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Photograph: Caroline Perron | Promenade Wellington

21 best things to do in Montreal with kids

The essential list of the best things to do in Montreal for guaranteed family-friendly fun.

Laura Osborne
Written by
Leigh KP
Laura Osborne

Montreal is a playground for kids of all ages—especially during the fall. The city is full of attractions for young children (and the young at heart), stellar museums and excellent places to eat that are easy on the budget. Every borough has its own family-forward fun—not to mention some incredibly gorgeous beaches and parks—with easy access via public transportation (5 year-olds and under ride for free!). 

Full guide to the best free things to do in Montreal
27 best Montreal attractions for tourists and locals
31 best museums in Montreal to discover all year round

Best things to do in Montreal with kids

Wand handling class and a potions workshop? Halloween is taking over the Botanical Gardens, blurring the boundaries between fantasy and reality with activities for kids of all ages. Get ready for sorcerers, how to master the power of a wand, plant-based potion-making and a play featuring Scaredy Squirrel—one of our favourite children’s books.

Spoiler alert: This is a bucket-list Halloween destination. Citrouilleville, located less than an hour from Montreal in Saint-Zotique—home to one of the most beautiful beaches around—is opening soon and is bringing the most original Halloween fun.  We're talking about a pumpkin village that includes a pumpkin-covered church, saloon, general store and pumpkin-covered houses where visitors can enjoy corn and hay mazes, a puppet theatre, games and u-pick pumpkin patches.


Take a day trip and get lost in a corn maze near Montreal with some rural farm fun and freshly-baked goods from gift shops. Whether or not the corn harvest at farms is over, it's a great way to follow up some apple picking or pumpkin picking— or grabbing some freshly-baked pies, donuts and pastries. Guaranteed fun for the whole family!

Apple picking season in Quebec is short and sweet, with peak freshness starting in mid-August and ending just before the beginning of November. A great fall family activity, a lot of these spots also produce a selection of ciders (cue a spontaneous fall road trip from Montreal). Take your pick from this list!

Discover Parc Mont-Royal
Photograph: Eva Blue | Mount Royal

5. Discover Parc Mont-Royal

Parc Mont-Royal was inaugurated in 1976 in an effort to preserve a natural space in the city’s core, but the park has been an important social meeting ground for generations before it was made official. Today, it’s the site of the weekly Tam Tam drum circle, vast picnic grounds, an excellent toboggan hill where equipment can be rented for a nominal fee, a lookout at the summit and multiple hiking trails.

Montreal is brimming with artists, in part due to its enticing art programs that attract students from distant places. Additionally, it remains the most affordable major city in Canada, making it an appealing choice for artists who prefer budget-friendly options. Consequently, the city boasts a diverse and vibrant cultural scene, offering numerous independent art galleries and artist-run centers that can be explored without any admission charges. Whether you're interested in commercial galleries (be prepared to spend money if you want to purchase artwork) or non-profit exhibition venues, each one has its own distinctive character, providing an excellent complement to the city's renowned museums.


When it comes to the abundant array of amazing free activities in Montreal, spending time in the city's numerous urban green spaces and beaches stands out as a top choice. These locations are frequented by Montreal residents throughout the year, but it's during the warm summer months that they truly flourish.  They also serve as perfect destinations for unwinding after a long day at school or grabbing a casual meal. Here are some of the finest parks in and around Montreal.

Head to the Biodome
Photograph: Commission canadienne du tourisme

8. Head to the Biodome

The Biodome is under renovations until December of 2019, but if it was left off this list, an iconic Montreal attraction would be neglected. Can’t have that. What you can have as of the end of 2019 are inexpensive tickets and you can do a pretty good tour in less than two hours—perfect for tots who need an activity before naptime. Stroll through four drastically different ecosystems and experience the climate, flora and fauna in an immersive way. Side recommendation goes to the Planetarium next door to keep you busy until this one reopens.


This 60-metre tall observation wheel—kaleidoscopically lit and equipped with climate-controlled booths running throughout the year—offers killer views of Old Montreal and downtown. It's also (conveniently) located next to Voiles en Voiles (a pirate-themed ropes course) and the Tyrolienne Mtl Zipline (an aerial adventure where you can fly like a super hero).

Explore the Montreal Science Centre
Photograph: Freddy Arciniegas | Montreal Science Centre

11. Explore the Montreal Science Centre

Head down to the Old Port and keep a look out for a big red molecule sculpture. There you’ll find this interactive museum located smack dab on the harbour. The exhibits rotate fairly regularly, but the Tiny Tots room and IMAX cinema are always available. Located on a pier that’s surrounded with important historical buildings and lunch spots, you could easily plan for full day visiting this place.

Watch a film at Cinéma Moderne
Photograph: Courtesy Cinéma Moderne

12. Watch a film at Cinéma Moderne

In the trendy Mile End neighbourhood stands Cinema Moderne, a small 54-seat movie theatre. On weekends it plays children’s movies selected by a curator with terrific taste. These aren’t the annoying films you’ve already seen 1000 times; the kids’ movies usually play in the late morning, so you can still get home in time for that 1pm nap. There’s a bar downstairs where you can grab a beer during the show, let alone enjoy the brunch they have during weekends as well.

Experience Bach Before Bedtime
Photograph: Bach Before Bedtime / @bachbeforebedtime

13. Experience Bach Before Bedtime

Performed by Allegra Chamber Music, Bach Before Bedtime is a series of classical music concerts with interactive elements to entertain toddlers and babies. The shows are presented in a mix of English and French, but even if you didn’t understand half of what’s said, the music carries the show. Bach Before Bedtime is presented downtown at McGill University and Place des Arts.

Get lost in SOS Labyrinth
Photograph: SOS Labyrinthe

15. Get lost in SOS Labyrinth

An indoor maze in Old Port, SOS Labyrinth is a challenging activity with a historical twist. Learn about the Montreal harbour’s history with an adventure in a maze, featuring puzzles and obstacles to keep your kids busy. SOS Labyrinth is open to all ages, but it’s best enjoyed by kids of reading age. Note that the Labyrinth is in a 105-year-old hangar that cannot accommodate winter fun, so the summer season’s the best time to go.

Take a leap at iSaute
Photograph: PhotoDR

16. Take a leap at iSaute

It’s rainy outside and your kids have boundless obnoxious energy. What do you do? Easy: Take ‘em to a giant warehouse full of trampolines and let them bounce until they pass out. iSaute has two Montreal locations, one in Kirkland and one in Anjou. Open to both kids and adults, Mondays are the best time to go, as there’s family jump night with special prices for people with kids.

Check out the Ecomuseum Zoo
Photograph: © Zoo Ecomuseum

17. Check out the Ecomuseum Zoo

Whether you grew up in Canada or it’s your first time north of the 49th, you probably haven’t engaged with Canadian animals as closely as you might like to. Well, you can at the Ecomuseum. This West Island zoo houses 115 species from Quebec, including arctic foxes, black bears and a delightful raft of otters. Rather than keep the animals in traditional zoo cages, the animals roam in beautiful specialized habitats designed with conservation in mind.

Get tickets for Geordie Theatre
Photograph: Geordie Theatre / @geordieprod

18. Get tickets for Geordie Theatre

For nearly four decades, Geordie Theatre has presented plays for kids performed by award-winning actors. Their headquarters is in the Sud-Ouest neighborhood of Montreal, but you can catch public shows at the MAI and DB Clarke Theatres in Montreal’s downtown core. Different shows are good for different age groups, with shows for youngins and young adults alike.

Visit Exporail / Canadian Railway Museum
Photograph: Exporail / Le Musée ferroviaire canadien

19. Visit Exporail / Canadian Railway Museum

It’s difficult to grasp just how grand steam engines are until you’re standing in front one. The Exporail train museum in Saint Constant—an hour away by public transportation—offers exhibits that get you up close and personal with locomotive artifacts. Exhibits include a miniature train ride, antique steam engines and a model train room which captures the attention of more dads than anyone would like to admit.

Spend an afternoon at Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal
Photograph: Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal, Michel Dubreuil

20. Spend an afternoon at Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal

Fine art galleries aren’t the first thing you imagine when you plan a weekend for kids, but the folks at Montreal’s Museum of Fine Arts do a terrific job of curating exhibits for all ages. Most exhibits have a room with tactile activities for young kids and free art workshops that compliment the main show. Skip the gift shop and take home a souvenir made by the whole family.

Watch a show at Illusion Theatre
Photograph: Michel Pinault

21. Watch a show at Illusion Theatre

Illusion Theatre has been around for nearly thirty years. The company performs puppet shows for toddlers to double-digit-aged kiddos. Shows are primarily in French, and are so dazzling and engaging that you’ll definitely enjoy them (even if you aren’t a fluent Francophone). It’s located in Little Italy, where you’ll find lots of parks and family-friendly restaurants for a follow-up meal and some relaxation by sundown.

On a budget?

Keep it cheap!

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