It isn’t all just about the boys and their toys. The Canadian Grand Prix, in Montreal June 6-8, also features fun, family-friendly events across the city, in addition to Montreal’s expansive array of other entertainment options.
The good times get rolling with the annual three-day Crescent Street Grand Prix Festival, which this year celebrates 15 years. Bands, DJs and other live entertainment, race car displays, driver autograph sessions and the Pit Stop Challenge (see how fast you can change a tire, pit crew style) are prominent components of this popular – and free – outdoor extravaganza.
Another perennial fave is the four-day Grand Prix on the Main, which closes off a lively resto- and pub-packed section of St. Laurent Blvd. (known to locals as The Main). It features culturally diverse food kiosks, animated street performers and a vibrant range of entertainment that’ll smoke your tires.
For those looking for more outdoorsy, but no-less-action-packed adventure, Rafting Montreal offers white water rafting, jet boating and, new this year, river boarding. Close to downtown, it’s a splashy blast for the whole family (though there are some minimum age restrictions). And for those who also like a little fun with their fishing, Montreal Fishing Tours is offering a special Grand Prix, all-day fishing package that includes a 21-foot bass boat outfitted with a, hold onto your rods, 250 HP engine that’s guaranteed to get your motor running.
Another safe bet for waterborne fun is H2O Adventures situated on the tree-lined shore of the historic Lachine Canal. Feel like kayaking? H2O has over 30 different kinds of solo and tandem kayaks at the ready. Pedal-boating more your speed? Both two- and four-seaters are primed for your pleasure. And if that doesn’t float your boat, take a load off in the larger electric-powered boats, which can seat up to five comfortably.
If you and yours prefer your rides on terra firma, the always-bustling Old Port, directly adjacent to Old Montreal, has a plethora of rental services for every whim and fancy, from Segways to inline skates, from bicycle to quadricycles. It’s also the home of the expansive Montreal Science Centre, and its educational and amusing interactive displays, which also houses an IMAX theatre.
Speaking of interactive displays, the Hotel Intercontinental is getting into the spirit of things with a giant F1 track replica, complete with speedy toy race cars, in the hotel’s lobby. And while the kids are checking out the track, the adults can chill at the Intercontinental’s atmospheric absinthe bar Sarah B. while enjoying a range of imported beers for the special promotional price of only $5.
However, if that doesn’t satisfy the F1 über-fans in your family, take a spin out to Montreal’s Vortex Racing, who operate high-end F1 racing simulators that come very close to the real thing. Vortex Racing’s facilities in the Montreal suburb of Dorval are one-of-a-kind in North America, and feature eight professional-level driving simulators. These are divided into six single-seaters and two three-seaters, and at an estimated $400,000 apiece, Vortex hasn’t skimped. It’s fast fun for the whole family, provided the kids are over the age of 18.
Book your stay in Montréal for F1 Grand Prix weekend! See our hotel deals and get a booklet filled with discount coupons for activities and attractions valued up to $450!