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Montreal or Halifax, which should we move to?

F.VF.V Registered User regular
edited July 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
In a couple of years once i finish my undergraduate degree here in the UK, me and my wife (who is canadian) will be moving back to canada, where we both plan on doing our masters. We have planned on Halifax and Dalhousie university for a while, but we have recently been thinking about Montreal and Mcgill.

I'm just looking for any information and advice on which city we should move to, thoughts or experiences of living in these cities, and of these universities, and general pro's and con's of each.

F.V on


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    Grid SystemGrid System Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Can either of you speak French? While you can get by in Montreal without it, a lot of its charm comes from French and francophone culture.

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    SoggychickenSoggychicken Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Montreal is a great place to live. A lot of culture and fun things to do. It is also one of the cheapest large cities I have lived in. Highly recommended, especially if you can speak French.

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    ChuweroChuwero Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I have only been to Montreal a few times; I have spent more time in Halifax.

    How big of a city do you want to live in? Montreal is ten times the size of Halifax.

    Halifax always seems like a very large 'college town' (in a good way) to me rather than the small city that it is; if you want a sophisticated metropolitan environment, go to Montreal.

    The choice of university is probably more important than the city; hopefully someone else can give help with that.

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    CorvusCorvus . VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I've lived in Halifax, and even though I haven't spent time in Montreal, I can tell you its a very different environment. Halifax is a smallish city, even though its the biggest place in the Maritimes. The people are very nice, but its probably a much less diverse city than a metropolis like Montreal.

    Dalhousie is a quality school, but the quality of the facilities is very uneven. There's some spectacular stuff, and then there's stuff that looks spectacular on the website, and is very disappointing in person. Some buildings are great and modern, and others look like they haven't been updated since 1970, and very likely haven't. The main library is like a concrete borg cube, with about as much charm. :P Actually, the courtyard inside is kind of cool.

    Whatever you do, do not make your decision without visting the schools and cities in person. It is more than possible to plan a visit to both places on one trip. You can even take the train from Montreal to Halifax or vice versa. I haven't personally done that trip. The main thing that bothered me about living in Halifax was the airport, its way the hell out of town. May be the only airport in the world where you can buy a live lobster to take with you though.

    Also, there are multiple universities in both cities, so keep that mind when planning your Master's degrees.

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    kaliyamakaliyama Left to find less-moderated fora Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Your question is like asking whether you should live in London or Newcastle. People may disagree, but it's going to be a clear answer for most. McGill is a way better university and enjoys a better reputation. I just wiki'd, and McGill crushes Dalhousie in every known league table. You're much better off being in Montreal.

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    HallucinogenHallucinogen Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I've spent time in both cities, and I preferred Montréal. But I liked both. I haven't been to either school so, as has been mentioned, check them out first. The school is the primary concern even if you're moving to live permanently. You can switch cities after school, but you can't switch which school you went to after the fact.

    If it makes any difference my sister went to McGill for her master's and enjoyed it. She's now a practicing GP in the states. What are you obtaining a master's in?

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    SatanIsMyMotorSatanIsMyMotor Fuck Warren Ellis Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Both cities are great and offer completely different things. You'll feel a lot less culture shock if you go to Montreal. It's very European both in terms of its aesthetic and people. Having said that, outside of Montreal the province is kind of shitty.

    Halifax is quintessentially a maritime city. Think ocean, seafood, beer, and friendly people. Also, if nature is your thing you'll probably really dig Nova Scotia and the surrounding provinces.

    Both schools are fantastic though. Either way I think you guys will be happy wherever you end up.

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    aydaayda Registered User new member
    I wanna go to Ecole polytechnique for a PhD and I was thinking of Dalhousie too, but eventually i decided the Montreal but I dont knoe any French !!!! so was it the best choice for me??? I wanna live in a big city full of different cultures and a great night life...
    so I choose the Montreal

This discussion has been closed.