Montreal is a city with a lot of history, and that history is riddled with tales of ghosts and haunting. Even those unfamiliar with most of these stories have no doubt heard about the Ghost of Simon McTavish riding his coffin down Mount-Royal or the ghost in the women's bathroom at the old Club 1234.
But there are far too many Montreal ghost stories to list so instead we've compiled the best Montreal Ghost tours for you to take this Halloween ... if you dare.
1. Old Port Ghost Tour
The Old Port has been around though some of the darker moments in Montreal's history. The cobblestone streets have been home to witches, murderers and criminals who's spirits still haunt the area.
Griffintown is one the most haunted neighborhoods in Montreal. You'll visit the mysterious ruins, the abandoned tunnels the burial grounds and the haunted buildings. Search for the ghost of a murdered girl with a team of psychics, and be surrounded by the ghosts of the thousand of disturbed souls.
Montreal has been the scene for many strange occurrences and on the eve of Halloween, the spirits rise to haunt the streets. Learn about the creepy history of the old Grey Nuns House, the Demon of the downtown church and many other creepy stories you won't be hearing anywhere else.
Imagine exploring Mount-Royal at night with an old lantern and exploring all the places where ghosts have been spotted. Learn about the haunted hospital, the abandoned castles, the underground crypt buried under the mountain and about the victims of the CIA's brainwashing experiments.
As Duval assesses each character on a case-by-case basis since the manufacturing varies, he said he will add them to his Facebook album "Encan 2020 Super Heros" with a starting price.
People can bid in the comments. Bids are accepted in $10 increments. When you have the highest-standing offer for an appropriate amount of time, Duval comments with your name three times and on the third, it's yours.
This year, the event included Halloween candy and a show featuring Captain America, Iron Man, Batman and Harley Quinn.
Visitors to Rue Balmoral could check out Duval's progress in the days and weeks leading up to Halloween. He also allowed people to take photos with their favourite superhero before taking down the display.
The tours are part of an important conversation about how we learn about Black history
Joseph's been doing the tours for almost three years and with everything that's happened this year in regards to discussions about race and systemic injustice, he says the tours "definitely gained in popularity."
People from all walks of life take the tour and try to learn more: young, old, Black, White, Francophones, Anglophones, you name it. He says people even come in from out of town.
"People definitely want to bring a change, but they don't know where to begin," he said.
But Joseph also wants people to know that these discoveries aren't new. Black history is no different than any other history, he underlined.
"Yes, it is Black history, but it's also just local history. It's people that live here, that share the space. We need to acknowledge that."
The tour attempts to show people a bigger picture of Montreal's history
"I think people really just want to know more and understand why it is that they didn't know about it before."
He said that people who take his tours are often shocked by just how much Black history there is here in Montreal and how much of an impact it's had on the city.
"Some people have been living here for 20, 30, 40 years, going to school and have high-learning studies... they have yet to know how the Black presence has affected the history of the city and the province."
The tour aims to "deconstruct what hasn't been taught to us here in schools, trying to get a deeper, broader, wider understanding of what we're going through what we're going through today."
This is something that Joseph hopes is brought into the school curriculum.
"It's something I would want the schools to implement and start taking seriously."
The tour asks people to think about a "new Montreal"
For him, a new Montreal would mean "first of all, acknowledging the people that share the space or the territory."
We talked about "being in control of your narrative." Joseph says that regardless of your background, it's important for all of us to take control, to be knowledgeable and to understand not just our past, but how we can alter our future.
"I feel like that's something that we can all benefit from."
Halloween in Montreal was always extravagant and sadly, this year the holiday will look a little different. Although it makes us all sad to think about, there are still safe and COVID-friendly things to do in Montreal if you are dying to celebrate the spooky holiday.
From walking around haunted locations in our city to getting a free pumpkin, there are tons of cool and fun things you can do over the weekend.
Beware that some of these events are likely to sell out!