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Newly revamped heritage sites Dorchester Square and Place du Canada offer beauty, history and a touch of whimsy in the heart of Montréal.
Initially known as Dominion Square, the southern part was re-christened Place du Canada and the northern section Dorchester Square in 1989. Together, these two parks comprise 11,000 m2 of green space amidst churches and superb buildings, old and new.
Dorchester Square, conveniently located next to Montréal’s main tourism office and steps away from Sainte-Catherine Street and Mary Queen of the World Cathedral, was formerly the site of the Montréal Catholic Cemetery between 1799 and 1854.
Offering an impressive Victorian-style fountain designed to appear cut in half, and two arched metal and wood footbridges, the Square is a popular spot at lunchtime in particular, attracting hundreds of people each day. To this, add wide sidewalks and the restoration of the ancient vespasienne to complete the allure of this important public place.
For its part, Place du Canada features a stately monument to Sir John A. MacDonald, a father of Confederation and first prime minister of Canada, with ambling granite walkways and park benches beneath leafy trees.