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Ping Pong Club

Your guide to dating in Montreal

From wine bars to axe throwing, these top spots for dating in Montreal are a guaranteed good time

Written by
Michelle Normandeau
Isa Tousignant
Laura Osborne

We've taken the stress out of dating for you. Finding date ideas that don't feel like a forced gesture out of Love, Actually can sometimes be an actual challenge. Luckily in Montreal you're spoiled for choice when it comes to things to do when you've got romance in mind. Whether you’re looking for one of the best romantic restaurants, or one of the best Montreal attractions to set the mood before a make out sesh or to grab a casual coffee in the most romantic café in town, we’ve compiled a top-notch list of places to try. From the best restaurants in the city, to the best bars—and some stellar cheap eats in between—let us play wingman.

Full guide to the best things to do in Montreal
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59 best bars in the city

The best of the city under one roof

Time Out Market Montréal

Before you start mapping out your date night out on the town, consider dropping into Time Out Market. Get the evening off to a great start by dining at any of the market’s 17 eateries composed of this city’s best chefs and restaurants, coupled with beer, wine and cocktails from some of Montreal’s best mixologists or a class taken at the Cooking School. Once you come for the food and drink, stay for the entertainment—weekends yield some fantastic DJ nights to dance the night away.

Restaurants & bars

Photograph: Ménard Dworkind architecture & design

1. Vinvinvin

In case the name didn’t give it away, this one is for the wine lovers. An essential spot on the Montreal nightlife map, this organic-forward bar has exploded in popularity since opening its doors in the summer of 2019. Its thoughtfully crafted lists include some local selections from Québec and Ontario among other wines primarily imported from Central Europe, all served in a 70-seat space that’s perfect for a casual yet classy date spot. Keep in mind that they don’t take reservations, so have a plan B in place if you plan to go during the weekend (hint: check out what the best wine bars in Montreal are right now).

Café Parvis
Photograph: Café Parvis / @cafeparvis

2. Café Parvis

Whether you head to Cafe Parvis for a quick drink with a Tinder date or are planning for a full meal with your significant other, this charming café offers a cozy ambiance perfect for intimate conversations. If you fancy dating in the daylight—or need an idea for where to go after a successful night out—they’re open for breakfast and lunch throughout the week and brunch during the weekend, when the menu extends beyond pastries and enfrijoladas. It’s simple: Dine during dinner and share one of their tasty gourmet pizzas and a bottle of red with your date. If you’re looking to have a couple drinks and spend a little one-on-one time under dimmed lights, you can’t go wrong here or at their neighbour Furco.

Le Mal Nécessaire
Photograph: Steven Smith

3. Le Mal Nécessaire

It’s dark. It’s trendy. Its cocktail list is extensive, its neon décor abundant. This place is great bet to take first dates when you haven’t nailed down exactly what the other person is into yet (and its proximity to Chinatown restaurants is an added bonus). Take a seat either by the bar or at one of their stunted tables and hash out that first-date conversation over a tequila-infused cocktail while the DJ plays in the corner. 

Le 4e Mur
Photograph: Courtesy Le 4e Mur

4. Le 4e Mur

For any and all fans of bygone eras, Le 4e Mur is an experience that you aren’t likely to forget. It’s one of the best speakeasys in Montreal that blends a Sherlockian aesthetic with the 1920s charm of Midnight in Paris, complete with a secret entranceway that leads down into what feels like the set of your childhood Clue board game. Once seated, choose to participate in a game of ‘whodunnit?’, as your drinks’ menu doubles as a murder mystery game. The cocktail list is creative, and depending on your choice, you may be in for a smoky surprise.

Snowbird Tiki Bar
Photograph: Snowbird Tiki Bar / @snowbirdtikibar

5. Snowbird Tiki Bar

Ready to hit the tropics? Snowbird Tiki Bar has been artfully furnished with the finest authentic vintage tiki decor, making any thoughts of Montreal’s brutal winters wash away upon entering. From plastic palm trees to 1960s-style princess wicker chairs, strands of glowing lights hung above the bar to a massive retro painting of Elvis, Snowbird is the perfect place for a playful date and a fruity sharing cocktail, and of course, showing off some killer dance moves.

Casa del Popolo
Photograph: Casa del Popolo

6. Casa del Popolo

In the mood for some live music, a couple of beers, and a good time? Casa del Popolo is likely your ideal date spot. A low-key bar that brings musical talent to its stage on any given night, we recommend checking their event calendar to stay up-to-date with their schedule to make sure that the music will be up you and your date’s alleys. During the summertime, wander out back and take a seat on their outdoor terrasse – it’s cozy and romantic if it’s not too crowded, and can make for a great first date.


Come winter, the city's coolest new pop-up bar also happens to be the most Instagrammable, maing this glamorous ice palace with winter-themed cocktails is a win-win. In a city known for its epic nightlife—think best bars, hidden drinking dens and speakeasies and downtown pre-game spots—this ice bar by the Lachine Canal is the newest addition, and the perfect excuse to cuddle up. Expect drinks like the Cotton Candy Claus-mopolitan (Grey Goose, Cointreau, hibiscus infusion, lavender and cotton candy) thanks to a partnership with Grey Goose and Cointreau—all designed by Max Coubès.

Head outdoors

Botanical Garden
Photograph: Eva Blue

1. Botanical Garden

Why buy your date a bouquet of flowers when you could bring them to the Botanical Garden instead? Just kidding, still buy the bouquet? This curated outdoor space features displays upon stunning displays of Mother Nature’s finest work all year-round. If you’re looking truly enjoy each other’s company while being peacefully surrounded by over 22,000 plant species in more than 20 themed gardens, there’s not a more romantic spot than the Botanical Garden. You know what they say: Sometimes you’ve just got to stop and smell the roses.

Parc La Fontaine
Photograph: The Bialons / Unsplash

2. Parc La Fontaine

Get a real feel for the Plateau at this sprawling green installation in the neighbourhood’s centre. It’s got a pond, tennis courts if you’re sporty, a dog park to gawk at cuteness and all sorts of gentle elevations that provide perfect private picnic nooks. In winter you can skate hand-in-hand on the pond to the sound of pretty music; in the summer, try and time your date to catch one of the free performances at the open-air theatre. It’ll be a date to remember.

Marché Jean-Talon
Photograph: Kelly Jacob

3. Marché Jean-Talon

Head to Little Italy with your special someone for a day at Jean-Talon Market. Pick up a few things for dinner amidst the stalls of fresh fruit and veggies or wander the endless aisles of flowers and houseplants tended to by friendly merchants. Montreal’s oldest market is open year-round and is always a great place to grab a bite to eat with its countless understated gastronomic gems studded throughout the marketplace. Make it romantic by feeding one another samples from the fresh fruit stalls.

Parc Mont-Royal
Photograph: Tourisme Montréal, Susan Moss

4. Parc Mont-Royal

Are you an active couple up for a mountainous run, or want to take in a scenic view of the city from the mountain’s plateau? How about a calming walk around Beaver Lake, which has some of the best ice skating in Montreal during winter? Parc Mont-Royal offers all of that and more. A vast outdoor space in the middle of the city, it’s the perfect temporary escape from the hustle and bustle of downtown. Keep in mind that on Sundays during the spring and summer,  Montreal’s infamous Tam-Tams take place—expect a lot of impromptu musicians to congregate around the George-Étienne Cartier monument and drum all day long.

Atwater Market
Photograph: Laurène Tinel | Tourisme Montréal

5. Atwater Market

A date spent wandering around Atwater Market makes for a morning or afternoon well spent. A market filled with gourmet cheese and chocolate shops, bakeries, butchers, local produce vendors, and restaurants throughout the week in the summer, it’s a bustling place to spend a date. Grab a coffee and Portuguese nata tart at Brulerie Aux Quatre Vents before wandering the stalls of fruits and veggies at any time of year. During the summertime, pop in at Havres aux Glaces for a refreshing ice cream cone and lounge at one of the picnic tables. Once you’ve tried enough of the good grub, talk a long stroll along the Lachine Canal to walk it off.

Picnic at Lachine Canal
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Christian Barrette

6. Picnic at Lachine Canal

Grab your picnic blanket and fill a basket with some fresh fruit, cheese, a couple of sandwiches, and a bottle of red, and you’ve got yourself a stellar evening ahead of you. Lachine Canal is one of the best spots in the city for a romantic picnic, with plenty of green space along the water to snuggle up for the day with your special someone. Of course, a picnic is best enjoyed during the spring and summer months; there’s nothing better than lying in the sun with the breeze off blowing off the canal to bring you and your date some cool relief. Plus, this makes for one cost-effective date—that is, of course, if you don’t spring for a swan boat ride ($30 for an hour) available near Atwater Market.


Twice the size of the The Rink at Rockefeller Center, the refrigerated ice rink at the Esplanade Tranquille—located at the intersection of Sainte-Catherine Street West and Clark Street—is 1,500 mof winter fun. Take your date for a whirl! Expect 70s vibes on Saturday nights thanks to all the musical disco hits (hello, Donna Summer!), and classical vibes (Mozart and more) on Wednesday afternoons. 

For something a little different

Ping Pong Club on Saint-Laurent Boulevard and Bernard Street pulls in hefty crowds on Friday and Saturday nights in part because of its finger foods and creative cocktails, but mostly because of its ping pong tables and assortment of other games. It’s a good place to devote a night to rather than simply stopping by; iit can be easy to get sucked into a table tennis tournament with your most competitive friends and, without realizing it, pass the hours away. If you’re in the mood to move, drink and win all in one night, this is the place to go.

Rage Axe Throwing
Photograph: Rage: Axe Throwing

2. Rage Axe Throwing

Whether you’ve both recently gotten over a fight or you’re simply looking for a more extreme activity to do together, consider heading to Rage for an adrenaline-inducing (and certainly memorable) date night. The premise is simple: Take out your rage by throwing axes at a wall. After all, nothing screams ‘romance’ more than whipping heavy, dangerous weapons across a room at full force, right? We can hear the wedding bells already.

Photograph: Allez Up Climbing/Escalade / @allezup

3. AllezUp

Sometimes there isn’t anything better than monkeying around, literally. AllezUp is known around Montreal as being one of the best indoor rock-climbing gyms in the city, making it a perfect spot to bring a partner for a sporty date. Whether you’re both beginners or skilled climbing veterans, this gym has various walls designed specifically for different skill sets. Gear up and head on over—they’re open until midnight every weeknight! It’s among the best gyms in town that (while not the only one) offers some action before the, ahem, action.

A/Maze Escape Room
Photograph: A/Maze /

4. A/Maze Escape Room

What better way to see if you’re destined to make it as a couple than by putting your teamwork skills to the test in an escape room? Pick which kind of location you want to try to escape from, from the Prison to a Lost Temple to a Laboratory and tons more. We recommend doing this as a double date idea, as it’s a case of ‘the more the merrier’ with this activity!

MTL Zipline
Photograph: Eva Blue

5. MTL Zipline

This summertime adventure park in the Old Port has a bit of a touristy twang, but it’s still a hell of a good time for anyone at any age. Strap yourself in and swing aaalllll the way over Île Bonsecours, with a bird’s eye view on all the Old Port frolickers below. The only downside is that it’s over before you know it—so use it as a high-adrenaline kick-off. Follow-up with some of the street food stalls along the waterfront or head to a bar in nearby Old Montréal.

6. iFLY

Feel the wind on your face as you propel yourself into a nose-dive… in an air tunnel. This indoor skydive place is worth the time it might take you to get to Laval, if only for the rush. It’s a great way to test your mettle—maybe more third-date than first, unless you’re both really all-in types! The endorphins afterwards make for a high that’s great lived à deux.

La Ronde
Photograph: Jean-François Savaria - Tourisme Montréal

7. La Ronde

Get the full-on amusement park experience at La Ronde, complete with candy floss and chocolate-smothered Beaver Tails. It’s all thrills and spills at this fun fair, a mere metro ride away from central Montréal, with rides that are both cute and quirky and straight-up terrifying. Try to time your visit for a fireworks night, to get the best view in the house. But be warned, the chills start with the price of entry—it ain’t cheap.

8. Les Affutés

Whether it’s basket weaving, pottery, woodworking, sewing or natural cosmetics, there’s a class for that at this bright and airy workshop on St. Lawrence Boulevard in Little Italy. The 3-hour format of some of the group classes is a great way to get to know somebody in a casual atmosphere, plus even if you don’t fully click, you’re guaranteed to get something out of the date. Like your own self-made chopping block. Not too shabby.


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