The Biosphere is fascinating as both a renowned Montreal landmark and as a unique museum that will please visitors of all ages. There are a variety of permanent exhibits located both inside and outside this gigantic steel tube dome that will educate on the latest issues surrounding our environment and its many eco-systems.
One of Montreal's most prominent and iconic landmarks, the Biosphere located on Île Sainte-Hélène, was originally designed by the forward thinking architect Richard Buckminster Fuller as the United States Pavilion for the 1967 World's Fair. Constructed of tubular steel this giant geometric dome stands as tall as a 20 storey building. Fuller wanted the structure to be bolted together but the American officials wanted it to be welded. This helped ensure that the structure remained as the legacy that it is today. The frame was covered with tinted transparent acrylic panels.
The Biosphere became the most successful pavilion at the fair with a total of 5.3 million visitors passing through it during the six month Expo. After the fair, the United States government donated the Biosphere to the City of Montreal. It served a variety of functions which included that of a conservatory housing a variety of plants and birds.
In 1976 the Biosphere was engulfed in flames when a welders torch accidentally set fire to the acrylic panels resulting in the complete loss of its covering. After that it sat dormant for about 15 years at which time Environment Canada made an agreement with the City of Montreal to turn it into the environmental Museum it is today. After a major restoration of the steel frame and the design and construction of new interior structures the museum opened to the public in 1995
The Biosphere Today
Since its inauguration in 1995 the Biosphere has built up a wide range of permanent exhibitions as well as hosting a variety of temporary exhibitions which all focus on aspects of our environment and eco-systems. Many exhibits are hands on and children and adults will find the museum both fun and educational.
You should try to include a visit to the Biosphere on your itinerary when you visit Montreal because the admission charges are nominal and you will not be disappointed with its many the exhibits. You can also enjoy some great 360 degree views of the city from inside the dome.
Facts For Your Visit
Official Website: Biosphere MontrealFee: Yes
Some attractions may have reduced hours or be closed due to COVID-19. Please verify opening hours with the attraction before visiting.
- Thursday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Friday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Saturday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sunday: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
160 Chemin Tour-de-l'Isle
Montreal, QC H3C 4G8
Phone: +1 514-283-5000
Alex G. Jan-03-2020
The Biosphere is a beautiful piece of architecture designed by Buckminster Fuller. But inside this awesome structure is a mini environment museum that's... Read More
Austin G. Aug-21-2019
If you're more of an off the beaten path traveler, don't waste your money on this. My wife, toddler, and I went here and literally stayed 20 minutes max.... Read More
Kristina K. Jun-22-2019
Despite below par weather during my visit, the views from the top floor are amazing. It's a really interesting view of the city and the river. The museum... Read More
Accommodations near Biosphere Montreal:
|Metro Line||Nearest Station||Walking Time|
|Line 4 - Yellow||Station Jean-Drapeau||2 Minutes|
How to get to Biosphere Montreal by Metro
By Metro: Take Metro Line 4 to Station Jean-Drapeau and follow the signs for the Biosphere
Map & Instant Route Finder
Click&Go Map and Route Finder with public transit, walking, driving or cycling directions. Get up-to-the-minute transit times for your route.