Montreal's cityscape changes with the light. Warm, soft and familiar by day, it becomes mysterious, secretive and angular at night. It's the perfect place to take a photo walk, which is exactly what long-time Lomographer Stéphane Heinz a.k.a. @vicuna did last summer. He arrived just in time to capture the city celebrating the World Cup Final. Join Stéphane as he takes you on a tour through his Montreal.
I discovered Montreal on a ten-day trip this summer, and I was absolutely charmed by the city and its people. It's a vibrant city that has a lot to offer, and the people are always very friendly and helpful. I had the chance to see the World Cup Final – France vs. Croatia – as it took place two days after my arrival, and I must say that the support of the people of Quebec towards France was incredible (of course, there's also a big amount of French people living there). The celebration after the French victory was simply stunning and I felt like I was in France, besides the fact that the game was at 10:00 am and I'm more used to evening football games and celebrations. I made an album about this game and the celebration that followed in the streets of Montreal.
I enjoyed the city as much during the day as during the night. When I visit a city, I like to leave time for a special night shooting session to discover the city during this time. Montreal has quite a few nice spots for night photography – great buildings and viewpoints that are as pleasant to shoot during day or night. The atmosphere during the night is very peaceful and friendly, and there are a lot of cool places to hang around. I was mainly on the waterfront of the St Laurent river and in the old town nearby. The waterfront has really great views – it's always relaxing to have a wide view over a river, a lake or the sea, but strolling around the streets and other parts of this huge city is also very pleasant.
Even if at first sight (for a European like me) it can be surprising to see a city where the streets are made of straight lines organized in a very geometrical pattern, the different neighborhoods have their own character and mood, so there a lot to discover. It's perfect for street photography. I especially loved the huge amount of street art you can find everywhere – I saw some amazing pieces of art on the walls.
Another nice place to visit is the huge market of Jean Talon, a good opportunity to take pictures. If you want to walk in a very quiet place and see some nature, you have the huge park of the Mont-Royal in the middle of the city. You can walk there for hours without noticing that you're still in the city.
Without any doubt, if there's one place you should have a bite in Montreal, it has to be Schwartz's Deli. It is famous for its delicious and unique smoked meat. Be patient though, as the queue in front of this little deli is always very long and there isn't much space inside. But if you go there outside of the usual meal hours, you have perhaps the chance to get a place quicker. I went there around 4:00 pm and I only waited for a seat for five minutes. The smoked meat in this little bread sandwich with homemade mustard was simply to die for!
I think that Montreal is for everyone as it has a lot to offer. The city and people have very open-minded spirits. Whoever you are and wherever you come from, the people will welcome you in a very warm and friendly way. Just be careful at which season you decide to go there, as the seasons are very different over there: the summer can be very hot and moist 30 to 35°C and 60% humidity – but the winter temperatures can go as low as -12°C, with a large chance of snowfall. As I was there in summer, it's kind of difficult to imagine the winter in Montreal, but it's definitely something I'd like to discover sometime.
The city of Montreal is also a good starting point to visit Quebec, as you can just go along the St Laurent River towards Quebec City, which is different but very charming and worth a visit. It's also easy to go north from the city towards the beautifully wild nature of Canada. So, if you don't know where to go for your next holiday, plan a trip to Montreal, Canada. You can find plenty of pictures taken on the streets of Montreal on my LomoHome so make sure to drop by!
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