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Best Historic Locations in Montreal

By: Cityseeker
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Marché Bonsecours

Located in the cultural and tourism heart of Old Montreal, this neoclassic building dates from the mid-18th Century. It has been home to a city hall, a reception center, and public markets. In fact, following an 1849 fire in the Parliament Building, it became the seat of the United Canada Government. Today, following two restorations, the silver-domed building is used as an exhibition hall. It teems with sidewalk cafes, boutiques, souvenir shops and fine arts galleries. You will find everything from maps to fashion accessories and First People's art.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal

Notre-Dame's twin towers have served as an Old Montreal landmark since the Neo-Gothic basilica was finished in 1829. Today they continue to be the focal point, where tourists disgorge from buses and calèche drivers line up for passengers. The interior glows with gilded statuary and gold-leafed fleurs de lys, and is home to one of the largest pipe organs in the world. The Montreal Symphony Orchestra performs its Christmas production of Messiah here at the Basilique Notre-Dame de Montréal or the Notre-Dame Basilica. Check website for opening hours for visitors.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Notman House

Located on the fancy Sherbrooke Street, Notman House is a place you cannot miss visiting. Owned by Sir William Collis, this ancient Greek Revival architecture is the only residential example of its kind. It was designated as a historical monument in 1979. Built entirely out of the local materials, the house featured an inner court and garden as well. This house should definitely not be missed if in this area.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral

Plans for the construction of the Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral first began in 1852, soon after Saint-Jacques Cathedral was destroyed by fire. At the behest of Ignace Bourget, the architect Victor Bourgeau was assigned the ambitious task of designing a cathedral in the image of the magnificent St Peter's Basilica in Rome. The architectural masterpiece was completed in 1894 and is renown today as one of Quebec's most revered religious sites. Inside a spectacular baldachin adorns the altar and elaborate paintings depict the early history of Montreal, while outside exquisitely wrought statues of the city's 13 patron saints watch over the people, replacing the 12 statues of Christ's apostles that adorn the exterior walls of St Peter's Basilica. The cathedral remains a sacred place of worship even as it attracts droves of tourists who are drawn to its austere beauty and artistic treasures.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Dollard-des-Ormeaux Monument

Parc Lafontaine (Park) is not only privy to beautiful scenery, but it also contains two of Montreal's famous historic monuments. One such monument is the Dollard-des-Ormeaux statue, which is a bronze and granite figure standing at about 40 feet high. The monument also depicts France's colonial journey in Quebec, Dollard one of its prime colonialists in the Montreal area. The exact story of his travels is speculated upon. After his arrival in Montreal, once known as Ville-Marie, Dollard and his men made their way up the Ottawa river to Long Sault, exact reasoning unknown. - Williamina Deneault

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Bank of Montreal

The Bank of Montreal is a building that was formerly occupied by a branch of the Bank of Montreal. This historic sandstone building was constructed in 1894 and features Queen Anne style of architecture with its Flemish motifs and shaped gables. The site was designated as a National Historic Site of Canada in 1990.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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Saint Joseph's Oratory of Mount Royal

Saint Joseph's Oratory in Montreal is the nation's largest church, its regal dome second in height only to St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. A small chapel dedicated to Saint Joseph was built at the site in 1904 by Brother André, renown for his miraculous ability to heal the injured and ailing. He was later beatified in 1982 and canonized in 2010. Completed in 1960, the renaissance church that replaced the original shrine encompasses a basilica, a votive chapel lined with discarded crutches, and the heart of Brother André amongst several other treasures. Outside, the Stations of the Cross grace the sculpture garden where scenes from the film Jésus of Montréal were shot. The oratory itself is a striking beauty that dominates the skyline for miles around, its elegant dome rising high above the bucolic scene. One of the world's most revered Catholic shrines and an important place of pilgrimage, Saint Joseph's Oratory inspires wonder in the hearts of the devout and the simply curious.

Montreal, QC, Canada
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