The 10 Best Free Winter Activities in Montreal meunierd / Shutterstock.com

The 10 Best Free Winter Activities in Montreal

The city of Montreal is beautiful, historic and is the perfect place to explore and try out new things; but most things come at a steep price tag. During the winter visitors and residents tend to get a bit stir crazy and often over indulge on spending money in shopping malls. Luckily Montreal offers an abundance of free things to do and see. Whether you spend time wandering the streets during the holiday season marveling at the window displays and twinkling lights or you hit up one of many free skating rinks; there is plenty to do both indoors and out. Discover the museums that offer free admission, the parks that offer sledding and shows, the infamous Nuit Blanche and underground public art. Heading to Montreal in the winter can not only be breathtakingly beautiful but inexpensive as well. So pack your bags and head out to discover the 10 best free things to see and do in Montreal during the wintertime.

10. Visit the Churches

Home to many beautiful and historic churches; Montreal is the perfect place to explore some of these churches whether you are religious or not. One of the most visited attractions in the city is the Basilique Notre-Dame, Canada’s first Gothic Revival-Style church. Admission used to be free for visitors but the church has since implemented a $5 admission charge to help with costs of renovations and upkeep. Ornate wood carvings, stained glass windows, intricate statues and vaulted ceilings all await you inside and if you happen to attend a service admission is always free.

The city also offers visitors the chance to visit St. Peter’s Basilica; or at least a replica of the most infamous church in Rome. Completed in 1894 this church is a scaled down version of the real deal standing at an impressive 249 feet with an inside that is modeled after St. Peter’s. Free to enter, visitors will be treated to the holy door; the first created outside of Europe; along with magnificent artwork inside. These are just two examples of the beautiful and historic churches that await you in the magnificent city of Montreal.

9. Play at Fête des Neiges

Every weekend for four weeks in January and February visitors and residents are treated to a fun-filled family event called Fete des neiges. Located at Parc Jean-Drapeau this free event offers activities and shows for four weekends. Daily live ice sculpting demonstrations will take place along with zip lining, tubing, skating and giant Foosball. Each weekend offers different choices of food trucks and dining options ranging from wood-fire pizza to potato donuts.

Free shows are offered and include Disney musical adventures, traditional folk groups, quiz shows and other musical groups. It should be noted that not all activities are free at this event and checking the website for the schedule is recommended. What is free is the chance to experience the shows, the skating path along the Saint-Lawrence River, snow soccer, the giant ice slide, a polar circus and many games for the little ones. This is truly a winter experience that anyone with family and children should not miss out on. Bundle up, pack a thermos of hot chocolate and enjoy the many free activities at Parc Jean-Drapeau.

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