Montreal Museum of Fine ArtsFounded in 1860, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) is one of the top 15 most-visited museums in North America. Located in the historic Golden Square Mile downtown, the museum’s encyclopedic permanent collection contains some 43,000 works – from European Masters to the MMFA’s dazzling Napoleon collection – much of it on display in the museum’s five connected pavilions. The MMFA also creates and hosts travelling blockbuster exhibitions. The MMFA complex includes the 460-seat Bourgie Concert Hall, a movie theatre, boutique and bookstore, as well as the Beaux-Arts Restaurant.
Montreal Holocaust MuseumThe History of the Holocaust Told by Survivors permanent exhibition at the Montreal Holocaust Museum features artifacts donated by Holocaust survivors living in Montreal, home to the third-largest Holocaust survivor population in the world. The mission of the Montreal Holocaust Museum is to educate people of all ages and backgrounds about the Holocaust, while sensitizing the public to the universal perils of antisemitism, racism, hate and indifference. Located in the West End, the museum also presents seasonal events and exhibitions.
Montreal Science CentreOpen seven days a week, the Montreal Science Centre in the Old Port is a family-oriented museum that, via temporary and permanent interactive exhibitions, explores how science and technology shape our lives. There is a giant IMAX® TELUS Theatre with a massive 36,000-watt sound system, as well as a gift shop and food court. Wheelchairs are also available for free at the box office.
Phi Centre and Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporainThe multi-media, LEED-certified eco-friendly Phi Centre in Old Montreal, and the neighbouring Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain, were founded by visionary Montreal patron of the arts Phoebe Greenberg. The Phi Centre includes an art gallery, cinema, theatre, performance space and production facilities, and presents exhibitions and shows year-round, while the Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain is a private museum with no permanent collection and presents a couple of exhibitions per year.
The Château Ramezay – Historic Site and Museum of MontrealOriginally built in 1705 by Montreal’s then-governor Claude de Ramezay as his personal residence, the Château Ramezay is the oldest private historical museum in Quebec. Permanent and seasonal exhibitions attest to the far-reaching history of Montreal, but none so much as the Château Ramezay itself, which served as the Canadian headquarters of the American Revolutionary Army in 1775 and 1776, and where Benjamin Franklin stayed when he tried to persuade Montreal to join the revolution. In summertime, the Governor’s Garden, located behind the building, evokes the gardens of New France, and comes alive with the Anciennes Troupes Militaires de Montréal parading in period military uniforms.
McCord MuseumThe McCord is a social history museum that celebrates the history, people and communities of Montréal. Comprising one of the largest historical collections in North America, its 1.5 million artefacts include a great photography collection anchored by The Notman Photographic Archives. The McCord presents exciting exhibitions, educational programming and cultural activities year-round, including a summer day camp, music concerts and blockbuster travelling exhibitions. Their hugely popular After Hours at the McCord evenings for young professionals combine cocktails with culture.
Redpath Museum, McGill UniversityOpened in 1882, the retro Redpath Museum of natural history at McGill University is an architectural jewel that looks like it came straight out of an Indiana Jones movie. Its permanent collection contains some three million objects, including Ancient Egyptian mummies, the cast of the Rosetta Stone, a Charles Darwin exhibition, a spectacular minke whale skeleton in its Creatures From the Deep exhibition, as well as its jaw-dropping Gorgosaurus dinosaur in the centre of the museum’s Beaux Arts main gallery.
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This post was written by Canadian freelance writer, editor, journalist, blogger and columnist Richard “Bugs” Burnett , a contributor for Tourisme Montreal. For more exclusive Montreal content, visit their website.