Travel Blog

11 Aug

Things to Do in Montréal August 12 to 18

Relax the way Montrealers do in August with outdoor classical music concerts and film screenings, set your kids free at family-focused events, or party like a Montrealer at Montréal Pride and the Fashion Design Festival. And definitely eat like a Montrealer – we’ve got recommendations.

Music for all ages

Classical music enthusiasts of all ages will love the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal Couche-Tarde Classical Spree, August 10-13: 30 affordable concerts at Place des Arts starting with Kent Nagano conducting the OSM in Chariots of Fire, plus matinée shows for kids, free activities and two free outdoor concerts: Mozart’s Magic Flute opera on Aug. 12 at 7 pm, and four orchestras performing in Spotlight on Youth on Aug. 13 at 10:30 am. Make your own music just by swinging: outdoor art installation 21 Swings is back until Sept. 5 outside Place des Arts. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts transforms a side street into Toulouse-Lautrec’s Belle Époque on Aug. 13 at noon, featuring Cancan dancers and music by the Alex Francoeur jazz trio. La Tohu circus centre hosts FALLA, a free event of world music, circus acts and kids activities, Aug. 11-13. And the Olympic Park hosts kids event Carnaval estival on Aug. 13.

Montréal Pride

The largest LGBTQ gathering in the Francophone world, Montréal Pride celebrates its 10th edition with parties, community and art events, cabaret shows, parades and more, Aug. 8-14. Along with cultural activities, club nights and free outdoor shows at Place Émilie-Gamelin, don’t miss Pride’s main events: Community Day on Aug. 13, along Sainte-Catherine Street in the Village; the Pride Parade on Aug. 14 at 1 pm; and the iconic Mega T-Dance afternoon at Place Émilie-Gamelin on Aug. 14. For the inside scoop, see our 2016 Montréal Pride Survival Guide.

roller-derby-susan-moss-3Fun and games

Keep up with all the action at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games by joining fans at Montréal’s best sports bars, from multi-screen, multi-floor pubs to quaint neighbourhood favourites.  Meanwhile, get ready to holler along with the crowds and announcer Plastik Patrik at the Montréal Roller Derby Championship on Aug. 13 at Arena Saint Louis. And go for a run with thousands of others in The Color Run, Aug. 13 at Parc Jean-Drapeau. See the city and countryside from the sky at hot air balloon festival International des Montgolfières Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Aug. 13-21 in nearby Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, also featuring activities for kids and music from Half Moon Run and Metric on Aug. 13, Milk Bone on Aug. 15 and more. In the city at the Old Port of Montréal, find your way through the SOS Labyrinthe and play pirates on ropes course Voiles en Voiles. Test your skills on the giant chessboards on Ste-Catherine St. in the Quartier des Spectacles. And kids can play the day away at Lego Image Nation Aug. 12-14. For more family activities, check our guide to fun with kids this summer in Montréal, including playtime and storytelling at the Botanical Garden and Biodôme.

Schwartz_smoked_meatWorldly food and drink

Even if you can’t be in Brazil for the Olympic Games, you can still feast as if you were: indulge in Brazilian food and drink in Montréal from “churrasco” grilled meats to refreshing cocktails and sweet treats. Explore the many tastes of Montréal with gourmet meals on Montréal’s favourite terrasses, or locally made smoked meat sandwiches along with more flavours of the world from Tex-Mex burritos and Portuguese chicken to spicy meals from African and Caribbean restaurants – eat on site or get take-out for a picnic in the park (note: it’s legal to drink boozy beverages outdoors with that full meal!) And entertainment, food and drink abound at pop-up outdoor markets Jardins Gamelin, Village au Pied-du-Courant and Les Jardineries.

Fashion, film and art

Catwalks, models and DJs move outdoors for the Fashion Design Festival, Aug. 15-20 in downtown Montréal – fashion shows, live music, workshops, film screenings, shopping and plenty of food and drink make it a must, whether you’re a fashion diva or not. Art must-sees: street art, dance and music at Under Pressure international grafitti festival; Liz Magor, Lizzie Fitch and Ryan Trecartin at the Musée d’art contemporain; multi-media artist Joan Jonas at DHC-ART; 1960s-inspired experimental film exhibition Le corps exquis featuring film The Exquisite Corpus by Peter Tscherkassky at the Cinémathèque québécoise; and, considering that it’s Italian Week, the Pompeii exhibition at the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts and ELEGANZA – Italian Fashion from 1945 to Today at the McCord Museum. The Phi Centre screens My Own Private Idaho and virtual reality films in Embodied Narrative: Sensory Stories of the Digital Age. See Daniel Cross’s documentary I Am the Blues outdoors at Place de la Paix, Aug. 16. International animation film festival Animaze kicks off on Aug. 18. And international speakers, artistic performances and workshops make the World Social Forum a place for change to happen, to Aug. 14.

Live music and more

World music, dance, art and food make Festival Orientalys a must, bringing Eastern sights and sounds from North Africa, Syria, China and beyond to Quai Jacques-Cartier in the Old Port, Aug. 11-14. Watch, listen and dance along as the Montréal International Tango Festival hosts some of the best tango dancers and musicians to match in the world to Aug. 14 at various venues. Superstar Céline Dion continues her spectacular 10-night run of shows at the Bell Centre to Aug. 17. On Friday night, electronic music producers Haezr and Proxy pull out all the clever dance-music stops at Théâtre Fairmount, Suoni Per Il Popolo presents Edmonton-based rockers Switches at Casa del Popolo, and dance all night to the beats of Richie Santana at New City Gas. On Saturday, the mighty yet small ukelele rules at Montréal Uke Fest 2016 at La Sala Rossa, and Manufactured Superstars play housey electro for serious dancing at at New City Gas.

Casa_del_popoloLegendary outdoor electronic music event Piknic Electronik happens at Parc Jean-Drapeau’s Calder statue, this Sunday with the Raw Moments collective. Also on Sunday, Fiesta Olympica transforms the Olympic Stadium’s Esplanade Financière Sun Life into a Latin music dance party, starting at 4 pm. On August 17, reggae masters Toots The Maytals get a serious groove on at Théâtre Corona, Suoni Per Il Popolo presents captivating guitarist and singer-songwriter Matt Valentine at Casa del Popolo, slide guitar one-man band Bob Log III blows some minds at Bar le Ritz P.D.B. , and fans of Montréal’s The Barr Brothers and High Dials will be into Tavis E. Triance The Natural Way at Divan Orange.

Up next: Great Greek restaurants in Montréal




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