Jardin Nelson in Montreal

Continuation of my Montreal trip

On Saturday, we slept in (after Friday night, we needed it). We woke, hit the streets, and began looking for lunch. In just a few blocks, we found China Town — at the corner of Saint-Laurent Blvd. and de La Gauchetiere Street — and sat down to one of the largest buffets I’ve seen in a while.

Stuffed, we headed off to Montreal’s Old Town. Located between the river and the city-center, Old Montreal, founded in 1642, has remarkable 18th and 19th century architecture and the first Canadian skyscrapers. Charming, we found its boutiques, sidewalk cafes and public places fun to explore.

We did make a point to visit the Notre-Dame Basilica of Montreal, a masterpiece of Gothic Revival architecture. Built between 1824 and 1829 the interior of the church of sculpted wood, paint and gold leaf. It’s paintings, sculptures and stained-glass windows were also amazing.

Before long, we needed a drink and a place to relax. Thankfully, we found Jardin Nelson. Part restaurant, part courtyard, Jardin Nelson had the perfect marriage of historic grace and modern elegance. The three of us spent the rest of the afternoon enjoying drinks in the restaurant’s courtyard, listening to the live jazz band, and admiring the huge parasols that provided our shade.

Wasting away the afternoon in Old Town Montreal was just what the three of us wanted. Refreshed, we returned to the hotel to freshen up and begin another night of the Jazz Festival.

We were not a lucky in getting a sweet table this time. Regardless, we had a great meal, walked around to a few stages to listen to some Jazz, and called it the evening right around midnight. Afternoon drinks and a late night on Friday drained our batteries, so turning in early for the evening was just what the three of us needed.

Sunday was all about driving home. Laura and I had about a seven hour drive ahead of us, Rob only had about two hours, for we dropped him off on the way. Leaving around lunch, we reached the US border in about an hour. Unfortunately, so did everyone else. It took us three long hours to get back on US soil. Driving can be tiring. But taking three hours to drive just over a mile is exhausting. Eleven hours after leaving Montreal, I was home.

It was a fun filled trip that made a few days feel like a week-long journey.