The Old Port or the Vieux Port (in French) has over the years become a soothing place to be and walk. Following the St-Lawrence River and De La Commune Street, the paved path allows multiple activities: walking, running, cycling, roller blading and more. It is a recreational area with an historical touch.
Montreal would not be Montreal without the proximity of the water and the development of the port. The geographical location, the river and the rapids, played in the establishment of the city. It is very close to the Pointe-à-Callière Museum where the first boats arrived around 1611, and where trading activities took place.
There was a time when silos and warehouses occupied the section between the river and De La Commune, making the place very industrial. The massive buildings obstructed the view and the access. Most of them were moved with the old port activities to make the area a more touristy and welcoming place to explore and it is next to charming Old Montreal.
Benches along the way, green areas for picnics or just to relax brings a new anti-stress dimension.
Depending on the season, you will have access to different options, including a frozen ice rink in the winter to skate on, and next to the clock tower, there is a beach in the summer.
Did you know that the Clock Tower is actually a memorial to a sailor lost at sea during World War I? It is an icon element in the area. It is also a good spot to see the fireworks from La Ronde.
If you are travelling with children, you may want to consider the Science Center which offers an interactive and participative experience. The Imax theater is in the same building.
The Clock Tower, the Big Wheel, the fireworks in the summer, simply biking, admiring the boats or taking a cruise are all opportunities.
Next, the 2km (1.2 mile) path takes you to the Place Royale, the Old Custom House, Pointe-a-Callieres Museum, the Alan building and the monument to John Young who has been recognized for his contribution in the development of the port.
The bicycle path is also connected to the Canal Lachine and it is a beautiful place to explore. Biking here is a different way to explore the river and the locks.
In summary, depending on the season, you can find an activity to do in this place from simply walking, taking a cruise, visiting the Montreal Science Center, going to the beach, renting a pedal boat, experiencing the river rapid boat, roller-skating, biking, renting a tricycle, running, skating, enjoying a ride on the Big Wheel or just sitting and appreciating the view. There might even be a cruise ship at dock.