Few people knew of Ville-Marie yet everyone has been; it’s the technical name for Montreal’s downtown area, and one of the most vibrant places in the world. It encompasses Old-Montreal, downtown Montreal, the Latin Quarter, the Gay Village, most of Mount Royal Park and the islands on the St. Lawrence River – indeed, it covers quite a lot of ground! It is therefore one of the most visited areas in North America, and one of the most densely populated too.
Attraction-wise, Ville-Marie isn’t a bore. Three of the four Montreal universities are located within its boundaries, as well as the notable district of Old-Montreal (and its historic museums, chapels and quaint squares), the lively Gay Village and its drag-queen bars, the business and high street shopping oriented downtown core area and, of course, the luxuriant Mount Royal and its unobstructed view of the neighborhood. That’s in addition to the world-class art museums, the fine dining and plenty of bars to animate the legendary Montreal nightlife scene. Visitors can go from art gallery hopping to ice skating to strolling in the cobblestone streets and shopping in the largest underground network in the world, in the matter of just a few hours; that’s what Ville-Marie is all about.