Because vacations in Montreal are better on two wheels.
Canada’s second-largest city may be a sprawling metropolis of 160 square miles, but most visitors stay within an area of less than seven square miles—think downtown, and the Rosemont, Mile End, and Plateau neighborhoods. Sure, many of Montreal’s most popular attractions like the Old Port, Montreal Botanical Garden, and Notre-Dame Basilica are situated in the that condensed, walkable area. But if you’d like to take a food tour of the city or are up for some fall foliage, try hopping on two wheels.
Though your motor won’t have major horsepower, it will help you cover plenty of distance while saving energy. “You get the chance to see more without getting tired, and you can access places that are more difficult to go by bike,” says Kim Fontaine, a local guide and travel blogger who leads scooter tours with Dyad, a local scooter rental company. Take the city’s namesake Mount Royal, for example. Instead of trekking the 764 feet to the top, just scoot it. You’ll have plenty of energy left at the summit to enjoy unrivaled view of the Montreal skyline from your perch atop the (small) mountain.
According to data from the Montreal Tourism Board, most visitors to the Québec city only stay for two or three nights, which is another consideration for visitors looking to use their time—and energy—efficiently. (Scooters, compared to a regular bike’s 10-15 mph, can go up to 30 mph.) Visitors are spoiled for choice: speed demons may opt for a traditional gas-powered scooter, or one of the customizable Vespa tours available through Montreal Scooter. Adventurous but eco-friendly riders might prefer renting an electric scooter through Kumpan. There are plenty of alternatives for those hesitant to battle the city’s relatively busy traffic aboard a scooter, too: Dyad and Ecorecreo both rent electric scooters and electric bikes that can be ridden along Montreal’s 400 miles of bike paths.
Both Ecorecreo and Dyad offer tours, but riders who want to explore on their own should head to the up-and-coming neighborhoods of Griffintown and Little Burgundy in Southwest Montreal. For a quick food-centric ride, head along the waterfront Lachine Canal and stop for a snack at the giant Atwater Market. Then, go on to Rue Notre-Dame Ouest to visit some of Montreal’s trendiest restaurants, bars, and boutiques, and see how many of the most beautiful places in Canada you can tick off your list.