Montréal  (French)
City of Montreal
Ville de Montréal  (French)
From top to bottom, left to right: Downtown Montreal, Notre-Dame Basilica, Olympic Stadium, McGill University, Old Montreal featuring the Clock Tower and Jacques Cartier Bridge at the Fireworks Festival, Saint Joseph's Oratory
Concordia Salus ("well-being through harmony")
Location within urban agglomeration
Location within urban agglomeration
Montreal is located in Quebec
Location within Quebec
Montreal is located in Canada
Location within Canada
Montreal is located in North America
Location within North America
Coordinates: 45°30′32″N 73°33′42″W / 45°30′32″N 73°33′42″W / 45.50889; -73.56167
UAUrban agglomeration of Montreal
FoundedMay 17, 1642
ConstitutedJanuary 1, 2002
 • TypeMontreal City Council
 • MayorValérie Plante
 • Federal riding
 • Prov. riding
 • MPs
 • City431.50 km2 (166.60 sq mi)
 • Land365.13 km2 (140.98 sq mi)
 • Urban1,293.99 km2 (499.61 sq mi)
 • Metro4,604.26 km2 (1,777.71 sq mi)
Highest elevation
233 m (764 ft)
Lowest elevation
6 m (20 ft)
 • City1,704,694
 • Density3,889/km2 (10,070/sq mi)
 • Urban3,519,595
 • Urban density2,719/km2 (7,040/sq mi)
 • Metro4,098,927 (2nd)
 • Metro density890/km2 (2,300/sq mi)
 • Pop 2011–2016
Increase 2.9%
 • Dwellings
Time zoneUTC−5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
Postal code(s)
H (except H7 for Laval)
Area code(s)514 and 438
GDPUS$155.9 billion[13]
GDP per capitaUS$38,867[13]

Montreal is the most populous municipality in the Canadian province of Quebec and the second-most populous municipality in Canada. Originally called Ville-Marie, or "City of Mary",[14] it is named after Mount Royal,[15] the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city. The city is centred on the Island of Montreal, which took its name from the same source as the city,[16][17] and a few much smaller peripheral islands, the largest of which is Île Bizard. It has a distinct four-season continental climate with warm to hot summers and cold, snowy winters.[18]

In 2016, the city had a population of 1,704,694,[9] with a population of 1,942,044 in the urban agglomeration, including all of the other municipalities on the Island of Montreal.[9] The broader metropolitan area had a population of 4,098,927.[11] French is the city's official language[19][20] and is the language spoken at home by 49.8% of the population of the city, followed by English at 22.8% and 18.3% other languages (in the 2016 census, not including multi-language responses).[9] In the larger Montreal Census Metropolitan Area, 65.8% of the population speaks French at home, compared to 15.3% who speak English.[11] The agglomeration Montreal is one of the most bilingual cities in Quebec and Canada, with over 59% of the population able to speak both English and French.[9] Montreal is the second largest primarily French-speaking city in the developed world, after Paris.[21][22][23][24] It is situated 258 kilometres (160 mi) south-west of Quebec City.

Historically the commercial capital of Canada, Montreal was surpassed in population and in economic strength by Toronto in the 1970s.[25] It remains an important centre of commerce, aerospace, transport, finance, pharmaceuticals, technology, design, education, art, culture, tourism, food, fashion, gaming, film, and world affairs. Montreal has the second-highest number of consulates in North America,[26] serves as the location of the headquarters of the International Civil Aviation Organization, and was named a UNESCO City of Design in 2006.[27][28] In 2017, Montreal was ranked the 12th most liveable city in the world by the Economist Intelligence Unit in its annual Global Liveability Ranking,[29] and the best city in the world to be a university student in the QS World University Rankings.[30]

Montreal has hosted multiple international conferences and events, including the 1967 International and Universal Exposition and the 1976 Summer Olympics.[31][32] It is the only Canadian city to have held the quadrennial Summer Olympics. In 2018, Montreal was ranked as an Alpha− world city.[33] As of 2016 the city hosts the Canadian Grand Prix of Formula One,[34] the Montreal International Jazz Festival[35] and the Just for Laughs festival.[36]


In the Mohawk language the island is called Tiohtià:ke Tsi. This name refers to the Lachine Rapids to the island's southwest or Ka-wé-no-te. It means "a place where nations and rivers unite and divide".[citation needed]

In the Ojibwe language the land is called Mooniyaang[37] which means "the first stopping place"[citation needed] and relates to the seven fires prophecy.

European settlers from La Flèche in the Loire valley first named their new town, founded in 1642, Ville Marie ("City of Mary"),[14] named for the Virgin Mary.[38] Its current name comes from Mount Royal,[15] the triple-peaked hill in the heart of the city. According to one theory, the name derives from mont Réal, (Mont Royal in modern French, although in 16th-century French the forms réal and royal were used interchangeably); Cartier's 1535 diary entry, naming the mountain, refers to le mont Royal.[39] One possibility, noted by the Government of Canada on its web site concerning Canadian place names, speculates that the name as it is written nowadays originated when an early map of 1556 used the Italian name of the mountain, Monte Real;[40] the Commission de toponymie du Québec has dismissed this idea as a misconception.[39]