Originally intended for the 1976 Montreal Olympics, the Montreal Tower Observatory is world’s tallest inclined tower, standing at an unprecedented 45-degree angle. A funicular cable ride to the observatory offers panoramic views of up to 50 miles (80 kilometers), from beyond the St. Lawrence River to Mount Royal.
As one of the city’s top landmarks, the Montreal Tower Observatory is included on Tourisme Montreal’s attractions pass, which grants access to a bundle of attractions at a discounted rate. This pass includes a range of city highlights, from the Montreal Biodôme to Saint Joseph’s Oratory.
Guided tours of Montreal’s Olympic Park are offered daily at various departure times, and typically include the Botanic Garden, Olympic Stadium, Planetarium, and Musée Dufresne-Nincheri. An option to upgrade includes an admission ticket to the Montreal Tower Observatory.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Purchase your admission ticket online in advance to skip long entrance queues.
- Don’t forget comfortable shoes and layers, as the Olympic Park is large and some highlights are outdoors.
- Street signs, including parking and traffic signs, are written in French.
- Café In Vivo and the Botanic Garden Restaurant offer plenty of refueling options.
- The Montreal Tower and Observatory are wheelchair accessible.
How to Get There
Located 4.2 miles (6.8 kilometers) from Downtown in Montreal’s Hochelaga-Maisonneuve neighborhood, the Montreal Tower Observatory is easily accessible using public transit. The nearest stops are Pie-IX and Viau metro stations on the green 2 line, located directly in front of Olympic Park. If traveling by car, Montreal Tower is accessible via Sherbrooke Street East. Olympic Park has eight parking lots available at a per diem rate.
When to Get There
Each season offers a different view from the observatory, which operates year-round. Winter provides panoramic views of the city under a blanket of snow; autumn rings in a fiery display of Mount Royal’s foliage. Every first Friday of the month from May to October, the Olympic Park hosts Québec’s biggest food truck festival. For a birds’-eye view of the gastronomic delights below, tack on a trip to the observatory.
Montreal’s Olympic Disaster
The Montreal Tower and Observatory were supposed to be finished before the opening ceremony of the 1976 Summer Olympics. Due to a long list of unforeseen issues—including brutal winter weather, an unusual architectural design, strikes, and escalating costs—the tower's construction was abandoned. After another series of setbacks, including a fire that set the tower ablaze, it officially opened in 1987—11 years after its intended completion.