Montreal's distinct, enchanting culture derives from its blending of many worlds. A magnificent fusion of old and new, this Canadian treasure charms visitors and locals alike with its quaint French and modern influences. In fact, more than half of its residents are bilingual, speaking both French and English. Situated along the Saint Lawrence River in Quebec (and technically on an island!), the city invites endless exploration, but the explosive festival scene has become an essential building block in Montreal’s reputation as a cultural powerhouse. The annual International Jazz Festival takes place over the course of 10 days and is recognized as one of the largest jazz festivals in the world. Osheaga is another massive music and arts festival that features emerging talent and international stars across multiple outdoor stages. You also can’t go wrong with the gut-busting Just For Laughs Comedy Festival.