Montreal is notorious for its unique European-North American atmosphere, its incredible restaurant scene and also its cool shops. But what about a kid-friendly Montreal – does it exist? Does Montreal’s reputation as Canada’s party city mean that kids can’t have a jolly good time?
There are a number of things to do with kids in the city, whether they prefer art or science. There’s just something for everyone – even the parents. We are all just big kids in our hearts.
6 kid-friendly things to do in Montreal
Biodôme and Space For Life
Three words: penguins, sloth and piranhas. That’s just three examples from the incredible variety of wildlife at the Biodôme! The museum is only a short metro ride from downtown, and is one of the greatest things to do in Montreal for both kids and parents alike. The visit is organized in 4 different ecosystems, from tropical jungle to the freezing sub-Antarctic – needless to say that this activity will leave you both amazed, and a tad smarter! And the Biodome is just a small part of the Espace pour la Vie centre, complete with a botanical garden, instectarium and a planetarium too.
That’s a given – every kid loves amusement parks! Canada’s second largest park of its kind is a great way to spend a sunny day out, especially considering its key location – the park was built on Ile Sainte-Hélène, which is right in front of the island of Montreal itself, and easily accessible by public transportation. Kids get the thrill and the cotton candy while the grown-ups enjoy the beautiful scenery. That’s quite the win-win!
This is the perfect place to go if you have a few days planned in Montreal with kids. Located in the heart of the artsy Plateau Mont-Royal, this little shop will horn your painting skills. The concept is pretty easy: pick a blank ceramic piece, pick the colors and get to work! You can stay as long as you like, enjoying your kids works of art, and have a little snack or drink. Keep in mind that the ceramic pieces need a few days to dry off, so make sure to plan accordingly.
A small step for man… a huge step to the Cosmodôme! If you rented a car for the length of your stay in Montreal, make good use of it by driving to Laval, where the Cosmodôme is. Take your kids on 3 different spatial missions, and then to one of the permanent exhibitions.
Small warning: there are high chances that the phrase “I want to be an astronaut!” will be used regularly after the visit.
If you’d rather stay in the center of Montreal to entertain your kids, that’s no problem. There are a handful of museums in the area, but the favourite one amongst the little ones is definitely the Science Center, and its IMAX movie theatre. Conveniently located in Old Montreal, it holds several different exhibitions throughout the year, as well as permanent ones about the Earth, electricity and so much more!
If you are visiting between late June and August and have a thing for fireworks, you will be a happy camper. The event itself takes place at La Ronde, where you can buy seats and see them from up close (but not too close, you know – that wouldn’t be very safe), but you can also opt to be budget-friendly and watch the fireworks from the Jacques-Cartier bridge or the Parc Bellerive, just outside Papineau metro station. Each show has a different theme, and is always worth the trip.
… And Here’s An Extra 8 Just Because
- TAZ Skatepark
- Jet boating on the Canal Lachine
- Daytrip at the Granby Zoo (open almost year-round)
- Indoor skating at 1000 de la Gauchetière
- A sports game (hockey, football or soccer, for example)
- Having some aquatic fun at Aquadome
- Defy gravity at SkyVenture
- Say hi to the dinos at the Redpath Museum
Have you visited Montreal with kids? What was your favourite activity?