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Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

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Greensboro, North...
4 posts
2 reviews
Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

I am sorry for the long post.

We are a group of 8 (at least) that will be visiting Montreal over Christmas (December 22 - 26). We will be driving in, so we will hav cars. Some of us are interested in skiing, while others would like to spend more time in downtown. Some questions: Is it better to stay in downtown and then drive to the ski resort, or to stay in outside downtown? A lot would depend on the availability of public transportation; if we stay outside downtown, where would be the best place, with public transportation links into downtown? I assume that the skiers would have to drive to the slopes no matter where we stay. Also, in terms of other activities, are these open during Christmas? Are there any special activities during this time?



Burlington, Canada
Level Contributor
6,656 posts
55 reviews
1. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

For the sake of simplicity and time the most efficient thing to do is to book a hotel in the city. Easy public transportation to everything.

For those wanting to ski they can just drive to the ski hills. In the Laurentians the closest is St.Sauveur about 45 minutes away and the farthest is Mt.Tremblant about an hour and a half. If they want to ski in the Eastern Townships the closest place would be Bromont then, Orford or Sutton are very good choices about an hour to an hour and a half away.

Two factors that are uncontrollable will affect everything, the weather and if there has been enough snow for the skiers.

As for places being open? It's Christmas and all stores are shut on the 25th, open for Boxing Day the 26th. Ski Hills are usually open but check with the particular hill before.

Greensboro, North...
4 posts
2 reviews
2. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

Hi, Canby, thanks for the prompt response.

3 posts
1 review
3. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

For a quick access to slopes you also have Mont St-Bruno, 30 min south of Montreal. Really a small station but can be interesting when not a lot of time is available.

Montreal, Canada
Destination Expert
for Montreal
Level Contributor
3,326 posts
41 reviews
4. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

The snow should not be of major concern since ski resorts have artificial snow making machines and make sure the slopes are fit for skiing. They would lose a lot of revenue if they relied too much on mother nature. Mostly, the worse that could happen to you would be rain or freezing rain, which makes the slopes iced over and unpleasant. Since you're there 4 days there is bound to be a day with nice weather.

One option would indeed to stay within the city. You can also opt to stay in a suburb like Longueuil and Laval. Both suburbs have a metro station. In Laval, you can drop off the ladies and go straight north to Saint-Sauveur. In Longueuil you should stay at the Sandman, which is right across the street from the metro station, and you can take the car to bromont. The reason i am suggesting this is that parking downtown is expensive and getting in and out of the island is a pain. In your situation, the suburbs make an attractive alternative.

Otherwise, if you re staying downtown, i recommend taking a hotel downtown, with access to the underground city. It's very convenient for getting around in bad weather.

Finally, i'd like to add that Saint-Sauveur can be quite fun for non skyers. Nordic spas (with hot and cold thermic baths), the big outlet mall complex, the cute street in old Saint- Sauveur with artisans and nice restaurants... it can be a nice day out. You could suggest it for a day.

Best of luck and let us know what you choose. I'm curious :)

Auckland Region...
8 posts
5. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

We want to visit Quebec, Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto in December this year. Will we be able to see all the sights or will the weather prevent us from doing so? We will be hiring a car and wondering what type of car to hire for road conditions, any suggestions?

Burlington, Canada
Level Contributor
6,656 posts
55 reviews
6. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

How long do you have planned for this?

I would suggest a mid sized car, they'll have snow tires if the rental is from Quebec, Montreal or Ottawa but check to make sure. As for the weather and the amount of snow, it's anyone's guess.

Toronto usually has less snow than Montreal or Ottawa or Quebec.

7. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

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Miami, Florida...
Level Contributor
1 post
4 reviews
8. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

I want to visit Montreal/Quebec this Christmas w/my 25 year old daughter. However a co-worker told her that it is so cold that we will not enjoy the visit.

HOw much of this is accurate? We live in Miami, FL, I do not have a problem with cold weather as I grew up in South America and I'm used to snow etc., not my daughter.

I was looking at the NOvotel Center in MOntreal. Should we rent a car?

Will be arriving on Sat Dec 22 and returning on the 25th in the afternoon.

Any suggestions of what we can do visit etc?

Montreal, Quebec
Level Contributor
248 posts
18 reviews
9. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

well it's canada...in winter. so yeah it's cold. anywhere between 0 and 30 F, though probably around 20 is a normal day, though our winters over the last few years have been relatively warm...thank you, al gore.

cold shouldn't scare you. as long as you have a proper winter coat, hats, gloves etc you should be ok. and if you get too cold, you can always spend time in the underground city which is a giant shopping mall spanning most of downtown. but even bad cold spells don't stop us from leaving the house...winter is too long for us to spend it all indoors.

don't rent a car unless you plan on leaving the island of montreal. driving in montreal in the summer is bad...lots of construction, awful parking signs, terrible drivers. in winter, add the fact that you'll be driving on snow and ice and probably you're not used to that so it can be dangerous. we have a great metro (subway) system and bus system that will get you anywhere you would want to go on the island. it's also cheap and pretty reliable. the closests metro station to your hotel is about a 90 second walk.

if you wanted to go skiing or visit anywhere off the island you're better renting a car but again, the roads can be very difficult.

10. Re: Visiting Montreal during Christmas 2012

I am wanting a Montreal Christmas ..I will be by myself and in definite need of great good ....personal Pampering ( spa) ....nice hotel downtown ..and the enjoyment of a Montreal Christmas with great looking people .....any suggestions please ......I am a male 42 ...trendy to a point with a great palate and enjoys winter and people ( women ...who are friendly and easy on the eyes ) ....thank you for any help or info you could share with me ...marc ...couture_5@hotmail.com

Edited: 10:16 pm, November 20, 2012