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  • Writer's pictureItsik Romano

7 free historical sites to visit on Canada Day

Admission is free for visitors of all ages on Canada Day (Friday, July 1, 2022) in the 171 national historic sites, 47 national parks, five national marine conservation areas, and one national urban park administered by Parks Canada.

In a recent announcement, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, Steven Guilbeault, encouraged Canadians and international visitors to take advantage of the opportunity to visit some of the most significant locations across the country for free and immerse themselves in nature, culture, and history on this national holiday. Historical canals across the province will also be opened at no cost.

Here is a list of 7 historical sites and locations near the Greater Montreal region (in alphabetical order):

Located 20 kilometers southeast of Montreal, the Chambly Canal National Historic is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts: especially cyclists, boaters, and hikers. It is also possible to observe the nine locks and a bridge that are still operated manually.

Photo: Parks Canada

Fort Chambly is located at the foot of the Richelieu River rapids approximately 30 kilometers southeast of Montreal. The historic site combines an urban park and a fortification preceded by three wooden forts constructed in 1711 to defend the colony. The main components of the original architecture are restored in the fortification.

Photo: Parks Canada

The 1825 structure located in the southwest region of Montreal runs between the Old Port and Lake Saint-Louis. The five-locks waterway traces back to the industrial era. Paddling and camping activities are also offered.

Photo: Parks Canada

The house of Louis-Joseph Papineau, the leader of the Patriotes located in Old Montreal witnessed one of the most troubled times in Quebec history when it has been attacked by the Doric Club, an Anglophone paramilitary organization from the outside.

Photo: Parks Canada

Located on the West Island, the Sainte-Anne-de-Bellevue, which opened in 1843 held a crucial commercial role as it connects the waterway between Montreal and Kingston. Today, it is possible to observe the lock-in operation and the site is used primarily for recreational purposes.

Photo: Parks Canada

Located at the corner of Notre Dame and Berri streets in the historic district of Old Montreal is the only Victorian-style open to the public in the city that was resided by one of the Fathers of Confederation: Sir George-Étienne Cartier.

The stone warehouse constructed in 1803 is strategically located in the heart of Lachine, along the fur trade route. The storage building with a waterfront setting displays the inner workings of one of the most significant commercial actions that shaped Canada.

Parks Canada also offers one year of free admission to new Canadian families through the Institute for Canadian Citizenship’s Canoo mobile app. Admission is also free year-round, for children of ages 17 and under, offering youth an inspiring experience outdoors to discover, connect and reflect upon the cultural heritage and history of Canada.

Visit the Parks Canada website or download the Parks Canada Website for more locations and to plan your trip in advance!

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