archaeology and History. This was pretty amazing. They’ve done a good job of bringing history to life. You are standing on ground that belonged to the Indigenous groups that lived there. In one room you are standing on a transparent floor and can see the old walls that were part of the first settlements. The demonstration there shows you where you are and what was there before the colonists arrived, and the changes that were made over time. It moved me. I felt like the historians and curators have tried to portray a real and balanced history of the place and that’s not something I’ve experienced in the U.S. We were not the first to inhabit this ground and our actions have a lasting impact, for worse and for better.
After that, we took the Metro back to the RV, made supper, and began driving to our next stop.
KIDS THOUGHTS ON MONTREAL
A~ “I learned that the Tower has a world record for ‘tallest leaning tower’.”
D~ “The artifacts in the museum [Pointe-a-Calliere] were preserved very well and they had very small houses.”
Djr~ “I learned that the French and Native people weren’t always peaceful, but they did have peace for 60 years straight.”