We've noticed an influx of visitors to Montréal this year, with tour bookings up almost 70% over last year. If you're one of the visitors headed here this summer (and make no mistake - there is no place like Montréal in the summer months!) you'll want to hear what our guide René has to say about spending time in this incredible city.
1. Guide’s name: René H.
2. Why I became a guide: After a career of 31 years as district sales manager with the 3M company I could retire pretty young. In Montréal you need to take a special course, pass a test and get an official permit to be a guide. I did all that after retiring because I love my city.
3. Describe why you love your city/region: Montréal has a mixture of French and British roots, more than 75 ethnic groups with at least one restaurant and all that with a very low crime rate. It's a wonderful place to live.
4. Top 3 things not to miss when visiting your city/region: The "Place Jacques Cartier" with its public entertainers and artists, the Notre-Dame Basilica with its breathtaking interior, and the unique look out from Mount Royal are a must-to-see when in Montréal.
5. Best place to go for a great photo: Mount Royal, the mountain in the middle of the city, is a perfect place to take very nice pictures. Old (Vieux) Montréal has also all kinds of ideal backgrounds for pictures, and there are lovely views of the city from the islands of Saint Helen's and Notre Dame.
6. Tell us one local food specialty everyone visiting your city/region should try: Montreal's excellent cuisine has a very well established reputation! From very fine French cuisine to a specialty fast food call poutine there is a lot to discover. Editor's note: we have a soft spot in our hearts for Montreal-style bagels and Montreal smoked meat!
7. Your favourite local restaurant(s)/café(s): I have a few favourite places to eat in Montreal: "Bonaparte" in Old Montreal for French cuisine, "Stash Café" for Polish cooking, and "Khyber Pass" for lamb prepared by an Afghan chef.