My Crazy Mount Royal Sunrise Hike in Montréal!

Did you know that Montréal’s original name was Ville-Marie (City of Mary) but was renamed after Mount Royal!

I was in Montréal for about 41 hours. Even though there was a lot of the city that I really wanted to see, I made sure to make time for some hiking too.

mount royal hike sunrise in autumn bloom

The day I was heading down to Toronto, I decided to wake up very early and hike up Mount Royal. Initially I was planning on riding the bus but found on Google Maps that it would take the same amount of time to walk as it would taking the bus. I decided to take the scenic route and walk. Probably not my best idea. (っ´ω`)ノ(╥ω╥) It was a few minutes past 6AM and it was very, very cold. My goal was to get up to the top before the sun had completely risen.

the climb up Mount Royal

I bought some coffee at a random coffee shop hoping it would keep me warm. The first problem I encountered was not realizing how steep it was just to get to the base of the mount. Montréal is build on the incline of Mount Royal and the roads are in a bit of a slant.

I didn’t factor in how tired I was going to be by walking. At first I thought stairs would be better than a slanted hill but once I got to some stairs, I quickly regretted it. It didn’t help that it was also drizzling at some point. The more I climbed the windier it got.

By the time I got to the stairs in the image on the left, my hands were aching from the cold, my face was dry and I had a runny nose. I was surprised the photo turned out so well because I took it many times before I could get one that was blurry due to my shaking.

It was quite exhausting; the coffee in the end became more hindering than it did warm me up because I had no gloves so my hands were freezing. Once I thought that the climb up was over, I was met with more stairs in the park. Once I got high enough, however the climb became lovelier because of all the autumn leaves. I love fall and one thing that worried me about taking this trip to Canada so late into the autumn season was that I’d miss out on the colorful leaves.

sunrise on the stairs of Mount Royal

While many trees lost their leaves, it was still worth it and I wished I had more time to enjoy the hike. The stairs weren’t the only option to get to the top. You can also take a slightly longer route that snakes up to the top on a slanted plain road. A lot of morning runners and bikers took that route but I thought the stairs would have better angles for photos. Plenty of benches to sit on though, so if you’re looking for a slow walk up, I think it’s a perfect way to go.

I didn’t quite beat the sun but it was still a beautiful sunrise.

Sunrise over Montreal
Would I do this hike again? Definitely.

It’s an amazing and very satisfying sight. I would probably choose to go during a warmer season even though the fall colors were very pretty. I would also choose to spend more time in the city so I could enjoy a relaxed hike up Mount Royal. The hike was very rushed because I had a train to catch and in the end, I still missed my train that morning! ♡ ( ;; ̄З ̄) I eventually made it to Toronto safely.

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