by Liz Fleming

Canada is proud to mark her 150th birthday, but Montréal takes the (birthday) cake, celebrating 375 years in 2017! 

Place Jacques CartierPlace Jacques-Cartier – © Tourisme Montréal, Stéphan Poulin

Called Hochelaga by her Iroquois founders, Montréal was a key trading post during the earliest days of New France. As Canada grew and matured, so did Montréal, arguably becoming Canada’s most cosmopolitan city.

Ice canoeBy Cornellier - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31298061

In 2017, Montréal will pull out all the stops to welcome the world to her party with 175 creative events designed to showcase the city. Grab a paddle and be part of the Ice Canoe Challenge as you brave the frosty St. Lawrence River in February. Celebrate the full Snow Moon on February 11 by cycling through the moonlit streets of Old Montréal or join in the Descente Saint-Denis Soap Box Derby and careen through a 280-metre obstacle course on one of Montréal’s steepest streets.

Horse and CarriageKatyenka / iStock

Tour the Aime Comme Montréal exhibits celebrating love and cultural diversity throughout the city, and experience Montréal en Lumière, Illuminart’s Island of Warmth – a bonfire of light bulbs that will flash to life under the heat of human bodies. Spend the 19 weekends between May 12th to September 17th enjoying La Grande Tournée du 375e, a traveling celebration of each of Montréal’s 19 boroughs, held in neighborhood parks and streets. Enjoy concerts, shows and plays, Canada Pride Montréal 2017, a national festival for the Canadian LGBT movement that will feature a parade of “unprecedented size” and much, much more.

IgloofestCourtesy Hinervales 375 / Miguel LegaultIn 2017 for her 375th birthday, we say Vive Montréal!

Originally published in Cruise & Travel Lifestyles Winter/Spring 2017 issue.

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