Disclaimer: Always Stay Safe. And if you are in the red zones, always stay at home and follow the federal and provincial regulation.

Montreal Winter Activities for 2021

Things to do in Montréal in winter 2021

Winter can be tough for some of us but we are here to try and make it a little better! Under normal circumstances, we would recommend a plethora of different activities and festivals to visit and participate in but with covid, there is just so much uncertainty and we will work with what is available this year. However, we have compiled a shortlist for you to make this holiday season an even more special and memorable one! 

This is MontrealTips’ Top 5 Winter Attractions 2020/2021:

  1. Our first option on the list is to visit Mount Royal Park during a nice snowfall. We can at least guarantee this to be available during the wintertime so it is a great place to start. Try and pick a day where it isn’t too cold and really take in the simplicity of it all. Visiting Mount Royal Park easily embodies Montreal’s winter scenery at its finest. It is a great time to spend with family and friends and a great area to bring your dogs for an adventure! The park also has regular walking trails as well as snowshoe trails and of course ice skating for all those interested
  1. Something I was truly worried about is returning this year and that’s Montreal’s, Christmas Market! Located just on the outskirts of Atwater Market, the Christmas market is open every weekend from November 26th to December 20th. It is currently the 5th year they do this and have always had a great time. As the name would suggest, the market offers visitors a chance to discover talented local artisans and their products all bundle up in a very Christmasy experience. It is a great way to help encourage local talent and to make new friends! Visiting the market is also free but like with a lot of things there are efforts to respect covid rules and that includes a capacity limit so make sure you get there early!
  1. For the first time ever, Montreal will actually be host to not one but two Christmas markets! This time the new one will be held at the Jean-Talon Market and available from December 4th to December 23rd. The market offers visitors “to make gastronomic discoveries and enjoy local crafts”. One of the aisles will also be occupied by small wooden cottages that offer warm-up spots and other comforting products like hot chocolate and churros. Like the Atwater Christmas market, it is a relaxing way to spend a weekend with friends and family during this holiday season.
  2. A classic amongst most Montrealers and tourists is visiting the Old Port during the holiday season. It’s equally as magical of a place as the Christmas villages but really shows off Montreal to its core. The decorations, the sights, the smells are all a part of the experience. While restaurants and bars won’t be able to fill that void this season, it is still worthwhile to take a stroll around the Old Port for a relaxing time and an extra excuse to get in those extra steps to walk off that extra covid weight! 
  1. With the Christmas villages up and running, their cousin, Montreal’s Winter Gardens is also alive and well this year. At Place des Arts,  after spending time shopping, take a trip down to The Winter Gardens and take in the sights and sounds of the holidays. The gardens promise an enchanting evening which will make your next winter memories a memorable one. Walk around and take in the sights and really bask in the holiday spirit by visiting the Winter Gardens this year! Starting from December 5th until January 3rd, 2021 and considered “a little treasure hidden in the heart of the Quartier des spectacles”, which really brings out the Christmas spirit in all of us. 

And there you have it. MontrealTips’ Top 5 Winter Attractions, we hope you have the chance to support the local talent and have a great time visiting them and want to wish everybody happy holidays!

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view from the top of Mont royal

Best 5 spots to go for a walk, in Montreal

With a not-so-ideal summer ahead of us, it’s a good time to be cherishing the little moments of life that we can get. One of the best ways we find to accomplish this goal is to go on a solo walk or walk with friends and family at a great spot you may have never been to before. Taking in new sceneries is a great way to feel refresh your brain and feel like a tourist in your own city all and can make for a fun afternoon or evening out. Walking is also a great way to not only keep healthy so why not do it with some incentives! but it’s a good chance to be a tourist in your own city once again.

Here are the top 5 spots to go for a nice walk in the city of Montreal:

1. Old Port

Old Montreal offers a great place to walk around and discover where Montreal’s roots came from. The Old Port offers a little bit for everyone as its scenery is able to transport you back centuries as you walk through the cobblestone streets and get to discover historical landmarks such as Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal. If you want a break from walking there are also Segway tours, paddle boat tours, and a handful of different activities to do. At the same time, the Old Port is also home to some of Montreal’s trendiest restaurants, stores, and bars which we can all hopefully enjoy to its full extent once again. Our pro tip is to walk around and find the Queues De Castor and enjoy the sights!

2. Mount Royal Park

One of Montreal’s green paradises, Mount Royal Park is the classic Montreal park for amazing and most scenics of walks. Mont-Royal Park is a great place to bring your family and friends to spend an afternoon and while you can definitely have small gatherings for bbq or just general social gatherings there are also walking paths to follow to the top of the mountain. If you’re looking to keep yourself in shape or just going to take in some views Mont-Royal will not disappoint. Making your way to the top offers up great nature scenery on the trail and eventually leading to the top where you get one of if not the best view of Montreal.

3. La Fontaine Park

La Fontaine Park is one of Montreal’s most interesting parks to walk, as it is quite large and kind of like the Old Port, in the sense that there is something for everyone. For general walking purposes, it is a great place to come for a stroll because of its many places for shade, great views, and awesome gardens. It also features very spacious greenery and has enough room for picnics and gatherings which makes it a great place to bring family but also offers up sports courts for tennis and volleyball for those who are looking to get a dose of sports. La Fontaine Park is located in the Plateau district where you can find trendy bars and of course two of Montreal’s favorite restaurants La Banquise and Ma Poule Mouillée. A pro tip would be to take either to go and enjoy it at the park for an unforgettable day.

4. Lachine Canal

The Lachine Canal is another classic walking spot in Montreal. Once the industrial beating heart of Montreal, it is now been mostly abandoned and transformed into beautiful looking condos. The city has taken care of it quite a bit as they have really aim to develop the canal into something a little more modernized. The Canal usually has a lot of visitors and is a welcome place of relaxation from the usual hustle and bustle of the city. The Canal itself is a multi-functional attraction that is welcoming to many different activities. While it has a dedicated bike and pedestrian lane that can take you from the Old Port all the way until Lake St. Louis, there is also entertainment and activities to do along the way ranging from Kayaking to stopping by the Atwater Market. The Canal walk itself is a great way to spend a couple of hours and also has areas to do a small picnic so it is a great way to spend an afternoon while taking in the sights. While this doesn’t have nature’s endless bounties it offers people a different vibe. The view along the Canal offers up different cityscapes as well as learning some history along the way making it a truly unique scenic walking trail.

lachine canal

5. Maisonneuve Park

Maisonneuve Park is located in the east end borough of Montreal, right next to the Olympic stadium, and is also a stone’s throw away from Montreal’s Botanical Gardens. The park itself is an amazing space with a massive amount of room and is of course a great place to walk around. The park can sometimes feel so big because of its vast openness and its natural surroundings and at times gives a feeling of a peaceful secluded area to yourself.It is a great place to spend an afternoon or evening or just for a bit of solo time. The park is also very well maintained as it features tons of picnic benches, tables, sitting structures, and plenty of great places to rest under some trees. Overall it promises for a good day no matter what you go there for!

Park in Montreal

This summer, choose your own adventure, be active while you can still enjoy our beautiful summer weather, and explore different parts of Montreal with your own two feet.


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5 Favourite Spots for a BBQ in Montreal
Top 5 Provincial Parks Near Montreal
Top 5 Cross Country Ski Experiences in Montreal

Montreal SKyline

 

Like most of us, the heatwaves that Montreal can experience can sometimes feel like we are in the middle of a rain forest. It always feels as if Montreal either get the two extremes of weather from -40 weather to immense humidity and heat. To add on to an already overly eventful year, Montreal actually had a record-breaking stat for having the most 30 degrees+ weather in a row. The humidity in Montreal can reach some really high levels to the point of feeling like there is no air to breathe. Fortunately for some, air conditioning will do the trick but for the rest of us wondering if wed prefer the 30cm of snow over the heat have to resort to alternatives, and that’s where we come in to help you. We came up with 5 different ways for you to cool off during the heatwaves and that goes double for all you folks with no air conditioning!

 

1. The first and probably one of the most obvious tips on our list is to actively try and avoid the sun at its peak times (11 am-2 pm) if possible. Obviously this is not achievable at times but it still serves as a good reminder to just generally limit your exposure to the sun to help you cool down. If you’re planning on going out, stick to the shade, or another useful tip is to buy a UV protection umbrella if you’re anticipating that you will spend more time out in the sun. You can also dip in and out of stores to catch some of their A/C but remember to bring your mask! Small efforts like this can help you stay cool throughout the day!

 

Find an umbrella at: https://www.amazon.ca/UUmbrella-Unbreakable-Windproof-Ultraslim-Umbrellas/dp/B07YJD2QLW/ref=sr_1_10?dchild=1&keywords=uv+umbrella&qid=1595365696&sr=8-10

 

2. Another one where we have to be occasionally reminded is that hydration is key throughout the entire day. As a general rule of thumb, you should always drink a lot of water but that’s especially true while facing the heatwaves. The sweat alone will dehydrate you to the point of having no energy and drinking constantly throughout the day is a sure-fire way to help keep your body cool and hydrated. Make sure if you are going out to always have a water bottle handy. And if you’re at home, might as well add some lemon and ice to up your game a little and enjoy your cool down session!

3. Ever hear that eating spicy foods while it’s hot out that it actually helps you cool off? If you’re like me, I was skeptical at first until I actually tried it for myself, and to my amazement, it actually worked. It would seem that the old saying of “fighting fire with fire” is actually an effective method to help cool you down. Thee science behind goes as follows “Sweat is your body’s natural response to heat. Collectively, all those little droplets are just energy, or heat, leaving your body. In a nice, dry climate, that excess energy evaporates off your skin and leaves you a little bit cooler”. Luckily in Montreal, we have a plethora of restaurants that offer up some of the best spicy foods at the touch of our fingers so let’s take advantage of that and also support our local businesses at the same time!

Source:https://www.wired.com/2016/10/can-spicy-foods-really-cool/ 

 

4. This tip is definitely the tastiest way to stay cool on our list. Another classic method to staying cool is to enjoy some frozen treats. This can range from popsicles, icecreams, frozen fruit smoothies, or finding your nearest Dairy Queen or Dipperie for example! Whatever your preferred method is, these treats will help tide you over to weather the storm and also making the inner kid in you extremely happy.

5. This last tip actually comes from my buddy who currently lives in Japan and his way of dealing with the extremely hot Japanese summers is to invest in cooling pillowcases and sheets. Sleeping in your sweat is something nobody wants to endure and to be completely honest, I was blown away by his favorite method of staying cool because I had no idea this existed but alas modern times calls for modern solutions. He also does not own air conditioning and the summers in Japan are notoriously brutal so I trust him as it has been a couple of years that he has sworn by it!

 

Find them at: https://www.amazon.ca/Japanese-Lightweight-Sleeping-Breathable-Comfortable/dp/B0835232YP/ref=sr_1_5?crid=1TY0KV774TJ2C&dchild=1&keywords=cooling+sheets&qid=1595364493&sprefix=cooling+sheet%2Caps%2C148&sr=8-5

 

https://www.amazon.ca/Zenssia-doreiller-Fermeture-glissi%C3%A8re-Standard/dp/B07NS66WZL/ref=sr_1_8?dchild=1&keywords=cooling+pillow+case&qid=1595369747&sr=8-8

 

There you have it, our top 5 favourite ways of staying cool during the Montreal heat! While there are of course multiple ways of fighting off the heat we thought wed add some small interesting alternatives that can be easily attainable and that can genuinely help you cool off and survive to tell the tale!

Top 5 at Home Exercises That Aren't Running to Get You in Shape

With the gyms being closed, many of us have found ourselves in a situation where we have to look for alternative ways to workout. Don’t get us wrong, running is a great exercise and workout but it’s not for everyone, and that’s okay! Whether you find it boring or you have leg or knee pains or are just looking for something different don’t worry we’ve got you covered. The article will also introduce ways in which you can maximize calories burnt while utilizing the exercises we provide. There are more options out there than you think that still abide by social distancing and quarantine rules. So let’s dive in and discover our top 5 exercises you can do that aren’t running! 

 


Here are 5 exercises to do if you hate running:

 

  • Skipping

    Guy holding a skipping rope

    Photo by Charlotte Karlsen on Unsplash

 

When we think of skipping our minds wander to our adolescent days or if you’re me, to the Rocky movies, but skipping doesn’t have to be so leisurely or so intense for you to make a difference. Skipping is a great way to exercise especially if you have knee and leg issues because it actually has less of an impact on them than running does. Skipping is also a full-body workout and according to a study by Shape America “After six weeks of daily 10-minute jump-rope exercises, participants demonstrated the same levels of improvement to their cardiovascular health as individuals who jogged for 30 minutes a day.” 

Skipping as you can see is also great for someone with not a lot of time on their hands and they can still make a bigger caloric impact than running can. Skipping really goes well if you look for a circuit or HIIT (high-intensity interval training) workout that can really push you to the next level in a short amount of time. So what are you waiting for, get out there!

If you don’t have one, find one here! : https://amzn.to/2zPM72T 

Source:https://shapeamerica.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/10671188.1968.10618043

 

 

  • Frisbee

 

Okay, hear me out, while we know you can’t really play frisbee by yourself unless you are freakishly fast if you’re at home with someone it’s a really fun exercise you can do together that can easily burn calories. While frisbee requires a little bit of running shorter distances, it is still less impactful on your joints than running on concrete for example. It also isn’t the first thing people think about while burning calories but trust us, there’s a lot more going on under the hood. What I especially love about it is the fact that you can run short sprints back and forth almost like suicides that really get the heart rate up. Mix this with some jumping catches and you’ve got yourself a tiresome workout that will shred those calories in no time. What I like to do especially is to tell my partner to throw it away from me so It forces me to be quick on my feet and run for it and keep the heart rate up. 

If you don’t have one, find one here!: https://amzn.to/2Tehif9

 

 

  • Orange Theory at home Youtube Videos

 

For those of you who don’t know what Orange Theory is, 

Orangetheory is a science-backed, technology-tracked, coach-inspired group workout designed to produce results from the inside out. The hardest part of our workouts is showing up – we make it simple for you to push yourself, be your personal best and give you more. MORE results. MORE confidence. MORE Life. More than a gym. Because you shouldn’t live to exercise. You should exercise to live.” 

They currently have gyms in Montreal and surrounding areas but obviously they are closed for the time being. If its something you always wanted to check out or are new to it, they have started to put out free at-home classes on youtube that require little to no equipment for all of them. They are a good comparison to what you can get with the real gyms but these classes still provide great HIIT workouts that can be very challenging and you will definitely get your sweat on.

Find the channel here: https://www.youtube.com/user/Otheoryfitness

Source: https://www.orangetheoryfitness.com/

 

 

  • WOD’s

 

This one is for all of you really looking to push yourselves to the limit. WOD or Workout of the Day is a term used in CrossFit and if you find that intimidating, you should because this really isn’t easy. However challenging it may be, the results you will get by doing these is hardd to argue with. They usually consist of full-body workouts so be prepared! They are an excellent and effective way to burn off calories and make you stronger at the same time.

As the name suggests, there are different workouts per day and also include male and female weight suggestions. While some of the workouts do need some sort of equipment you can look through to find some that have exercises with the equipment you already have. If you find them too difficult simply reduce the rep range to something that is doable but still challenging for you. Overall WOD’s can be an exceptional alternative to running but be prepared for a hell of a challenge.

Find the WOD’s at https://www.crossfit.com/

 

 

  • Hiking

 

Hiking or trail running can be a great alternative to running on concrete. Yes, trail running does include running but it is generally a little slower paced because you have to watch your footing and you are also running on the ground as opposed to concrete which helps reduce joint pains. While hiking, in general, is an incredible leg focused exercise, it really excels over running because of the constant shift of elevation and traversing through difficult terrain can really put in work for your lower body.  A hike is taxing on the body and what’s great about it is that you can get some great scenic views and a sort of freedom of exploration if you will whenever you go on a hike. 

Guy Hiking in Nature

Photo by Boxed Water Is Better on Unsplash

 

All you need to get started is a great pair of hiking shoes and you’re good to go!

Find some amazing shoes here 

Women: https://montrealtips.com/2020/05/16/best-hiking-shoes-for-women-in-canada-2020/

Men:https://montrealtips.com/2020/05/11/best-hiking-shoes-for-men-2020/

So there you have it, our 5 alternatives to just running! Remember, while all of these great exercises will help you burn calories and help you get into better shape, nothing beats out a good diet and healthy life choices. I tend to believe that to lose weight and make a difference in your body training and workouts only count for about 20% of the overall effort and the other 80% is about having a good diet to supplement those hard-earned workouts.

The 5 best online cooking classes you can take in 2020

Top 5 cooking classes to take online in 2020

The 5 online classes you can take in 2020 to improve your cooking skills.

This time off is a great time to work on some skills that you just didn’t have enough time during your usual busy days. Learning how to cook is an essential skill that is currently being exemplified by this quarantine. With restaurants closed, and having limited options for take-out we are starting to rely on our homemade cooking ability a lot more. Online cooking classes are a great way to start your journey to becoming a better cook. There is something fulfilling about trying to improve yourself and at the same time, you will also be able to impress the next time you host friends and family for dinner! It can be a great way to get inspired and stay busy during this quarantine and well…you can eat your amazing home-cooked meals at the same time, what’s better than that?

plate of vegetables and healthy food

Photo by Ella Olsson on Unsplash

Here are our 5 favourite cooking classes you can start taking right now!

 

1. Instructables

Instructables is a site that teaches you how to make a bunch of different things for free. But what’s especially great is their cooking classes are geared for beginners. It offers an accessible introduction to the world of cooking and how to make easy delicious meals. It also teaches you a variety of things from knife skills to how to properly bake, stewing, roast and more. It is a perfect entry-level online cooking class that you can start if you aren’t very experienced in the kitchen, so what are you waiting for? Sign up, get busy and get ready to feel accomplished!

https://www.instructables.com/class/Cooking-Class/

 

2 people cooking healthy food

Photo by Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash

2. Udemy 

Udemy offers a range of different courses for different fields but their cooking section is one of their more interesting selections. Their cooking section is divided into two. One contains free recipes and tutorials and the others you will have to pay for. The free recipes come with ratings and reviews so you can pick and choose which recipes you feel like making based on interest and user feedback. For their premium content, Udemy has certain cooking courses for different prices depending on which ones you want to sign up for. You can expect courses like “Essential Cooking Skills” and “Herbalism”(which is an awesome certificate to get) which really shows you the versatility of the site. Udemy is especially useful if you aren’t really sure what you want to make, or if you want to upscale yourself by completing their classes.

https://www.udemy.com/topic/cooking/free/

 

3. Masterclass

guy and girl cooking in kitchen

Photo by Toa Heftiba on Unsplash

For something really interesting and unique, there is Masterclass which if you don’t know, is a new and different approach to online education for a variety of subjects. It is known as one of the best online cooking schools because the kicker is, is that the people teaching these classes are known celebrities and leaders in their respective fields. The best part about that is their cooking celebrities are really top tier. You can be taught by some culinary giants like Wolfgang Puck, Gordon Ramsay, and Massimo Bottura. They each have their own styles and ways to teach different things so you can see who is a better fit for you. There is also a useful trailer on the courses to get a good idea of what and how you are going to learn. Being taught one on one by these guys naturally doesn’t come free, as a single class can cost you about $120 CAD but keep in mind, these classes are extremely high quality and are made to feel very intimate in order for you to learn as if you were one of their students

https://www.masterclass.com/

4. Rouxbe

Rouxbe is probably one of the most well known online cooking courses you can enroll in right now. Rouxbe is welcoming to all different skill levels and is also a cost-effective entry into the culinary world. You can take on multiple courses like on how to cook and make pasta, how to master your fry pan or do the “The Cook’s Roadmap” which is a course that helps you gradually develop your skills over a set path that tests different skills. What’s especially nice about Rouxbe is that you can go at your own pace and make sure to properly learn what they are teaching you to receive the proper experience. Their membership is available monthly at an affordable $9.99 CAD or at an annual fee of $99.99 CAD. There is however a 30-day free trial which we recommend you try before you buy to see if Rouxbe is best for you!

https://rouxbe.com/

 

5. Thekitchn Cooking School

Thekitchn promises 20 lessons in 20 days for you to be a better cook than you are today for free. It is like a compilation of organized crash courses that are meant to have you learning quickly. The lessons themselves are extremely informative and go into detail about how to properly use the equipment, what to do, what not to do and what you shouldn’t learn for example. The lessons really come across as an honest and realistic approach to cooking at home and it really compliments how their lessons are structured. The lessons usually contain multiple assignments for you to practice what you learned and refine your skills. To us, it creates an almost class like atmosphere which can be a real motivator for some but also allows you to get a strong foundation of culinary knowledge.

https://www.thekitchn.com/


If you are in Montreal you might want to check these cooking classes.

If you want to more things from the comfort of your home, check out: