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Save Some Cash and Experience the Best of Montreal's Holiday Season for Free
Christmas is a beautiful time to visit Montreal. It's also a great excuse to stay in the city and enjoy holiday festivities should you happen to be a resident. And while there are loads of activities happening during the holidays, finding free things to do in Montreal come Christmas-time can go a long way in giving those overactive holiday-maxed credit cards a break.
So I put together a list of free things to do in Montreal during the Christmas Holidays in 2017-2018 with your budget in mind, a list featuring the best free things to do in Montreal come Christmas time. And do check out my Montreal Christmas events calendar as well. It might tempt you to splurge a little.Continue to 2 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal During Christmas: Window Shop
It's gonna cost you if you buy something at one of these Montreal Christmas shopping destinations, all temporary pop-ups. But no one's ever paid to window drool ;-)Continue to 3 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal During Christmas Holidays: Santa Claus Parade
Montreal's biggest parade of the year, the Montreal Santa Claus Parade typically heralds the beginning of holiday shopping season. In 2017, it runs November 18.Continue to 4 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal come Christmas Holidays: Défilé des Rêves
The first Friday of December isn't exactly Christmas holiday season. But I had to bring up Montreal Christmas Parade Défilé des Rêves. It's a family favorite.Continue to 5 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal on the Christmas Holidays: Marche de Noël
Marche de Noël des flambeaux is a choice free activity for families. Or anyone, really. You can buy a candle on location for $2 of which the proceeds go to worthy local charities like local food banks and to help families in need.
But candles aren't mandatory if you want to participate in the candlelit walk, a unique Montreal Christmas parade happening the evening of December 9, 2017. Instead of paying $2, organizers also accept plushies, children's book, toys and non-perishable food items as a donation in exchange for a candle.Continue to 6 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal on the Christmas Holidays: Fireworks
The Old Port's annual Christmas fireworks? It's official. They're back for the 2017-2018 holiday season starting December 16.Continue to 7 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal on the Christmas Holidays: Luminothérapie
Luminothérapie has been a tradition every December and January for years now. While you're in the neighborhood, consider crossing the street for a peek at Santa's Kingdom in Complexe Desjardins or checking out the nearby Christmas Market held on the outdoor grounds of Place des Arts.Continue to 8 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal on the Christmas Holidays: Alfred's Adventures
Free for ages 12 and under, McCord Museum proposes The Topsy Turvy Storyland, a made-for-kids exhibit exploring the universe of fairy tales. Children are challenged to find ten lost characters to gain access to an "enchanted library."Continue to 9 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal come Christmas Holidays: Santa's Kingdom
You've got from November 18 until December 31, 2017 to check out Complexe Desjardins' free family programming via its annual Santa's Kingdom.Continue to 10 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal come Christmas Holidays: Skate!
Easily the most accessible and affordable winter sport you can do in Montreal, ice skating at most of these top outdoor Montreal skating rinks is free of charge IF you bring your own skates.Continue to 11 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal come Christmas Holidays: CBC Sing-In
Held at the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts' neighboring Bourgie Hall free of charge on December 10, 2017, the CBC Sing-In is your opportunity to sing in a choir. No audition needed. Details here.Continue to 13 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Les Choralies
La Chapelle de Notre-Dame-du-Bonsecours, Montreal's oldest chapel, makes a point to feature free if donation-based choir concerts every December. In 2017, Les Choralies are held every weekend afternoon at 1:30 p.m. and again at 3 p.m. December 2 through December 23.Continue to 14 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Salon des Métiers d'art
The juggernaut of Montreal craft fairs, the Salon des Métiers d'art is free admission at all times, a fun excuse to see what Quebec artisans are up to, even if you don't have the budget to buy anything just yet. Collect a few business cards on-site and keep track of your favorites online. You can always score them outside of holiday season, some time down the line.Continue to 15 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Christmas in the Park
From December 1 to December 25, 2017, catch over 100 free musical performances while sipping on hot cocoa, roasting marshmallows and sausages by a bonfire courtesy of Noël dans le Parc.
Parc Lahaie in the Plateau is the holiday fest's main hub, but festivities are spread out across three Montreal parks, including Place Émilie-Gamelin near the Gay Village.Continue to 16 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Mass
Christmas Mass in Montreal is particularly enchanting when you factor in how grandiose some of the city's basilicas and churches are, ornate interiors speaking to a time when the Church in Quebec was practically the State.
Save exceptions and basket-passing donations, Mass is free.Continue to 17 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Le Grand Marché
From December 1 to December 24, 2017, Place des Arts' esplanade turns into a Christmas Market, aka Le Grand Marché de Noël de Montréal, complete with shopping options, live choirs, foodie goods, mulled wine, whiskey tastings and free entertainment, including a karaoke igloo. Check the schedule before heading out. It varies significantly by day.Continue to 18 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal Come Christmas Holidays: Village Mammouth
The Olympic Village got the perfect face lift in time for Christmas holidays. Opening in mid-December 2017 is its newly christened Village Mammouth and its giant slide and expanded skating rink. Admission to the site is free. Activities cost extra.Continue to 19 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal During Christmas: Merry Montreal
From December 1, 2017 to January 1, 2018 is Merry Montreal, a series of mostly free holiday-inspired activities held in Old Montreal. Highlights? Everything from a Christmas Market to New Year's Eve fireworks to Christmas karaoke and Santa meet-and-greets on select days.Continue to 20 of 20 below.
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Free Things to Do in Montreal During Christmas: Santas at the Stewart
Santas at the Stewart has been a holiday tradition for years at the Stewart Museum at Parc Jean-Drapeau. Figurines, a doll castle, and photos are part of the exhibit. Whether it returns for the 2017-2018 holiday season remains to be seen.