Montréal’s mighty Saint Lawrence River is a landmark both quintessential in Canadian history and intrinsically linked to the city’s culture, health, beauty and livelihood.
French explorer Jacques Cartier was the first European to visit the Saint Lawrence River and to see the Lachine Rapids, arriving in 1535. Prior to that, the valley surrounding the area was home to the Iroquois, Algonquin, Huron, Mohawk, Abnake and Montagnais peoples.
Part of the larger Saint Lawrence Seaway, the river’s significance as a major water route within Canada and the Unites States allowed Montréal to rise prominently as Canada’s principal eastern seaport serving as the main route for the fur trade in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Today, it remains one of the country’s largest ports and an important commercial waterway.
It’s also the perfect playground to walk, hike, or bike the waterfront’s 21 km pathway. Other popular activities include kayaking alongside the rapids, SUP’ing in its warm waters (as I’ve had the pleasure of doing) or taking a city boat cruise tour.