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Montreal On a Budget
An Affordable Journey
Recently I traveled to Montreal for 4 nights. I did this trip on a very minimal budget. I was hanging a show at an art gallery. I have a very small income, but enjoy traveling a lot. Montreal is a city I frequently visit. I went to art school there as a 20 year old girl. I didn't live there for very long, but enjoy visiting the city. Thanks to Megabus I am able to travel to Montreal with greater frequency than ever before.
I use a website called Hostelbookers to find backpacking hostels. This is a way to save a lot of money. I have used this website to find lodgings in many different cities in the region in which I travel. This time I decided to stay at a hostel at Auberge L'Apero. This was only $19 a night and included a breakfast. Breakfast was set out for us to help ourselves to in the mornings. It was cereal, bread, peanut butter, and jam. This served me well. They also included free coffee and tea. This helped me save a lot of money. I only had $40 spending money to use while I was there.
Here are some inexpensive suitcases to help you pack for your trip.
New Photo GalleryClick thumbnail to view full-size
I exhibited my art work in Montreal. This was the reason for my trip. I brought 29 paintings and illustrations to display in a gallery on the plateau. This was the second day of my journey. I woke up early and walked to the gallery. It was only 40 minutes walking. My art work is not very large. These pieces were all contained within my portfolio case and a separate bag I carried. I stopped for coffee on Avenue du Parc on my way to the gallery. A Bob Dylan song was playing in the background as I drank my vanilla blond roast.
I arrived at the gallery a little bit before noon. I hung all of my paintings with the assistance of a political theorist who has written 4 books. He is the one who organized the art show. He is currently running as a candidate for the Green Party in the upcoming election taking place in April of 2014. We chatted a great deal about various things.
The restaurant is part of the gallery. It is a Hungarian restaurant with a very short menu. The items sound very delicious and inexpensive. I didn't stick around to eat. This is Spring Equinox when I conduct an annual fast. There was music that evening, but I was too tired to attend. There are many press clips on the front window raving on about the food and music. The gallery has been there since the 1980s. It was transformed into a restaurant so they could expand their options for revenue.
I spent Monday walking around Old Montreal in the morning. I browsed many art galleries. I spent a lot of time chatting with gallery staff. Some people were very friendly. We chatted for quite some time. One young man showed me his own art work while I waited for the store next door to open. There was a store just before I arrived at Old Montreal which had many plants. They had a wide variety of cactus which were very appealing.
I climbed Mont Royal when I was in Montreal. It didn't take very long. It was a brisk walk. I felt very heated by the time I arrived at the top. There is a staircase built along the side which makes the climb a lot easier. There were many people up at the top looking over the city. A young man warned me very nicely not to slip on the ice. I find people in Montreal very friendly. That was one incident of that. It is rare for people to show concern for strangers. I walked very carefully to take a few photographs.
There is a lodge up top. It is a big large room. Inside there was a fireplace which I sat in front of for a short time. I had a vague recollection of a statue of an angel. I couldn't remember very clearly where it was located. I went outside to search for it. I climbed up a little hill. I could hear a woodpecker drilling into a tree. I followed the sound and caught site of him. This was a very cheerful thing. I began to make my way down the mountain. I wanted to find some birch bark to write goals on for the coming year. My birthday is coming up. I want to make a list of things to accomplish. I thought a piece of birch bark would be a nice thing to write on. I searched very careful for a tree which was not exposed to much traffic.
There was a tree as I came down off of the mountain. It had a loose hunk of bark hanging off of the side. I decided to pull it off. This was off the beaten track. I was knee deep in the snow to get this piece of birch bark.
Saint Laurent Boulevard
After I climbed down the mountain I walked a little bit too far north. I ended up walking along Saint Laurent Boulevard for quite some time. I was chilled by the time I got back that night. This was quite a long walk. I did walk in the same direction as I would need to go to get to a bar the next evening. I got a sneak preview of the neighborhood I should be in.
A friend from grade school invited me to a bar at 5240 Avenue du Parc for the last evening of my trip. This bar was called Le Cabaret du Mile End. I had spent the day browsing the art museum. I have an Art Gallery of Ontario membership which gives me reciprocal benefits to many art museums across North America.
My friend was doing a fundraiser for his production of 'Paradise Lost'. This is a show which uses animation and puppets. This was quite amusing for me because I had remembered being partners in grade 8 for history with my friend. He was the class clown. I didn't have a very serious personality either. We were paired up together for a history project. I brought in a book that I had found at home on how to make puppets. My friend made some puppets. The class laughed hysterically at our production. The history teacher didn't find it very funny. He told us we needed to learn the different between when people were laughing at us or with us.
The people who were doing the fundraiser are trying to raise money for their theatre company to take part in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. This theatre company is called Beyond The Mountain.
Parlez-Vous Francais? - Do you speak French?
In Canadian culture there has been a conflict for ages between the French and the English. This is something which laws are constantly being revised about. Some believe that French should be the official language. That all signage should be in French to preserve the unique culture that is in Quebec. Montreal is often described as the most European city in North America.
Do you think English should be displayed in signage in Montreal?
Yes. I think both languages are integral to the culture.
This music video is of a very popular ska band from the 1990s. This was my favorite band as a teenager. I have seen them in concert in Montreal.
Quebec Travel Items
You can have some memorabilia without leaving your home.
Montreal Travel Resources
- Aubergue L'Apero
This is the backpacker hostel I stayed in on my vacation.
This is a very affordable bus line which I use all the time.
This site has provided me with many great backpacker hostels. I used to get points for Via Rail's rewards program for purchasing off of this site. They have suspended that program. I now collect rewards points from mypoints.com every time I purchase
- Beyond The Mountain Theatre Company
This is the theatre company my grade school friend is involved with.
- Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
This is my favorite art museum out of all of the ones I visit. They have a great collection.
This is a store I visited in the plateau region on my trip. The staff was very friendly. The sell hemp related products. I chatted with the sales woman as I waited to set up my art show.