Montreal is Canada's original metropolitan city, and is still the greatest, despite what Torontonians have to say. Toronto has grown to be a major Canadian city, no doubt about that, with a lot of cool attractions, it just pales in comparison to the awesome that is Montreal. To remind us why Montreal is the cream of the Canadian city crop, and to inform some ignorant Toronto biddies, here is MTL Blog's reasons why the equation is always MTL > TO.
1. We Love To Eat
Montrealers love to eat, a fact made apparent given that Montreal has more restaurants per capita than any other city in North America. Poutine, bagels, and smoked meat are all native to MTL, and we have tons of fine dining for the ritzy among us. Not to mention our new legion of foodtrucks.
Other than the epic CNE food fair,Toronto has...yeah, not much of a competition in the food department.
2. Our Hockey Team Actually Wins
Sorry Leafs fans, this may be a low blow, but at least the Montreal Canadiens are known to win a Stanley cup or two. Or, to be exact, twenty four, which I might add, is more than any other team in the NHL.
The last time Toronto won was 1967. Montreal may have lost in that championship, but we've more than redeemed ourselves since then. Can't say the same for the Leafs.
3. We Love To Party
No one can deny Montreal is WAY better party city than Toronto. With our drinking age at 18, we get the party started much earlier. Last call in Montreal is 3am, not a way-too-early 2am, so we party later too. Beer and wine is readily available at all grocery stores and depanneurs, so no need to rely on the weird opening hours of an LCBO or Beer Store. Montreal has drinking culture on lock.
Montreal's bar/club scene is also much more condensed than Toronto's. Streets like St. Laurent, Crescent, and Mont-Royal offer tons of venues in a few short blocks, so you can literally leave one bar and stroll into another. Toronto is much more widespread, and inhibits drunken adventures for that reason. If you wanna party, MTL is the city.
4. We Speak Franglais
Another easy win for Montreal: most of MTL residents can speak English AND French. Of course, certain groups prefer one over the other, but that doesn't change how Montreal is a bilingual city. Order a drink in French, then thank your bartender in English, and no one will miss a beat. The same level of linguistic ability can't be said for Toronto.
5. In MTL, Feel Free to Light Up
In a society where smoking is increasingly becoming prohibited, its nice to know that there is at least some spots where smokers are still welcome, at least in Montreal. In our fair city you're still free to have a cigarette on a terrace, while you enjoy a drink with friends.
As it stands now, Toronto is still somewhat the same, but that may change very soon, depending on the decision by the city's Board of Health on September 30th. Either way, MTL still has a much more accepting smoking culture than TO anyway. Especially true when it comes to smoking the green stuff, which MTL is much more relaxed about.
6. MTL Looks Pretty Too
Montreal's architecture is a defining aspect of the city. The city has French, British, and American architectural influences that have inspired the construction of buildings from early settlement to the present day. An amalgamation of old and new, Montreal architecture is truly unique and beautiful.
Toronto is home to some pretty cool structures and buildings, but the city lacks the rich architectural history of Montreal. Toronto does have a lot more skyscrapers, so that's kinda cool right?
7. Festival Fun
TIFF, Veld, and NXNE are Toronto-specific Summer Festivals, ones Montreal doesn't have a direct counterpart to. Not that Montreal minds much, since we rock Jazz Fest, JFL, Fantasia Film Festival, Osheaga, Nuit D'Afrique, and SO MANY MORE. Not to mention the weekly Summer mini-fests like Piknik Electronik. Summer time in MTL is non-stop festival fun.
We don't slow down in Fall and Winter either. Pop Montreal was just upon us, and Igloo Fest is always a hot jam in the cold of Winter. Just out of sheer number of festivals and activities, Montreal proves to be more fun than Toronto.
Maybe we're a bit biased, we are MTL Blog, but you can't argue with the facts. With beautiful buildings and people, a unique cultural atmosphere, and more parties than you can even hope to attend, Montreal remains Canada's greatest city.
Don't agree with us? Are you a Toronto native and think your city was misrepresented? Prove us wrong in the comments below.