Enjoy a taste of Asia with a visit to Montreal's Chinatown

Gate to Chinatown in Montreal
Gate to Chinatown in Montreal cc licensed photo by abdallahh

Most major cities in the world have a Chinatown and so does Montreal, albeit a much smaller one in comparison to most big cities. Chinatown sprang up on La Gauchetière Street and surrounding streets when Chinese immigrants who worked on the railways needed accommodation which was conveniently situated close to work.

It is recorded that the first Chinese clans which settled in the area were the Chan, Hom, Lee, Wong clans, but later Chinese refugees from Vietnam also settled in the area.The size of Chinatown decreased from around 1970 due to redevelopment and rezoning of the district. Because of the reduced size of Chinatown you may find that there are not as many shops as one would expect to find, however you will easily come across something which catches your interest; it is always worth the look. In spite of the decreased size of the district, it is still bustling with people, night life, food stalls, shops and restaurants. One reason why this Chinatown is still so busy is because shops and restaurants have special licence to remain open until late as Montreal's city officials slated the area as a tourist attraction. Because of this special permission Chinatown is alive during the day as well as during the night.

Chinatown does not only celebrate their own festivals, it also celebrates a variety of Canadian festivals and holidays. You can find green fortune cookies on St. Patrick's Day and pink bean curd hearts on Valentine's day. With the large variety of stores and restaurants in the area you can tryuly spend the entire day just browsing and searching for interesting knick knacks and bargains to take home with you for the family.

If you are in the area and you enjoy eating Asian foods you will find a good array of authentic Chinese, Cantonese and Vietnamese restaurants in the area.


Metro Line Nearest Station Walking Time
Line 2 - OrangePlace-d'Armes3 Minutes

How to get to Chinatown by Metro

By Metro: Take Metro Line 2 to Place-d'Armes; exit and go north on St. Urbain Street to Rue de la Gauchetiere, a pedestrian only lane lined with Chinese shops and services. Follow it east to Blvd St-Laurent to get to the heart of Chinatown.

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